Developer: Killmonday Games AB
Publisher: Killmonday Games AB
I want to say ‘here’s a game for those who like their horror a bit more cutesy’, but honestly Little Misfortune is just actually horrifying and harrowing. No matter how much glitter you toss around (which is a legit in-game mechanic) it won’t make up for what happens to the puppy near the start. Nothing will.
It’s the newest game from developer Killmonday Games, who made Fran Bow, so if you’ve played that then you know roughly what to expect hiding behind the cute exterior. Little Misfortune is a bit less interactive than Fran Bow, like a cross between a point and click adventure and a visual novel, but it works well and it’s absolutely brimming with tragedy. One for those who want a depressing Halloween, then.
Developer: Scythe Dev Team
Publisher: Scythe Dev Team
I’m recommending Walls Closing In because it’s the new one, out this year, but really this recommendation is for the entire Northbury Grove trilogy from developers Scythe Dev Team. This may be considered cheating, but this is my list and I make the rules.
The first two Northbury games are free, so download and play, then pick up Walls Closing In and continue the adventure against The Slasher, Northbury Grove’s nefarious and deranged serial killer. It’s a punishing, raw survival horror in which you’ll die often, so if you’re after an easy ride then pass on this one. But if you want an extremely tense grindhouse experience with challenging gameplay? Look no further.
Publisher: Armor Games Studios
I’m cheating again because this is seven games spanning two series, but they’re all from developer scriptwelder and share similarities, so they count as one recommendation for our purposes. Deep Sleep is a point-and-click escape-the-room series, in which you uncover the truth behind an epidemic of lucid dreams becoming nightmares.
Then, Don’t Escape flips the genre by being games where you essentially have to barricade yourself in a room instead of leaving. The first one is my favourite, where you play a werewolf trying to stop himself from slaughtering the town once the full moon rises. When you’re done with the six shorter games, you can tackle the new Don’t Escape: 4 Days to Survive, in which you’re tasked with living through a post-apocalyptic wasteland.
Developer: Protocol Games
Publisher: Raiser Games
The final entry on my list is also the one I recommend everyone prioritise this Halloween. Song OF Horror from developer Protocol Games is incredible. It’s an episodic horror game, with each chapter telling its own standalone story within a wider, overarching one. As of today, October 31st 2019, two of the five chapters will be available.
In each chapter you control one of a number of characters, and if (when) that character dies, then they’re dead in the story forever, and you take over as the next one. Each character has their own connection to the plot, so who lives and who dies affects your experience of the game. It’s easy to become attached to someone, only to thoughtlessly walk through a door without checking it, and be swallowed by the darkness.
The game’s antagonist, The Presence, is one of the most terrifying horror villains I’ve encountered in gaming, and the whole thing is just so goddamn scary that I can’t imagine playing anything else as the clock heads towards midnight this Hallows’ eve. If all five chapters are up to the quality of the ones so far, then this has the potential to be one of my all-time favourite horror games — and yours too. Even the two chapters available come strongly recommended. I’d go so far as to call Song Of Horror the best horror game from the last 12 months.