Today is Halloween, for those who prefer to spend their Halloween curled up with some scary entertainment, this list was made just for you. October might be the end to the warm weather but it’s the beginning of a wonderful season. The leaves are transforming from greens to bright orange and reds, reminding us that change can be absolutely beautiful. The entire month smells like warm spices and pumpkin pie, and most importantly, it’s the month of Halloween. Dentists might be cringing at the thought of cavities caused by sugar rich sweets, but the rest of us want to get our thrills in a different way.
We searched grave yards, abandoned houses and post apocalyptic wastelands to bring you the scariest MMOs we could dig up (pun intended). The genre tends to be filled with fantasy landscapes and Sci-Fi expanses, but there are still a handful bone chilling experiences out there to be had. If you’re looking for a few scares this season, some of these games might be just the thrill you were craving.
Some might say the scariest thing about Hellgate is its abysmally poor launch. Flagship studios, the original developer of the game, almost seemed doomed from the start. The title had a frenzy of hype behind it, expectations were huge. Unfortunately at launch the title was riddled with bugs, stability issues and met with a poor response. Hellgate was also released at the end of the era. The pay to play model was rapidly being replaced by free titles that utilized micro transactions. In the end it fell victim to bad timing; Flagship studios went out of business and shut the game down in 2009.
All hope was not lost though; a subsidiary of Hannibitsoft relaunched the game in 2011, as a free to play title. Although it’s largely in maintenance mode, Hellgate is now a playable and enjoyable experience. The visuals have aged but the games aesthetic is perfectly in place. The storyline is well thought out and creates more than enough suspense to see you through to the end. For most, Hellgate lacks a level of longevity. It might not be a title you play for years on end, but if you have never given this title a spin, it’s a good load of fun for at least a few weeks.
Path of Exile
Yes, I know it’s a top down dungeon crawler. Path of Exile isn’t necessarily the game that comes to mind when you’re looking for a frightening experience, but surprisingly it is. The mood it sets with its aesthetics is absolutely eerie. The voice over work has a melancholy tone that sets the scene for everything to come. The music and ambiance this game provides help give you a sense of immersion.
Visually it’s dark, the drab color palette serves to further the tone set by the rest of the ambiance. For many, it might not give a “jump out of your seat” feeling, but in almost every way imaginable this game does an excellent job of creating tension and providing a unique experience, despite its tried and true formula.
F.E.A.R Online from Aeria games is the newest game on our list. While it doesn’t contain the earth shattering moments that its stand alone PC brothers have, it is still quite frightening at times. F.E.A.R online utilizes the same set of techniques as other games in the franchise. There are more than enough jump scares,and special effects to give most a fright.
Some would argue that F.E.A.R online is inferior to stand alone titles in the franchise. The level of polish and overall quality are lower than that of previous iterations. With that being said, if you are a fan of first person shooters or just want a quick scare, F.E.A.R online is more than worth the install.
This one is quite a gem in my opinion. A niche game and it might only appeal to a certain audience, but it’s one I really appreciate. Set in a post apocalyptic world, Fallen Earth draws a lot of inspiration from games such as Fallout. That doesn’t stop it from being creepy at times. Fallen earth contains everything a good dystopian theme should. It has zombies, barren landscapes and a whole lot of social relevance.
For me personally, it’s hard not to draw parallels to the world we live in. Fallen Earth lacks jump scares and traditional horror elements, but it’s striking feature is its ability to relate its self to the world we live in, and that’s more frightening than any one startling moment or sound effect can offer.
The Secret World
Last but certainly not least, we have the king of horror inspired MMOs. The Secret World is the only buy to play game on our list, but it’s here for a good reason. The Secret world is absolutely wonderful, its eerie, and features and one of the best storylines in the entire genre. The influences are numerous and range from Lovecraft to Edgar Allen Poe. Voice acting is phenomenal and immersion is a central focus of the games design. The Secret world features a unique mission type called investigation missions. These focus on critical thinking, research and logic puzzles. The investigation missions go a long way to helping set the mood and draw you in even further.
Funcom’s MMO has a hardcore cult following and appeals to the role playing community. This is truly one of the most engaging elements of The Secret World. I encounter more walk up role playing than almost any MMO I have ever played. The Secret world embraces and encourages its role playing community. This arguably makes the secret world the “scariest” game on the list. It’s a community that allows for you to create your own moments, scary or otherwise.
All treats, no tricks.
Thank you very much for reading our Halloween games list.This list was in no particular order. Like every list, some titles may of been looked over. Like every list, sometimes titles don’t make it on for one reason or another. Please feel free to leave some of your favorite spooky games in the comments. Maybe you have already heard of every game listed here, possibly even played all of them. For some of you, a couple of these might be rewarding new experience and a great way to enjoy the season.
Be sure to check out our Halloween Top MMOs section, where you can vote on on your favorite Halloween events.Related: Editorial, MMORPG, Shooter, Top List