Graveyard Shift The Scariest Video Games of All Time  

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Originally by Ranker Community
73.9k votes 7.6k voters 138.3k views 90 items

List Rules Not best overall games, but the video games that are the most terrifying. (Games only.)

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List of the most frightening video games ever, ranked by hardcore survival horror fans and casual gamers alike. Unlike the Ultimate List of the Best Survival Horror Games of all time, which attempts to rank the horror genre's overall BEST games, this list is about defining the most terrifying or unsettling gaming experiences. So even if a game perhaps wasn't your favorite in terms of the characters or the controls, if it made you jump out of your seat in shock, perhaps it might still qualify.

In the early days of gaming, "scary" games tended to refer to platformers and action games inspired by horror literature or films. The games themselves, however, were rarely scary, and mainly just used a 'horror' setting for personality or flavor. (Consider the early "Castlevania" adventures, which essentially replicated a "Mario"-type experience but in a world full of classic movie monsters.) There were exceptions to this rule - 1982's "Haunted House" included many elements recognizable from later horror games - but it was really not until the late '80s and early '90s that truly frightening games were starting to get released.

So what are athe scariest video games of all time?

Over time, particularly with the release of influential horror titles like "Resident Evil" and "Silent Hill," the genre became more defined, and currently nearly all games inspired by horror movies that intend to make the player jump are classified as "survival horror." These games include elements usually identified with action games - including combat, puzzle-solving, navigating mazes and so on - but manipulate these elements to make gameplay more intense and increase the player's vulnerability. This can include limiting the player's ammunition or ability to fight, manipulating game physics to make actions less predictable, obscuring enemies and makign the environment darker and, of course, using loud noises and unexpected turnabouts to provide 'scares.'

The games listed here are the most effective at creating a chilling environment to manipulate the players emotions, and elicit fear. Vote up the games that you won't play in a dark room alone, and if one of your favorites isn't listed, re-rank the list yourself and add whatever you like.
list ordered by

1
2,527 589
Silent Hill is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

2
2,012 838
Dead Space is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
2008

3
1,120 589
Amnesia: The Dark Descent is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

4
1,889 550
Resident Evil is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

5
940 651
Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butter... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

6
1,267 668
Dead Space 2 is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

7
1,923 381
Silent Hill 2 is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

8
1,421 406
Outlast is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
mperry0765173 added 2013

9
1,161 735
Resident Evil 4 is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

10
1,058 392
Silent Hill 4: The Room is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

11
565 542
Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Req... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

12
993 229
Silent Hill 3 is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
mperry0765173 added 2003

13
965 503
The Evil Within is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
lostshadow added 2014

14
747 896
BioShock is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
2007

15
737 559
Doom 3 is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
2004

16
454 674
Slender: The Eight Pages is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
midnightq2 added 2012

17
679 341
Fatal Frame is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

18
1,092 216
Resident Evil 2 is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
mperry0765173 added 1998

19
867 218
Resident Evil 3: Nemesis is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
mperry0765173 added 1999

20
480 584
Manhunt is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
2003

21
863 251
Alien: Isolation is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
ColtNorr added 2014

22
589 339
Silent Hill: Origins is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

23
447 497
Doom is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
1993

24
547 386
Resident Evil Zero is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time

25
180 497
Sanitarium is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Scariest Video Games of All Time
1998