The four scariest games ever, to get you in the mood for Halloween
Ghosts, monsters, deranged killers – they’re all after you in these video games, which might just scare you off your seat
Who doesn’t love a scary video game? You kick back in your favourite chair, turn the lights off and prepare to be terrified. There are dozens of video games people will swear are the most horrifying, but to our knowledge, the following are the scariest video games ever.
Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly
Set in Japan, you play as Mio Amakura who is searching the “Lost Village” for her twin sister, Mayu. Your only tool is the Camera Obscura, which acts as both a weapon and as your means of documentation during the game. Ghosts will attack you, but you can only fight back by taking pictures of them. Be warned: if you run out of film, you’re not going to get far in the game. You spend the game searching for your sister, solving puzzles and keeping the ghosts at bay. Japanese horror is always on a creepier level than its Western counterparts and this game is no exception.
For PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox
A “playable teaser” for the now-cancelled Silent Hills, it was a collaboration between Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima and horror/fantasy film director Guillermo del Toro. The game has you spending your time walking through ever-changing hallways. Sometimes you’ll walk through and everything seems completely normal, other times you’ll hear a creepy voice on the radio telling you not to turn around and look behind you or seeing the lights change to a red hue. The horror comes from the game’s simplicity. You’re not going to have monsters chasing you. It feels like nearly everything you see and hear is inside your character’s head, which is what the Silent Hill series is supposed to be about. This game fully captures that helpless feeling, which is why it’s probably one of the most perfect horror games ever made.
For PlayStation 4
Amnesia: The Dark Descent
You wake up in a castle with no memory besides your name, where you’re from and the knowledge that something is hunting you. What a way to start off a game, right? Like the other games on this list, you’re unable to fight any of the creatures. You can barricade doors while hiding, but it won’t deter these monsters for long. You also have to avoid looking directly at them, being in the dark or seeing anything disturbing, because you have a sanity meter to watch. The more you stand in the dark or look at the monsters, the more the meter will drain, causing the screen to become distorted and blurry. You have to spend the game avoiding the creatures as well as piecing together why you wiped your memory, giving yourself even more of a challenge.
For PlayStation 4, PC, Mac, Linux
The basic story here is fairly clichéd: a person goes to a run-down psychiatric hospital and, surprisingly, things go awry. But, since your character is a journalist equipped with only a night-vision camera and a notebook, it makes the “combat” more challenging. You can’t fight. Your only options are to run away or hide from the enemies, which increases the horror in the game. Oh, and the batteries don’t last very long in your camera, especially when you’re using the night vision to see where you’re going … or what creature might be in the room with you. Your goal is to avoid being murdered by the patients and to figure out why they’re murdering and pillaging. Think of it like a found-footage horror movie … with you as the star.
For PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, Mac and Linux