Top 10 Scary Video Games
These are the games that make you wanna sleep with the lights on. They range from the games that drop you in the woods and have a demon stalk you, to the memorable ones that take place aboard a space station full of zombies. Just to be clear, for this list any game genre is eligible, as long as it brings the frights. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down the top 10 scary video games.
Top 10 Scary Video Games
These are the games that make you wanna sleep with the lights on. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’ll be counting down the top 10 scary video games.
Just to be clear, for this list any game genre is eligible, as long as it brings the frights.
#10: “Clock Tower” (1995)
The first installment in this series, this title first arrived on the SNES. Taking terror to the point and click genre, it’s story focuses on orphans who are adopted by a wealthy man living in the titular clock tower mansion. Unusual for the time, it still manages to be a frightening game thanks to its unsettling atmosphere packed with psychological horror. Sheesh, as if Orphans didn’t have it bad enough as it is.
#9: “Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem” (2002)
Another frightener for a Nintendo console, this survival horror instead focuses on a mansion in Rhode Island. A third person experience, it centers on Alexandria, a woman investigating her grandfather’s death, who soon discovers a book linking her to characters from different time periods, which the player gets to control as well. The takeaway from Enternal Darkness is the patented Sanity Meter. As the meter depletes, the camera angle begins to skew, the terrifying sounds become more intense, and you begin to see things that aren’t really there.
#8: “System Shock 2” (1999)
Expecting a trip under the ocean in Bioshock? Well, Rapture was fun, but it nobody would have ever taken the plunge if it wasn’t for this outting on the Von Braun. Awakening on a seemingly derelict spacecraft, players must scavenge to survive against the hideously mutated crewmembers and a malevolent AI that’s pulling the strings in the background. Difficult, complex and oozing with atmosphere, System Shock 2 is as much a classic of PC gaming in general as it is one of the scariest games of all time.
#7: “Siren” (2004)
Known as Forbidden Siren in Europe, this scary as hell survival horror title weaves a story about characters in a Japanese village who are interconnected, able to see and hear what each other experiences. The sheer amount of disturbing content packed into this game caused it to get banned. The real terror comes from the fact that you can never sully kill the ghastly horror’s you face, encouraging you run to and hide rather than go in guns blazing.
#6: “Dead Space” (2008)
Even if in space no one can hear you scream, on a spaceship there’s plenty of opportunity to wail like a little girl. Taking some heavy inspiration from Event Horizon and System Shock 2, Dead Space does “alone in a spaceship” horror like no other. Even though it’s the most action oriented game on this list, it’s still got enough totally effed up shit and underwear staining surprises to keep you jittery from start to finish.
#5: “Condemned: Criminal Origins” (2005)
Few things are as scary as psychological horror from the first person perspective. Condemned takes the nerve jangling experience to new heights by focusing on melee combat, meaning you get to feel every crowbar blow your unfortunate protagonist takes to face. Like Doom 3, your flashlight is your best friend in this game, and most long pauses are followed by moments of hair raising panic.
#4: “Silent Hill 2” (2001)
Only gamers who have managed to make it out of the town of Silent Hill understand how fundamentally freaky it is. Konami spared no expense making this the scariest fictional town in America. Better than the original, the sequel follows James Sunderland on his search for his dead wife. What makes Silent Hill 2 so horrifying, and so satisfying as a story, is that the cursed town draws upon the darker elements found in the psyche of its guests.
#3: “Slender: The Eight Pages” (2012)
Getting scared doesn’t have to cost anything! This free to play computer game will make you scream quiver in fear without ever showing any blood. The premise is simple, you’re dropped in the woods and need to retrieve eight pages. All the while, you are being pursued by the Slenderman, a faceless ghoul that awaits you at every turn. Sealing the package is pulsating drumming sound grows in your ears and turns your stomach. Yes, the sequels are just as scary.
Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.
#2: “Amnesia: The Dark Descent” (2010)
Surpassing the scares of the original, here you go it alone to explore a dark and foreboding castle. Filed with puzzles and obstructions, you must find your way without getting macerated by roaming monsters. Oh, and can’t fight back, all you can do is hide. Then again, hiding for too long or looking at monsters directly will cause your sanity to dwindle, spurring hallucinations and drawing the creatures towards you. Adult diapers are pretty much mandatory.
#1: “Fatal Frame” (2002)
Known as Project Zero in Europe, this game, supposedly based on a true story, casts you as a girl searching for her brother. Of course, she must find him in a haunted mansion filled with evil ghosts. Your only weapon is the Camera Obscura, an antique that can photograph and exorcise spirits. Fatal Frame takes the top spot on our list for surrounding you with invisible horror, forcing you to stare your demons straight in the face, and for literally making you into a defenseless little girl.
Agree with our list which game left you shaking in a corner? For more nail biting top 10s, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.