My Top 10 Horror Games

My Top 10 Horror Games

The horror genre is now one of my favorite genres in the gaming world. I used to despise the genre, and had numerous nightmares after watching a friend play Resident Evil 2. So, with me on a Silent Hill addiction right now and not to mention working in game development as an indie-horror developer I’ve decided to compile a list of my top experiences in the horror genre of games. They’re also in no particular order.

I hope you enjoy this list, and keep in mind these are compiled from games I’ve played. You may be disappointed by the list, but I’d love to see everyone’s opinions on their favorites as well. Let’s get down to business.

#10 – Fatal Frame III: The Tormented (Tecmo)

I’ve always heard good things about the Fatal Frame series, especially from my buddy Adam Dodd over on BloodyDisgusting. Now, let it be known that this has been my only venture into the Fatal Frame series and I did so last year via my PlayStation 3 as this game was fairly cheap on PSN. When I first hopped into the game I didn’t expect something this terrifying, and generally a game make me feel this uneasy.

I’ve been scared from games before, but this was one of the only games to actually make me feel nauseous from fucking with my nerves while playing. The ghosts were creepy, and the entire time all I could think about were the Ju-On films. The fact that the “combat” came from a camera was an interesting twist, and I enjoyed my time with the game. I should take Adam’s advice and go check out Crimson Butterfly. Apparently, that’s the best game in the series.

 

#9 – Dino Crisis (Capcom)

Being only 22 years old, Dino Crisis was one of the first horror games I ever got my hands on. I’m a massive fan of dinosaurs, and the chance to play a video-game with dinosaurs was something I wanted to experience so very badly. The opening cut-scene really set the tone of the entire experience for me, and threw me into a world full of terror and absolute dread. The dinosaurs were scary, and back then I couldn’t believe they’d let a game this bloody, and gory get made (I hadn’t played Resident Evil yet at this point).

This game then caused me to check out Dino Crisis 2, and to also avoid Dino Crisis 3 which was set in the future with some odd mutated dinosaurs. I loved Dino Crisis and would love to see either a reboot, or a return to the series for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

 

#8 – Silent Hill: Shattered Memories (Climax Studios)

This was pretty much the only game I owned on my PSP and I rather enjoyed it. I wasn’t big on the Silent Hill games around this time, and it caught my eye in a store for around $10, so I snagged it. I had only previously played a few hours of the first game on the PlayStation and didn’t care too much for it. I hated horror games at that age, so I avoided getting scared pretty much all the time.

However, I had just received a PSP for Christmas and was aching for some games. So, I got home and dipped right into Shattered Memories. I loved what I was playing, and was genuinely spooked too during the experience. Most people will say the original game got them into the series, but Shattered Memories is what did it for me.

 

#7 – Penumbra: Black Plague (Frictional Games)

Amnesia: The Dark Descent is what gave me notice about Frictional Games and their work as a horror developer. One of my friends also mentioned a very interesting horror game that they made before the release of Amnesia titled Penumbra and that there was a whole series attached to this game. So, one day I dipped on Black Plague to see what the hype was all about.
It couldn’t possibly be as scary, or scarier than Amnesia…or could it?

When I hopped into the game I noticed some similar gameplay mechanics, and elements that were prominent in Amnesia. This sold me right away. I ventured into Black Plague with open arms and got to experience not only one of the scariest, and tense games I’ve ever played but is now one of my favorite horror games I have ever had the privilege of playing. Is it scarier than Amnesia? No way, but it’s still high up there.

 

#6 – Resident Evil: Code Veronica (Capcom)

A more recent entry to this list as I dipped on the HD version that dropped on Xbox 360 a few years back. I had played numerous iterations of the franchise at this point and was curious about Code Veronica even though one of my best friends, and fellow Resident Evil fans had only talked shit about this game. So, I hopped in with extremely low expectations.

I was pleasantly surprised, and was greeted with the old-school, fixed camera gamestyle that was prominent in the earlier Resident Evil games. I sure as hell didn’t miss the old style, but it was nice to go back and experience some nostalgia from the older games in the series. Not only was it nice to see Claire Redfield again (one of my favorites) but getting to see zombies again after my disappointment with Resident Evil 5 was a nice thing for me. However, that disappointment only grew stronger with the release of Resident Evil 6.

 

#5 – Outlast (Red Barrels)

Outlast may just be the scariest game I’ve ever played next to Amnesia (not Machine For Pigs). It was gruesome, tense, and downright terrifying. It has some of the best villains I’ve ever experienced in a video-game, and the overall ascetic of the game will stick with me for the rest of my life. This game has been burned into my memory for years to come. There’s a lot of moments in the game that are truly disturbing, and the whole “found-footage” deal with the camera being your main source of seeing in the dark was a really neat aspect.

Of course, the game did tend to get really repetitive at some point, and the jump scares eventually stopped working for me. Over-all, I enjoyed my time with the game, even though it’s a fairly short experience. The recently released DLC, Whistleblower was far scarier than the core-game, but I can’t add it to this list as it is just DLC.

 

#4 – Resident Evil 4 (Capcom)

I wonder if it’s considered poor taste if Resident Evil 4 is my favorite of the series. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Resident Evil 2, and Nemesis but Resident Evil 4 did something to the series for me that got me insanely hooked, and terrified at the same time. Even though this took the game down the dark-road towards it’s now action oriented roots I still loved this game.

I bought it for my Nintendo Gamecube and was my addiction for the longest time. I was eating, breathing, and living Resident Evil. It’s all my friends and I talked about for a good couple of years before we all got our Xbox 360s. But the time I spent with this game will always be memorable for me. Not only is it one of my favorite horror games, but it’s also one of my favorite video games of all time.

 

#3 – Dead Space 2 (Visceral Games)

People would probably expect to see the first Dead Space game on this list, and while that is for sure a solid horror game I fell in love and adored the sequel a little bit more. Not only is Dead Space one of my favorite series of all time, it is also one of the games I have spent the most time in on the last generation of consoles. I sunk numerous playthroughs into Dead Space 2, and spent countless hours into the competitive multiplayer component.

It was a little more action oriented than the first game, and would eventually take Dead Space 3 down a path that most fans absolutely hated (I actually loved Dead Space 3). I loved the new setting, and that opening sequence set the entire tone and experience for me. Plus, I loved collecting all the different suits of armor. It was a fun time. I’ll still sit here and pray for a Dead Space on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

 

#2 – Amnesia: The Dark Descent (Frictional Games)

It’s a given to have this game on the list. I’ve mentioned it numerous times in this article and is by far the scariest game I have ever got my hands on. The proof being that I’ve gotten so terrified from playing Amnesia that it’s caused me to struggle in actually finishing the game. Maybe I’m overreacting but this game does something so well that terrifies me to the core and causes me to have long breaks between sessions.

Even though I never did finish Dark Descent I still loved my time with it, and put in a good chunk of hours into the game. I should go back and finish this game. It makes me feel dirty that it still sits there incomplete. I did however pick up the sequel, Machine For Pigs recently and can honestly say that I haven’t really been scared by the sequel. Compared to the original game it’s such a disappointment.

 

 

#1 – Silent Hill 2 (Team Silent)

The most recent entry on the list as it’s the game I’m currently playing through for the first time. I bought the HD Collection (I know sue me) a few months back and never gotten around to investing some actual time into the series. I may only be about 5 hours into the game at this point but it’s one of the best horror games I’ve ever played. Even though it hasn’t “terrified” me like some of the other games on the list, I can see how it did scare players way back when they first got their hands on this title when we didn’t have things like Amnesia, or Outlast.

Shattered Memories may have introduced me to the world of Silent Hill, but Silent Hill 2 has solidified that relationship and made me love the series. However, I had played Downpour (Enjoyed it) and Homecoming (Meh) in the past so I haven’t fully neglected the series. This might also cause me to bust out the ole PS1 and look for a copy of Silent Hill so I can spend more than just an hour wandering around the streets.

Justin Ross


2 Comments

  1. fhyf
    June 18, 2014, 10:36 pm

    Lots of bad games right there.. hell, RE4 is action oriented not survival thus making the horror factor almost nonexistent.

  2. Amber
    June 18, 2014, 11:38 pm

    Outlast and Amnesia… I needed new pants for those!

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