News Article

No Fatal Frame IV for North America

Posted by Christopher Clark

Tecmo's survival-horror title denied a stateside release by Nintendo.

Wii-exclusive survival-horror title Fatal Frame IV: Mask Of The Lunar Eclipse has been out in Japan since late July. Co-developed by Tecmo (Ninja Gaiden, Dead Or Alive) and Grasshopper Manufacture (Killer7, Contact, No More Heroes) and published by Nintendo, many assumed a worldwide release was inevitable. An official statement from Tecmo, however, confirms that Fatal Frame will not be coming to North America. The statement reads as follows:

Nintendo holds the publishing rights to 'Fatal Frame Wii,' which was developed by Tecmo LTD. and Grasshopper Manufacture and released in Japan on July 31, 2008. Nintendo of America has since then decided not to publish the title in North America – consequently, the title will not be released in this territory. As the owner of the IP, Tecmo feels very unfortunate that the fans of the series in North America will not have a chance to play the game, but respects the final decision made by Nintendo of America.

European gamers should remain hopeful, though, as a full-page advertisement for*Fatal Frame IV* has been spotted in a recent French Nintendo mag:


The caption translates to "They Will Haunt Your Wii Next Month", suggesting a May release. Nintendo of Europe released a statement claiming the ad was "a mistake" and that there were "no plans" for a European release, but this is the same company that denied Pokémon Platinum existed until six weeks from release, so take from that what you will.

Fatal Frame IV is the second high-profile game in recent months to be denied a release by Nintendo of America, following Disaster: Day Of Crisis which was released late last year in Japan, Europe and Oceania but left unreleased in North America due to lower-than-expected sales. It's not often I get to say this as a gamer, but I'm glad I live in Australia.


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User Comments (27)



Sean_Aaron said:

So it appears NoA is using Europe as a test bed for Japanese titles it's unsure of? I can live with that...



Corbs said:

I can't....I'm getting sick and tired of these companies not bringing these Japanese titles to the US. Like Deathsmiles, why can some company that's just going to throw money at a garbage title not throw that same money on a quality shooter like Deathsmiles. And if you're not going to do that, at least make these consoles region-free so gamers can import the titles they want.



Mopsical said:

YES! It could be coming to Europe! IN YOUR...

I'm very, very sorry, Americans.



Golgo said:

This practise is just odd. Why would a company go to expense and bother of localization across several countries/languages/censorship bodies in Europe, and neglect the relatively simple localization in the US/Canada? I doubt anyone outside of Japan is going to see this. Luckily I still have a 'virgin' copy (not sure if that's appropriate word in the context!) of 'Fatal Frame: Crimson Butterfly' sitting beside my PS2.



Firkraag said:

Phew, I was under the impression coming in here that no US release = no EU release. If it wouldnt get released i would definately have imported it.



Objection said:

This really pisses me off when the Wii is region-coded. I want Disaster and I want FFIV. I don't want Punch-Out or Excitebots; those look like mediocre updates to games I don't care about much in my eyes. Nintendo, what's in your head? It's not like you wouldn't make money on these, maybe just not the millions you're used to. Do something for your fans for once.



Starwolf_UK said:

At least it is easy to get Wii discs region free (of course being in Euorpe I don't want discs but WiiWare and te Wii shop is region locked!).

Still I'm confused. What benefit does NOA get by squatting on the pulbishing rights? What message does this send to 3rd parties thinking of having Nintendo publish their games? To me it sends the message of, Nintendo might deny your game being published in a region responsible for a lot of sales so why bother?

That will bite Nintendo in the back. The likes of Fragile and Fatal Frame 4 will be a thing of the past.

Still I find it odd how everyone trusts ONM of all magazines about Fatal Frame 4 coming to Europe. After all, this is the same magazine that reviewed Drill Dozer for Europe (it never came out) and told us Metroid Dread was coming very soon.



RevolverLink said:

Wasn't Reggie just bitching about Capcom not bringing RE5 to the Wii last week? Yeah, screw you NOA. I guess I should start looking at the Homebrew Channel now...



Terra said:

I'm not a big fan of Fatal Frame but i understand many US gamers will be disappointed. Then again, if Europe do get this, it would help make up for all those games Europe didn't get, that all those games US Gamers got.



wanderlustwarrior said:

I'm inclined to agree with ObjectionBlaster and RevolverLink. I personally wouldn't have played this game, but would have still supported its release. I wish Nintendo actually took its own advice and those of its fans. If they don't support the fans, we should at least get the opportunity to experience something that we would have supported. Sometimes it seems that Nintendo puts more effort into shutting down the homebrew channel for importers than into actually getting games into multiple regions.



Moai_Head said:

@Corbie - Deathsmiles could have been region-free but Cave decided against it for whatever reason. As far as 360 and region-loocks go, it's left entirely upto the developer.

@Starwolf_UK - I don't believe the scan is from ONM. I do have the name of it (I think, may have deleted it) but it wasn't ONM.



Atlantis1982 said:

Lovely, there goes one horror title I will not see over here. What is it this time, Reggie, the sound quality crappy? To think, most of us Amercians respected you, but clearly this is the reason why the Nintendo Wii is getting such a bad rep from serious companies while Nintendo of Japan have to suffer the bad rep as they, even Europe, are doing things right.

And they wonder why they have to deal with the Homebrew Channel.



WarioFan63 said:

With all the talk recently of NCL being the ones who decide what comes out....its still possible thats true. NoA having to ask NCL if its cool with them if they can have Fatal Frame 4 over for dinner. NCL says "No, youre grounded. You can't have friends over." NoA relaying that message back to Tecmo. Then they trade desserts the next day at lunchtime.



Ricardo91 said:

Damn. Another quality Wii game not seeing the light of day in America. Sigh...
They keep great Japanese games from reaching out shores, yet they let all that shovelware crap pollute the market. Disgusting...

I thinking I ought to check out that homebrew channel doohickey...



Atlantis1982 said:

Honestly, I am now afraid of the possibilities of No More Heroes 2 if this keeps up.

If it doesn't show up, will I sell my Wii; god no. But the next console generation; no thanks on Nintendo Wii HD, I will probably move back to PC only.



Moai_Head said:

@Atlantis1992 - there's no need to worry. No More Heroes was not and will probably never be a Nintendo-published title, and the publishers of the original game have stated that they were extremely pleased with the sales of the original, so there is no risk of losing NMH2. You can quote me on that.



Chipmunk777 said:

why? ugh..... how ridiculous! Do they not think it would make money? Or does NoA just hate money?



Atlantis1982 said:

That is true, kind of forgot the likes of DDOC and FF4 (Fatal Frame) are Nintendo published, not the likes of NMH:DS. Still, sigh...

Wish NoA wasn't full of fail sometimes.



AVahne said:

sigh,someone needs to go to Reggie,and slap him.NoA is denying the gamers of the games we WANT.sheesh while Nintendo of Japan loves money,it seems NoA hates it



Chrono_Cross said:

With Fatal Frame IV now not coming to U.S. along Disaster Day of Crisis, who knows what`s the fate of Monster Hunter 3?



AVahne said:

hmmm,i did a little research,it seems that the game actually has quite a few bugs.maybe hopefully after the game has been fixed and the control issues are changed or if motion plus capability has been added,maybe NoA will reconsider



Objection said:

So as a result of this and Disaster being MIA in the USA (pun), I'm considering homebrew. you can find my (and others') thoughts in a Wii forum thread.



XCWarrior said:

NOA is really confusing sometimes. This is a perfect example.

Purely core title - apparently that is a no go here in the USA.



space_jesus said:

Yes, this doesn't get a release, whilst countless bits of shovelware deluge the market.

Well done Nintendo.


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