[Top 15] Best FPS Horror Games

A banner for Black Mesa showing Gordon Freeman facing three Headcrab zombies
Don't forget your crowbar!

All great things come in twos: Chicken and Chips, Netflix and Chill, and of course, Horror and First-Person-Shooters. There’s something so perfectly simple about the formula: horror movies are great, but how can we really put the audience in the protagonists’ shoes? Video games are great, but what if I don’t want to sleep tonight? It’s two birds with one stone! 

While both genres have their roots in home computer games and arcade systems from the 1970s and 80s, Doom is generally considered to be the first game to combine both (itself a successor to Wolfenstein 3D), inspiring many sequels, successors, and clones to this day. While Doom is an undeniable classic, it lacks in the horror department, using the hellish imagery as a theme rather than as a means to scare. So what other Horror FPS games are there that I can have nightmares about, I hear you ask?

Well, you’ve come to the right place! Today I’m going to be listing 15 of the best Horror FPS games to sink your teeth into. These are in no particular order, so have a scroll, take your time and maybe even check a couple out!

1. Lost In Vivo - 2018 (PC)

After a heavy storm leads to your service dog being dragged into an old sewage drain, you follow him down into the sewers and fall into a deep pit of claustrophobia and anxiety to rescue him. On your way through the endless sewers, tunnels, and chambers, you meet various horrors and creatures of the underground – each glowing and twisting in their polygonal PS1-style frames. The only real question here: how far will you go to save your dog?

A recent addition and a modern cult classic, Lost In Vivo begins on a simple premise so that the inevitable horrors seem even more surprising. Inspired by Silent Hill and other horror games of the PS1 generation, KIRA takes advantage of modern technology through his stellar use of sound design – the tunnels you stalk through echo with every step and bounce back at you in such a way that couldn’t have been possible on a PS1. KIRA’s previous game Spooky’s House of Jumpscares deserves a mention as an effective parody of the genre, however it is his full step into the genre that gets a spot on this list. Just a heads up: this game will stress. You. OUT. 

Choose this if you like: 

  • Silent Hill adjacent horror
  • great horror settings (sewer systems, train tunnels, etc.)
  • unique enemies and monsters

Something sinister is lurking in the dark… Let’s hope it stays there.


2. Black Mesa - 2020 (PC)

After a routine test at the Black Mesa Research Facility goes horribly wrong, Gordon Freeman is forced to pick up his crowbar and go frolicking into the dark steel corridors and fight his way through both Alien and Combat Soldier to clean the mess he started. You’ll journey across the giant complex, from the office buildings to the rocket silos to the illegal government labs buried deep in the heart of the New Mexico desert to stop the Resonance Cascade by any means necessary.

An officially endorsed fan remake of the classic FPS Half-Life, Black Mesa modernises both the gameplay and scares of the original to create something unique. While the 1998 original and dlc are equally great, Black Mesa takes a lot from modern horror games to add to the atmosphere and tension. I mean it’s Half-Life but better, you can’t really go wrong. 

Choose this if you like:

  • the Half-Life franchise
  • fighting your way out of government buildings
  • whacking everything in sight with a crowbar

A beautiful Black Mesa vista, so long as that helicopter doesn’t come any closer!


3. Alien: Isolation - 2014 (PS3/PS4/X360/XBO/PC)

As the daughter of Ellen Ripley, Amanda is offered a chance at closure when she is assigned to a space-faring crew on route to the Sevastopol - a station which has recovered back the black box from the wreckage of her mother’s ship, the Nostromos. Upon arriving however, she finds another piece of her mother’s past has come to haunt her - history repeats itself as Amanda must run, hide and fight her way out of the station while being stalked and preyed on by a new Xenomorph.

I sometimes think about the poor kids who were born at the time of Alien’s release who, if they wanted a chance to fight off a Xenomorph themselves, would have to play the Atari or ZX Spectrum. Alien: Isolation instead feels like a step back into the seventies and eighties with its authentic retro-futuristic design and passion for the original movies. The first-hand terror of being stalked by an emotionless killing-machine across a desolate space station is one of the reasons the original is a classic, and it is translated incredibly well into this modern sequel. 

Choose this if you like: 

  • the Alien Franchise
  • classic science-fiction horror experiences
  • great voice-acting and characters

Caught in the act! Better off making a runner though. 


4. myhouse.wad - 2023 (PC)

At first glance, it’s just a doom map designed after someone’s old house. But while reading into the description and notes left in the zip folder doesn’t itself tell the full story, they tell you that something is wrong here: the creator found it on a deceased friend’s laptop unfinished and hoped to release it as a means of closure. And yet, the diary entries slowly begin to read less as a homage to a dead friend and more as a collection of scrawled hallucinations and paranoia. And playing the map - and trying to 100% it - turns it into a spiral of childhood nightmares, unending trauma, and loneliness. It’s only a map though, right?

myhouse.wad is the most recent and unconventional game on this list. Inspired by the book House of Leaves - in which a family discovers and explores a house that never ends - you can easily play this game and beat it in about two minutes. But pushing further leads you into a labyrinth that literally breaks Doom’s geometry and code. So, look around! See what you can find.

Choose this if you like:

  • unique horror visions
  • psychological, domestic horror stories
  • boundary pushing gameplay

A nightmare in an airport bathroom – but where is this blood coming from? 


5. Outlast - 2013 (PS4/XBO/PC/SWITCH)

As an investigative journalist on the hunt for the next scoop, Miles Upshur receives an anonymous email warning him of inhumane experiments being conducted at the local Mount Massive Asylum. Upon arrival, however, he discovers something far darker at play - with the asylum ransacked and the various patients (called variants in game) released and dangerous, Miles will have to explore the entire facility and go up against many unfriendly faces to uncover the truth behind the Walrider and the dark secrets of the asylum.

Another recent game and one of the first viral horror games to gain attention on youtube, Outlast takes a very traditional horror premise and cranks it to 110%. Abandoned, derelict asylums are pretty basic turf for horror games but Outlast manages to do everything right, from the story to the scares. If you’re looking for a classic horror experience, this is the one to try.

Choose this if you like:

  • modern jumpscare-based horror games
  • tension-building atmosphere
  • great horror visuals 

Not the friendliest face I’ve seen, not by a long shot! 


6. Prey - 2017 (XBO/PS4/PC)

Set in an alternate universe in which the Space Race led to the discovery of the unfriendly alien species the Typhon, Morgan Yu wakes up to find most of his colleagues on the Talos I space station dead. Infested with Typhon ‘Coral’, Morgan is forced to use his scientific equipment to discover what the alien force is planning and escape the space station.  

A successor to the original, albeit unrelated Prey released a decade earlier, Prey offers the player an open-world story-driven campaign whilst still staying true to its sci-fi horror roots. On top of all this, the game is really fun. The Gloo Gun especially is a simple but brilliant weapon that I couldn’t put down once I found it. While vaguely similar to the original Prey, the game takes more from System Shock than anything, so fans of the series should definitely pick this one up and give it a go.

Choose this if you like: 

  • the System Shock Franchise
  • open-world and metroidvania style gameplay
  • sci-fi scares

One of the Typhon - a hivemind space parasite - and it looks like he means business. 


7. Soma - 2015 (PC/XBO)

Mankind is gone, victims of their own anxiety at the hands of nuclear war. The only survivors are stranded at the bottom of the ocean, dedicated to preserving some form of human consciousness and sending it into space to escape the barren Earth. You, as Simon Jarret, wake up some one hundred years into the future in a derelict sea base and are forced to explore the facility – now filled with insane robots that have the minds of former workers trapped inside – to help those left alive.

The latest IP from Frictional Games - the developers of Amnesia and Penumbra - Soma goes above and beyond on the format established by the former title. While Amnesia: The Dark Descent is itself a great horror game, Soma features some of the best storytelling within a game that I’ve ever seen, nevermind a horror game! Without spoiling too much of the plot, I can only say that if you haven’t played this, you should buy it the moment you click off this article.

Choose this if you like:

  • Philip K Dick
  • stealth based gameplay
  • unique and thought-provoking stories

A section of the sea-base - and the last habited place on Earth


8. Doom 3 - 2004 (PC/XBO)

Set in a research facility on Mars in the not-so-far future, Doom 3 acted as the first reboot of the series and follows an unnamed marine having to single handedly stop a demonic invasion of Earth. After teleportation experiments go haywire and create a portal to Hell (with a capital H no less), the facility becomes a massacre and is quickly overrun with demons, beasts and scientists now possessed. You are the only thing that stands between them and Earth. Good luck soldier.

The middle child between the incredibly influential Doom 1 and 2 and the modern classics that are DOOM 2016 and Doom Eternal, Doom 3 was released in an awkward phase of low-quality remakes and sequels (see the Resident Evil Franchise after 4). Despite this, the game is severely underrated, swapping the huge halls of gunplay action for small steel corridors of survival horror. While not as well-regarded as the rest of the series, it deserves credit for successfully switching from the vaguely horror themed action of the originals to a more fright-filled experience.

Choose this if you like:

  • the DOOM franchise
  • classic survival horror action
  • less story, more scares 

An encounter with some demonic presence. You better get used to those cold steel walls because they could be the last thing you see. 


9. Cry Of Fear - 2012 (PC)

Cry of Fear opens with the protagonist, Simon, being hit by a car. Upon waking up, he finds himself in a hellish version of his Swedish hometown, now filled with grotesque monsters and cryptic allies. All Simon wants to do is get home, but no matter what happens or where he goes the city simply won’t let him. Maybe because the truth hidden at home is far too much to bear.  

Originally a mod for Half-Life 2 but released as its own fully realised project due to demand, Cry of Fear is a devastating and haunting game about depression, mental health and the ways trauma materialises itself. It’s honestly incredible that such a unique vision could be created as a mod (no hate towards mods of course, simply that the version finally released feels so separate and different to Half-Life 2 both thematically and in gameplay). The game does deal with sensitive topics, however if you’re aware and prepared I couldn’t recommend it enough.

Choose this if you like: 

  • metaphorical and thematic storylines
  • Silent Hill-esque gameplay
  • a uniquely depressing setting 

Another lost soul in a city that won’t let you wake up. 


10. PT - 2014 (PS4)

You open with a dark corridor late at night and the feeling of being watched. The radio crackles with reports of a nearby homicide, and someone’s shadow flickers on the wall but disappears whenever you look further. Eventually you finish exploring the hallway and its rooms, and then she appears. Lisa. When the game restarts, you open with the same corridor, but something feels different. Lamps bleed red light across the room, a child seemingly cries from a bloodied fridge hanging from the ceiling, and voices echo about societal decline. The house reeks of death and yet you are here, uncovering the mystery.

Maybe the greatest video game “what if” in history and Hideo Kojima’s last work with Konami, it was originally a demo for a potential Silent Hills game until their relationship deteriorated. Still, the game is an essential, if impossible to play (Konami removed it from online stores following Kojima’s departure) standard. While not a shooter, I let it into the list on the technicality that the game uses a first person perspective - mainly as it felt wrong NOT to include PT on this list. A short but sweet psychological horror that uses its photorealism, sound design and grounded story to spin a terrifying realistic tale about domestic abuse.

Choose this if you like:

  • slower paced horror games
  • David Lynch
  • puzzle-based gameplay

It’s her. Good luck sleeping tonight. 


11. F.E.A.R - 2005 (X360, PS3, PC)

As the newest member of F.E.A.R, a government taskforce dedicated to taking down paranormal threats, Point Man (a codename, obviously) is assigned to stop Paxton Fettel, the top-secret psychic operative of Armarach Technology Corporation who has used the experiments of the company to take control of the facility. However, the hallucinations that Point Man experiences throughout - and the psychic link between the two - suggest that something else is going on beneath the surface. And it’ll take Point Man to hell and back to find out. 

A psychological thriller and classic of the horror FPS genre, F.E.A.R throws everything you could possibly want from a horror game at you: secret government divisions, creepy hallucinated girls, and enough bullet sponges to make every weapon have a place in your arsenal. While its technological innovations may come up short twenty years on, both the enemy and team AI still works a treat and the atmosphere the game creates still manages to conjure up the heebie-jeebies to this day. 

Choose this if you like:

  • serious psychological thrillers
  • great action setpieces
  • plots with tons of twists and turns

The bloodbath is one thing, but who’s that on the balcony?


12. Bioshock - 2007 (X360, PS3, PC)

As the sole survivor of a plane crash across the seemingly empty Atlantic Ocean, you -as Jack - are forced to enter a bathysphere at a nearby Lighthouse (the only land for miles) to find any semblance of civilization. Instead, you find Rapture - a supposed underwater utopia that’s now become a warzone due to the influx of super-powered and super-addictive drugs called Plasmids. Now swept into a political conflict, you must fight your way through the derelict streets filled with Little Girls, Big Daddies and Splicers to try and find the founder of this once great city. 

A modern classic, Bioshock builds on the best parts of its predecessors and creates a unique action-horror experience filtered through a pulpy sixties sci-fi book. The city itself is a testament to game design, as you are forced through dark alleys and art-deco slums to reach your goal. Meanwhile the gameplay consists of injecting yourself with random serums you find to beat up super-powered junkies that seem to lurk around every corner, just waiting to jump at you. If you haven’t played it yet, what are you even doing? 

Choose this if you like: 

  • art deco aesthetics
  • complex political stories
  • varied gameplay mechanics (gunplay, plasmids, etc.)

Fighting against a Big Daddy - doesn’t get much better than this! 


13. Left 4 Dead 2 - 2009 (X360, PC)

After a global pandemic nicknamed the ‘Green Flu’ ravages the planet (a little on the nose), four immune survivors are forced to work together to reach a safe zone from the innumerable hordes that stand between them and safety. While they cannot become infected, these zombies will stop at almost nothing to kill and feast. There’s no space in hell anymore, and the undead won’t stop until either you make it to New Orleans, or you don’t. 

The only solely multiplayer game on this list, Left 4 Dead 2 manages the challenging task of being both scary and fun; on top of that, it’s also maybe one of the greatest games ever made? There’s genuinely nothing better than joining a team with three friends and blasting your way through hordes of zombies - even over a decade after release. 

Choose this if you like:

  • casual multiplayer games
  • Valve’s other titles (Half-Life, Portal, TF2)
  • chopping down zombies with your friends

The dead don’t stop till you do. 


14. System Shock 2 - 1999 (PC)

Set in the aftermath of the first System Shock - in which the rogue AI SHODAN is seemingly defeated - System Shock 2 opens with one of the sole survivors of the Von Braun, a starship infested with the worm-like parasite the Many. It’s eventually revealed to be the work of the AI some fifty years after its supposed death. Now, once again, the player must take up arms and destroy SHODAN before the parasites reach Earth and infect the population. 

Probably one of the most influential horror games ever created - having laid the groundworks for a fair few of the games on this list - System Shock 2 somehow balances an incredibly heavy and lore-filled story with a great sci-fi setting, great scares, and RPG elements that eventually became the foundation to half of your steam library. If you’re a fan of classic 90s FPS games, you’ve probably already played this one. But if not, give it a shot. 

Choose this if you like: 

  • Classic 90s FPS games
  • Sci Fi horror a la The Thing
  • Complex stories in your video games

A bloodbath - I wouldn’t touch those eggs if I was you. 


15. Dusk - 2018 (PC/SWITCH)

Set in the rural town of Dusk, Pennsylvania (hence the name, surprise surprise), the game opens on the titular quarantined town being possessed by demonic forces after a series of ritualistic tunnels are discovered beneath a farm. From here, the unnamed treasure hunter and player character fights through hordes of undead locals, possessed soldiers and demons after hearing of untold riches hidden somewhere within the town. But just how far will the player go to find these riches, and how much of himself will he lose in the process?

Created by David Syzmanski - a developer who has been on the forefront of the indie genre for the past decade - Dusk offers a modernised version of the classic boomer shooter formula that was created by Doom, System Shock and Duke Nukem. The Lovecraftian twist offers a culty, folk horror spin on an already beloved genre while the game itself plays like the long awaited successor to Quake. If low-poly graphics are a red flag, then try something else. But if anything, the retro-look adds to both the charm and the atmosphere of Dusk. 

Play this if you like: 

  • Boomer shooters 
  • Lovecraftian horrors 
  • Retro-style graphics

Not the best looking bunch - not by a long shot.

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Writer, Musician, Vault Dweller, Zombie Hunter, the list is honestly endless. If you defeat me in battle, I drop my Switch, half a sandwich and about £8 in pennies.
Gamer Since: 2010
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Tears Of The Kingdom
Top 3 Favorite Games:Fallout: New Vegas, Portal 2, DOOM

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