Ready to be scared? Horror games tend to make you hide from your enemies and leave you feeling vulnerable. Try to enjoy some of the games on this list at night in a dark room with the lights switched off. If you dare, play these games when no one else at home. But remember, the experiences may haunt you long after you play. Horror games are not for the weak of heart.
There are all kinds of media to tell horrific stories, but games may be the most chilling medium of all due to the level of immersion. Horror games are not for the weak of heart. There are a lot of good horror games and this list contains some of the best titles in the entire genre.
Back to the past
In 2005, the game F.E.A.R. First Encounter Assault Recon released. The story revolves around a supernatural phenomenon. The F.E.A.R. team is assembled to deal with the circumstances and given one simple mission: evaluate the threat and eliminate the intruders at any cost. The result is a good horror atmosphere with some frightening moments. The supernatural elements make it a weird experience. Even after years, the game remains a great first-person shooter with tough and tactical opponents.
Before the release of F.E.A.R. First Encounter Assault Recon, a reboot redefined the rules of the horror genre. Doom 3 is a horror first-person shooter with a gameplay style similar to its predecessors. The corridors and different rooms in the station are more compact and a true claustrophobic nightmare in the dark. With such restricted space, most encounters become far more threatening. The gore and demonic enemies make Doom 3 a scary experience.
Storytelling at its best
More recent horror games take a different approach to storytelling. Until Dawn is an interactive drama survival horror game. The story follows eight young adults who have to survive on Blackwood Mountain when their lives are threatened. All playable characters can survive or die, depending on the choices you make in the game. This creates a feeling of paranoia seen you never know the direct outcome of your choices during critical moments.
After the release of Until Dawn, the developers created The Dark Pictures Anthology. A series of interactive drama survival horror games set in different settings. The Dark Pictures Anthology – Man of Medan tells the story of five individuals and an underwater diving expedition. In the course of events, the group enters the Indonesian Ourang Medan, a large ghost ship, where their worst nightmares become true. Life-or-death choices could either lead them to freedom or cause them to suffer fatal consequences.
The Dark Pictures Anthology – Little Hope is the second game in the series and presented as an unfinished story in the possession of the omnipresent Curator, who requests your assistance in completing it. The game follows college students and their professor who become trapped in a fictional town in New England. Together, they search for a means of escape whilst visions from the past haunt them from the shadows.
Survival horror games in different settings
If you are looking for a traditional survival horror game experience, there are some others games ready to scare you. Resident Evil 7 – Biohazard is a first-person survival horror game set in an abandoned house. In the game, you unfold the story of the infected Baker family and try to escape mutated creatures and family members.
Alien Isolation is also a first-person survival horror game and follows the story of engineer Amanda Ripley, the daughter of Alien protagonist Ellen Ripley, as she investigates the disappearance of her mother. In the game you have to survive while being chased by an alien. There is an emphasis on stealth and survival horror gameplay, requiring the player to avoid and outsmart the dangerous creature with a motion tracker. You never know where the alien is and you often need to hide.
Outlast is a first-person survival horror game set in a psychiatric hospital named Mount Massive Asylum, located deep in the mountains of Lake County, Colorado. You are a freelance investigative journalist who receives an anonymous email that inhumane experiments happen in the psychiatric hospital. After you enter the building, you have to survive in the dark corridors with a camera as helpful tool.
Urban legends and creepypastas retold
Of course, this list would not be complete without the Slender Man games. Slender – The Eight Pages is a free-to-play indie-developed first-person survival horror game set deep in a forest with abandoned buildings. You have to find eight pages while being followed by a tall man wearing a black costume with a white face and no facial features. As told in the urban legend, the character is known for the abduction of countless children in mysterious settings.
A sequel to this game was released and known as Slender – The Arrival. In this survival horror game, you search the wooded area for clues to find your lost friend. If you played Slender – The Eight Pages and are looking for the next fear of the urban legend Slender Man, the game will not disappoint and increase your heart rate. Remember, never look at the Slender Man.
Remember to hide in the dark from monsters
Amnesia – The Dark Descent is a survival horror adventure game. You must explore a dark castle while avoiding various dangers and solving puzzles. As you makes your way through the castle, you learn more about its mysteries but there are other creatures lurking in the dark. If a monster sees you, it will chase you until you evades its sight. You are not able to fight these monsters, so you must either avoid being seen or run and hide.
In addition to a health indicator, your sanity must be managed. The darkness itself is one of your enemies. Sanity is reduced by staying in the dark for too long, witnessing unsettling events or looking directly at monsters. Low sanity causes hallucinations and a complete depletion results in death in higher difficulties.
Amnesia – Rebirth is a survival horror game and serves as a sequel to Amnesia – The Dark Descent. The game is similar to its predecessor and You must use light sources, such as your own fuel lamp to search the environment, find ways to progress and discover notes to learn more about the story.
A psychological gameplay experience
The psychological action thriller game Alan Wake is a personal favourite of mine. The story follows the best-selling novelist Alan Wake as he tries to find his wife. His search turns up pages from a manuscript entitled Departure, written by Alan Wake, but he does not even remember writing it.
As the darkness stalks the fictional town of Bright Falls, Washington, you try to uncover its mysteries and find out the pages of the manuscript unfold the story and the writer himself became the protagonist in the plot of his latest novel. In the game, the darkness is able to take over humans, animals and objects. You never know how the darkness will show itself and its constant presence has a strong psychological influence.
Not for the weak of heart
These are some of the scarriest games. If you think you will not be scared of these horror experiences, please enjoy these games in the dark with headphones. The one thing these games have in common, is that they are designed to make you feel like anything could be lurking around the next corner.
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Disclaimer. This post contains copyrighted images from Alien Isolation, a video game developed by Creative Assembly and published by Sega. The fair use of copyrighted works for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting or research is not considered as an infringement of copyright.