There is nowhere to hide. They just won't stay dead.


The House of the Dead III (ザ・ハウス・オブ・ザ・デッド III Za Hausu obu za Deddo III?) is a horror-themed rail shooting game developed by WOW Entertainment (formerly SEGA AM1) and released by Sega to arcades in 2002. It is the sequel to The House of the Dead 2, and the third game overall in the House of the Dead series.

Set in a post-apocalyptic 2019, the game follows AMS agent Thomas Rogan's disappearance, and his daughter Lisa and former partner G's journey to find him.

The House of the Dead III received generally positive reviews. A spin-off and several console ports were produced. A follow-up and prequel to the game, The House of the Dead 4, was released in 2005.




In a post-apocalyptic 2019, retired AMS agent Thomas Rogan and his team of military commandos raid the EFI Research Facility for the source of humanity's downfall. The raid is botched, as the entire team is killed, leaving only Rogan and team captain Dan Taylor alive. When the duo finds the source, Death, a behemoth in a security guard uniform, kills Taylor and injures Rogan, who is approached by an unknown figure. Contact with him is lost.

Two weeks later, on October 31st[1], Rogan's 20-year-old daughter Lisa and former partner G arrive at the EFI building to search for him. They fight biologically-engineered creatures, including Death twice; the Fool, a deformed sloth; and the mutant plant-like Sun. Along the way, Lisa muses about her and her mother's estranged relationship with Rogan.

Daniel Curien 1st Flashback

A flashback depicting Dr. Curien and his son, Daniel.

Flashbacks depict geneticist Dr. Curien, the perpetrator of the 1998 Curien Mansion incident, in his pursuit to cure his terminally-ill son Daniel.[2] While successful, Curien went mad after his research team abandoned him, producing Magician and Wheel of Fate to "change the future."[3][4][5]

Lisa and G reunite with Rogan, reveals his rescuer to be Daniel Curien himself. While G cares for Rogan, Lisa and Daniel fight to Wheel of Fate's laboratory. Daniel reveals that Wheel of Fate is his father, whose body has undergone a 19-year resurrection process; he prematurely wakes it through hacking. Wheel of Fate seeks mankind's destruction and resurrection. Upon defeat, he laments world overpopulation and begs for his son's forgiveness; Daniel, refusing to recognize the creature as his father, destroys him with Lisa.

While leaving the EFI building, Rogan and G discuss the uncertain future. Rogan is optimistic, stating that it is up to the next generation "to believe in themselves, and walk their own paths."


Depending on the player's performance and routes taken, one of four endings is shown.

  1. Outside, Daniel pauses to face the EFI building and bid his father farewell. Swearing to not let his father's efforts go to waste, Daniel promises to return if "[humans] go down the wrong path again." He and Lisa then leave.
  2. Daniel loses the will to move on and acts erratically. His voice turns deep and monstrous, and a close-up of his face reveals that he has become a creature. Lisa screams in the background.
  3. Lisa sees her car drive away, yet Rogan and G are behind her. It is revealed that a creature is behind the wheel. Lisa and Daniel give pursuit, with the former shouting "Hey, that's my car you slimy bastards! Say your prayers!" (The arcade version changes the first line to "Let's keep after him!") while the two agents watch.
  4. An unknown man in a business suit limps through Wheel of Fate's laboratory to retrieve Daniel's genes. He mutters, "It appears that [Curien] didn't understand its true purpose," and laughs.

New Features

The House of the Dead III brought a lot of new features to the series, including.

  • An End of Level Ranking System
  • A total of four endings
  • A standard weapon that is not a pistol
  • Being prompted to choose your own path
  • Bosses now have an additional attack bar that must be depleted to disrupt their attacks, as opposed to hitting them in their weak spot once.
  • Civilians are no longer present, but certain instances require the player to save their partners (accidentally shooting their partner in those instances does not result in any penalty)
  • A Time Attack mode, where Dr. Curien would give his analysis of the player's performance
  • The Wii version adds the ability to use the gun as a melee attack to block enemy blows, but must be reloaded after every use.
  • In some versions of the game, reloading occurs automatically, no longer requiring the player to shoot off-screen.


Except for the first and the last boss (Death and Wheel of Fate respectively), others can be selected by going through different selectable floors in the facility in game.


The Typing of the Dead II

The Typing of the Dead II is an education game and the sequel to 2001's The Typing of the Dead. While the first game was a reworked version of The House of the Dead 2, replacing the light guns with keyboards but otherwise retaining the same graphics and story, The Typing of the Dead II uses The House of the Dead III as a basis. Characters now wield keyboards shaped like shotguns, and once again wear a battery back with a Dreamcast on their backs. The game was released in arcades in 2007 and ported to the PC in the following year, but only saw a Japanese release.


The House of the Dead III- Early Prototype Trailer

The House of the Dead III- Early Prototype Trailer

An early trailer for III's prototype.

The arcade version was ported to the Xbox game console, as the Chihiro hardware was based on the Xbox's architecture. It was originally marketed as The House of the Dead 3 (lacking the roman numeral) and had cel-shaded graphics. Both were scrapped for no official reason; it has been speculated the change was due to negative fan feedback, and that the art style clashed with the themes, mood, and tone already established in prior House of the Dead games.[6]


  • The new Attack Bar seen during boss battles, in which players must shoot their weakpoint multiple times and deplete it completely in order to disrupt their attacks, is a mechanic that was taken from 2000's Vampire Night, a light-gun arcade shooter co-developed by Sega's Wow Entertainment and Namco. Vampire Night shares enough similarities to The House of the Dead 2 that some considered it a spiritual successor or worthy spin-off prior to HOTD3's announcement. Along the same vein, the "Reload" voice clip from Vampire Night is reused in this game.
  • The original XBox port included a 13-minute preview at the then-upcoming House of the Dead film, including a behind-the-scenes look with input from director Uwe Boll.
  • The XBox version also included a port of the PC version of The House of the Dead 2. When selecting to play it, a unique mini-game would play in which players would time-travel in an elevator from 2019 to 2000, which would occasionally stop for players to shoot zombies and unlock extra content to use in HOTD2's Original Mode. This would be retained in the Wii Compilation.
  • This was the last game where Rikiya Nakagawa served as a producer before stepping down as the head of Sega's Wow Entertainment division. Nakagawa was the producer behind several titles developed by AM1, including the previous two House of the Dead installments, The Typing of the Dead, and Zombie Revenge. Seen as the face of the HOTD series at the time, it was also reported that both he and Peter Moore (the CEO of Sega of America at the time) made cameo appearances in the 2003 film as zombies.


Cel-shaded version


  1. This date is based on The House Of The Dead III Xbox version manual.
  2. The House of the Dead III - First flashback
  3. The House of the Dead III - Second flashback
  4. The House of the Dead III - Third flashback
  5. The House of the Dead III - Fourth flashback
  6. U64 STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS (April 16, 2008). "House Of The Dead 3 [Cell Shading Proto"]. “The causes of abandonment are still unknown, but it is thought that the idea of a graphic “cartoon” in a game as violent as HOTD III would not satisfy the fans, who would definitely prefer “normal” graphics.”
veTHoTD III logocontent
Lisa RoganGThomas RoganDr. CurienDaniel CurienThornheartDan Taylor
Craig • Fenton • Waylon • Kageo • Eunice • Ebitan • Tyrone • Frederic • Charles • Horace • Azteca • Raymond • Cain • Julie • Jodi • Piko • Morris • Hugh • MickeyJohnnyMurrer • Mokin • DevilonRogan CommandosYukio
DeathFoolSunWheel of Fate
ReminiscenceChasing ShadowsBewilderment, Sensory Chaos, and Ultimate Challenge (EFI and DBR facilities - EFI BIO facilities - Information Systems Department)Wheel of Fate
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