A good scary game is often a thrilling experience. And if you are currently a Game Pass subscriber and in the mood to play something terrifying, creepy, or just downright spooky you already have access to some fantastic horror games for no additional cost. This is nice, because the only thing scarier than deadly monsters are expensive video games you buy, but never finish.
We here at Kotaku enjoy scary and spooky games too. (Well, most of us do…) So here’s a list of the 14 best scary games you can play right now on Xbox Game Pass.
(Oh and if you aren’t looking for super gory or scary games, but still want something to play on Halloween night, check out our list of the best spooky but not-scary games.)
Back 4 Blood
Zombies aren’t the scariest thing in the world these days, thanks in large part to how many movies, shows, and games rely on the undead. But enough of them, spitting acid at you or attacking your friends in the middle of a dark forest is still scary. And Back 4 Blood, a co-op shooter very similar to Left 4 Dead, will let you experience that fear alone or with pals
Perhaps you long for a more classic horror game, one focused on slow scares and puzzles? If so, The Medium might be perfect for you. Be warned: There’s some nasty, uncomfortable content inside this static-camera horror adventure. But if you can stomach the nasty bits of The Medium, it’s a decent Silent Hill-like horror game.
Dead Space 1, 2, 3
Sure, we’re getting a new remake of the original Dead Space. That’s great. But if you want to experience (or replay) the original Dead Space trilogy, they are all available on Game Pass. While I know many love Dead Space 1 and 2, I’d recommend giving 3 a chance too. It’s not as good as those first two entries, but it’s still a creepy adventure through a snowy hellscape.
The Evil Within 1, 2
While I prefer the sequel, both The Evil Within and The Evil Within 2 are scary survival-horror games that will probably remind you of Resident Evil 4. That’s not a random coincidence, either. Shinji Mikami, who was the director of multiple Resident Evil games including RE4, directed the first game and was an executive producer on the sequel. Like RE4, Evil Within mixes third-person action with scary situations, creepy locations, and puzzles.
I know some folks dislike Doom 3 for valid reasons. But as its own thing, and not a sequel to Doom 2, (which it is, but in name only…) I think Doom 3 is fantastic! Its use of shadows and darkness is excellent, hiding demons and other threats behind the darkness. Doom 3 also has some disturbing (in a good way!) sound design. And if you want to really get scared playing Doom 3, I highly recommend playing the VR port of the game released on PSVR earlier this year.
Resident Evil 7
When I was scanning through Game Pass’s huge library of games for some spooky titles, I was shocked to see Resident Evil 7 on here. If you haven’t played RE7 yet and you are looking for a great scary game, stop reading this blog and go play RE7. It’s a damn masterpiece of suspense and horror. I agree the ending is a bit… meh. But everything else before that is top-notch shit. Don’t let the FPS shift scare you away. This is a Resident Evil game in every way that matters.
How scary can one alien be? You just hide and run to an exit. Good luck. Alien Isolation is different than basically every other game based on the popular sci-fi franchise. You aren’t fighting off waves of xenomorphs using assault rifles or playing as the Predator. Instead, you are just one person, stuck on a desolate space station filled with deadly androids and one really nasty and equally deadly alien creature. You can hide, you can run, but it will find you and it will scare the shit out of you.
Alan Wake American Nightmare
This isn’t as intense or scarier as some of the other games on this list, but American Nightmare is a perfect, bite-sized shooter with just the right amount of creepy bad guys and eerie worlds to explore. If you loved Alan Wake or the more recently released Control and you haven’t played American Nightmare, give this one a spin. And say hello to Mr. Scratch for me, the bastard.
Here’s an odd one. When this game came out it was skewered by critics and a lot of players. But, many still enjoy this stealth horror game that tasks you with exploring your neighbour’s house. Each time you make progress or get caught, the game’s AI changes up its behaviour based on what you’ve done previously. Later games in the series are also on Game Pass. Not my cup of tea, but I know many enjoy the spooky fun of these titles.
Dead By Daylight
Love horror games and scary movies? Love asymmetrical multiplayer games? Well folks, I got a perfect game for you: Dead By Daylight. Four players take on the role of survivors trying to hide and complete objectives. Meanwhile, one player takes on the role of a killer trying to stop and murder them all. This game has seen frequent updates since it was released back in 2016, adding new characters like Michael Myers from Halloween and Ghostface from Scream.
The original Outlast is still the better of the two games, but the 2017 sequel is still a solid horror game with some genuinely creepy moments. Unlike the first game, Outlast 2 is set in a more rural and open environment. It ends up making the experience more terrifying in some ways because you never know when you are safe. Definitely not for the faint of heart.