The history of scary games dates back to the early 1970s, when the game Haunted House was released on the Magnavox Odyssey.

The next stage in the development of the genre was text-based games, such as Mystery House, released in 1980. Meanwhile, survival games based on horror films began to appear on the market, such as Nostromo (1981) and Halloween (1983).

The 1990s brought some changes with the growing interest in the horror game genre. During this time, the excellent game Alone in the Dark (1992) was created, which inspired Capcom to create the first part of Resident Evil (1996), actually a slightly enhanced remake of their earlier game, Sweet Home (1986).

This game gave birth to and coined the term “survival horror games”. The transition from text-based, isometric, and platform titles to full, first-person experiences made players fall in love with horror games and demand more!

The Resident Evil franchise has grown significantly, currently consisting of …60 games! The creators follow trends and successfully utilize the latest technologies, meeting players’ expectations. Their latest production, Resident Evil Village from 2021, is considered a masterpiece. Players appreciate the phenomenal graphics, intriguing enemies, the story, and the extreme experiences the game provides.

Are you a fan of RE: Village? Are you looking for similar FPS horror games? In that case, you must explore our list!

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard

Release date:2017-01-23
Genre:Horror
Developer:CAPCOM CO., LTD.

The seventh main installment of the Resident Evil series, which, after the action-oriented nature of the previous two parts, returns to the franchise’s roots.

It also serves as a prequel to the story of Ethan Winters, a regular guy searching for his missing wife, who ends up in a mysterious and eerie abandoned residence, facing creatures from his worst nightmares.

The game was enthusiastically received even during its announcement at E3 2016, where players appreciated the atmosphere of horror, intricate logical puzzles, and the protagonist – an untrained in combat everyman.

Key features
  • A full-fledged horror story
  • Similar to RE: Village, it follows Ethan’s story
  • Plenty of logical puzzles
  • Highly praised by players and critics

Layers of Fear

Release date:2023-06-15
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Bloober Team

Released in June of this year, the game is the third installment in the series and an expanded remake of two previous parts – Layers of Fear: Legacy and Layers of Fear 2.

The game’s story focuses on the lives of two artists, the Painter and the Actor, who, while pursuing their passions and trying to create their magnum opus, begin to experience various visions and hallucinations, gradually losing touch with reality.

The gameplay centres around exploration and uncovering the mysteries of the mansion where the action takes place. Fighting with the nightmares is impossible, and the only option to deal with the enemies is… a lamp.

Key features
  • Dark and psychedelic atmosphere
  • Engaging gameplay focused on exploration
  • Excellent and polished graphics enhancing the game’s experience
  • No possibility of possessing weapons or fighting enemies

P.T.

Release date:2014-08-14
Genre:Horror
Developer:Konami

P.T, which stands for Playable Teaser, was a short game/interactive teaser for the new, Silent Hills game, the release of which unfortunately never happened.

The production stood out for its photorealistic graphics. The story follows an unnamed protagonist who wakes up in an unfamiliar, empty house, accompanied by a radio broadcast. Trying to leave, the character repeatedly returns to the same place, but the environment slowly transforms into a terrifying, claustrophobic nightmare. The game offers a very dense and frightening atmosphere.

Unfortunately, after the cancellation of Silent Hills, Konami removed P.T from the PS Store, making it impossible to download again. We include this game on our list as an intriguing titbit because it was simply phenomenal and was recognized as one of the top 20 horror games in history.

Key features
  • Very dark and claustrophobic atmosphere
  • Phenomenal, photorealistic graphics
  • Considered a masterpiece
  • Well-known actors in the lead roles

Outlast

Release date:2013-09-04
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Red Barrels

Interestingly, this game was inspired by real events related to the CIA’s secret Project MKUltra.

In the game, you take on the role of a journalist who receives information that a research facility has been opened in an old, previously abandoned psychiatric hospital. Rumours of strange occurrences at the site abound. The protagonist sneaks into the building to confirm the rumours. However, what he encounters there exceeds his expectations.

The main character is not a combat-trained, heavily armed veteran but is equipped with a camera with night vision, and he must confront genuine nightmares. Sounds familiar, right?

Key features

Amnesia: The Dark Descent

Release date:2010-09-08
Genre:Adventure
Developer:Frictional Games

A highly acclaimed horror game that strongly evokes the atmosphere of H.P. Lovecraft’s works.

In this title, you step into the shoes of Daniel, who wakes up in a dark, 18th-century castle. He has no idea where he is or what he has been doing. It turns out that his amnesia is the result of his own actions. As you explore the dark corridors of the fortress, you find notes and pages from your journal, slowly uncovering your dark past.

Like several other games on our list, the main character in Amnesia lacks the ability to confront the nightmares that haunt him. Instead, he must hide and flee from the monsters skilfully. The key element of the gameplay is the fact that Daniel… is afraid of the dark.

Key features
  • Outstanding story, told from end to beginning
  • A theme of darkness and mystery
  • A tragic protagonist, full of personal issues and fears
  • Excellent music and sound design

Honorable Mentions

In addition to the games mentioned above, a few more titles deserve recognition in this article.

  • SOMA: Released in 2015 by Frictional Games, this adventure game puts you in the shoes of Simon Jarrett, who ends up in a research facility called PATHOS-II at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. It’s quickly evident that the place has been taken over by artificial intelligence, which has killed the staff. Jarrett must discover what happened and find a way out.
  • The Forest:  Developed and released by Endnight Games in 2018, you play as a survivor of a plane crash who finds themselves in a dense jungle, having to find shelter and food to survive. However, it becomes clear that you are not alone in this wilderness.
  • Condemned: Criminal Origins: Released in 2005 by Monolith Productions, this dark psychological thriller places you in the shoes of Ethan Thomas, an FBI agent on the trail of serial killers. As you traverse strange and terrifying locations, you’ll experience a gripping and disturbing storyline.

Conclusion

If playing Resident Evil: Village has left you craving more games in a similar vein, the list above should help satisfy your appetite!

These remarkable, spine-chilling stories, unique experiences, dense and unsettling atmospheres, and terrifying themes in each of the listed games will provide you with entertainment for many months to come!