Halloween hath arrived and if watching a scary movie isn’t really your style, maybe you should consider diving into a spooky video game instead. There’s no shortage of horror games out there and the good news (for folks like me) is not all of them have to be scary.
Whether it’s an indie on the Nintendo Switch, a battle of survival against horrendous monsters or a ghost hunting session with your friends, there are spooky games for all sorts of players.
Here are just a few of our favourite Halloween-esque video games for your weekend gaming session.
Which scary video game should you play on Halloween?
Phasmophobia was helped greatly by its popularity on Twitch as streamers teamed up to try and capture ghosts without being scared shitless.
With a title meaning fear of ghosts, Phasmophobia is a pretty accurate name for the game which pits you and your friends as paranormal investigators against a range of spooky spirits. The real kicker is that the game can respond to your microphone, allowing you to speak to ghosts and them to hear you. It’s terrifying fun.
Resident Evil: Village
The next instalment in the iconic franchise, Resident Evil: Village was also the first to make its way onto the PS5 – and it lived up to the hype.
If you’re after a truly creepy game in an interesting horror-filled world, you can’t go past RE: Village. You’ll once again take on the role of Ethan Winters, who travels to a snowy European village filled with werewolf mutants.
The PS5’s spatial audio and the controller’s haptic feedback help to truly immerse you into the spooks, and at around 10 hours of story, you can easily knock it over in one weekend.
A puzzle platformer with a side of horror, Little Nightmares takes 2.5D animation and makes it super creepy as you guide your character through a world of monstrous beings.
A prequel, Little Nightmares II, was released earlier this year and takes you through the Pale City. The games have been praised for their visual aesthetic and blending of horror with childish themes.
The Evil Within
Getting into true horror now, we have The Evil Within series. Both games are some of the most terrifying options out there as you attempt to help your character survive a range of monstrous and twisted creatures.
It’s tense, it’s scary, it’s perfect for Halloween.
Alan Wake recently made a return with the remastered edition and it comes as a lighter option for those who want spooky vibes in a game without the horror.
The gameplay relies heavily on Alan’s handy flashlight as he attempts to solve the mystery behind his wife’s disappearance. It’s a psychological thriller that will have you hooked from start to finish.
Look, Hades may not be your typical horror game, but I stand by it being a great choice for Halloween.
Between the decadent characters, ghostly Shades and your constant exposure to the undead of the underworld, it has all the makings of a scary story but without any of the spooks.
Hades is a great game at any time of the year and if you want something to get you into the Halloween spirit without being terrified, it is the game for you.
The Last of Us
Both The Last of Us and The Last of Us 2 drop you into a post-pandemic world filled with humans that have been transformed into fungus-headed zombies. Between Clickers, Runners and Bloaters, you’ll spend half the game in a fight for survival with limited resources, but you’ll have the reprieve of emotional character moments and dialogue.
The Last of Us can get pretty scary sometimes, but it’s worth the terror for the amazing story and characters.
Back 4 Blood
If you’re just after some zombie killing fun for the Halloween weekend, you can’t go past Back 4 Blood.
The Left 4 Dead successor is a cooperative battle between you and your friends and hordes of vicious mutants. You’ll need tactics, patience and a whole lot of firepower to survive.
The Dark Pictures Anthology
Any of The Dark Pictures games make for a spooky time, but the most recent release in the franchise, House of Ashes, is here just in time for Halloween.
House of Ashes takes place in a Mesopotamian temple filled with Lovecraftian subterranean monsters. It’s a choice-based survival game with plenty of chilling vibes to go around.
If you’ve read through this and decided maybe you would rather go for a horror movie, check out our latest Gizmodo Movie Night for some recommendations.