Generally favorable reviews - based on 46 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 46
  2. Negative: 0 out of 46
Buy On
  1. Fatal Frame 3 is horror at its best, minus any cheap scares. It does an outstanding job of creeping you out while spinning a deep and distressing story that will get under your skin.
  2. A supremely worthy successor to the most-frightening throne.
  3. Computer Games Magazine
    The actual story is as sad as it is malevolent. [Jan 2006, p.88]
  4. Fatal Frame III really ties the entire series together and provides a good and complex plot with plenty of scares and frantic moments.
  5. A fantastic game; you probably won't play a scarier title in the survival horror genre. And if you can forgive the minor niggles you're in for a wholesome and character building experience.
  6. An appealing game for the 13 or so hours that it lasts. The storyline and atmosphere is perfect and the gameplay is solid for the most part.
  7. I had a great time with Fatal Frame III despite the aging controls and unoriginal gameplay.
  8. I loved playing the game--it’s scary as hell. The graphics, gameplay, presentation, and sound are decent and they work very well together.
  9. A quality title that doesn't necessarily stray from the proven groundwork laid down by its predecessors, but still manages to give you a good scare.
  10. A unique approach to the genre, the series proves that an endless supply of undead to fight isn’t always scarier than an empty hallway in a deserted mansion.
  11. A great horror game for PS2 owners and anyone who likes a good ghost story, but fans may find it to be a little too mired in its series's formula.
  12. Those passionate for an escapade into cursed manors and the spirit world will find The Tormented equally as refreshing as its predecessors.
  13. 82
    A little gem of a game, one which proves the power and intensity of effect that some games can exert on the players.
  14. Not only are the characters sluggish but the game is very fussy about triggering events. You have to be standing in the perfect spot to do things such as open a door or pick up a key.
  15. 80
    This is great gaming, great art, and a great way to give yourself the creeps while fumbling around with the oddest virtual camera you've ever handled.
  16. PSM Magazine
    However, "not quite as good as the best ever" is still pretty damn good. [Holiday 2005, p.84]
  17. 80
    While it's an interesting idea, the abrupt changes in pace really kills the excitement level.
  18. 80
    Although Fatal Frame III will simultaneously delight and scare the bejesus out of fans of the series, Tecmo will need to take that next big step in "Fatal Frame IV" to keep this innovative series at the top of the survival-horror heap.
  19. Controlling the characters is still quite awkward in that old Resident Evil kind of way but the real treat comes in the form of the Camera Obscura and the fact that you can play as two other characters.
  20. 100% guaranteed to creep you out, Fatal Frame III combines the best parts of the last two games into a story that helps wrap up most loose ends nicely. It's not terribly new, but it is very, very scary.
  21. Who knew the camera could be this powerful? Tecmo comes up with the perfect shot, and you'll be clicking away like a Hollywood paparazzi in this genuinely scary adventure.
  22. Standing back from the relatively minor niggles and the impatient desire for Tecmo to push on with the series in a slightly more forward-looking direction, it's still a labour of love playing a title that leaves you lying awake at night pondering on every palpitating detail.
  23. 80
    Tecmo have done an excellent job in creating a truly epic storyline that, while original, also binds together with the other titles in the series.
  24. AceGamez
    I'll just issue a warning that this game isn't for the faint hearted - don't buy it in haste, or you'll have plenty of time to repent at leisure when it's sat in your PS2, not getting played, because you dare not unpause it.
  25. If it is the last in the series it’s truly a shame. But Project Zero 3: The Tormented definitely goes out with a bang... a big spooky bang.
  26. 80
    One of the better horror games out there and will definitely give you a fright factor, definitely recommended for horror fans.
  27. One hell of a game. Fans of the series will find answers to some of their questions and find new ones to ponder over by the game’s close, while gamers unfamiliar with the Camera Obscura would do well to check it out right after the first two. It’s chilling, it’s engrossing and there’s even extra unlockable content.
  28. 78
    In a world with "Resident Evil 4" and "Ties That Bind," its sluggish movement and less responsive controls are becoming harder to forgive with time -- especially when coupled with a heavy amount of backtracking (which The Tormented has) and long moments of build-up between screams.
  29. Game Informer
    It's just not very scary. [Dec 2005, p.171]
  30. Enjoyment of the game's dark subject matter is diluted slightly by some awkward controls and strange pacing, but there are still plenty of good chills to be had.
  31. 75
    In terms of sheer creepiness only "Silent Hill" can give it a run for its money, and Fatal Frame inspires dread in such a different way that it's really worth experiencing.
  32. Play Magazine
    Capturing images of the dead is the name of the game in Fatal Frame, but it's not as easy as it sounds. [Dec 2005, p.63]
  33. A nice departure from the horror game norm. Having a huge arsenal of weapons at one’s disposal tends to give players a sense of empowerment even if all of hell is on their tail.
  34. It has just enough to keep you enthralled despite these shortcomings, yet the relatively low reply value means that it is not a title you’ll keep coming back to time after time.
  35. Frame's spooky atmosphere and subtle use of ambient noise and music build a sense of mounting terror that makes the actual enemy and cutscene scares all the more pants-wetting.
  36. It's certainly a quality product, but the stiff controls, the back tracking, and the predictability is soooo 2004.
  37. The Tormented may read more as a mystery than a truly frightening horror story but, if it’s to be a conclusion to this dark and lonely diversion from the beaten track, it will be a fitting and deserving one. [Jan 2005, p.87]
  38. The slow pace may not be to everyone's taste but this game is a must for horror buffs.
  39. Yes, the atmosphere is thicker than Pete Burns' lippy, and sure, this is fantastic hairraising fare, but it is hard to shake the feeling that the bare bones of The Tormented - spooky exploration mixed with shadowy combat - has been done much better elsewhere, and this feels antiquated and cumbersome and in comparison.
  40. Official Playstation 2 Magazine UK
    It's not perfect but it's creepy. The mix of investigation and scores easily outweighs the clunky controls and occasional lulls in the action. [Mar 2006, p.105]
  41. If only the same amount of effort was put into the actual game play as was put into making it so beautifully disturbing to look at, you’d probably have a near flawless result , as it is the lack of mobility and annoying combat situations are just too irritating to ignore.
  42. It isn’t 2001 anymore and what once seemed fresh is now starting to whiff a bit; the play mechanics are beginning to creak with age and consequently you may ultimately find yourself more irritated than terrified.
  43. Genre fans will rejoice in its depth and should grab it straightaway.
  44. Most adventure gamers will enjoy the frequent scares and pretty scenes of Fatal Frame III. However, the slow pacing and general lack of innovation to gameplay, scenery, or story keeps this picture just slightly out of focus.
  45. 60
    The sights, sounds, and feel of the game are so similar to the last two games that you’ll find the entire thing less scary. Enemies will feel less threatening, locations will remind you of past locations, and the whole thing will lose some of its edge.
  46. 60
    This game is strictly for die-hard fans of the Fatal Frame series and graphics whores everywhere. Everyone else can easily find better offerings in the survival horror sub-genre.

Awards & Rankings

#52 Most Discussed PS2 Game of 2005
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 73 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 64 out of 73
  2. Negative: 3 out of 73
  1. DanielPereira
    May 23, 2008
    So so scary!! I tell you i can´t play it by myself in the dark! I completed the game playng in daylight. I can´t play it at night.So so scary!! I tell you i can´t play it by myself in the dark! I completed the game playng in daylight. I can´t play it at night. It creps me out. But some day i´ll do IT! Anyway this game is so crepy but also a great game! Fantastic game really. Full Review »
  2. IchigoTahata
    May 4, 2008
    Probably the best horror game i have ever played. No matter how many times i play it, I still jump out of my seat. I think this is the best inProbably the best horror game i have ever played. No matter how many times i play it, I still jump out of my seat. I think this is the best in the series. You get to play as three different characters and see each characters way of surviving the house. It has a creepy atmosphere , a great storyline and uniqe characters and ghost. The only problem I had with the game was that most the time the characters sound like they are speaking though a crappy microphone but that's it and i highly recommend it to any survival horror fan and the best time to play it? At night with all the lights off hehe. Full Review »
  3. SabrinaW.
    Mar 18, 2007
    This game is the best survival horror game yet! Fatal Frame and Fatal Frame II was pretty scary, but they were nothing like this game. Fatal This game is the best survival horror game yet! Fatal Frame and Fatal Frame II was pretty scary, but they were nothing like this game. Fatal Frame III has great graphics, of course, cause the Ps2 has better graphics than xbox, although I think this game is on xbox. It has great controls, great combat, nice and fast, and I somewhat seem to get more Fatal Frames than on the other two. It is spooky, but you will need a walkthrough with it. It is the scariest game I have ever played. It is right next to Tekken 5 on my favorites list. Everyone should own Fatal Frame III. The good thing is you run into alot of ghosts, every second you walk, unlike Fatal Frame, Fatal frame lacked ghost combat a little bit. If you think Silent Hill 4 is scary, play this one! You will be horrified every second of gameplay! And every fatal frame story is in one! Excellent story. If it happened in real life, it would be horrifying. And Miku with Rei! That is so cool. Rei and Miku are my favorites. Get this game! It deserves a ten! Full Review »