Maneuvering through a decidedly unnerving environment while getting to the bottom of a mystery is scary enough in third-person. That scenario becomes even more of a nail-biter when you experience it from a first-person perspective.
Lexip Games’ Dark Room presents its amalgamation of classic adventure point & click mechanics and a horrifying atmosphere from that aforementioned camera setting. Solving a myriad of brainteasers while you learn about the big secret at the heart of your journey is what Dark Room is all about. Chances are you’re on the lookout for something along the lines of that game ever since you completed it. And that’s where we step in – the 16 titles on this list provide unforgettable scares, intriguing mysteries to solve, and an assortment of puzzling situations to work your way out of.
Whether it’s from a third- or first-person viewpoint, these recommended games will provide you with everything you enjoyed about Dark Room and more.
Capcom’s lauded survival horror series switched things up in 2017 and largely succeeded in the process. As newcomer Ethan Winters, you set out to rescue your wife whilst exploring a creepy plantation. This mission sees you defending yourself against a crazed family and humanoid creatures that are referred to as the “Molded.” Resident Evil 7 Biohazard entails a whole lot of shooting, puzzle-solving, hide and seek sequences, and heart-thumping scares. And you’ll feel every part of the horror as you get to enjoy it all in first-person (this game absolutely rules in VR, by the way).
The main conundrum that Alien: Isolation presents players with is wholly terrifying. There’s a vicious Xenomorph on your trail, and you’ll need to utilize the best methods needed to avoid it. As the daughter of Ellen Ripley, you set out to uncover everything behind her disappearance. Reaching that goal isn’t going to be easy thanks to the presence of hostile humans, killer androids, and an Alien that wants you dead. You’ll get to play around with a whole host of weapons, but the name of the game here is stealth. Keep quiet, stay low, and try not to get eaten.
Outlast, and its successor are incredibly tense horror games that will keep you on your toes and sweating bullets more often than not. The first release in the series puts you in the role of an investigative journalist that’s out to uncover the truth behind a twisted psychiatric hospital. As for its sequel, Outlast 2 sets you up as another journalist that explores the Arizona desert in a bid to get more info on the murder of a pregnant woman. Both games force you into uneasy scenarios that see you constantly run, hide, and use your camcorder to maneuver through the darkness.
The Amnesia games feature everything you’ve come to expect from survival horror games – a creepy environment to explore, tons of puzzles to solve, and the types of monsters that increase your heart rate at first sight. The Dark Descent, A Machine for Pigs, and Rebirth all manage to spark one’s interest due to their intriguing premises. They also have a penchant for scaring the hell out of anyone that tries them, so you should expect to turn a few lights on while you’re making your way through each fear-inducing entry.
One of Sega’s more slept-on IPs has to be Condemned. Anyone who’s given it a chance knows just how nerve-wracking the original game and its sequel can be. If you’re not in the know, then let us bring you up to speed – both games have you take on the role of a crime scene investigation agent that’s looking for some sort of reasoning behind the madness occurring in his city. Criminal Origins and Bloodshot both focus on thorough crime scene investigations, brutal melee combat, and a whole lot of exploring within unfriendly locales.
It’s one thing to be above ground whilst getting confronted by all manner of mysterious horrors. It’s a whole other thing when you’re forced to deal with those same horrors while trapped within an underwater facility. SOMA’s the type of game that gives you that exact scenario to overcome. As a character named Simon Jarrett, you set out to make sense of your surroundings and come to grips with psychological horror elements. The clues you’ll discover during your journey will bring you ever so closer to the truth about your underwater prison.
As the newest member of Paranormal Activity Helpers Incorporated, you’re entrusted with exploring a dilapidated home that once doubled as a funeral parlor. On your own, with three of your friends or against other players, this supernatural thriller tasks you with pacifying a great evil. You’ll need to adjust your game plan as the little girl that hunts you progressively gets smarter and faster. Gather your clues, collect the items needed to aid your progression, and overcome one of the biggest paranormal threats you’ve ever faced.
DEVOUR is another one of those first-person survival horror games that pit you against a singular menace. You can choose to go it alone during this harrowing mission or make your playthrough a tad bit easier with three other players by your side. A maniacal cult leader that’s been possessed by a goat demon has it out for you and your fellow cult members. Everyone must work together to exorcise the woman with a demonic hold over her, which is quite a tall task. The essential items you need to make that happen are randomized during every session, plus the unpredictable AI attached to the crazed cult leader certainly complicates things.
Marianne doesn’t live a normal life. She has the ability to converge with the dead and navigate the realm they inhabit, which classifies her as a spirit medium. After receiving a mysterious phone call from an unknown individual, Marianne makes her way to an abandoned location in hopes of getting to the bottom of her paranormal dilemma. Besides offering an engrossing storyline, The Medium features an old-school approach to survival horror games. The inclusion of a third-person viewpoint, clever puzzle sequences, and a particularly rabid spirit that wants to consume you are the main hooks that’ll pull you into this game. The dual-reality sections that let you explore two realms at once should also pique your interest.
The Layers of Fear series pushes the horror genre forward by mixing in elements of psychedelic and psychological horror. And what comes from that complex mixture are two games that will mess with your mind and make you question the very events that play out in front of you. The first entry in the series puts you in the role of a disturbed painter who must find a way to complete his magnum opus, while the sequel sets you up as an actor that’s been called upon to handle an important leadership role. Both games focus on heavy exploration, mind-bending sights, and haunting audio. The Layers of Fear games will certainly stick with you long after you’ve completed them.
The first Little Nightmares came out of nowhere to capture the imagination of horror fans everywhere back in 2017. Participating in the horrifying misadventures of Six as she looks to escape the grasp of hideous beings inside the Maw is a nail-biting blast. There’s a ton of fun to be had as you figure out the best routes and solutions that are crucial to Six’s survival. For 2021, Little Nightmares II arrived with everything that worked beforehand. Plus, it ratchets up the fun factor of it all by bringing back Six and debuting a completely new character (Mono) that’s onscreen at all times.
If you always find yourself binge-watching ghost investigation shows on Travel Channel, then Phasmophobia should be right up your alley. This four-player ghost-hunting simulator gives you a spooky locale to explore and an assortment of essential equipment that’ll pick up on any paranormal activity. There are 10 different ghosts to keep an eye out for, so each investigation you embark on will be different from the last. The use of actual voice recognition when it comes time to communicate with your ghostly targets is one of the coolest parts of this spirit-filled adventure.
It took forever and a day, but we finally got a video game adaptation of the monumental Blair Witch film. Taking place two years after the events of the first movie, this playable sequel sees you searching for a missing boy in the Black Hills Forest as former police officer Ellis Lynch. During your unnerving search and rescue mission, you’ll regularly find yourself getting spooked by shadowy creatures. The mood is always tense in this one as you come upon cassette tapes full of curious footage and make your way through a forest that definitely has it out for you.
Stories Untold is kind of like a video game rendition of Tales from the Crypt. Players are treated to four episodes that focus on delivering everything you love about classic puzzle-laden horror adventure games. Each episode embraces a retro feel thanks to an 80s aesthetic and incorporates text-based, point-and-click gameplay. You can expect to get caught up in all of Stories Untold’s trippy narratives that deliver elements of sci-fi, psychological horror, and more.
The Sylvio games center around a ghost recorder named Juliette Waters, who embarks upon the type of nerve-wracking adventures that will keep anyone up at night. Juliette’s first encounter with the deceased puts her on the path to learning about an evil curse and a ruthless cult, while her second run-in with the deceased has her exploring a decidedly creepy flooded setting. Hopping into these games means you’ll be analyzing clues, taking note of your uncomfortable surroundings, and listening in on the spirits that want to tell you their story.
If you don’t know about the Five Nights at Freddy’s franchise by now, then you’ve been living under a rock for far too long. The premise of the mainline games has you taking on the role of a night guard (one game even has you playing as a child!) that‘s tasked with keeping an eye on a building full of animatronic characters. Those bots may look friendly, but don’t let their innocent exterior fool you. They move around on their own and are looking to take you out of the equation. The series’ clever use of a security camera system, unmistakable horrors, and signature jump scares have made it a mainstream force since its inception.