We’re in the midst of a survival horror revival right now. A lot of that is due to the presence the genre has found on YouTube. However, one notable director managed to catch that wave: Shinji Mikami, the grandfather of survival horror himself. He began the mega-franchise known as Resident Evil by creating a virtual haunted house experience, but later evolved it into an action thriller with Resident Evil 4. He left Capcom to pursue his own interests, but finally came roaring back with the help of Bethesda in the form of The Evil Within, which attempts to combine the tense gunplay of Resident Evil 4 with the straight horror of the original game.
So, with the sequel having released not too long ago, we thought it prudent to throw a few suggestions your way if you’re still in the mood for horror. After all, with so many survival horror games out there, it can be tough to sort through the best of the best. Just make sure you check out this list with the lights on. It’s bad for your eyes to read in the dark… yeah, that’s why.
Similar Game to The Evil Within
1. Dead Space 2
- System: Xbox 360, Playstation 3, PC
- Publisher: EA
- Developer: Visceral Games
- Release Dates: January 25th, 2011 (US)
It’s been 3 years since the events of the original Dead Space. Series protagonist Isaac Clarke has reawakened on the Sprawl; a colony found on Saturn’s moon Titan. He has no memory of why he’s there, but regardless, someone came to revive him, only to quickly be killed and mutated into a Necromorph himself. Now, Isaac Clarke has to make his way out of Sprawl alive, but maybe he’ll regain his memories in the process.
Dead Space 2 is often considered the crowning jewel in the entire Dead Space franchise and is often considered to be the defining survival horror game of the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. This is partially due to the move away from shock horror from the original game and pushes for a more dreadful atmosphere. You’ll still find plenty of grotesque space monsters wanting to eat your face, but you’ll also encounter more intimate, personal moments that send a chill up your spine. Plus, outer space has always been underutilized within a horror setting, and Dead Space 2 really takes advantage of the haunted house style setup by making use of the isolation found therein.
2. Resident Evil 4
- System: GameCube, Playstation 2, Mobile Wii, Playstation 3, Xbox 360, Playstation 4, Xbox One, PC
- Publisher: Capcom
- Developer: Capcom Production
- Release Dates: January 11th, 2005 (US)
Former Raccoon City police officer Leon S. Kennedy has seen some career advancement to the FBI and has been tasked with saving President Graham’s daughter, Ashley. His search has led him to a small Spanish village, where not everything is quite what it seems. These villagers seem a bit more aggressive than your average rural worker. Before he knows it, Leon is swarmed with the entire village on his tail. It’s almost as if they aren’t even human anymore…
Okay, first of all, if you haven’t played Resident Evil 4 yet, what’s wrong with you? It’s one of the most influential games of all time, even now with modern classics aping its thrill-a-minute design. But more to the point, Resident Evil 4 is the magnum opus of Shinji Mikami, and an argument could even be made in its favor as one of the best games of all time. The Evil Within was specifically made to be a soft revival of Resident Evil 4, so if you haven’t touched it yet, what’s keeping you? It’s been ported to almost every system ever made.
Resident Evil 4 Ultimate HD Edition PC Trailer:
3. Silent Hill 2
- System: Playstation 2, Xbox, Playstation 3, Xbox 360
- Publisher: Konami
- Developer: Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo
- Release Dates: September 24th, 2001 (US)
James Sunderland recently came into possession of a letter from his ex-wife Mary… which is odd considering she actually died three years ago. However, the letter has led James Sunderland to the fog-ridden town of Silent Hill, and he begins his mad search for his once thought dead wife. His expedition finally has led him to a young girl named Laura, who apparently befriended Mary herself. But there’s more to Silent Hill than meets the eye. Strange monsters appear through the fog, and James will have to avoid them if he wants any hope of meeting Mary again.
Silent Hill 2 is oft cited as one of the finest horror experiences of all time for making use of a subdued atmosphere and obscuring the unknown by making us feel unsure about just what’s lurking around that next corner. In some ways, Silent Hill captures that dream-like atmosphere of a David Lynch movie, where reality and fantasy intermingle and you’re never quite sure which is which. Is that Pyramid Head actually having its way with a monster, or is James just seeing what his paranoia is leading him to believe? Is he really even horrified by it or does he embrace it? You better believe that Silent Hill 2 at least had some influence on The Evil Within, because it’s influenced all horror games since its release.
Silent Hill: HD Collection Teaser Trailer:
Any Game Like The Evil Within ?
4. Outlast 2
- System: PC, Playstation 4, Xbox One
- Publisher: Red Barrels
- Developer: Red Barrels
- Release Dates: April 25th, 2017 (US)
Blake Langermann has decided to travel to Arizona to investigate the kidnapping and murder of an unknown woman. His lead brought him to the Supai region, and he, along with his wife Lynn, are finally going to get to the bottom of this. They try to helicopter in, but one thing leads to another and they crash land, knocking Blake unconscious. When he awakens, he discovers his pilot brutally murdered and his wife missing. Can Blake track down his wife and uncover the mystery of whatever happened to his Jane Doe?
The original Outlast was largely notable for being one of the first big horror games that got famous in the YouTube space. This was due to its focus on relentless, shocking imagery that you couldn’t help but get engrossed by, similar to watching footage of tornado descents or car wrecks. Outlast 2 does everything you’d expect out of a sequel by jacking up the intensity tenfold and displaying some of the most gruesome depictions of violence ever captured by a game. Outlast 2 was so vile that it almost got banned for sale in Australia by the Australian Classification Board for its depiction of sexual violence. So, if your stomach could take some of the gut wrenching moments of The Evil Within, try and go back for a second helping with Outlast 2. We’re not convinced you can.
Outlast 2 Trailer:
5. Shadows of the Damned
- System: Xbox 360, Playstation 3
- Publisher: EA
- Developer: Grasshopper Manufacture
- Release Dates: June 21st, 2011 (US)
Garcia Hotspur has always had a bit of a tumultuous relationship with his girlfriend Paula. That only got worse when Fleming, the Lord of Demons, decided to swing by one day and swipe her up. Now, Garcia Hotspur has to ride down to hell itself to win her back. But he can’t do it alone. Garcia befriends a demon named Johnson, who can transform into a variety of different weaponry. Together, they set out to take down Fleming once and for all.
While, technically, Grasshopper Manufacture developed Shadows of the Damned, Shinji Mikami was the producer on it, and the game shows a lot of the trademarks he established in Resident Evil 4 and would go on to explore in The Evil Within. It’s got the killer gunplay of Resident Evil 4, but more of the psychological horror focus of The Evil Within, largely coming in the form of the terrifying sequences in which Paula comes out of nowhere and hunts you down with a knife. Shadows of the Damned works as a nice transition game between the two and is worth your while if you’re down for a cheekier experience than what you’d find in the more straight-laced The Evil Within.
Shadows of the Damned: Official Gameplay Trailer:
- System: PC, Playstation 4, Xbox One
- Publisher: Frictional Games
- Developer: Frictional Games
- Release Dates: September 22nd, 2015 (US)
It was just a normal day for Simon Jarrett. That is, until he found himself in a car crash. While Simon isn’t dead, his life is currently miserable and his only chance for happiness is to undergo experimental brain surgery. As he begins the operation, though, he falls asleep and then somehow, miraculously almost, wakes up in the year 2104 in PATHOS-II, humanity’s last settlement after the world got wiped out by a comet a year prior. Now, Simon can only wander around PATHOS-II with some hope of maybe finding human contact.
Soma is the sort of game that doesn’t actually have the premise of a horror game, but fits into the horror mold due to the presentation. It captures the horrors of being stranded and left alone in an unfamiliar environment. But rather than going for cheap scares, it uses the setting to tell a lonely tale of the fears of making a connection and what it means to truly find peace with others, building on its eerie tone. People who came out of The Evil Within hungry for another story-oriented horror game should find Soma a delight.
Soma – E3 2015 Trailer:
Spooked yet? You should be. These pants-wetting terrors should keep you soiled for some time. But once you’re done soaking them all in, consider writing a comment down below if you want to give a good scare to anyone browsing!