Despite having less capable hardware compared to other flagship consoles, the Nintendo Switch has a library full of fun exclusives including the spooky action title Luigi’s Mansion 3 and the expansive open-world game Breath of the Wild. Aside from that, gamers can also find a handful of ported titles from different developers with varying genres and gameplay.
Through porting, horror games originally released to previous consoles such as the Nintendo Wii and various PlayStation iterations have found their way to the Nintendo Switch library. Now, gamers thirsty for mystery and terrifying creatures can enjoy some of the best horror games on their handheld console.
Little Nightmares (2017)
One of the eeriest games ever released is the puzzle platformer Little Nightmares. Developed by Tarsier Studios, the game sees a girl named six go through the haunting areas of a large submarine called the Maw and encounter other lonely children, dangerous creatures, and zombie-like adults that like to feed on children.
The game has been praised for its compelling narrative, as well as its incredible environment and character design. Gamers can also download the DLC which widens the uncanny world inside the Maw. Its stomach-churning visuals and heart-thumping puzzles will surely creep out Switch gamers.
Resident Evil: Revelations (2012)
There are a lot of games in the Resident Evil franchise that present some of the most horrifying creations and experiments from the nefarious Umbrella Corporation. But, the ones that Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield encounter in Resident Evil: Revelations will surely frighten Switch users.
After thwarting various T-virus-infused monsters, gamers will have to beat difficult bosses including the Draghihnazzo and a Jack Norman pumped with indecent amounts of T-Abyss Virus. Despite being originally released for the 3DS, Resident Evil: Revelations provides Switch gamers with a solidly terrifying gaming experience.
Alien: Isolation (2014)
Fans of the incredibly rewatchable Ridley Scott horror film Alien will be pleased to know that they can join in on the fun by playing Alien: Isolation. Set about 15 years before the 1979 film, the game highlights engineer Amanda Ripley’s investigation of her mother’s disappearance on board a space station.
In the game, players will have to survive, hide, fight, and outsmart extraterrestrial creatures using various weapons and accessories. Many critics agree that Alien: Isolation is a brilliant port for the Nintendo Switch as it successfully replicates the impeccable gameplay and visuals of the classic film.
Don’t be fooled by its top-down perspective. Darkwood is a very horrifying and thrilling game that’s been originally released for the PC. Taking inspiration from Slavic folklore, Darkwood sees the player fight for their survival in a forest hideout. During the day, they can go out and scavenge for supplies, but during the night, they need to protect themselves from intruders.
What makes Darkwood more terrifying is its well-crafted horror narrative that players slowly unravel. Gamers will also feel the constant pressure to collect items and craft parts that can help them survive while being fast enough to avoid the night. Darkwood is a great Switch horror survival game to play, especially for those who love the spooky season.
Dead By Daylight (2016)
Switch gamers who love horror games and playing with others will surely adore Dead by Daylight. The horror game has been around for quite some time now, allowing gamers to choose between two roles: survivors that need to bring generators to life to escape the map and a brutal killer who needs to impale all survivors.
Dead by Daylight has been considered one of the best multiplayer horror games for its diverse characters and competitive gameplay. But while there are complaints about the Switch port regarding the game’s graphics and controls, it’s still a horror game worth playing with friends and online strangers.
Dying Light (2015)
Zombies continue to be a key plot driver in many horror games, including the Techland survival horror title Dying Light. The game takes gamers on a wild ride as they put on the shoes of an undercover agent named Kyle Crane who needs to explore a zombie-infested city and find a man who might be able to cure the zombie virus.
What made Dying Light a hit was its crisp combat and impressive graphics, although some felt that the game was too difficult, especially during the beginning. On the Nintendo Switch, the game is excellently ported as it runs smoothly and provides gamers with hours of survival horror content due to the inclusion of DLCs.
Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water (2014)
Gamers who are interested in Japanese urban legends should check out Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water. The fifth entry in the horror series Fatal Frame attempts to tell the story of three protagonists who have been attracted to the mysticism of the fictional Hikami Mountain.
In the game, players will have to use a weapon called the Camera Obscura and take photographs of the ghosts and creatures in order to defend themselves. Remastered and ported to the Switch in 2021, Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water has received an outpour of positive praise thanks to its clever jump scares and incredible graphics.
Outlast is perhaps one of the best stealth horror games ever released on the Nintendo Switch. Developed by Red Barrels, Outlast is a horror game set in a run-down psychiatric hospital where murderous patients run amok. Unfortunately for players, they have to assume the role of an investigative journalist who needs to solve a chilling mystery at the hospital.
What’s terrifying about Outlast is that players aren’t really given the option to actively fend for themselves and are instead tasked with running and hiding from the homicidal patients. Switch gamers should consider buying Outlast as the port manages to keep the thrill and spine-tingling gameplay that made it a hit on other consoles.
The Walking Dead (2012)
There aren’t a lot of episodic video games, and from its small pool, there are only a handful of titles that are truly worth playing. The horror game The Walking Dead is an excellent episodic video game based on the popular comic book series littered with zombies, territorial fiends, and compelling characters.
Gamers find that the adventure game is a masterpiece in video game storytelling with its bite-sized chapters and decision-based gameplay. Switch gamers will also appreciate the superb voiceover performances and masterful world-building that The Walking Dead offers.
Resident Evil 4 (2005)
There are a handful of Resident Evil ports available on the Nintendo Switch, but it’s Resident Evil 4 that takes the cake when it comes to gameplay, narrative, graphics, and scare level. The game follows Leon S. Kennedy who needs to save the U.S. president’s daughter from a terrifying cult.
The dynamic shooting gameplay of Resident Evil 4 and its cinematic sequences are well-revered by both critics and gamers. While the game’s visuals are obviously a product of its time, the game still manages to shine through on the Switch thanks to its solid gameplay and story.
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