Best horror games: the scariest titles to play in 2024

A close up of Alan Wake's face
(Image credit: Epic Games)

The best horror games may not be the most comforting things to play, but they'll definitely get your adrenaline rushing. 

There were some fantastic additions to the horror game genre last year. Alan Wake 2, the Resident Evil 4 remake, and Amnesia: The Bunker were all great entries. While some of these are certainly scarier than others, they are all brilliant games to play if you enjoy painfully unsettling locations and frightening chase sequences.

Hopefully, the rest of 2024 will have just as many big hitters. We'll hopefully get more information on the Silent Hill 2 remake later this year, as well as some news on the next mainline Resident Evil. But if you're looking to get stuck in right now and scare your socks off, then this list has you covered for all the latest and greatest entries to the horror genre.

Best horror games 2024

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A chef prepares a meal in a dimly lit galley

(Image credit: The Chinese Room)
Why we love it

Still Wakes the Deep is an incredibly atmospheric, tense, and gripping first-person horror game. With a tremendous sense of place, superb voice acting, and creepy horror elements, it’s a small but punchy experience that we fully recommend despite some hand-holding, simple puzzles, and the story being a little too short.

Available on: PS5, XSX|S, PC

Still Wakes the Deep is one of the more recent entries on this list, developed by The Chinese Room and released in June of 2024. It tells the story of Caz, an electrician assigned to work on an oil rig in the North Sea. After an accident, things start getting spooky on the rig, with a strange entity now stalking its dark hallways and vents.

It's best to go into Still Wakes the Deep as fresh as possible, so we'll mostly describe it as being an atmospheric horror game that takes place in a uniquely terrifying setting. The acting is superb throughout, with British actors conveying the dreariness of working on an oil rig perfectly. 

As you explore, you'll work to bring parts of the rig back online following the accident, all the while attempting to locate your missing crew. Definitely for fans of more immersive horror like the Outlast and Amnesia series.

A close up of Alan Wake's face, framed in green and red light

(Image credit: Remedy Entertainment)

10. Alan Wake 2

Journey into the Dark Place
Why we love it

Alan Wake 2 is without a doubt one of the best modern survival horror games available. It's brilliant mesh of psychological horror and thrilling action fights mean that you're constantly on tender hooks.

Available on: PC, PS5, Xbox Series X|S

If you're a fan of horror, then Alan Wake 2 is a must-buy. There are some outstanding options for the genre, but none of them manage to pull off every aspect of horror as well as this survival horror game. 

There are beautiful graphics and imagery as the title expertly combines the two worlds of the protagonists, Alan Wake and Saga Anderson, as well as reality and video games in expertly shot cutscenes. There's also an intriguing narrative that lends itself to engaging in-game detective work and fights, while music fans will be happy to know that the soundtrack in this horror game has had some serious effort put into it thanks to a great Scandinavian rock band.  

The beginning few hours may be too terrifying even for veteran players. However, like in any good survival game, the more you play, the more confidence you get from recognizing fight patterns and gathering resources that will help you push forward. Keep going, and you will be rewarded tremendously.

Little Nightmares protagonist Six walking down a dark corridor

(Image credit: Tarsier Studios)

9. Little Nightmares

Escape The Maw
Why we love it

The side-scrolling format of Little Nightmares builds tension throughout the game. Not being able to see what lies around every corner while being boxed into a world that is too big for you is a terrifying experience that this title pulls off very well. 

Available on: PS5, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, PC, Xbox One, and PS4

In Little Nightmares, you control a young girl called Six, who has to navigate a frightening world far too big for her, populated by a wide array of giant and grotesque creatures. Six is just a small girl, so you sneak past them instead of fighting these creatures. The tension in this best horror games contender comes from navigating complicated platforming sections while also being pursued by monsters.

Little Nightmares is a deserved entry on our best horror games list because it creates a feeling of helplessness while making it clear that you still have ways to escape. It takes familiar domestic areas that should be comforting and turns them on their head by making them repulsive and unsafe for Six to travel through. In any other medium, using children this way would be uncomfortable, and a shrunken protagonist would more likely make us think of 90s comedy films than tense horror, so Little Nightmares makes use of it being a game in all the right ways.

The sequel, Little Nightmares 2, also has an all-new protagonist and terrors. However, despite being a great game in its own right, it couldn't replicate the tension of the first title.

The Evil Within 2's main character looking towards a large eye in the sky floating above a building

(Image credit: Tango Gameworks)

8. The Evil Within 2

A great horror game evolved
Why we love it

The Evil Within 2's gothic and gritty setting combined with its horrifically creative monsters makes sure to captivate audiences every single step of the way. 

Available on: PS5, Xbox Series X|S, PC, Xbox One, and PS4

The Evil Within series comes from Shinji Mikami, the mind behind Resident Evil – and if that doesn't give you enough reason to pick it up, its nightmarish world likely will. 

This third-person survival horror will pull you into a world populated by grotesque and frightening enemies. Mixed with dashes of psychological horror – protagonist Sebastian Castellanos never quite knows what's real and what's a horror cooked up by his own mind.

The Evil Within 2 makes its way onto our best horror games list as it succeeded in modernizing Japanese horror, making it less janky and more approachable. While the first game is good in its own right, the sequel has some unforgettable psychological scare tactics.

View of the serial killer in Dead by Daylight from behind

(Image credit: Behaviour Interactive)

7. Dead By Daylight

Killer or Survivor - make your choice
Why we love it

This is the perfect horror game to play with friends. The amount of coordination and trust you must have with your fellow survivors makes for some pretty thrilling and funny antics. 

Available: PS5, Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC (Android and iOS versions are available, but don't come recommended)

Dead By Daylight stands out in this list of best horror games for being a genuinely scary multiplayer title, showing that you don't have to be alone in the dark to be scared. In Dead By Daylight, a single player takes on the role of a savage serial killer, while four others flee for their lives, desperately trying to fix generators to secure their freedom.

It's a thematic staple for horror, and a thrilling twist on usual PvP combat to boot. With a host of original characters, each with their own abilities and advantages, theremanyts of tactics to develop and deplother kill all the survivors or make your escape. You can also unlock or download characters from films such as Saw, A Nightmare on Elm Street, or The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, which showcases the genuine love Dead by Daylight devs have for its cinematic roots.

Not only is Dead By Daylight one of our favorite horror games, but it's also one of the best crossplay games right now.

A ghostly old woman in Resident Evil 7 looking straight at you with sickly white eyes

(Image credit: Capcom)

6. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard

Survival horror comes come to the Bakers
Why we love it

Resident Evil 7 Biohazard is the title that brough this iconic horror series back from the dead, and it did so with a bang. Entering the mysterious house settled in the middle of nowhere the unsettling atmosphere and claustrophobic setting will keep you on edge for every second. 

Available on: PC, Xbox Series X|S, PS5, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Amazon Luna, and PS4 (and PSVR)

Resident Evil 7 was a breath of fresh air for an increasingly stale series. While it's not the only Resident Evil title on our best horror games list, it brought a much-needed modern understanding of horror movies and games to the series while retaining that distinct Resident Evil feel. 

Moving the perspective from third to first person made the fear feel closer and more immediate while leading the way to include a genuinely frightening VR experience in the game. 

With a great story and tight gameplay, Resident Evil 7 was the addition to the horror series we all wanted and feared we wouldn't get. The game's success, along with the recent remakes of earlier titles in the series, gained a lot of new fans.

A man cowers in a snowy forest

(Image credit: Supermassive Games)

5. Until Dawn

Your own story to tell
Why we love it

Getting to choose the direction of your own story is incredibly engaging. While this does mean that if someone dies it's entirely on you, there is an option to restart the game and try all over again.

Available on: PS5, PS4

This best horror game entry changed what was possible for the genre of horror. Instead of going the classic survival horror route, Until Dawn pioneered a new interactive horror trope. This provided players with the chance to experience a story like something you'd see in a horror movie and decide the outcomes of all the characters through decision-making and quick time events. 

Stuck on a snowy mountain with no way out, you play as a group of friends trying to survive the wintery blizzard and a killer who's on the loose and seemingly hell-bent on killing them all. But that's not your only problem; as you go deeper into the mountain, you close in on a terrifying secret.

There are tons of fascinating twists and turns in this horror mystery. It's the perfect game to play around Halloween, either by yourself or streaming for friends. 

A scientist writing notes

(Image credit: Red Barrels)

4. The Outlast Trials

A new standard for multiplayer horror
Why we love it

The Outlast Trials expertly meshes horror and puzzles together so you not only have to fight for your life but arguably do something even more terrifying; use your brain. 

Available on: PC

The Outlast Trials balances pure terror and hilarity like no other multiplayer horror game, making it a special entry on our best horror games list. Originally a single-player franchise, this next installment in the series managed to duplicate the atmospheric horror found in the first few games and modernize it in a way that can draw in new audiences. 

There's multiple trials to put yourself through, either with friends or on your lonesome, each providing different ways to scare and horrify yourself. If you're looking for good old-fashioned jumpscares and anxious hiding, look no further; the Outlast Trials has it all. 

Aiming a revolver pistol down a dimly lit corridor bunker

(Image credit: Red Barrels)

3. Amnesia: The Bunker

Not for the faint of heart
Why we love it

Playing through Amnesia: The Bunker was by no means easy, however, the difficult setting and at time smothering tension made it all the more pleasing to finally escape the nightmare right at the end. 

Available on: Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PS4, and PC.

Amnesia: The Bunker lives up to the petrifying history that this series has; with its claustrophobic, psychological, and bloody scares, this horror game is not to be taken lightly. 

Trapped in a bunker with only one exit available, you must navigate the dwindling light and precarious tunnels to complete the puzzles and secure the dynamite you need to explode your way to freedom. Unfortunately, like the first title Amnesia: The Dark Descent, The Bunker has an unwelcome guest; The Beast. 

This creature will haunt you through the dark bunker, waiting for its moment to strike and drag you into the dark hollows below. Can you solve the puzzles while fending off this monster? Probably not without experiencing some heart-stopping scares. This title is one of the scariest additions to our best horror games list, so play at your own risk. 

A dystopian forest with giant chains hanging from the sky

(Image credit: Sadsquare Studio)

2. Visage

Horrifyingly realistic
Why we love it

Visage is a wonderfully disturbing psychological horror game. If you're a fan of uncannily realistic settings and genuinely terrifying experiences then this is something you need to check out. 

Visage made its way onto our best horror games list thanks to its eerily creepy psychological horror basis and its uncannily realistic environments. However, it may possible trigger seizures for those with photosensitive epilepsy. 

This first-person survival horror game is set inside a huge and terrifying house, here you have to explore endless mazes which fill your head with the memories of all the dead families who used to occupy this place. 

If you're in the mood to be truly horrified this Halloween then Visage is the game for you. Just be warned, maybe play it with the lights on.

First-person view of the player shooting at the Alien in Alien: Isolation

(Image credit: Sega)

1. Alien: Isolation

A terrifying and unforgettable classic
Why we love it

At the end of the day horror is meant to scare you sideways, and no other title does this quite like Alien: Isolation. Providing blood-rushing moments one after another you'll definitely have to sit down after playing this title. 

Available on: PS5, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One, PS4 and PC

Of the countless games to use this precious creative license over the years, developer Creative Assembly is the first actually to create a game that lives up to it. The game takes place 15 years following the events of the 1979 Ridley Scott film, putting players into the space boots of Ellen Ripley's daughter, Amanda Ripley.

Taking on a first-person perspective and squaring you off with a single xenomorph hunting you across a vast space station in darkness, Alien: Isolation nails what it felt like watching the film for the first time. The vibe makes it so deserving of the title of one of the best horror games, and Isolation feels as if you're playing through the movie.

Throw in the excruciatingly-clever artificial intelligence afforded to the alien, along with an absolutely gripping virtual reality experiment, and you have the trappings of a modern horror classic.

Best horror games: FAQs

Resident Evil 7

(Image credit: Capcom)

What's the scariest horror game in 2024?

Amnesia: The Bunker easily takes the spot for the scariest horror game in 2024. While there have been some admirable entries, nothing comes close to emulating the terrifying atmosphere that this horror game emits. 

What's the scariest game on Roblox?

Horror Elevator is one of the scariest games currently on Roblox. Check out our best Roblox games list for more unexpectedly fantastic titles. 

How we picked the best horror games

The best horror games is not an easy list to collate; with the sheer number of new titles released, it can sometimes seem impossible to get through them all. Thankfully the TechRadar Gaming team has a core appreciation and somewhat twisted love for horror games. 

I make it my mission to play every horror game I can, having reviewed The Outlast Trials, Amnesia: The Bunker, and Layers of Fear remake in the last year or so. I started playing horror games at a very early age as a test of coverage, and at this point, I'm in too deep to turn back. 

What horror games I'm playing right now

Recently, I decided that a mindlessly terrifying co-op horror game is exactly what my tired brain needs. After some digging, I decided to give Inside the Backrooms another go. 

This multiplayer survival horror game is hilariously terrifying. Transported into the infamous backrooms, you're plagued with strange visions and spine-chilling noises at every turn. Despite hiding in a locker for 30 minutes and bursting my friend's eardrum after I screamed too loud, it was genuinely good fun, even if it's not technically or narratively as impressive as the entries on our best horror games list. 

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Elie Gould
Features Writer

Elie is a Features Writer for TechRadar Gaming, here to write about anything new or slightly weird. Before writing for TRG, Elie studied for a Masters at Cardiff University JOMEC in International Journalism and Documentaries – spending their free time filming short docs or editing the gaming section for their student publications. 

Elie’s first step into gaming was through Pokémon but they've taken the natural next step in the horror genre. Any and every game that would keep you up at night is on their list to play - despite the fact that one of Elie’s biggest fears is being chased. 

With contributions from