22 Blog

The illustrated history of horror games

More than 30 years of frights in one definitive guide

"Everyone's entitled to one good scare."

These were the words uttered by Sheriff Brackett to Jamie Lee Curtis' Laurie Strode in the original Halloween.

It's easy to see what he meant. Many of us love the thrill of being scared in controlled situations - watching horror films, going on roller coasters, checking our bank balances the day before pay day.

It goes for video games too. Almost as long as gaming has existed, developers have been trying to make interactive experiences that terrify the player even more than the passive act of watching a movie. Some have succeeded, many have failed.

With The Evil Within promising to scare us out of our wits in a few months' time and a recent trailer for Outlast DLC making us simultaneously excited and nervous, we decided to take a look back at the history of horror gaming.

Of course, not every single horror game ever released is featured here - instead, these are the key titles that struck a particular chord with gamers over the years and are remembered as having made contributions to the genre. Turn the lights out and enjoy.

Part 1: The 20th century

Part 2: The 21st century