Why it’s scary: In Outlast, you’re an investigative journalist entering into an insane asylum armed with nothing more than your wits and a night vision camera. Unlike most games, you cannot engage in combat and instead have to run or hide to avoid the terrors lurking in the dark. Just be careful to use your camera carefully – the batteries don’t last very long.
Available on: PC, PS4, and Xbox One.
Why it’s scary: Hideo Kojima and Guillermo del Toro’s “playable teaser” for the now-cancelledSilent Hills places you in a single, infinitely looping hallway. Each successfully completed loop layers on a new set of changes: from unsettling lighting, to obscure writing coating the walls, and the presence of a ghost named Lisa.. You cannot defend yourself nor can you die. All you must do is progress through each series of hallways no matter how terrifying they become.
Why it’s scary: While the whole Silent Hill franchise is pretty unsettling, it’s the second installment that remains the best and most disturbing. You play as James Sunderland, a man who returns to the abandoned town of Silent Hill after receiving a letter written by his deceased wife. As you descend deeper into the town, you encounter deformed creatures like Pyramid Head and the undead nurses. But it’s James’s personal demons, which are brought to life by the empty town of Silent Hill, that are the most threatening.
Available on: PC, PS2, PS3, Xbox, Xbox 360.
Why it’s scary: Playing as Amanda Ripley, daughter of Sigourney Weaver’s now-iconic hero Ellen Ripley, your mission is simple – search a deserted space station to track down a lost flight recorder. But it’s soon after landing that you discover the single Alien Xenomorph inhabiting the corridors of the space station. Although you have access to multiple weapons throughout the course of the game, there is limited ammunition available meaning that every shot you take has to count.
Available on: PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.
Why it’s scary: Regarded as one of the greatest games ever made, this installment of Resident Evil replaces bloodthirsty zombies with an all-too human mob of infected cultists as the main enemy. You play as special agent Leon S. Kennedy, who battles horrific new creatures on his mission to rescue the President’s daughter. Just remember to watch out for the screaming, chainsaw-wielding madman.
Available on: PC, Wii, PS3, PS4, xbox 360, and Xbox One.
Why it’s scary: You play as Daniel, an archaeologist who finds himself helpless, unarmed, and alone in a desolate castle with no memory of his past. Under the guidance of a letter, you attempt to escape both the mad castle and the shadowy figures that stalk its hallways. There’s a catch though – to survive you must hide from the monsters, and to hide you must remain in the safety of darkness. But it’s in the darkness where Daniel begins to lose his sanity resulting in his perception of reality becoming blurred.
Available on: PC and PS4.
Why it’s scary: Mashing Japanese horror (think The Grudge and The Ring vibes) and FPS combat styles, the game revolves around the F.E.A.R (First Encounter Assault Recon) team having to fight against paranormal entity, Alma Wade. Alma, who is a young girl that was experimented on and imprisoned, becomes a powerful psychic entity filled with rage and an insatiable bloodlust as the game’s storyline develops.
Available on: PC, PS3, and Xbox 360.
Why it’s scary:Until Dawn combines the cliched tropes of past horror films such as the dumb blonde and final girl to create terrifying experiences that are both familiar and unique. With the added layer of interactivity, the game puts you in charge of deciding the fate of a group of teenagers attempting to escape from a masked killer in the woods.
Bonus fact: Hayden Panettiere, Peter Stormare, Rami Malek, and Brett Dalton lended their voices and likenesses for the characters of Samantha, Dr Hill, Joshua, and Michael.
Why it’s scary:Five Nights At Freddy’s puts you in the role of a overnight security guard at a pizza restaurant. You’ve been instructed to keep a watchful eye on the life-sized animatronic animals who roam freely around the restaurant… but the catch is they have been involved in a series of “incidents” involving previous guards. The goal is to stay alive until the morning, and ultimately survive five nights in a row. But if your concentration wavers for a single moment, the animatronics will attack and try to stuff you into an empty animatronic suit.
Available on: PC, Android, Windows Phone, and iOS
Why it’s scary: In Dead Space you play as Isaac Clarke, a systems engineer tasked with fighting his way through a mining ship infested with gruesome, alien zombies known as necromorphs. Although you’re equipped with a whole host of weapons including a flamethrower, machine gun, sniper rifle, and mining saw, they become slightly pointless when most of the ship is cloaked in darkness. That wouldn’t be a problem if it weren’t for the unpredictable nature of the necromorphs, who appear around corners, crash through windows, and crawl across the ceilings.
Available on: PC, Xbox 360, PS3, Android, and iOS.
Why it’s scary: Set in a nightmarish vision of rural Louisiana, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard follows the story of Ethan Winters stumbling onto a seemingly abandoned plantation while searching for his missing wife, Mia. What he discovers however, is a psychopathic family called the Bakers who imprison him in their mansion infected with the “Moulded”, a humanoid form of bacteria.
Why it’s scary: Taking its cues from Silent Hill, Resident Evil, and Twin Peaks, Deadly Premonition introduces you to Francis York Morgan, an FBI agent with a split personality. When word spreads of a young woman being mutilated and hung from a red tree in Greenvale, Agent York takes the case and soon discovers the peculiarities inhabiting the rural town.
Why it’s scary:Metro 2033 is set in the ruins of Moscow following a nuclear war where the surviours are forced to live in underground metro tunnels. Players control Artyom, a man who must save his home station which is now under attack by a group of mysterious, grotesque-looking creatures referred to as the Dark Ones. In addition to the dimly lit tunnels, most areas of the game are covered in radiation and require the use of a gas mask. And if that gas mask is cracked and there’s no replacement available, it’s game over.
Available on: PC and Xbox 360.
Why it’s scary:Condemned introduces you to FBI agent, Ethan Thomas, whose search for a twisted serial killer becomes a disturbing journey through the city’s underbelly. Drug-addled psychopaths lurch at you from the shadows with blood-splattered pipes, while the crime scenes you investigate are full of grotesque imagery. The artificial intelligence displayed by the enemies are also a great deal higher than similar games, meaning that they are able to flee and hide effectively, or trick you into leaving yourself open for an attack.
Why it’s scary: In Slender: The Eight Pages, your only objective is to collect eight manuscripts about the Slender Man, a paranormal creature based on the Internet folklore surrounding it. Depicted as a tall man wearing all black with no facial features, the Slender Man is said to be responsible for countless abductions of children. Although the game is simplistic, the isolating atmosphere it creates as you fumble your way through the forest under torchlight is super eerie. There is complete silence too, until a loud piano slamming noise and/or static on the screen signals the appearance of Slender Man.
Why it’s scary: The plot of Siren: Blood Curse begins with an American television crew arriving in Hanuda and stumbling upon a horrifying ritual involving human sacrifice. Things only get worse from there. It quickly becomes apparent that virtually everyone in the village is a corpse, known as “shibito”. The shibito are more unsettling than your usual mindless zombies because even in their gruesome, decaying states, they maintain shreds of their human identities. Playing as multiple characters, the game also utilises a hide-and-seek mechanic that forces players to sneak, hide, and run from the darkest aspects of Japanese horror.
Why it’s scary:Layers of Fear puts you in control of a psychologically disturbed painter who has become fixated on his new, greatest work… a portrait of his dead wife. As he paints, he is forced to recount his past with his wife through disturbing hallucinations. Through each progression, the painter’s true memories finally come to light as does the finished painting.
Available on: PC, PS4, and Xbox 360.
Why it’s scary: Made by the same creators of Amnesia: The Dark Descent,SOMA revolves around Simon Jarrett who wakes up in an underwater research facility following a brain scan. Like Amnesia, the game places you in a hostile but isolated environment where you know nothing, and are encouraged to discover the truth about what happened. While exploring, you discover a number of mutated, hostile, robotic-human hybrids that want you dead.
Why it’s scary: There have been several Fatal Frame games since Crimson Butterfly, but the second one remains the definitive take on horror photography. In Fatal Frame, the enemies are omnipresent – they’re ghosts. You can’t touch them, and sometimes you can’t see them, but they’re always there. Your only defence is the Camera Obscura, a device used to exorcise and stop vengeful spirits from possessing you.
Available on: PS2, PS3, Xbox, and Wii.
Why it’s scary: After witnessing the slaughter of his fellow officers while investigating a gruesome murder, Detective Sebastian Castellanos is ambushed and knocked unconscious. When he awakens, he finds himself in a deranged world where hideous creatures wander among the dead in nightmarish locations.
Why it’s scary: The game follows the story of Jack Walters, a mentally unstable private detective hired to investigate Innsmouth, a strong and mysterious town that has cut itself from the rest of the United States. As you progress through the game, Jack gradually loses his sanity when he encounters disturbing situations or monsters. This mental degradation can lead to him having hallucinations and visions, as well as permanent insanity or suicide if he becomes too unsettled.
Bonus fact:Call of Cthulu: Dark Corners of the Earth is based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft, in particular his 1936 novel The Shadow over Innsmouth.
Available on: PC and Xbox.
Note to self: Play these with the light on and the door open.
Posted on October 24, 2017, 05:35 GMT
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