The most horrifying literature can be written by exploring our darkest, deepest anxieties, which are frequently found within ourselves. Speaking of frightful literature, it would not be overstating things to claim that H.R. Giger is the inventor of the genre known as “biomechanical horror,” which is concerned with the fusion of human and mechanical forms.
The late Swiss artist H.R. Giger deserves a great deal of credit for Alien, a film directed by Ridley Scott that altered the parameters of space terror foreverr. He created the ageless nightmare of the Alien, a beast that, it is fair to say, combined the worst human fears.
This otherworldly manifestation of evil’s creator actually utilized his sketches as a way to process his trauma. He further claimed that if he had not had the chance to paint, he would have had serious psychological problems.
H.R. Giger was raised during the chaotic years between the two world wars, and the trauma he experienced as a youngster had a lasting effect on him. Even his Academy Award-winning performance in the film was just a way for him to convey his nightmares.
He apparently used to sit by himself at a nearby museum close to the mummy of an Egyptian princess because he was fascinated by the symbolism of ancient Egypt as a child. He was afraid, but his interest in Egyptian culture had a lasting impact on his writing. Egyptian culture has even affected the Alien’s design.
Over time, he became familiar with Lovecraft’s writings and was also influenced by Freud and Jung. In addition to this, he was fascinated by mysticism and the occult. In other words, his art allowed the audience to stare directly into darkness itself as a result of his real-life experiences and the horrors he faced! We acknowledge the impact of some of his works in the game industry in this video. We have put together a collection of eerie, horrifying games that will astound you with its bizarre monsters!
This 2008 survival horror game was developed by EA Redwood Shores and published by Electronic Arts for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Microsoft Windows. The game is premised in the year 2508, and in this futuristic world humanity has spread throughout the universe.
After life on Earth is threatened due to the shortening of natural resources, various ships are sent to scout and harvest for resources in some unexplored barren planets. USG Ishimura is one of the oldest ships and it is performing illegal mining on a planet called Aegis VII. The true horror begins as the spaceship is stranded and a maintenance crew is dispatched to investigate. It is soon overrun by dangerous monstrosities called Necromorphs. You have to play as engineer Isaac Clarke, and you have to fight these creatures while struggling with increasing psychosis.
It is not the easiest task to launch a new franchise in the survival horror genre. With some absolute classics in the past, the expectations from a new game are always sky-high, but Dead Space took up the challenge and aced it. The premise is haunting, to say the least, and as a player, you have to embrace the shock of the attack of the Necromorphs that end up killing most members of the team.
This is not your typical sci-fi action hero, and his vulnerabilities make things all the more real. The gameplay is flawless and one of the most important aspects of the decision-making in this game is to pick the right weapons to fight the Necromorphs. The atmospheric effects are remarkable, and the creature effects are stunning. The terror infused by these creatures is the kind influenced by H.R. Giger’s creations. The unsettling nature of the game is often highlighted by the extreme gore that might be a bit too much for some. We loved the high-end graphics, and together with such terrific features, it transforms into the game that makes the genre proud.
Silent Hill 2
After the massive success of Silent Hill a sequel was always on the cards, and we were not surprised when Silent Hill 2 was announced. This game was released in 2001, and developed by Team Silent. It was another gem of a survival horror game published by Konami, and the story revolved around James Sunderland, a widower who travels to the infamous town of Silent Hill. He received a mysterious letter from his dead wife, where she asked him to meet him in this small lakeside town. However, from the moment he arrives in Silent Hill, he sinks deeper and deeper into the world of the unknown. The horrors of the town slowly unfold and now, the only question is if he can ever get out alive!
The Silent Hill franchise is the unsaid king of the survival horror genre, and this game stays true to its reputation. The dream-like storytelling that explores guilt, obsession, and desperate redemption hits so hard that the gamer is transported into the virtual universe of the narrative. Speaking about the brilliance of the game, we don’t even know where to start! The realistic lighting, shadows, weather effects, and some unforgettable CGI cut scenes make for an experience like no other.
There are some terrifying sights during the gameplay, but the sight of the Pyramid Head monster is bound to remind you of Giger’s nightmarish visions. The game is totally plot-driven, and the metaphorical nature of the narrative leaves a lot to your interpretation.
There are several endings on offer, which ensures that the game has a decent replay value. Silent Hill 2 is by no means technically perfect, but the theme is so in sync with the technology that you never feel the flaws. Imagine the genius minds at work who could embrace the so-called technical shortcomings to amplify the experience of the gamer. We must also speak about the voice-acting that perfectly aligns with the narrative. If you are prepared to handle some disturbing content and bloody violence, you will have the privilege of enjoying horror at its purest!
Developed and published by Red Barrels, Outlast was an intriguing first-person survival horror game that soon blossomed into a grand franchise. This game was released for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, and Nintendo Switch, and the story begins with a freelance investigative journalist getting an anonymous e-mail tipping him off about some inhumane experiments being conducted at Mount Massive Asylum.
However, when the journalist arrives to investigate, he watches in horror as he finds the halls of the facility ransacked and mutilated corpses of the staff lying around. He is told by one of the dying guards that the deranged inmates are running loose, and now, he must find a way to escape. You play as this helpless journalist, armed only with a camcorder and your wits, as you struggle to stay safe from the demented inmates!
There is something oddly unsettling about the premise that will scare you immediately after you start playing the game. Outlast will manage to reduce you to an anxiety-stricken wreck, and the possibility of getting attacked out of nowhere will always keep you on your toes.
One of the things that add to the horrifying experience is the graphical detail of the experimented mutants, who are menacing and creepy at the same time. These deranged monstrosities are not dim-witted and armed with sharp hearing and sight that allows them to spot you soon enough. The gore effects are impressive, even though the game doesn’t really thrive on graphic violence.
It uses the dark, gritty environment more to get the desired results as everything around you reeks of oppression, evil, and death! There are a few chase sequences that will set your adrenaline levels shooting, and there are plenty of moments that will make you jump in your seats. One of the good things about your unarmed journey is that there are several hiding places, but eventually, you have to keep moving. The gameplay is subtle and incredibly clever, and if you dare to play this game it will take you to some dark places, where video games rarely dare to go!
This game was developed by Remedy Entertainment and published by Microsoft Studios for Xbox 360 and Windows. The plot centers round the titular character Alan Wake who is a bestselling crime-fiction writer, but of late, he has been suffering from a terrible writer’s block. He goes for a short vacation with his wife Alice, and they travel to the small mountain town of Bright Falls.
However, the trip soon turns into a disaster when his wife goes missing. As he tries to solve the mystery behind his wife’s disappearance, he is shocked to experience events from the plot of his latest novel, which he has no memory of writing till date! It is the story of a man who never held a gun before, being forced to fight some of the most terrifying creatures that thrive in darkness!
The game took over five years to be created, and once you play it you realize that unusually long time spent in development paid off! It greets you with a super-creepy atmosphere and the crisp storytelling makes for an unforgettable experience. Throughout the gameplay, darkness remains your most fearsome enemy because the shadows house the monsters.
Imagine a world, where you are moving through absolute darkness, pointing your hopeless flashlight to find your way ahead. Suddenly you hear a sound behind you, and now, you must prepare yourself to combat some unthinkable entity! This is the kind of gameplay that made such a grand name for Alan Wake, and it takes you deep into a world of fear and tension. There might not be enough surprises on offer, but you won’t be complaining because the nature of the story will keep you on the edge of your seat.
The combat sequences are absolutely frantic, and the gamer will not be able to quit it till he reaches the thrilling conclusion! However, this game prioritizes exploring the surroundings as much as combat. Going off-route can have some unwanted consequences, and strategizing is crucial in order to get the better of the monsters lurking around. The remastered version of the game is a must-try, especially because of the updated character models in high-end cinematics.
Every aspect of the game that made Alan Wake such a showstopper more than a decade ago still remains fresh, and thus, Alan Wake Remastered is like a sturdy old fort with some maintenance and polish! The content largely remains unchanged, but there are a few tiny adjustments and some new hidden secrets to explore. The improvement in graphics is noteworthy, and this riveting adventure will be fun to revisit, especially if you are a fan!
Condemned: Criminal Origins
This first-person survival horror game was developed by Monolith Productions and published by Sega for Xbox 360 and Microsoft Windows. The game was inspired by movies like Seven, The Silence of the Lambs, and Saw, and the narrative picks up on the same unbearable tension and fear that is associated with these films. It is set in a fictional American city, and you play as an investigator named Ethan Thomas who works with the FBI’s Serial Crime Unit. Ethan travels through some of the condemned, notorious buildings, and he is looking for the elusive serial killer X who framed him for murder. He must also deal with the psychotic denizens of the city, all of whom seem to have been pushed to the brink of madness due to some mysterious force!
The game opens up quite nicely as you investigate a grisly murder, and a notorious serial killer called the Match Maker is on the loose. Things get ugly very quickly because you end up being framed for the murder of two officers, and now, you have to find the killer and set things right. These might seem like a standard set up, but things get weirder and darker very quickly.
The only help that Ethan has is from an agent named Rosa who still trusts his innocence. The quest is incredibly surreal and it expands across ten levels to take down the serial killer. There are some secrets to be unraveled, which would explain the dive into murderous frenzies by many other citizens. You should be prepared for a few shocking moments, where you will probably scream out and be totally creeped out.
It is a game that actually makes the player fear for his own life! At times, you don’t even see the attacker in the first-person perspective, and it makes you feel right there in the world of madness. There are a few weapons, but the focus is largely on melee combat. The sound systems in the game are excellent, and you can keep an ear open to hear the enemies approaching even before they engage you. While the sound is one of the most frightening aspects of the game, the same cannot be said about the below par voice acting. Overall, Condemned might be a linear game and relatively short, but it promises an unforgettable experience. For the ultimate thrill-seeking try playing the game at night with the lights off!
THE EVIL WITHIN
The Resident Evil series creator Shinji Mikami created this game, and it was developed by Tango Gameworks and published by Bethesda Softworks. This survival horror game was released for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, and Windows. Sebastian is a Detective Sergeant working with Krimson City Police, and he is out investigating a mass murder at Beacon Mental Hospital. Suddenly, he and his partners find themselves in an unreal world, and to make matters worse Sebastian gets separated from the others. He then wanders around some of the nightmarish locations in this distorted world, and he also has to battle some disfigured monstrosities that would have put a smile on H.R. Giger’s face! Sebastian must be stealthy, strategic, and use the right weapons in order to get through the tricky levels on fight the unthinkable enemies!
This game is aesthetically in line with the director Shinji Mikami’s last work in Resident Evil 4. However, The Evil Within is by no means a rip-off, and it only retains the finesse and scary aspects of the game. The plot might not be very innovative or original, but the execution certainly is. It starts off with a compelling mystery, and slowly, it boils down to a thrilling climax.
The developers have created some of the most disturbing locations seen in video games, and these places strike fear in the heart of the player. They deal with the usual horror clichés, but twist them in imaginative ways for a different effect. The game might appear to be a little rough around the edges, but the graphics are impressive. It is helped by clever lighting, and together, it captures the claustrophobia in the surrounding.
The developers have used shadows so effectively that there are a few occasions, where you get spooked by your own shadow! However, there are some genuine threats as well because the enemies around you are quite unpredictable and smart. If there is one thing that we could have changed about this game, it would be the dull protagonist, who is rather emotionless and robotic! Apart from that, The Evil Within hits a home run in the world of survival horror games, and it is certainly worth trying out.
This 2015 interactive drama horror video game was developed by Supermassive Games and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation 4. The game explores the aftermath of a terrible tragedy, where two sisters disappeared under mysterious circumstances because of a silly prank.
A year later, their brother Josh invites the members from the previous party, and they are back in the same lodge in the woods, where the tragedy took place. There are some visible tensions among certain members of the group, and the eight young adults soon realize that some sinister plan is enforced to bring them together. Now, the player gets to take control of these young people and help them survive the night in the mountainous forests. There are multi-linear narratives, and the fate of the characters depends on the choices made. Be a part of this adventure, where losing means death!
Before the game was released, the promotions often dubbed this one as a teen horror title. This led many to believe that we were in for dumb gameplay, but Sony soon realized the true potential of the project and the developers repaid their trust in them. The story is written by a few Hollywood hotshots like Graham Reznick and Larry Fessenden, and there is a strong vibe of a typical Hollywood slasher flick.
The characters are intentionally obnoxious, and while they never really become likable, there is a certain development in them for sure. Decision-making is a very important aspect of the game because one wrong move can come back to haunt you later.
The game is visually stunning, and despite some issues with the facial animations, the atmospheric surroundings let you sink in completely. The camera angles are sorted, and you will be greeted by some unexpected jump scares out of nowhere! This game is a pleasant surprise for the fans of interactive stories, and the strong filmy vibe in the gameplay is an added bonus for many. If you have loved games like Heavy Rain and The Walking Dead, this game will be a real treat for you!
Amnesia: The Dark Descent
This survival horror game was developed by Frictional Games and released for Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The game starts off with a young man waking up in the dark and empty halls of a castle. He has absolutely no memory of his past life, and he just remembers his name Daniel and that someone is after him. He soon learns that he deliberately erased his memory, and the one hunting him down is some form of an unearthly presence. His first task is to navigate his way into the inner sanctum of the castle and kill the baron, Alexander. The whole castle is a graveyard-dim, and he has to collect boxes and other times that will be essential for his survival when the monstrosities come looking for him!
This game is a true homage to the works of Lovecraft, and the effects are surely going to remind you of the legendary H.R. Giger. The gameplay sounds simple, but it is really challenging to execute. All you have to do is solve the puzzles thrown at you, exploit the environment and surroundings, and hide when the otherworldly creatures arrive.
The game starts off from almost zero knowledge, but you start finding bits and pieces of the missing puzzle pretty soon. The backgrounds are impeccably done, and one of the most disturbing moments in the game is when they explain the psychological and physical specifics of medieval torture.
It is all somehow connected to your past, and the gameplay shows you things that are revolting! The graphics are top-notch, and there aren’t any major glitches in the gameplay. Tension is always sparking around in the grisly atmosphere, and the game is big on scaring the player. We believe that Amnesia: The Dark Descent is a fitting tribute to the survival horror genre, and if you are looking for a thrill ride you simply need to hop on!
Acid Wizard Studio came up with this innovative survival horror game and it was released for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Steam OS. The game is premised in Polish People’s Republic, or some place in the Soviet Bloc countries during the 1980s.
A strange forest is continuously expanding, and those who are trapped in this forest are being transformed into monsters. The group comprising government officials and soldiers are sent to investigate the forests, and they set up elaborate tunnel systems to get in and out of the woods. However, the game begins with most of them dead, and the player has to explore the semi-open world and unlock new areas. One must also be on guard because some vicious creatures might attack at any moment!
Darkwood is beyond brilliant, and it is an absolute masterpiece. The graphics are kept simplistic, but it never takes away from the visual experience. The sound design is simply perfect, and it helps you absorb the dark fairytale setting around you.
The game revels in eponymous darkness, and even the daytime sequences are quite scary. The creepy, satanic sadistic are always looking to maul you to death, and the game uses complex mechanics to accomplish the intense gameplay. The game is brutally unforgiving, and you are never really safe in these cursed woods. One of the most shocking realizations for the gamer is when he figures out that in this twisted world madness is an asset, and the transient nature of life in the forest is spooky as hell.
The narrative gets ambiguous and confusing at times, but the detailing makes it suited to console. The creatures of the night are designed perfectly, and they would have made H.R. Giger proud! The game ranks right up there with the best in terms of aesthetics and gameplay, and even with a few minor bugs this is a game that tests your composure to the fullest!
Frictional Games are known for their prowess when it comes to survival horror games, and Soma is another addition to their archive. This game was released for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, OS X, and Xbox One. The narrative is premised in the underwater remote research facility, where some crucial machinery of human characteristics is present. Simon ends up in this facility under mysterious circumstances, and he tries to decipher the history of the place. Add to this the threat of human extinction, and the idea of extended life in complete isolation, and the game is bound to test the edges of your sanity!
How often do you come across a game that is set below the waves of the Atlantic Ocean! The awe-inspiring premise is enough to draw in the player, and we aren’t even disclosing the best parts in order to not spoil it for you! The game doesn’t lure you in with the usual gimmicks of a great inventory, or weapons, or ammo.
There is nothing between you and the setting, and at times you will be greeted by some nightmarish monsters that waste no time in inflicting death. These creatures are influenced by the art style of H. R. Giger and their presence makes the experience a lot scarier. The entire subject matter of the game is actually suited to the first-person perspective, and the conversations often come in handy for crucial information.
To the credit of the developers, they have made the game environment a bit too real, where everything feels tangible. The graphics are hauntingly beautiful, and the revelations that come in the course of the game are sure to take you by surprise. The storytelling works on multiple levels, and the exploration of the underwater base is only the outer shell. Beneath lie a deeper metaphor that puts questions on your identity!
Storytelling in video games is seldom better than this, and Soma strikes a fine balance between the amazing plot and the way it tells the story. If you haven’t played the game so far, we are just jealous because you will get to experience this for the first time!
Ebb Software is developing Scorn, and this upcoming biopunk horror shooter is one of the most awaited games in recent times. It has been revealed that the game is set to be repulsive, and it is premised in a gruesome world of bone, flesh, and sharp steel! The imagery is beyond gory, and the game is certainly not the weaklings. The visual style is all set to challenge our boundaries, and the game has used the artistry of greats like H.R. Giger to create an interactive nightmare.
The game will be released for Xbox Series X/S and Microsoft Windows, and this horror adventure has the player controlling a skinless humanoid who is lost in an alien planet. The planet is home to terrifying creatures, and the player has to survive the hostilities and also look for answers about the game’s world. The game has been in development for a long time now, and it is all set to release later this year. Will it redefine horror gaming? Only time will tell, but we can assure you that Scorn will be an intriguing gaming experience.
If you have been an admirer of H.R. Giger’s excruciating and impactful art forms, these games will be perfectly suited for you. Most of these games on our list offer an unreal experience and let the imagination mills run full time. Embrace the unexplored side of your character and dive into the untapped territory of your subconscious because we all love getting spooked once in a while!