Horror games are usually a bit too scary for me to play alone. I actually barely manage to play them at all, though not for lack of trying. Whenever I load them up, I just can’t help but pause every five seconds for a breather. Multiplayer games are far more manageable, though, and often also turn stifled screams into contagious laughter as your friends terrorise each other.
If you’re a scaredy cat like me and would rather scream at the horrors of your unhinged mates than at unpredictable AIs and scripted jump scares, then you’re in the right spot. Here are five games in which your mates can play as the monster. Some are creepy, some are cute, and none of them will force you to run around alone. If you're looking to get monstrous yourself this Halloween, Liam's done a list all about games that make you the monster. No overlap, promise.
Evil Dead: The Game
Evil Dead: The Game isn’t really about screaming at all. Rather than sprinting desperately with your head down to hide from horrors, you’ll charge through the demon hordes with your shotguns up. Rip and tear, and all that goodness. Since the objectives are focused on slaying the demon hordes and ending their incursion, rather than simply escaping the map, I tend to find matches more exhilarating than the likes of Dead By Daylight. Evil Deadheads would probably call it groovy. I’ve never used the word groovy, because I’m not a dinosaur, but Evil Dead: The Game is indeed groovy. It might not offer many scares, but Evil Dead’s gory kills and demonic hordes should still keep the Halloween spirit alive for your group.
Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed
We don’t have the time to cover everything at RPS, but goodness I wish we’d covered Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed. It’s a delightful bout of simple ghostbusting, and not just because it blasts the Ghostbusters theme at full volume as you load it up for the first time. It also lets you catch ghosties with a Proton Pack. A Proton Pack! Blasting out the frenetic ray of purple electricity from the barrel and watching it dance around your slimy target is a spectacle, and it feels incredibly good to wield. A bestest best FPS weapon, if you will.
Ghostbusting is all about that Proton Pack and the little trap boxes that you use to lasso and capture a ghost, respectively. For the ghosts, though, it’s all about building fear. Terrorising civilians, sliming ghostbusters, and hiding your ghost rifts (which you can use to respawn when captured) so that the busters can’t destroy them. That boils down to a game of prop hunt, and some of the objects are hilarious to pilot. They don’t just slide around the floor as they do in Midnight Ghost Hunt. In Ghostbusters: Spirits Unleashed, the ghost can control big stuffed teddy bears. The big stuffed teddy bears are fully animated. They just awkwardly womble around. It’s not really a disguise. Your mate is obviously the living teddy bear. It’s very funny.
White Noise 2
Alright, it’s time for the spooky one. White Noise 2 is by far the scariest game on this list. There’s lots of slowly creeping around in the dark, guided by little else than a dim ray extending from your flashlight. But, you don’t creep around alone! Your friends can creep around too! What are you trying to hide from? Another friend! Although, they’re not really your friend anymore, as they’re controlling one of White Noise 2’s big, gangly, nightmarish monsters.
In White Noise 2, your main weapon is light, which you can use to stun the monster. However, it’s also essentially your health bar, as your flashlight battery will slowly drain. If you fail to recharge it, you’ll find yourself stumbling in the dark, and that’s when things get really scary. If you thought those monsters looked creepy before, wait until you can only hear their scampering footsteps circling you in an inky black ether… *shudders*.
Friday The 13th: The Game
Look, we all know the story. IllFonic’s Friday The 13th was a gem, but licensing and rights issues meant it sank far earlier than many would’ve preferred. With one of its final major updates replacing dedicated servers with peer-to-peer connections, it’s hardly in an ideal state to play online. However, with some friends gathering for a Halloween horror game night, you’d be hard pressed to find something more fun. Needing to make friends as an adult so that you have people to play with might be the scariest part about this game, actually.
The obvious comparison is Dead By Daylight, with both asymmetrical horrors focusing on escaping the onslaught of a player-controlled killer. Friday the 13th’s various iterations of the towering bloke in a hockey mask himself, Jason Voorhees, have a far stronger presence than most of DBD’s killers, though, and that makes it way scarier. Whichever version of Jason you're facing, you know they have some strange mythical powers, and they’re all pretty good at making you shit yourself as you hide in a cabin.
Okay, so this one is kind of a lie. There’s no “become the ghost” mode in Phasmophobia, but still watch out for your pals. They can be little shits, even when you think you’re safe in the comfort of co-op.
See, I'm not great at entering Phasmophobia's many haunted houses alone. No thank you. So, I patiently wait for my mates while they gather some gear, and we all enter together. They'll walk in by my side, slowly leading me into the heart of the murky darkness, and then turn and bolt for the door. They then slam it behind them and hold it closed, which stops me from escaping easily. This is how lamps get smashed in VR. I hate them. My pals are the worst. They’re the real monsters.