Survival horror games are, as the name suggests, video games that focus on the survival of the game’s protagonist(s), using a variety of scare tactics and life-threatening obstacles to challenge the player.
The term was first used to describe the original 1996 Resident Evil when it was released in Japan. Since then, the genre has grown rapidly and, now, boasts some of the best titles across all platforms. Here, we look at the 10 best survival horror games for the PS4.
10. Dying Light (2015)
Dying Light is a first-person, zombie apocalypse survival horror game in which players navigate their way around a huge urban environment and scavenge for supplies in order to survive.
Players take on the role of Kyle Crane, who is sent on an undercover mission to find Kadir Suleiman in the fictional city of Harran. A big feature of Dying Light is the use of parkour, allowing the player to traverse the environment in spectacular fashion. Day and night are two very different experiences in this game, and it is best to avoid the infected when the sun goes down.
Dying Light received widespread praise upon its release, largely owing to its unique first-person parkour movement, huge open world, and compelling storyline. It is a good place to start if you are looking for the best survival horror games for the PlayStation 4.
9. Outlast (2013)
Outlast was something of a catalyst for the recent resurgence of survival horror video games. This first-person survival horror game was initially developed for Microsoft Windows by Red Barrels, before getting a release for the PS4 in early 2014.
The story of Outlast follows the path of investigative journalist Miles Upshur, who has arrived at a seemingly abandoned psychiatric hospital to learn the truth about its past. There is no way to attack assailants in this game and, instead, players must sneak, run, and crouch their way around. All of this while trying to conserve as much battery as possible on your night vision camera in order to navigate the area.
Outlast is gruesome, terrifying and electrifying, all in one painfully addictive horror experience. This was the game that got a lot of people back into the genre and was so popular that it spawned a spinoff in 2017. Outlast is a must try if you’re looking for the best survival horror games for the PS4.
8. The Evil Within (2014)
The Evil Within is a third-person survival horror game developed by Tango Gameworks and directed by Shinji Mikami, the creator of the Resident Evil series.
Players follow the path of Sebastian Castellanos, who must make the use of his surrounding environment in order to navigate a nightmarish world full of terrifyingly weird and wonderful monsters. To defend yourself, players can use melee weapons and guns, or they can stealthily avoid their foe.
The Evil Within received positive reception when it was released, owing to the suspenseful atmosphere the game created and the survival horror gameplay elements. A sequel, The Evil Within 2, was also released in 2017.
7. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (2017)
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard was very much a return to form for the legendary series by Capcom. After taking more of an action-based approach in their previous few instalments, Resident Evil 7 focusses more on the survival horror aspect of gameplay.
The plot follows Ethan Winters as he searches for his wife, Mia, in an eerily atmospheric plantation house in Louisiana. When he finds her, all is not as he had hoped, and he ends up being attacked by Mia with devastating consequences. Ethan is then captured by the father of the Baker family and, subsequently, pursued by them as he tries to escape.
After receiving word from an outside call that there is a special cure for his infected wife, Ethan is led on a terrifying journey to find the antidote. If you haven’t tried Resident Evil 7 yet, this is a great place to jump into the survival horror scene but, be warned, it is not for the faint-of-heart.
6. Amnesia: The Dark Descent (2010)
Amnesia: The Dark Descent is a survival horror game that set the standard for modern games in the genre. The game was initially developed for Microsoft Windows by Frictional Games, before being released on the PS4 in 2016.
Players control an archaeologist from London, Daniel, after he awakes in the galleries of Brennenburg Castle with no memory and only a journal to help him navigate the area. The game is played form first-person perspective and heavily revolves around solving puzzles and searching for clues in order to progress throughout the game.
Widely regarded as one of the best survival horror games of all time, Amnesia: The Dark Descent creates suspense in a spine-chilling way that can leave with sleepless nights. Yet, there is an addictive element of the gameplay that keeps one coming back for more.
5. Until Dawn (2015)
Until Dawn is an interactive drama game in which players take control of eight characters and must survive certain scenarios when their lives become threatened. Players have an important role in the game as their choices affect the direction of the narrative.
The game, which was developed by Supermassive Games, follows the story of a group of young adults as they meet at a lodge on Blackwood Mountain to mark the one-year anniversary of the disappearance of sisters Beth and Hannah (friends and family of the group). Things don’t go to plan and each of the characters find themselves in danger.
The story is masterfully put together and is complemented by a great cast of actors, including Rami Malek and Hayden Panettiere. There is plenty of atmosphere and a healthy supply of jump scares to keep you on your toes, all of which make Until Dawn one of the best survival horror games for the PS4.
4. Alien: Isolation (2014)
Alien: Isolation is a survival horror game that is based on Ridley Scott’s science fiction horror film series. The game was developed by Creative Assembly and is set 15 years after the first Alien film.
The story follows Amanda Ripley, daughter of Sigourney Weaver’s Ellen Ripley character. Players control Amanda as she investigates her mother’s disappearance. In Alien: Isolation, stealth and survival are the focus of the gameplay, and players are equipped with a motion tracker to detect and outsmart the enemy.
The game was positively received by gamers and critics alike, with the art and sound coming in for particular praise. The alien’s artificial intelligence is another winning feature of Alien: Isolation, and avoiding the enemy requires a good amount of skill
3. Resident Evil 2 (2019)
When the much-anticipated remake of Resident Evil 2 was released in early 2019, it received universal critical acclaim, and for good reason. Capcom put a fresh twist on arguably the best survival horror game in the series, while conserving the essence of what made it so good.
The story is the same as the original – Raccoon City has been turned into a haven for zombies following the outbreak of Umbrella’s T-Virus. Players control Leon and Claire, the game’s protagonists, as they look for a way to escape the ravaged city.
Resident Evil 2 is every bit as good as the reviews suggest, the sense of atmosphere and suspense that Capcom created with the original is still extant in the remake, while the gameplay and fresh camera perspective make the experience more fluid. This is easily one of the best survival horror games for the PlayStation 4.
2. SOMA (2015)
SOMA is a science fiction survival horror from Frictional Games, the same developers as Amnesia. The game is played from first-person perspective and has a plot that rivals video games across all genres.
In this game, player control Simon Jarrett, a man who has agreed to undergo brain experiments following a life-threatening car crash in his hometown of Toronto. The next thing he knows, Simon wakes up in an underwater facility in 2104 with no knowledge of how he came to be there.
SOMA will take you on an emotional journey with its engaging and impactful story. The atmosphere is tense, and the soundtrack is chilling. If you haven’t tried this survival horror yet, you need to.
1. The Last of Us (2013)
The Last of Us is, in my opinion, not only one the best survival horror games for the PS4, but also one of the greatest video games to be released on any platform across all genres. The game was initially released in 2013 for the PS3, before being remastered for the PS4 in 2014.
Players follow the story of Joel, the game’s main playable character, and Ellie. After a heart-wrenching opening scene, Joel finds himself with a chance to find purpose for his life again, as he agrees to smuggle Ellie across a post-apocalyptic United States. Ellie carries physical properties that render her immune to the mutant Cordyceps virus that has ravaged the US and turned the majority of its inhabitants into cannibalistic maniacs.
The relationship between Joel, Ellie, and the other characters that they encounter, is what makes the game so special. The Last of Us features a plotline that is engaging and moving, and this is a game that you should not miss if you are searching for the best survival horror games for the PS4.
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