What’s the best game in the horror genre? It’s hard to pick one, they come in all shapes and sizes. This is why instead of singling out one title for praise, we’ve prepared a whole list of the most incredible horror games of all time. There are some classics, there are some newer releases, all in all, you should be satisfied.

Spooky games come in all sorts of flavors, so you can expect some zombies here, crazed murderers on the loose, terrors from outer space and so on. Behold, these are the top 15 best horror games of all time:

GameReleaseDeveloperSale
Dead Space 2008-10-20 EA Redwood Shores 60% Read more
Alien Isolation 2014-10-06 Creative Assembly 82% Read more
Outlast 2013-09-04 Red Barrels 85% Read more
Left 4 Dead 2 2009-11-16 Valve Read more
Amnesia Rebirth 2020-10-20 Frictional Games 94% Read more
Carrion 2020-07-23 Phobia Game Studio 53% Read more
Maid Of Sker 2020-07-28 Wales Interactive 7% Read more
Phasmophobia 2020-09-18 Kinetic Games Read more
Resident Evil 3 2020-04-03 CAPCOM CO., LTD. 86% Read more
System Shock 2 1999-08-11 Irrational Games 74% Read more
The Dark Pictures Anthology: Little Hope 2020-10-30 Supermassive Games 84% Read more
The Last Of Us Part II (PS4) 2020-06-19 Naughty Dog Read more
The Medium 2021-01-28 Bloober Team SA 60% Read more
Resident Evil 8: Village 2021-05-07 CAPCOM CO., LTD. 77% Read more
Dying Light 2 2022-02-04 Techland 63% Read more

        

Dead Space

Release date:2008-10-20
Genre:Adventure
Developer:EA Redwood Shores

Of all science fiction horrors, this one is probably the most iconic. As Isaac Clarke, an engineer aboard a vessel named the Ishimura, you need to find out what happened on this ship and face a deadly threat known as the Necromorphs.

Dead Space

That’s right: expect some top-tier body horror here. The Necromorphs are freaking ugly and extremely deadly. You’ll need to figure out a way to defeat these enemies, as some might sprout new limbs or produce new monsters. You can kill them only by severing their limbs using several weapons available in the game. Lots of horrifying fun guaranteed!

One of the most commendable things in Dead Space is the immersion the developers achieved through the removal of a HUD. The only information you’ll see here is whatever that is being displayed in the game world. For example, Isaac’s health and energy levels are shown on the back of his suit. You can see how much ammo is left only once you draw a particular weapon. All in all, Dead Space is a competently crafted and genuinely terrifying space horror that’ll appeal to the fans of Aliens, Resident Evil, The Thing and the like.

 

Key features
  • You’ll get to fight space undead known as the Necromorphs
  • You’ll get to play as an engineer forced to become a space zombie killer
  • Unique dismemberment mechanics
  • A great science fiction horror in the vein of Aliens and The Thing
        

Silent Hill 2

Release date:2001-09-24
Genre:Survival horror
Developer:Team Silent

While the entire Silent Hill series is one of the greatest collections of survival horrors, there are certain installments that are simply the best. Silent Hill 2 is most likely the best game in this saga.

Silent Hill 2 bloody scribble

As James Sunderland, your task is to find your deceased wife in the titular town. This won’t be an easy task, as you will be exposed to horrifying monsters and haunting visions on a regular basis. Expect fighting monsters using both melee weapons and firearms (or just running away from them), solving puzzles and uncovering all sorts of mysteries related to this cursed place.

Silent Hill 2 is still an impressive feat when it comes to atmosphere and monster designs. There are some clever gameplay mechanics in here as well (such as the fact that you can read maps only in well-lit rooms or when you have a flashlight). All in all, while this title has certainly aged, it’s still most likely going to terrify you. And if you’re against playing old games, prepare for a remake, announced in October 2022.

Key features
  • One of the best survival horrors of all time
  • Fantastically eerie and creepy
  • Psychological horror at its finest
  • The game features some of the most memorable monster designs of all time
        

Alien: Isolation

Release date:2014-10-06
Genre:Action & Shooter
Developer:Creative Assembly

Isolation gives Alien fans plenty of reasons to rejoice. It’s a wonderful video game sequel to one of the most incredible science fiction horrors of all time that puts you in the shoes of Amanda Ripley, the daughter of Ellen, a character famously played by Sigourney Weaver. Like her mother, she will have to face the terrifying xenomorph who stalks her throughout the Sevastopol space station.

Alien: Isolation

Alien: Isolation is pretty much a stealth game where your goal is to avoid hostile humans and androids, as well as the titular enemy. Some enemies can be defeated using the weapons scattered across the station, but the xenomorph is immune to your attacks. Isolation uses a bunch of clever mechanics. For example, you can use the motion tracker to locate the Alien, but it can also attract its attention with its sounds. All this, coupled with a first-person perspective, results in a hectic, scary experience.

Aside from the main campaign, there is also the so-called Survival Mode where you need to complete various objectives on a selection of maps within a set time limit and while avoiding the Alien. There is also a bunch of DLCs that offer some new adventures and missions. And if you’re a fan of the 1970s, you’ll be pleased to learn that this game recreates the original’s atmosphere perfectly with its design and attention to details. Alien: Isolation is definitely one of the best horror games of all time, hands down.

Key features
  • A huge Alien is constantly on the prowl
  • A painstaking recreation of the 1970s’ aesthetics
  • A wonderful mix of stealth, action and horror
  • Various modes to try out
        

Outlast

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

Amnesia: The Dark Descent started a whole new trend in the survival horror genre and Outlast is the fruit of that. This psychological horror with emphasis on stealth also became popular, as revered as the title that inspired it.

Outlast

Outlast puts you in the shoes of one Miles Upshur, an investigative journalist who ends up trapped in a mental asylum full of vicious killers. Unfortunately, he can’t fight back. The only way to avoid getting killed is either running away or hiding somewhere your pursuers can’t find you. There’s absolutely no combat here.

Another interesting thing about Outlast is that the hospital is mostly dark, which means you need to resort to using a camcorder with night vision in order to explore the dilapidated hallways. As you probably already expect, you’ll need to find batteries, too. Outlast is a terrifying experience and if you loved the Amnesia series, you’ll be quite fond of this one as well.

Key features
  • A very good survival horror with crazed murderers on the loose, jump scares and an eerie atmosphere
  • You need to find batteries that’ll power up your night vision
  • No combat, you need to rely on your stealth skills
  • A malevolent entity known as the Walrider is out there to get you
        

Left 4 Dead 2

Release date:2009-11-16
Genre:Action & Shooter
Developer:Valve

Who knew that a co-op shooter with zombies as antagonists will become one of the best video games of all time? Left 4 Dead 2 did just that. It’s an improvement over its predecessor and a fantastic title to try out if you want to experience some horrifying moments with your friends.

Left 4 Dead 2

Your goal in Left 4 Dead 2 is to make it to a safe zone at the end of pretty much every level in the game. This won’t be an easy task, since the area is littered with zombies and other undead monstrosities. You need to co-operate as a team of four Survivors, look for better weapons, kill any monsters you encounter, rinse and repeat.

There are also other modes in the game that you can try out as well aside from the main campaign. Some of these allow players to become the Infected and try to stop the Survivors from achieving their goals. Coupled with an enhanced AI Director, a system which adjusts the things going on in accordance with your team’s performance, you’re in for a real co-op treat here. If you’re looking for a great game in this genre, Left 4 Dead 2 is one of the very best picks in this department.

Key features
  • One of the best co-operative shooters of all time
  • Four different Survivor characters to play as
  • AI Director 2.0 does a fantastic job responding to your team’s progress and performance with new threats and monsters
  • Various game modes available
        

Amnesia: Rebirth

Release date:2020-10-20
Genre:Horror
Developer:Frictional Games

The first Amnesia game, The Dark Descent, turned out to be a very influential one, causing a surge in first-person horrors’ popularity. Its proper sequel, Rebirth, comes with a new protagonist, a new setting and fresh nightmares to face.

Amnesia: Rebirth

Here you play as Tasi Trianon. She awakens somewhere in Algeria without any recollection of what happened. Worse yet, she’s being hunted by some strange creatures. Looks like she’s got so much more to worry about than just being stranded somewhere in the desert.

If you crave another fantastic horror from Frictional Game, this one is your best bet.

Key features
  • Immersive first-person horror
  • You need to manage your sanity levels
  • Set in the 1930s Algeria
  • It’s Amnesia, folks!
        

Carrion

Release date:2020-07-23
Genre:Horror
Developer:Phobia Game Studio

Carrion is a different breed. In this one, you’re not running away from a monster. You are the monster. If you ever fantasized about being a science experiment gone wrong, now’s your chance to live that fantasy.

Carrion

So, you’re basically a tentacled monstrosity crawling through vents, killing scientists and soldiers, as well as evolving into an even deadlier beast. It’s a gruesome, deeply unsettling game featuring some really good pixel art, lending to the overall old-school vibe. If you’re looking for a great “reverse horror,” Carrion’s a fantastic pick.

Key features
  • You control a monster, not a survivor
  • Cool mutations that you can undergo as you progress in the game
  • Great pixel art aesthetic
  • You’ll get to slaughter entire facilities
        

Maid of Sker

Release date:2020-07-28
Genre:Survival horror
Developer:Wales Interactive

This one is probably inspired by a 19th century novel of the same title, as well as a Welsh folk tale. Fortunately, however, knowledge of the source material is not going to impact your enjoyment of the game, as it introduces quite a few ideas of its own.

Maid of Sker

The protagonist in Maid of Sker is a young composer hired to compose a musical piece for a woman named Elizabeth Williams. The problem is that she’s trapped in the Sker hotel, a cursed place crawling with monsters known as the Quiet Ones. You’ll need to avoid them and uncover all the gruesome secrets of the hotel. This won’t be easy!

Key features
  • Inspired by a classic Welsh story
  • Sound plays the most important role here, as the Quiet Ones can hear you breathing
  • Multiple endings
  • You are helpless here, enemies can easily kill you
        

Phasmophobia

Release date:2020-09-18
Genre:Horror
Developer:Kinetic Games

Phasmophobia is essentially what would happen if Ghostbusters were made by the folks responsible for Paranormal Activity. Here, you collect evidence of supernatural presence in various haunted locations. Too bad these ghosts aren’t very fond of strangers poking around.

Phasmophobia

Phasmophobia features a dozen of different ghost types, each requiring a different approach. You’ll need to work with your friends in order to get what you came for and make it out in one piece. Spooks can be easily disturbed and this is something they don’t like. Add VR to the mix and you’ll get a really memorable horror experience.

Key features
  • Ghosts are more than apparitions: they can totally kill you
  • Co-operative VR horror experience, also playable without VR
  • Various ghost types to face
  • Getting out in one piece can be a really daunting task
        

Resident Evil 3

Release date:2020-04-03
Genre:Action
Developer:CAPCOM CO., LTD.

Remakes serve the Resident Evil series well. Resident Evil 3 received one, too, and it’s really, really good. Are you ready to help Jill Valentine survive as she’s being hunted by a relentless monster known as the Nemesis?

Resident Evil 3

The remake does away with tank controls of the original and is a proper third-person action game. Thanks to the RE Engine, you can admire all the gory details of zombies and mutants. Obviously, you’ll have to dig up some dirty secrets of the Umbrella Corp. as well. All in all, it’s a fantastic remake that you’ll love if you enjoyed the previous ones.

Key features
  • Uses the RE Engine to a great visual effect
  • You’ll get to relive the zombie outbreak in Racoon City
  • Great third-person survival horror
  • There’s even a multiplayer mode included
        

System Shock 2

Release date:1999-08-11
Genre:RPG
Developer:Irrational Games

Among all rogue AIs, SHODAN is probably the most memorable. You can face this malevolent entity in System Shock 2, a science fiction horror that happens to be one of the most unique games ever released, far ahead of its time.

System Shock 2

System Shock 2 blends various genres. There’s a bit of a survival horror to it, there is a lot of a first-person shooter in it, and there are some role-playing elements here as well. It’s a truly remarkable gameplay experience: complex, captivating and truly frightening. If you’re looking for a cyberpunk horror, System Shock 2 is the best choice, hands down.

Key features
  • SHODAN
  • Complex gameplay blending various genres
  • Each playthrough can be totally unique
  • It’s a game that was way ahead of its time – and probably is to this very day 
        

The Dark Pictures Anthology: Little Hope

Release date:2020-10-30
Genre:Interactive drama, survival horror
Developer:Supermassive Games

A second game in Supermassive Games’ horror anthology, Little Hope lets you control several characters, either solo or with friends in the multiplayer mode.

The Dark Pictures Anthology: Little Hope

The Curator asks for your help once again. This time a group of students and their professor are left stranded in an abandoned (yeah, right) town of Little Hope. This place is haunted and its past is really dark, as it involves witch trials. If our protagonists are to escape, they’ll need to uncover the secrets of the place.

Key features
  • The second installment in The Dark Pictures Anthology
  • You get to uncover whatever dark stuff happened in the town of Little Hope
  • Multiple playable characters
  • Two multiplayer modes
        

The Last of Us Part II

Release date:2020-06-19
Genre:Action-adventure
Developer:Naughty Dog

The sequel to The Last of Us is strongly focused on the “true horror is other people” theme. Still, it packs plenty of them fungus zombies that you’ll now face as Ellie, as opposed to Joel who was the protagonist of the previous game.

The Last of Us Part II

It’s a highly cinematic experience that boasts a harsh, brutal story. Expect lots of twists along the way, too. Gameplay-wise, it’s a mixture of survival horror, action-adventure and stealth where you need to explore your surroundings in search for valuable items and avoid – or kill – enemies that you encounter along the way, either hostile humans or zombies infected by a mutant Cordyceps fungus.

Key features
  • A dark, brutal story
  • Two playable characters
  • Fantastic graphics
  • Excellent voice acting and performances
        

The Medium

Release date:2021-01-28
Genre:Horror
Developer:Bloober Team SA

There are two things that you should know about Bloober Team’s The Medium. First, it’s inspired by the works of a famous Polish painter, Zdzisław Beksiński. Second, you’ll often explore two realms at once: the real, physical world and the spirit world. The thing is that it’s hard to say which one is more horrifying.

The Medium

The Medium is set in Poland. Marianne, the protagonist of the game, is investigating weird things happening at the Niwa holiday resort. Her ability to see the spirit world is both helpful and extremely dangerous. 

Oh, and the game features music composed by none other than Akira Yamaoka of Silent Hill fame (in addition to Arkadiusz Reikowski).

Key features
  • Two realities that you interact with simultaneously
  • Aesthetics inspired by the art of Zdzisław Beksiński
  • Legendary composer Akira Yamaoka contributed to the game’s music
  • Your spiritual powers are useful, but they won’t solve all your problems
        

Resident Evil Village

Release date:2021-05-07
Genre:Horror
Developer:CAPCOM CO., LTD.

>Ethan Winters, the protagonist of Resident Evil 7: Biohazard, is a fellow with poor luck in life. A couple of years after his misadventures in Louisiana problems come knocking on his door again. Ethan’s chase after Chris Redfield takes him to a weird village somewhere in Europe.

Resident Evil Village

Resident Evil Village retains the first-person perspective which worked wonders in RE7 when it comes to the sense of dread and immersion. You’ll get to face the werewolf-like Lycans and the mutant lords who rule the titular village. It’s definitely one of the best installments in the Resident Evil series, although if you preferred the more brooding predecessor, you might be disappointed to hear that its sequel is more action-oriented.

Key features
  • A new mess that Ethan Winters has gotten himself into
  • More action-oriented than its predecessor
  • You’ll get to kill some werewolf-like enemies
  • The titular village sure has some interesting rulers

This concludes or list of the best scariest games of all time. As you can see, quite a variety here and all sorts of themes. One thing’s for sure, these titles will surely leave a lasting impression on you.