So about Fatal Frame, eh?
After loving Fatal Frame II to pieces, which is an odd emotion to attach to a horror game, I was not too surprised that I thoroughly enjoyed the original Fatal Frame, with the exception of one notable segment very close to the end where you have to fight four, well, rather tough ghosts – though I hesitate to call them bosses – which came right at a point where I happened to be almost completely out of healing items.
So it was really rough and I had to do it over a few times before I got it.
On the other hand, the final fight of the game was done really well. The game recognizes that, well, it’s the last bit of the game and you might be running a LITTLE low on resources as you come to the end of the game, so it actually takes pity on you and hands you just enough film and health to fight the last fight, even if you’re otherwise running dry.
I did have to do it over once, but I won’t blame the game for that.
I tried for a bit of a change of pace after that and started Lego Indiana Jones, and it really wasn’t grabbing me. Unfortunately, while I liked Lego Star Wars an awful lot, I find that I’ve fallen into the trap of buying progressively less enjoyable sequels. I own Lego Star Wars I & II, Lego Batman, and Lego Indy, and honestly I’m kind of dreading trying to play through all of Lego Indy and haven’t been able to even get through the first level of Lego Batman.
So I started Fatal Frame III instead and will let you know how that goes. I’ve played about an hour so far and I’m noticing a few things:
1) I still miss the FPS mode from the Xbox version of Crimson Butterfly, BUT at least the game’s controls are very customizable – so I can always have movement on the left stick and look on the right stick.
2) I’m also really seeing the difference between PS2 visuals and Xbox visuals. I mean, the PS2 graphics are certainly adequate, but there’s a… it’s hard to describe. It’s like the Xbox versions did shadows better, which means a lot in an atmospheric game.
3) I’m really glad I played through FF 1 & 2 before starting this. I played through FF2 without ever having played the first game, and that wasn’t a problem. FF3 is, so far, full of references to both older games.
4) Speaking of which, both older FF games DID have happy endings, if you played through them at higher difficulty levels, but in the world of FF3, those happy endings are ignored.
5) The game goes back and forth between the real world and a dream world and it’s a big change. I’m used to being stuck in crumbling ruined mansions from beginning to end, so the bits where you are running around your tastefully furnished house (with cat!) and not being chased by ghosts are a little odd.
6) On the other hand, there’s a lot more backstory for the assorted ghosts you run into, which can be interesting to read and which wouldn’t make sense if you weren’t occasionally popping back to reality.