1. S.T.A.L.K.E.R: Shadow of Chernobyl
“In S.T.A.L.K.E.R: Shadow of Chernobyl, there were several underground research labs full of all kind of spooky and paranormal badness and other sorts of anomalies. It was like exploring a haunted house except the ghosts were real and there’s a psychic force slowly driving you insane. Also it’s pitch black and you can get lost really easily.” — Innalibra
“Outlast and Alien Isolation gave me so much anxiety I had to stop playing them.
I managed to complete Outlast and Outlast 2, but I haven’t touched Alien in years. There’s no way I’m going through 20 hours of that shit.” — HearTheEkko
3. Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem
“That game fucked with your head so much using the sanity meter. For those that haven’t played it here are some of things that would happen:
- When entering a room, the character may turn into a Zombie, and ‘die’ a moment later or after going through some doors.
- Attempting to cast Recover may cause the character’s torso to explode, resulting in a (fake) death of the character.
- When entering a room, the character’s limbs may explode in a systematic order, going for the head, the arms and then the torso, resulting in a (fake) death of the character.
- When entering a room, the character may shrink or grow while moving. This is most commonly seen in the strange curved corridors of the Forbidden City.
- When entering a room and when holding a gun, the character can shoot at nothing at random times or turn around and shoot at the camera leaving a fake bullet hole in the screen. (Similiar to the Prologue of the James Bond movies, and in Resident Evil 2.)
- When attempting to reload a gun, it may go off in the character’s stomach, resulting in a (fake) death of the character. This is most prominent in Max’s chapter, for he is the only one without a bigger gun than his flintlock pistols. Revolvers in other chapters have been known to cause this phenomenon to occur as well.
- When entering a room, the character’s head falls off (but can be picked up), and levitates on screen reciting ‘HAMLET’.
- The screen goes black, as if the TV went off.
- Bugs may appear to be crawling on the TV screen.
- The game will lower the gameplay volume while displaying a green volume bar, similar to real on-screen TV settings.
- The screen goes black and changes to video mode, and you will hear your character getting eaten until they ‘die’. (Even without a ‘Break Free’ control stick, the unseen Zombie can still be pushed away)
- A false sneak-preview of a sequel to the game, called ‘Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Redemption’ (the original planned sequel to ‘Sanity’s Requiem’) will appear.
- Upon saving your game, a message will say, ‘Are you sure you want to delete all of your Saved Games?’ If you say yes or no, the saved files will be ‘deleted’.
- A ‘Blue Screen of Death’ will appear.
- You will see the image you see when you start up or reset the game, quoting Edgar Allan Poe’s ‘The Raven’ in Edward Roivas’ voice.
- When the controller is left idle long enough, a still ‘screensaver’ shot of Pious will appear on the screen until a button is pressed.
- When you open your inventory screen, all your inventory spaces appear empty.
- When entering a room, the character may be unable to move or attack, and the player will get a fake system message telling that a controller isn’t plugged in, while the many zombies attack them.
- A fake screen message will appear, congratulating the player for finishing the demo of the game.
- The camera begins leaning as the Sanity Meter lowers.” — -eDgAR-
4. Doki Doki
“My old roommate was playing this game and I thought it was some dating sim game. So, I left and went to play some game and I hear him yell ‘JESUS FUCKING CHRIST NO!!!’ and was like ‘yo, wtf dude you alright?’
I kid you not he was white as a fucking sheet and literally shut his computer (gaming laptop) and proceeded to go outside. I’ve known the dude for two years and worked with him for one. He hates going outside… But, not after Doki Doki. That shit made him contemplate life.
I’m scared to even buy the game if it did that to an anti-social recluse.” — xItz_Anthonyx34
“Everything about Bloodborne is disturbing and eerie, the atmosphere, the monsters the unpredictability of the world itself, by far the most tense I felt playing a video game.” — Novasex
6. Until Dawn
“Until Dawn was pretty fucking well done. At times it was like they were trying to hard, but over all one of the best horror anything I’ve played/watched/read.” — murderousbudgie
“I got a cracked version of Amnesia from a friend.
Loaded it, stepped into the main hall, heard scary noises. Have never played again.” — iKILLcarrots
8. Condemned: Criminal Origins
“There is no game that has filled me with a worse sense of dread than Condemned: Criminal Origins.
Yes, the graphics aren’t great and there are a few things that aren’t great, such as the story or a couple levels, but still. I have yet to play a game that has such a good sense of suspense, dread, and fear of the unknown.
It has such good enemy reveals, such as the mannequins in the department store. Or the starving corrupted beings in the sewer.
It uses audio and visuals perfectly, and has very good foreshadowing, such as how you can sometimes look behind you and catch a glimpse of the late game enemies, or how it purposefully misleads you for things such as the locker jumpscare, or how SKX isn’t The Match Maker.
Overall, C:CO is a phenomenal game and I highly suggest everyone to play it if they want a great psychological horror game.” — PhReAkOuTz
“I’ve played a ton of horror games – my roommate and I went on a kick where we’d stream ourselves playing every horror game we could find, from big names like Outlast/Outlast 2 and RE7 to lesser known indie games.
Subnautica has honestly scared me way more than pretty much every one of those. It’s just that feeling that there’s something out there, especially when you’re diving into new areas. I’ve literally jumpscared myself by accidentally driving the Seamoth into a tiny fish without noticing – there’s just way more chances to run into something unexpected that won’t be given away by the soundtrack or something else (most horror games really give away their jump scares).
Love that game.” — blay12
10. The 11th Hour
“I always remember the 7th Guest & 11th Hour creeping me out. The way the games gradually descended into the eerie parts made it more disturbing than games that start right out with the horror and jump scares.” — wj333
11. Silent Hill
“They might not hold up as well now but I remember being scared shitless playing the first Fatal Frame and Silent Hill games as a kid sitting in the dark down in my basement.” — TheLastSpoonBender
12. Dying Light
“Playing Dying Light at like 1 in the morning. Especially when you got to the point when the running zombies were introduced.” — PM_ME_UR_BOOBSICLES
13. Gone Home
“Gone Home. I was so sure my dead sister’s corpse was going to suddenly tap me on the shoulder. Especially down in that stupid basement. I sprinted to all those lamps immediately.” — olive1112
14. Doom 3
“Probably Doom 3, especially in that dark corridor where the babies were crying.” — DejectedHead
“I remember playing this game as a kid and being absolutely terrified when the wahrk swims up to the window. I could never figure out why everything about the game made me feel so creeped out and uncomfortable but I think [the] emptiness and isolation was what did it.” — JosefGordonLightfoot
16. Dead Space
“The Dead Space series, especially the first game. That game made me jump so many damn times. I loved it!” — nope_noperstein
17. Parasite EVE
“Parasite EVE for PS1.
Playing it as a kid probably has something to do with why it was so scary to me, but seeing people infected with a sentient parasite and grotesquely mutating was pretty intense.” — Serukaizen
“Manhunt, that shit was pretty intense when it first came out… Using things like piano wire to not only choke people to death, but to actually saw the guys head off…
Also came with classic lines such as ‘I can smell the shit in your pants’ whilst being hunted.” — Jee187
19. Penumbra: Overture
“Penumbra: Overture is scary shit, and has a terrific story as well. The entire series is great, although Requiem is more like added content than anything.
The SCP games were super low fi but actually pretty terrifying, too.” — ZeusAmmon
20. SCP Containment Breach
“SCP Containment Breach. I am not trying to sound like a manly badass but there are few horror games that can scare me in the same way as SCP Containment Breach. I always quit the game early because I get scared of the sculpture and don’t feel like playing after that.” — Edgyfaggot6969666
21. Half Life
“I couldn’t play Half Life. Never even saw the first enemy. The sounds and suspense stressed me out too much. Dead Space got me too. I’ve played plenty of horror games but couldn’t do those. I’m sure there were a couple others between those two I’m forgetting. Just some of em strike me the right (wrong?) way.” — rectalstresses
22. First Encounter Assault Recon
“I enjoyed the creepy darkness and sounds/jumpscares in the F.E.A.R Series.” — Uppgrade
“Have y’all played SOMA? It was good but everything freaked me out even days after I finished it.” — Shiruet
24. Resident Evil
“Resident Evil 7 is so disturbing and graphic. I had to look away so many times.” — ccr3ds
25. Spooky’s House Of Jump Scares
“Spooky’s House Of Jump Scares.
It starts off cartoony with the cardboard cutouts.
But it goes downhill fast.
And they keep doing the cardboard cutouts to keep you on your toes.” — Pasta-hobo