Total Nerd These Horrifying Video Games Were Designed Specifically To Mess With Your Head  

Robert Carnevale
148 votes 72 voters 2.7k views 15 items Embed

List Rules Vote up the games that screwed with your mind.

Have you ever found yourself playing a game that sets itself up as one thing, then out of nowhere, it mentally throws you out a window? Unlike horror video games that make you want to sh*t your pants, games that mess with your mind will have you second-guessing your sanity. These are the kinds of trippy games with insane plot twists, crazy dialogue, or unexpected perspectives. 

This list exposes just how many of those types of mindf*ck games there are. They range from puzzle games to FPS to platformers. From wild surprises to subverting your expectations, these titles will definitely have you spinning in circles. Vote for whichever one has thrown you for the biggest loop. 

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Undertale Dupes You Into Thinking It Is A Standard RPG


Undertale Dupes You Into Think... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list These Horrifying Video Games Were Designed Specifically To Mess With Your Head
Photo:  Steam

A game that subverts its entire genre is bound to twist some minds, which is what Undertale is known for doing. As an RPG that allows you to show mercy to your opponents, this is a game that doesn't play by the rules and uses its quixotic ideals to bewilder and subsequently mold players into pacifistic optimists. Not a bad moral for a game that's aiming to hack your psyche.

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The Stanley Parable is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list These Horrifying Video Games Were Designed Specifically To Mess With Your Head
Photo:  Steam

The Stanley Parable is special in that it doesn't feature just one mindf*ck moment - it sports enough that the entire game is built around them. You play as Stanley, whose sole goal is to subvert a narrative that wants to be subverted at every possible opportunity. The game will tell you to follow a yellow line to finish the story faster, only to punish and reward you simultaneously with very, very weird bonuses should you disobey. Pull the right stunts and The Stanley Parable will teleport you inside of a Minecraft map. And keep in mind that's only one example - the whole game is a mindf*ck buffet. 

Also Ranked

#2 on The Best Walking Simulators of All Time

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see more on The Stanley Parable

Spec Ops: The Line is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list These Horrifying Video Games Were Designed Specifically To Mess With Your Head
Photo: WhatCulture

What appears to be a run-of-the-mill military shooter narrative flips the switch entirely after your character, the protagonist, orders a white phosphorous strike on a group of terrorists. While this would be a non-issue in other games across the genre, Spec Ops forces you to go downhill and peruse the aftermath of your actions. Spoiler: you didn't kill terrorists. Turns out your character's been suffering from a dissociative identity disorder and just burned a whole shelter's worth of civilians - children included - to death.

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see more on Spec Ops: The Line

Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Req... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list These Horrifying Video Games Were Designed Specifically To Mess With Your Head
Photo:  Nintendo

Why's the save menu not letting you save? Why's the volume on your monitor spontaneously going down? Why is your game becoming sentient?! These are just a few of the plethora of mindf*cks nestled into Eternal Darkness, an action-adventure horror title that plays its genre like a match of fourth-dimensional chess. Neither before nor since has a game come along that utilizes meta-scares as well as this one.

Also Ranked

#14 on The Scariest Video Games of All Time

#9 on 15 Forgotten Horror Game Franchises That Need To Rise From The Grave

#20 on The Greatest Survival Horror Games of All Time

#49 on Video Games That Should Be Movies

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see more on Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem