The Best Creepy Games on PC
Looking for a good creepy PC Game?
PC Games today give a wide range of different experiences. Whether you are looking for a game that pits you head to head against demonic forces or gives you the task that forces you to travel far and wide in order to save a kingdom, you will always find a game that will satisfy you. This is especially the case if you are looking for a good creepy game. Triple-A and Indie developers alike have created numerous games that will keep you on the edge of your seat as you are forced to go through horrors beyond your imagination. Some may surprise you with unexpected jump scares, while others will get under your skin with immense sound design making you feel uncomfortable and stories that will make you question the intentions of your hero. Though, not all creepy games need to be a part of the horror genre. Something as simple as a JRPG or platformer could have elements that creep you out. So let’s take a look at the best creepy games to play on PC.
Trailer for Outlast
Outlast is one of many first-person survival horror games. The player takes control of Miles Upshur, an investigative journalist who seeks to uncover a dark secret within Mount Massive Asylum, a recently re-opened mental hospital that operates secretly. The object of the game is to escape the asylum through finding out what truly lies behind this asylum, recording everything they see through the use of video camera.
Like many other horror games of its kind, the player is unable to fight against the monsters that hide behind the walls of Mount Massive. The best the player can do is to either remain hidden or try to evade them, though the unpredictable nature of the monsters could make this difficult. Outlast also has a found footage element in the sense that players are equipped with a video camera to record the events at Mount Massive and to help the pleasure navigate dark areas with its infrared mode.
Using Infared Mode, you can get a better view of darker areas
What adds to the horrific experience of this game is not only the strange setting, but the sole fact that you cannot fight back. You are completely defenceless as you navigate a decrepit old asylum trying to avoid others who will not hesitate to kill you. Even those who don’t want to kill you will make you feel uneasy. Seemingly harmless individuals that inhabit the asylum talk senselessly make the already dilapidated location seem hostile. If that’s not enough, then the well detailed design should add to the creep factor of the overall game. The attention to detail on part of the designer are excellent and add to the atmosphere of the game. Decay and rust mix with the strange bloody messages and dismembered corpses to immerse the player into an environment that they are unfamiliar with.
Gameplay Footage of Outlast
You can also get more horror from Outlast through its “Whistleblower” DLC. This addition to Outlast puts you in the shoes of Waylon Park, a software engineer working for the company that owns the asylum, and a key character who gave Upshur the tip about the dark secrets of Mount Massive. As a result, the DLC acts as a prequel that shows the events leading up to Outlast, along with showing events that occur after the events in Outlast.
2) Amnesia: The Dark Descent
Trailer for Amnesia
When looking at first person horror games, it just doesn’t seem right to ignore one of the most iconic first-person survival horror games, Amnesia: The Dark Descent. Amnesia is about a man named Daniel who must traverse a castle under the command of a note he wrote to himself before drinking a substance that would erase his memories. His main goal is to find a man named Alexander and kill him. Daniel must kill this individual quickly as he is being hunted by what is called a shadow, a strange creature that pursues Daniel throughout the game; occasionally hindering Daniel’s progress by blocking paths and making loud roars that cause the castle’s already dilapidated foundation to crumble.rephrase for clarity and make it sound more dangerous.
Amnesia, very much like other games designed by Frictional Games, Penumbra for example, is simple in gameplay terms. The player will navigate through various levels and solve a number of puzzles that involve the player’s interaction with the environment. They will either be pulling levers to activate machinery, or they will carry different objects and either use them as stepping stones to get to higher heights or place the items in important places.
One key aspect of the game is its sanity system. If the player witnesses disturbing events or stays in the dark, their sanity will get worse. Once it reaches a certain level, Daniel will harder to control as the movement of the first person perspective becomes more difficult. If Daniel’s sanity remains too low for too long, he may collapse, leaving him immobile for a time. Sanity can be improved by solving puzzles or staying in the light.
In the sewer section, deformed monsters called "Brutes" appear at specific moments. What makes these creatures notable is that they have the potential to kill the player in one hit
What adds to this games atmosphere is the supreme use of sound in the game. A lot of the time, you are unlikely to really see scary things directly, but you will hear strange sounds in the background. Screams in the distance, the sound of wind or maybe the groan of a monster stalking you. Amnesia keeps you on your toes as you traverse the old dilapidated castle, with every noise being something that either creeps you out or alerts you to a possible danger. The game is very much unsafe as the player cannot fight monsters, some of which can kill the player quite easily, so their only choice is to hide as the monsters can easily outrun the player. As a result, the player will need to keep their sanity in check at times while also trying to find ways to distract monsters without getting spotted, because they can spot Daniel easily if the player accidently makes a noise, or Daniel collapses onto the ground from having low sanity.
Video depicting one of the game’s many monsters
Amnesia has become one of the most iconic horror games of all time. Even five years after its initial release, Amnesia is still seen as one of the scariest games of all time. In addition to this, Amnesia also has a free DLC called “Amnesia: Justine”. A side story where players take control of a young girl named Justine who must wonder through the “cabinet of perturbation”, a test that she has made for herself. In this DLC, the player will need to make moral choices regarding a number of trapped men, and face off against terrifying monsters that inhabit the cabinet. One key feature of this extra content is the fact that death is permanent. This means that once the player dies, they must play the DLC from the start, thus making the DLC much more tense as the player will be thrown into situations where they can either rush to the end, or risk everything to save another human being
3) Penumbra: Overture
Trailer for Penumbra Overture
Of course Amnesia was not the only game in this style developed by Frictional Games. It would be a shame to ignore the Penumbra series, a trilogy of first person horror games that were developed on the same engine as Amnesia and can be seen as the starting point for Frictional Game’s success in making horror games.
The first game in the series is called Penumbra: Overture. In this game, you play as a thirty year old physicist named Philip, who goes to a strange at the northern part of Greenland after receiving a message from his father who was thought to have been dead. After seeking shelter in an abandoned mine, Philip finds himself trapped as the entrance collapsed. Now he must venture deep within the mines.
As this game was developed by the same company, Penumbra: Overture takes on many similarities to its eventual successor, Amnesia: The Dark Descent. These similarities include the standard first-person perspective and successful use of sound and visuals to immerse the player in a hostile environment. However, this is where the similarities end. Apart from being set in a more modern time than Amnesia, Penumbra also has numerous other differences. The game does not have a sanity system, so there is little risk from the player going into the dark, especially since Philip’s eyes will readjust so that the screen appears brighter when the player crouches. If that’s not enough, the player will also pick up items that will make it much easier to navigate through dark areas in comparison to Amnesia as the player can pick up the standard flashlight which uses battery power, and the player gets a glow-stick, an item that may not be as powerful as the flashlight, but never runs out during the game.
Penumbra Overture allows players to fight back using weapons
Finally, the biggest difference is the combat. Unlike Amnesia and the later games in the Penumbra series, Penumbra: Overture allows the player to pick up a variety of weapons and use them to fight back against the various monsters that the player encounters. This system is imperfect and the player will still be struggling to fight off the strange spiders, wolves and other monstrosities that they will encounter in the cave. As a result, the player is still not very powerful when facing up against strange enemies which adds to the game’s atmosphere. Even more so, there are notes that the player can pick up throughout the game that reveal startling background story about the area they are exploring.
penumbra overture gameplay
4) Penumbra: Black Plague
Trailer for Penumbra Dark Plague
The sequel to Overture continues from the game’s ending. Penumbra: Black Plague starts with the player awakening in a dark room after an unknown assailant knocked Philip unconscious. After escaping the room, Philip finds that he is now in a strange unground research facility known as “Archaic Elevated Caste” in Greenland. A strange infection is turning the other inhabitants into zombies and the player themselves becomes infected at some point. Now the player must explore the abandoned facility and figure out what has happened.
Examining strange spinal x-rays
As I mentioned earlier, Penumbra: Black Plague, eliminates the combat, making the player completely vulnerable as they cannot fight back against the enemies they encounter. Though there may not be as much variety in the monsters the player encounters, they are still powerful enough to kill the player quickly if they are not careful. Like the previous game, the backstory adds quite a lot to the creepiness of the overall game as the player explores the strange facility and uncovers the mystery behind the strange infection that has turned the majority of the inhabitants into zombies. In addition to this, the player also becomes infected at some point; their mind taken over by a sarcastic figure named Clarence. Philip will experience hallucinations at times as the player remains infected, making it so that it is hard to trust what Clarence is saying and you see on-screen when playing.
Gameplay Footage of Penumbra Black Plague
5) Slender: The Arrival
Trailer for Slender the Arrival
Remember when you played Slender for the first time? The terrifying experience of wondering through a forest trying to collect the eight notes. The music intensifying with each note collected as Slenderman was drawing closer to you. Every time the camera distorted made you dread your eventual encounter with him as you grabbed the last note.Well, now you can relive those memories with Slender: The Arrival, a sequel to the original Slender: The Eight Pages. This sequel pits players against the iconic Slenderman, who pursues them relentlessly as the player takes control of Lauren, young woman who seeks to learn about the mystery surrounding him after her friend Kate goes missing in the woods near her home.
The camera distorts as Slenderman is near you
Throughout the game you collect pages like the original and try to avoid Slenderman. However, what separates this game is the improved graphics which add to the game’s immersion. This is in addition to being completely helpless to do anything but run as your camera distorts and Slenderman approaches you.
Gameplay of Prologue
6) Five nights at Freddy’s
Gameplay Trailer for Five Nights at Freddy's
Not being able to fight in a horror game is one thing, but another thing is being confined to one spot for the entirety of the game. Five Nights at Freddy’s is a type of tower-defence horror game where the player works as a security guard at a pizza restaurant called “Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza”. A fairly standard job at face value, but the main difference here is that the player must prevent a number of haunted animatronics from reaching them. If they fail to do so, they die and they must start over.
Different Animatrnics will exhibit different behaviours in this game.
The player must survive from midnight to 6:00AM from day one to day five. To do this, they must monitor each security camera to see if look at the location of the animatronics. If they see that there are animatronics close to them, they can press a button to close the door so that they are unable to get in. The main problem with this is that the player has a limited amount of power that can be used, so if the power reaches 0 before the night ends, the player is at the mercy of the animatronics. As a result, it is important for the player to be conservative with how much they monitor the cameras and use the functions of the room that they are in.
Gameplay Footage of Five Nights at Freddy's
The gameplay of Five Nights at Freddy’s is quite tense as the player must be extremely cautious with how they play. One mistake can result in a game over. However, it is not only the tense gameplay that adds to the overall creepiness of the game, but the backstory is also quite notable. This is due to the fact that there is quite a lot of story surrounding the restaurant and the animatronics that make the setting itself disturbing. Of course, such information can only be gained through looking at the game’s backstory and playing the sequel, but it is worth looking into if you want more insight about the events of the game itself as it can make the experience much more interesting.
Trailer for Limbo
If you’re looking for a creepy, stylistic platformer, then Limbo is for you. Limbo, is a 2D puzzle platformer set in an apocalyptic world. The player takes control of a child wondering through this strange apocalyptic world where danger is around every corner. The gameplay is comprised of solving physics puzzles in order to get past certain obstacles. Some puzzles might be as simple as moving a box so that it can be used as a platform, while others may involve tense situations where you need to remove something that is trying to kill you, and this game has no shortage of that.
The player will need to avert numerous traps and dangerous creatures as they go through this unforgiving world
One of the biggest elements that makes this game creepy is its extremely unforgiving world and interesting art style. The game is mostly monochrome with everything from the terrain to living creatures, silhouetted against a white background. There are a large number of different hazards that can kill the player quite violently, from traps that crush the player to death, to giant spiders that attack them. The player is also placed in a number of tense situations. The player must try to outrun a spider whilst wrapped up in a web, for example. So Limbo’s setting, combined with the different traps and environmental hazards, help to create an extremely unsettling game where there is little to no relief for the player who is nothing more than a helpless child.
Gameplay Footage of Limbo
8) Lone Survivor: The Director’s Cut
Trailer for Lone Survivor: The Director's Cut
Another Sidescrolling horror game worth mentioning is Lone Survivor: The Director’s Cut. This game pits the player in a world ravaged by an unknown virus that turns people into monsters. The player character, simply referred to as “YOU”, has been holding out in an apartment for a long time and has been forced to leave the apartment room as a result of running low on supplies.
Lone Survivor is designed in a similar way to the Silent Hill series, but with more emphasis on survival. As the player goes through the game, they need to make sure that the protagonist not only has full health, but that they have enough food supplies and are not starving. The player can collect a variety of different supplies to help them on their journey. For instance, the player can use rotten meat in order to distract monsters. There is also a stealth element where players need to sneak into narrow portions of a hallway in order to sneak past monsters. Finally, the player can take coloured pills that provide supplies, or keep the player energised when needed. One key function of the game is its mental health system. If the player does certain things, they may have a negative effect on the character’s mental health. So the player, not only has to keep themselves well fed, but they must also keep their mental health in check.
Killing monsters gets rid of them permanently. This can have an effect on the player character's sanity however
What makes Lone Survivor creepy is not only the basic survival horror elements, but also a lot of the mental health aspects of the game. Sometimes the player might meet new people, but certain scenes will make them question if what they are seeing is real or if the main character is going crazy. Additionally, if the player goes through the game acting violent and abusing the pills function in the game, then the player character may even appear to be quite violent as shown through their internal monologues when the player observes certain objects.
Gameplay Footage of Lone Survivor: The Director's Cut
Trailer for Inside
If you enjoyed Limbo, then Inside is a game worth trying. Created by the same developers, Inside is very similar in terms of story and the overall subject matter. The biggest similarity is the player character who is a small child in a very oppressive world. However, unlike Limbo, Inside has a less apocalyptic story as the player character wonders through an urban dystopia alone being hunted by powerful forces as they are drawn into some kind of strange, dark project.
Swimming is a feature that makes this game unique to Limbo
Like Limbo, Inside is a simple 2D platformer, though with upgraded visuals and more reliance on colour, for example, the main character’s red jacket. Throughout the game, the player will solve physics puzzles at times and there is an emphasis on stealth as the player must remain hidden from their enemies at times. Swimming is an addition that makes this game unique in comparison to Limbo (which normally uses water as a death trap).
The game retains Limbo’s creepiness through pitting the player in a world where everything is against them. Though they may not be forced to go against large creatures like in Limbo, the more human threat still makes the player feel vulnerable as they are pursued by those who are a part of something much bigger than the player themselves.
Gameplay Footage of Inside
10) The Cat Lady
Trailer for The Cat Lady
The Cat Lady, released by Harvester Games, is both a 2D adventure game that can be both beautiful and horrifying. The protagonist of The Cat Lady is a middle aged woman named Susan Ashworth who suffers from depression. The game starts off with her committing suicide as the game opens up with her reading her suicide note. However, her life is given back to her by a strange being called “The Queen of Maggots” who tasks her with killing 5 people called parasites, who seek to hurt and kill Susan, and will continue to hurt others as well. In addition to bringing her back to life, the Queen of Maggots gives Susan the gift of immortality to help her in her quest. As the player goes through the game, they will not only help Susan in completing this task, but they will also see Susan’s spiritual journey as she tries to overcome her depression. Though the overall story is very linear, it is told in a non-linear fashion.
Susan at the mercy of a parasite
The Cat Lady bears many similarities to its precursor released in 2009, Downfall, in terms of visual style and being an adventure game with a number of very odd puzzles. However, the key difference here is that, unlike Downfall which was a point and click adventure game, The Cat Lady is mostly a sidescroller. The player will explore a number of different locations that Susan finds herself in and solve puzzles in order to progress. These locations can range from a mental hospital that Susan needs to escape, or even Susan’s own apartment as she tries to go through an evening living normally. In addition to solving puzzles, the player will also engage in dialogue with numerous characters and make key decisions that can have both major and subtle effects on both plot and gameplay.
Gameplay Footage of The Cat Lady
A lot of the game’s horror comes from its visual style and the various strange horrors that the player encounters as they go through the game. Although the game’s visual style can look quite beautiful at times, some areas that the player will explore can look quite strange and bizarre. For instance, some areas will tend to adopt a strange black and white style with the only colour present being red. The various parasites are also a creepy factor in the game. Each parasite is about as messed up as the previous one as they not only want to hurt Susan, but they also hurt others as well, normally in horrifying ways.
Trailer for Kholat
What makes Slender and Outlast great games is that they remove you from a normal civilised world and plunge you into a world that is completely unknown. Kholat is another example of a horrific world to explore. The game is set in the Ural Mountains as the player must investigate a mystery behind what is called the “Dyatlov Pass Incident”.
Strange spirits dwell in the forest
Kholat is mainly a horror exploration game. It is inspired by the Dyatlov Pass Incident, a real incident that occurred in 1959, where nine Russian hikers mysteriously died. This sparked a number of rumours that the player must investigate. The game makes excellent use of the Unreal Engine 4 to present beautiful scenery and graphics for the player along with an excellent soundtrack. Along with the beauty, there is also an excellent atmosphere. The game can be both soothing and quite scary at times, especially as the player delves deeper into a world devoid of other humans.
Gameplay Footage of Kholat
Trailer for Wick
Telling ghost stories has always being a great experience, so why deny a chance to live through your favourite ghost story with Wick. This survival horror game turns campfire ghost stories into reality as the player walks through a forested area when looking into a legend about lost children who can only be seen by those who enter the forest alone aided only by the light of a candle.
Only the dead keep you company in these dark woods
Though the game’s story is akin to ghost stories told around a campfire, it still manages to be an excellently creepy survival horror experience. There is quite a lot for the player to do in the game including exploration, thinking of strategies to evade the ghosts that dwell in the forest, specify the creatures instead. Make it sound creepy along with making sure ensure that you have enough candlelight and there is a story that you can piece together through a number of collectables. The setting and parts of the gameplay of Wick is similar to Slender, though the player no longer has the benefit of using a flashlight for light and there are more threats to the player. As a result, the player is much more vulnerable and there is a greater need to be conservative with your light source in order to survive the nightmares in the forest so that you can find the dead children in the horror story.
Collection of scary moments in the game
13) The Evil Within
Trailer for The Evil Within
Did you enjoy Silent Hill and Resident Evil? Then The Evil Within is for you. This strange survival horror game developed by creator of Resident Evil, Shinji Mikami, is a great survival horror experience. The player takes control of Sebastian Castellanos who awakens in a strange world filled with horrendous creatures after he witnesses the slaughter of his partners. Now he must unravel the mystery behind the evil force as he fights for survival.
Nothing makes good horror like an extremely strong creature
With the creator of Resident Evil developing this game, it is not unexpected that the game would create an excellent horror experience. Many reviews, both from critical reviewers and gamers, refer to the game’s atmosphere, story, enemies and characters, as being key positive points in the game. There is no shortage of brutal violence, horrific creatures and difficult battles in this game. The game can also be quite bizarre at times which can confuse the player and make them wonder what is going on, something that can be compared to Silent Hill.
Gameplay from the beginning of The Evil Within
14) Gone Home
Not every game needs to pit you against horrific monstrosities spelling in order to provide a good experience to creep you out, some games could be more subtle like Gone Home. a man is it a man or woman?. The protagonist of the game arrives home to find that it has been deserted. Now they must explore the house and figure out where everybody went in this exploration game.
Looks like a normal family home, but it looks like the family vanished while going about their daily lives
Although Gone home is not a horror game, there are quite a lot of things that make it both a sad and, at times, quite creepy. The house has been strangely deserted with no evidence of anything terrible having occurred when exploring the environment which is quite strange and makes the player wonder what has happened. As the player uncovers more and more about why the family is not present, through collecting various notes, they become more enamoured in the story as they approach its climax.
Gameplay Footage of Gone Home
15) Emily Wants to Play
Trailer for Emily Wants to Play
Everybody enjoys a good slasher movie which is why “Emily Wants to Play” is a good example of a game that almost immerses you in one. The game takes on a story that is not too dissimilar from Five Nights at Freddy’s. In this game you play as some guy delivering pizza. Strangely, the house is boarded up, but the lights are on so it must be occupied. When you get to the front door, you call out, but there is no answer so you enter the house and the door closes suddenly, trapping you in the house. Now you must find a way out as three dolls and a girl named Emily stalk you.
If these creatures creep you out normally, try to explore the house with Virtual Reality
This game can be compared to something very much like Five Nights a Freddy’s, though this time, the player has no way to defend themselves. As they are stalked by the monsters in the house, far from the safety of their own home, they must figure out a way to escape. Though the game’s premise may not be the most sophisticated or silly, the gameplay is excellent and is almost like a mixture of Five Nights and Freddy’s, Amnesia and Clock Tower.
Gameplay Footage of Emily Wants to Play
Trailer for Knock-Knock
Knock-Knock is a 2D horror game about a cabin that was once used as a dwelling and a laboratory for three generations of lodgers. However, the cabin has changed for one of the latest lodgers. Certain things are missing, strange sounds can be heard and something strange lives in the woods. This strange thing only comes at night and makes its presence known in the different rooms of the house.
Maintaining your sanity and surviving is a key mechanic in Knock-Knock
Again, like Emily Wants to Play, Knock-Knock’s gameplay is similar to Five Nights at Freddy’s, though this game is much more like Five Nights at Freddy’s as it takes on the survival aspect rather than tasking the player with escaping. Like Amnesia, there is an emphasis on keeping your sanity in check as you get through the night.
Gameplay Footage of Knock-Knock
17) Year Walk
Trailer for Year Walk
Year Walk is a strange first person game that blurs the line between the natural and supernatural along with exploring graphics in both 2D and 3D two and three dimensions rephrase for clarity. The player explores a set of dark woods that is inhabited by strange creatures. The main goal is to learn about whether or not the person the protagonists loves will ever return their love to them.
Strange folklore and surreal creatures are prevalent in this game
This exploration adventure game is quite bizarre. The strange creatures and the folklore that the player learns about adds a creepy atmosphere to an otherwise interesting and bizarre adventure game. make it sound creepy. . The player must also solve a number of strange puzzles as they go through the game. Although there may not be much in the way of actual horror, the bizarre environment combined with certain elements of the folklore can be quite creepy.
Gameplay Footage of Year Walk
18) Town of Light
Trailer for Town of Light
The Town of Light is a first person psychological adventure game set in Italy during the first half of the 20th century. You play as Renée who is a 16 year old who has been taken from her world and locked in an asylum as she is, according to police headquarters, a danger to other people and herself. As a result, she is taken from a world she once knew, losing everything. The game’s realism in terms of its horror makes it quite creepy when compared to many other horror games as it does not rely on the supernatural.
The game has its fair share of strange imagery
This psychological adventure game is comparable with The Cat Lady. With an emphasis on making choices and being completely grounded to reality, the player will explore the reality of mental health during the first half of the 20th century as you go through the confused viewpoint of the main character. The first person perspective of this game is also amplified through the game’s support of Virtual Reality, further immersing the player in the game’s atmosphere.
Gameplay Footage for Town of Light
19) Sherlock Holmes versus Jack the Ripper
Trailer for Sherlock Holmes Versus Jack the Ripper
Fans of Sherlock Holmes and horror detective games will enjoy Sherlock Holmes versus Jack the Ripper. The game puts the player in the shoes of Sherlock Holmes in London in 1888. After mutilated female bodies have been found during a series of crimes at East End, the police struggle to find the assailant murderer as people become paranoid. Sherlock Holmes must immerse himself in the dark corners of Whitechapel to find the man known as “Jack the Ripper”.
Looking over a covered body in third person
This game is presented through multiple perspectives. There is the traditional third person adventure game perspective and the first person perspective that can be used to look at things up close. In addition to this, the player switches between the protagonist Sherlock Holmes and his partner, Doctor Watson. Finally, the player has the ability to interact with 30 unique characters and collect more than 100 objects and clues that can help you solve the mystery behind Jack the Ripper.
The game has gotten critical acclaim, being recognised as one of the best adventure game. This is not too surprising as the game portrays an excellent story with great visuals and a fantastic, creepy atmosphere. The game plunges you into the dark underbelly of Whitechapel, with no shortage of disturbing imagery as you gather the clues to help you catch Jack the Ripper.
Gameplay Footage for Sherlock Holmes Versus Jack the Ripper
20) Fran Bow
Trailer for Fran Bow
Fran Bow is an adventure game about a young girl named Fran. The protagonist struggles with a mental disorder following the gruesome deaths of her parents. After taking off into the woods with her cat, Mr. Midnight, she goes into shock for a time before recovering and finding herself in an oppressive mental institution for children known as Oswald Asylum. Mr. Midnight is also missing. However, after having a dream about her cat, Fran decides that it is time to get out of the mental institution, find Mr. Midnight and find her Aunt Grace, her only living relative.
Cartoonish imagery mixed with horror
This game is mostly story driven and shown through two-dimensional hand-drawn art and animation. There are a variety of puzzles that vary in difficulty, each tailored towards the story itself. There are also some fun minigames that act as transitions during the story. Gamers found the game addicting with its creepy and enticing atmosphere. With an emphasis on psychological horror along with a story that can be upbeat, but also twisted and horrific at times, the game manages to be an excellent demonstration of a creepy psychological horror game.
Gameplay for Fran Bow
Trailer for Claire
If you are looking for a game with a greater emphasis on survival horror, then Claire is another game to try out. Claire is a 2D survival horror game with an emphasis on psychological horror. The game’s protagonist, Claire is thrown into a strange and horrific world when she is visiting her mother at the hospital. Now she must explore the demented version of the once peaceful hospital accompanied by her dog, Annubis, and figure out a way to get back to her mother.
Despite the difference in imagery and characters, Lone Survivor and Catherine look quite similar
Claire’s artstyle is very similar to that of Lone Survivor use image to illustrate this because readers don’t know what Lone Survivor is like as both games are 2D survival horror games that use pixelated graphics. These games also put a lot of emphasis on psychological horror as well as survival horror. However, the games are also strongly different in terms of story and gameplay. Unlike the protagonist of Lone Survivor, Claire has the ability to run, jump and push different objects like boxes in order to use them as a boost or for other purposes. Additionally, Claire has no means of defending herself against the strange monsters that will stalk her at times in the game, and to make matters worse, the monsters will even follow her into different rooms like a villain in a Clocktower game.
The game's environments tend to alternate between ordinary buildings and twisted representations of those buildings
As the player goes through the game, environments will change frequently. Sometimes the game will shift from a dilapidated location to something more normal. The player may also be thrown into a flashback as the game gives you information about Claire’s past. The game can be quite frightening as the player is forced to go through a number of oppressive environments that resemble the otherworld sections of a Silent Hill game. The player’s inability to defend themselves leaves them at the mercy of monsters. What makes this worse is that the game implements a sanity system that can even result in the player losing health if their sanity is too low, meaning that the player must try to keep Claire as calm as possible when avoiding monsters.
Gameplay for Claire
22) Dead Secret
Trailer for Dead Secret
Dead Secret is a first person horror game. The game is set in the year 1965. In rural Kansas, a professor has died and the player must figure out the mystery behind his death before they meet a similar fate.
As you go through the game, you will need to uncover the story through exploring his the professor’s highly detailed home. You will find items and clues along with solving puzzles that will help you get the name of the murderer. Not only that, but you can use strange devices designed by the professor to explore your subconscious. In addition to this, you are also be stalked by the murderer, so you will need to watch out for him when looking for clues.
The outline of the Professor’s Corpse
This game was called deeply creepy and captivating by Time Magazine. Many other critics have also held this game in high regard, some saying that they were immersed in the story and that the game is a must-have for those that are enthusiastic about Virtual Reality. The Virtual Reality aspect allows for much more immersion as the player must explore the circumstances leading to the murder while being completely immersed in their environment. This is especially scary when you are trying to investigate the murder while the masked killer is hot on your trail.
Gameplay for Dead Secret
Dreadout Launch Trailer
Dreadout is a third person horror game with a focus on the supernatural. The game is about a high school student named Linda who is trapped in an abandoned town. All she has is a smart phone and an SLR Camera to battle the strange creatures that stalk her, in addition to solving puzzles that will play a part in the way her story ends.
As Linda, the player will explore the Asian Indonesian setting and battle against supernatural creatures. The player can switch between the standard third person view for exploring and the first person view for using the camera. The player is immersed in a story that is thrilling with a number of endings and an unlockable wardrobe for Linda.
Much like Fatal Frame, Dreadout’s camera brings you close to the creepy looking spirits
This game can be quite intense in how horror is presented, with heavy emphasis on various horrific themes along with sexual content and realistic violence. Just a testament to how scary this game it, it was nominated for the scariest game of 2014 for the FEAR Awards. Many critical reviews and users will reference how the game keeps the spirit of other horror games like Silent Hill and Fatal Frame. Many deem this game to be quite ominous and that the game manages to keep the tension high.
Gameplay for Dreadout
24) Among the Sleep
Trailer for Among the Sleep
Among the sleep takes a very unique perspective in terms of first person horror. In this game, you play a 2 year old child who has been awoken by a strange force. Now you must explore a strange and eerie house in search for comfort after what has happened.
Teddy, a plush the player character receives for his birthday, is a companion for the player in Among the Sleep
Among the Sleep takes first person horror to the extreme as you are truly vulnerable in this game. You are not a young man who can simply outrun monsters, you are a two year old child with no means of defending yourself. Many reviewers have praised this unique game for being able to immerse the player in a negative creepy atmosphere. Critics have also praised the game for being able to tackle serious themes like isolation, well. rephrase for clarity
Virtual Reality Gameplay of Among the Sleep
25) The Park
Trailer for The Park
The Park is a psychological horror game that focuses on first person exploration and storytelling. The game is set in an amusement park as you take control of Lorraine as she explores Atlantic Island Park in search for her missing son Callum.
Step right in
The Park is praised for being able to turn a simple story into something more chilling, and quite personal as well. Though the game is very similar to other story-driven first person horror games, with the standard newspaper clippings and other items that you can pick up to help flesh out the game, The Park is an excellent example of a chilling and creepy horror game. This is especially the case when it comes to the jump scares that, despite being predictable, still manage to leave the player shaken as they explore this simple and short game.
Gameplay Footage of The Park
26) Layers of Fear
Trailer for Layers of Fear
Layers of Fear is another psychological first person horror game with a focus on storytelling. The player takes control of a painter who wants to finish his Magnum Opus. The game tends to blur the line between what is real and what is not as the player explores the standard Victorian mansion along with the degrading psyche of the painter.
The disorganised studio emphasises the artist’s degrading psyche quite well
Since this game is mostly a psychological horror, there is an emphasis on the breakdown of the protagonist’s mind. Even as the player explores the mansion, the sense of insanity increases as surroundings change, making it hard for the player to decide if what they are experiencing is real or just a figment of the painter’s imagination, which adds quite a lot to the horror part of the game. This game has been rated highly by many critics who state that the game is one of the best horror games ever made, with the most primal emotions being quite prominent in this game.
Gameplay Footage of Layers of Fear
27) Neverending Nightmares
Trailer for Neverending Nightmares
If you enjoyed the Cat Lady, then Neverending Nightmares is another game that we recommend you play. The game’s protagonist is Thomas who wakes up in his own hellish dreamscape. Now he must go through his subconscious and avoid the manifestations of his mind along with finding out what reality will be when he actually manages to wake up.
All monsters have the potential to kill the player in one hit, so they must avoid the monsters or find a way to hide from them until the coast is clear
The psychological aspects of this game were inspired by the creator’s struggles with OCD and depression, which makes for a very real and genuine experience. Like the Cat Lady, the game uses a black and white aesthetic which works to make the game look and feel quite moody. Along with the atmospheric visuals, IGF nominated composer, Skyler McGlothlin, provides an excellent soundtrack that matches the oppressive visuals of the game.
Gameplay Footage of Neverending Nightmares
Trailer for Sanitarium
In Sanitarium you play an amnesiac who wakes up in an asylum with his head wrapped up in bandages. He is confused as to who he is, where he is and how he is supposed to escape. Now the player must figure out how to escape this strange asylum and solve many confusing puzzles as they piece together the bizarre and rich plot of the game.
First room of the game gives the player a taste of how strange the world is
This game was originally released in 1998 for PC. The game won Adventure Game of the year. Many critics praise the game for being emotionally captivating along with providing plenty of surprises as a simple point and click adventure blows you away. Although some of the game’s puzzles rely on trial and error too much, the convoluted environment and plot make up for it as everything comes together to make this game a timeless classic that is worth getting on steam.
Gameplay Footage of Sanitarium
29) Call of Cthulu
Trailer for Call of Cthulhu
Fans of Lovecraftian horror can look forward to the 2017 release of Call of Cthulu. This investigation horror game utilises both psychological horror along with stealth. In this game, the player must uncover the truth behind the death of an acclaimed artist and her family. As the player investigates, they will get key information about a disturbing truth as Cthulu prepares to awaken.
Cemetery devoid of colour and life
As can be seen from the screenshots and the game’s trailer, gamers and horror game fans alike can expect a fantastic experience that will leave them at the edge of their seats. The company, Cyanide Studio, who are known for working on other critically acclaimed games like Styx: Master of Shadows, which has been praised by many critics as having excellently well-varied level design, a rich, immersive atmosphere and good gameplay that is a must-have for stealth game fans. As a result, one can expect the upcoming adaption of H.P. Lovecraft’s story to be a smash hit as atmosphere trumps over the excessive use of jump scares.
Gameplay Footage of Call of Cthulhu
30) System Shock Remastered
Trailer for System Shock Remastered
As good as the old system shock was, it can be agreed that the game has not aged well, which makes it hard for people to enjoy nowadays. Thankfully, the game is being remade from the ground up in the Unity Engine. With everything being created from scratch, it is now possible to relive the past with fantastic upgraded graphics.
System Shock remastered has a similar story to the original game. The protagonist is caught when trying to break in to TriOptimum and are then indentured to one of their executives. Following the six months of being in a coma, the player awakens to see that something is not right. The surgeons are missing, the station that they resided in is in poor condition and now the facility is filled with cyborgs, robots and mutants who serve a ruthless artificial intelligence that calls herself Shodan.
This graphics already look quite impressive in comparison to the original
This game is being created with all of the elements of the original in mind along with newer more refined elements inserted. To make sure that this is done right, the team has recruited Christ Avellone, who worked on other games like Fallout: New Vegas, Star Wars: Knights of the Old republic II and many more. The remastered edition of System Shock as a free pre-alpha demo that enables players to give the remake a try. Many who have tried the game have noted how much work has been put into making the game look exactly like the original. The game succeeds in getting the look and feel of the original, but with newly upgraded graphics. Though there may be problems due to it being a pre-alpha, the game is being widely anticipated as the remake manages to remain faithful to the original.
The original System Shock had first person shooter gameplay with 3D graphics. The players explored a space station with multiple levels containing puzzles for players to solve, and enemies to fight. The player uses a mouse cursor to aim weapons at enemies and to interact with various objects. There are many options in the Heads Up Display that the players can use. For instance, there are view and posture controls that the player can use to lean, look around, crouch and crawl. There are also different displays that can be configured to display information like weapon readouts, a map and the inventory. The story was told through audio logs and notes as there were no other characters to interact with apart from the antagonist, Shodan. The player can collect a variety of weapons that they can use to fight the enemies that they encounter along with certain items that can be used. Dermal patches are one type of item that can be picked up which provides certain benefits like regeneration or more melee power, though there are also problems that can be encountered from using them as they can cause fatigue and a distortion in colour perception. The original system shock also had a sequel which had similar gameplay.
Gameplay Footage of System Shock Remastered
31) Resident Evil 7
Trailer for Resident Evil 7
Resident Evil 7 is a major change from its predecessor, Resident Evil 6, as the game appears to be going back to its survivor horror routes rather than the high-octane action that was present in previous games. Resident Evil 7 is set after the events of Resident Evil 6. The game has a new protagonist who is named Ethan and, unlike other Resident Evil games, they do not have any combat skills. Ethan is looking for his missing wife. During his search, he stumbles upon an old derelict mansion that he will explore.
Close-Up of one of the zombies from the game
This game takes on a massive change in terms of gameplay. While other Resident Evil games were either action games or standard survival horror with tank controls, Resident Evil 7 plays from a first-person perspective, which was only ever used in Resident Evil: Code Veronica X. This change in gameplay makes the game unique when put against all the other games in the series. However, unlike other first person survival horror games, Ethan is not completely vulnerable. He has access to a variety of weapons that he can use to fight other creatures. Exploration and puzzle solving along with a new cast of characters will also be featured in this upcoming game. Resident Evil 7 also had a demo which impressed a number of critics. If you enjoyed the original resident evil games and are looking for something without quick time events in the resident evil series, then this game is highly recommended.
Gameplay of playable alpha demo of Resident Evil 7
If you are looking for a good creepy game to play for the night, then these games are definitely worth your time. They will keep you immersed in their environments. Some may scare you out of your seat while others will make you feel uncomfortable for their duration. So check them out today and get your fix of creepy games.
If you enjoyed this article, then check out these other articles about creepy and horrific games.