January 26, 202317 Best Indie Horror Games (Must-Try Games to Play in 2023)

17 Best Indie Horror Games (Must-Try Games to Play in 2023)

What better genre can provide you with constant thrill, mystery, and excitement other than a great horror game, right? Horror games are undoubtedly one of the most heart-pounding and thrilling games you’ll ever try. Horror games, when done right, are games that are a force to reckon with. Today, we are going to give you what you want. We’re going to list the top 17 indie horror games you must try!

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Before indie games were popular, we would usually get our horror games from triple-A companies like Capcom. But now, indie developers are making themselves known by showing us that they are able to create horror games that can match or even outrank some of the most popular triple-A horror games.

Just running away from a sinister ghost or fighting off an evil creature isn’t enough to make a horror game good. A great horror game is all about the thrill, the ambiguity, the mystery solving, and the overall suspense of the game. It’s about the mysteries you solve and the why, when, and how of the game. Without the depth of having to rack up your brain to solve these mysteries while trying to survive the sinister beings that surround you, the game is just meh.

With indie horror games, you get a lot of everything in one. Indie horror games are just on a whole different level, and they are undoubtedly one of the best games available on the market. Indie game developers are not afraid to go above and beyond to give us die-hard horror fans the adrenaline rush that only horror games can provide.

So, today is a day for the die-hard horror game fans out there. Today, we are going to list some of the best and most popular indie horror games on the market for you to try! Let’s get into it!

Note: If you’re curious about how we chose the best indie games, check out our criteria below.

Our Criteria for the Best Indie Games

  • The game should be developed by an independent developer or a small game development company without a huge financial backing.
  • The game can be published by a small to a large company.
  • The game has received some degree of success.
  • The game can either be popular or lowkey.
  • The game should have at least a 70% and above Metacritic score
  • The game should have mostly, very positive, to overwhelmingly positive Steam reviews.

Top 17 Indie Horror Games You Should Try!

Amnesia: The Dark Descent

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Release Date: September 9, 2010

Developer/Publisher: Frictional Games/Frictional Games

Genre: Adventure, Survival-Horror Game

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Android, Microsoft Windows, macOS, Linux, Classic Mac OS

Metacritic Score: 85%

Steam Review: Overwhelmingly Positive

A list of the best indie horror games is not complete without Amnesia: The Dark Descent. This game is one of the best indie horror games and has literally set the bar so high.

In Amnesia: The Dark Descent, you play as Daniel. Playing in a first-person setting, you wake up in an abandoned castle with no memories or recollection as to why you’re there in the first place. Now, you have to find your way through the castle while not only trying to rack up your brain trying to get your memories back but also having to fight off the evil monsters and avoid witnessing traumatizing events inside the castle. The evil that you have to fight isn’t only the monsters that lurk in the shadows; it also includes the evils that lurk within your mind.

Amnesia: The Dark Descent is a game that will immerse you in a world full of danger that lurks deep within every corner. It’s a game that’ll keep you up at night with its horrific atmosphere. Moreover, it’s a game that has a very thrilling and compelling story that you’ll definitely want to try!


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Release Date: January 12, 2017

Developer/Publisher: RedCondieGames/RedCandieGames, AGM PLAYISM

Genre: Adventure, Horror, Survival, Puzzle Game

Available Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Android, Microsoft Windows, Linux, macOS, Mac operating systems

Metacritic Score: 83%

Steam Review: Overwhelmingly Positive

Detention is a well-known Taiwanese horror game that will let you explore Taiwan during the 1960s. It’s an easy point-and-click game that is scary even without the jumpscares.

You take on the role of high schoolers imprisoned at Greenwood High School, which is located in a remote mountainous area. The once-comfortable setting has undergone odd mutations and is now the home of evil beings. If you want to escape, you must look into the mysterious campus’s ominous objects and mysteries.

Detention makes excellent use of the region’s history and mythology. There are many scares, but they’re never without purpose. As a result, the game offers a seamless experience that helps you understand the subtleties of its plot.

If you decide to play Detention, get ready because it will certainly haunt your dreams.


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Release Date: September 22, 2015

Developer/Publisher: Frictional Games/Frictional Games

Genre: First-Person, Adventure, Horror-Survival Game

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows, macOS, Linux, Classic Mac OS

Metacritic Score: 84%

Steam Review: Overwhelmingly Positive

From the same creators of Amnesia: The Dark Descent, SOMA is another hit horror game that will leave you flabbergasted.

In SOMA, you play Simon Jarret, who was in a fatal car accident before the current events of SOMA. After surviving the car crash, you suffer from severe brain damage and cranial bleeding, so you agree to undergo an experimental brain scan.

Now, you must face the horrors that SOMA has buried deep. It’s your task to look deeply into the locked terminals and confidential documents to uncover the secrets they have hidden. However, be careful since there is danger around every turn, including corrupt individuals, twisted animals, crazy robots, and even an enigmatic omnipresent A.I. But it doesn’t end there. You can’t fight back, you have to outsmart them, run, or die.

SOMA is one of my favorite horror games. It is one of the most engrossing and thought-provoking games I’ve played. The graphics in combination with the storyline are just amazing and it definitely provides you with a gripping experience.

The Forest

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Release Date: May 1, 2018

Developer/Publisher: Endnight Games Ltd/Endnight Games Ltd

Genre: Open-World, Adventure, Horror-Survival Game

Platforms: PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows

Metacritic Score: 83%

Steam Review: Overwhelmingly Positive

The Forest is a horror-survival game where you play as the lone survivor (supposedly) of a tragic plane crash. You will find yourself trying to survive the challenges the forest will throw at you while trying to find your son, who was taken by a group of cannibals before it’s too late. Now, you will need to survive and fight to get to your son.

This game is an open-world game where you can build your own base, hunt for your food, while trying to survive each night from not only the cannibals but also creatures of the forest. The Forest is a gripping game that will make you feel a lot of different emotions.

Little Nightmares II

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Release Date: February 11, 2021

Developer/Publisher: Tarsier Studios/ BANDAI NAMCO Entertainment

Genre: Puzzle, Adventure, Platform, Survival Horror Game

Other Available Platforms: PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Series S, Microsoft Windows, Google Stadia

Metacritic Score: 83%

Steam Review: Very Positive

You take on the role of Mono in Little Nightmares II. A malicious transmission has imprisoned Mono and your new companion Six together in an evil warped universe. Six and you will have to explore this dark realm together in order to learn the Signal Tower’s mysteries. You will both face various challenges from the evil people of the planet on your difficult trek to find the solution.

Compared to the original, Little Nightmare II is even darker. It affirms itself at the same levels or even goes beyond the levels of its predecessor. This game’s stunning visuals make it genuinely terrifying. Little Nightmares II has a persistent oppression in the game’s situations that keeps the player hooked from beginning to end with great anticipation. It is a great horror game that will lead you on a voyage through a dangerous world filled with villains, dangerous creatures, and extremely difficult challenges and puzzles.


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Release Date: September 4, 2013

Developer/Publisher: Red Barrels/Red Barrels

Genre: Action-Adventure, Horror, Survival, Puzzle Game

Available Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows, macOS, Linux, Classic Mac OS

Metacritic Score: 80%

Steam Review: Overwhelmingly Positive

Another classic horror game is Outlast. Outlast is one of the scariest games’ I’ve tried and is easily one of my top horror games.

In the video game Outlast, you take on the role of Miles Upshur, an investigative journalist who is trying to break into Mount Massive Asylum in order to learn more about its sinister past and mysteries.

Independent journalist Miles Upshur breaks into the building after receiving a tip from an unnamed source. But what he finds straddles a horrifying line between nature and something else out of this world. Can you survive long enough to discover the asylum’s secrets?

Outlast features some of the most horrific creatures of the mind and is unquestionably one of the scariest indie titles available. Outlast is one of those games where your only choices for surviving (or not) are to run, hide, or just simply die. There are multiple jump scares in it that will make you piss yourself. There’s a reason why it’s the best survival horror game.

Pathologic Classic HD

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Release Date: October 29, 2015

Developer/Publisher: Ice-Pick Lodge, General Arcade/Good Shepherd Entertainment

Genre: Role-Playing, Action-Adventure, Survival-Horror Game

Platforms: Microsoft Windows, IBM PC compatible

Metacritic Score: 76%

Steam Review: Very Positive

Pathologic is an interesting game that is told through the perspectives of three different characters, a ruthless investigator that was assigned by local authorities, a surgeon, and an eccentric girl who is rumored to have healing abilities. They must race to find the cause and cure of the plague that is plaguing the remote town of Gorkhon.

Once you delve deeper, Pathologic is more than just a first-person horror adventure game where you play as one of three “heroes”—you’ll also have an immersive and psychologically impactful experience. You will encounter circumstances in the universe of Pathologic where morality and noble actions are irrelevant in the face of utter misery and unending need. This game will take you on a weird and ominous journey that will leave you feeling terrified and sick out of your mind.

World of Horror

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Release Date: February 20, 2020

Developer/Publisher: panstasz/Ysbryd Games

Genre: Role-Playing, Adventure, Horror Game

Platforms: Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows, macOS, Mac operating systems

Metacritic Score: 80%

Steam Review: Very Positive

If you’re a fan of Junji Ito, a horror manga artist who has created numerous horror mangas, then you’re going to love World of Horror. This is because the World of Horror is based on Junji Ito’s horrific manga.

World of Horror has a rather straightforward plot. You are a paranormal investigator entrusted with investigating mysteries in the seaside city of Shiokawa. These puzzles, which take the form of little horror-adventure games, each relate to a bigger puzzle involving a different ancient god that was chosen at random.

In the game, World of Horror, you are thrown into a hand-drawn, manga-style game where you’ll have to figure out different secrets of the Shiokawa. You will have to navigate through the hellish scenarios of the world and make unforgivable choices. It’s a game that has a deep story that will make you feel an overwhelming sense of doom. It’s full of what ifs that are left unanswered. It’s definitely a game full of depth that is much more than it seems.

Five Nights at Freddy’s

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Release Date: August 18, 2014

Developer/Publisher: Scott Cawthon/Scott Cawthon

Genre: Simulation, Adventure, Horror-Survival Game

Platforms: Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, Nintendo Switch, iOS, Android, Oculus Quest, Oculus Quest 2, Google Stadia

Metacritic Score: 78%

Steam Review: Very Positive

In Five Nights at Freddy’s, you play as a security guard who works the night shift in a Chuck-E-Cheese family-style restaurant setting where the animatronic robots become sinister beings at night. Your job is to stay alive until 6 am and not get killed by these evil animatronic robots.

You will have to do tasks, watch the security cameras, and a lot more to keep an eye on these animatronic robots. They’re not able to move if you are watching them or flashing a light on them, but removing your eye on them and no light will just cost your life. Also, you have a limited amount of electricity, so good luck staying alive.

Five Nights at Freddy’s is a thrilling game that will keep you on your toes. You will have to constantly shift to different tasks just to keep an eye on these sinister robots because if you don’t, you might just be their next meal.


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Release Date: October 19, 2021

Developer/Publisher: Daniel Mullins Games/Devolver Digital

Genre: Puzzle, Horror, Adventure, Strategy, Roguelike, Deck-Building Game

Available Platforms: macOS, GeForce Now, Microsoft Windows, Linux, Mac operating systems, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5

Metacritic Score: 87%

Steam Review: Overwhelmingly Positive

A gory card-based adventure called Inscryption combines psychological horror, escape-room-style puzzles, and dec-kbuilding rogue-like games.

At the beginning of the story, you, the player, awaken in a cabin where a mysterious game master has locked you up. Your objective is to get through his card game, which is filled with scary mysteries that are inscribed on the cards, and figure out how to escape.

Inscryption is a fantastic thriller puzzle game packed with unexpected twists and turns that never cling to one concept to keep you completely engrossed in the game. Without a doubt, this is among the best games I’ve ever played. The lore is very engrossing, and the terror elements are quite distinctive and raise a plethora of questions that will leave you wanting more.


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Release Date: July 8, 2022


Genre: Action-Adventure, Puzzle, Simulation, Horror Game

Platforms: PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X and Series S, Microsoft Windows

Metacritic Score: 75%

Steam Review: Very Positive

MADiSON is one of the newer and fresher indie horror games on the market and is undoubtedly one of the best of the newer horror games.

A teenage guy named Luca, who obtains an instant camera for his 16th birthday, is the protagonist of the game, which is set in a huge house. Through the camera, which belonged to a serial killer 30 years prior, the teenage boy will be contacted to bring an end to a gruesome ritual.

The first-person psychological horror game MADiSON is fantastic and provides a genuinely terrifying atmosphere. You will have to solve puzzles, uncover hidden secrets, and stay alive. It’s a terrifying game that will send you on a harrowing quest to fight off a malevolent force.


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Release Date: September 19, 2020

Developer/Publisher: Kinetic Games/Kinetic Games

Genre: Virtual Reality, Adventure, Puzzle, Horror-Survival Game

Platforms: Microsoft Windows

Metacritic Score: N/A

Steam Review: Overwhelmingly Positive

Phasmophobia is a first-person horror investigation and survival game. The player must finish an agreement in which they must determine the kind of ghost that haunts a certain location alone or with up to three other players in a group. It’s now up to you and your team to acquire as much proof as you can using all the ghost hunting tools at your disposal.

Phasmophobia is one of the best horror co-op games I’ve tried. Moreover, the game gets even more fun when you play with a friend who’s scared sh*tless with you.


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Release Date: August 18, 2017

Developer/Publisher: Acid Wizard Studio/Acid Wizard Studio

Genre: Survival-Horror, Role-Playing, Adventure, Shooter, Fighting Game

Platforms: Microsoft Windows, macOS, Linux, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Google Stadia

Metacritic Score: 80%

Steam Review: Very Positive

In the deepest part of the Polish forest Darkwood, a plague spreading from an unidentified source is killing its residents. The forest has captured a large number of people, and among the survivors, a weird plague is wreaking havoc, murdering and turning victims into monstrosities and vile creatures. Your objective is to locate the doctor and discover a cure for the plague that is plaguing the public.

Darkwood is a difficult game that will take some time before you’re able to finish it. But it’s completely worth it. It’s a great mix of horror, action, and investigation.


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Release Date: August 16, 2017

Developer/Publisher: Bloober Team SA/Bloober Team

Genre: First-Person, Adventure, Horror-Survival Game

Platforms: Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Linux, macOS, Nintendo Switch, Amazon Luna, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S

Metacritic Score: 78%

Steam Review: Very Positive

In Observer, you will assume the role of Krakow-based detective Daniel Lazarski from the Observers police division. He has a tool called the Dream Eater that he can use to infiltrate people’s brain implants for the sake of interrogation. You will revisit the worst nightmares of criminals and victims as you hack into their unstable brains in search of information, making you doubt your own reality and your sanity.

Observer isn’t your usual type of horror game, but it is definitely scary in its own right. It provides an eerie atmosphere and is a horror game you should definitely try.


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Release Date: July 8, 2016

Developer/Publisher: Playdead/Playdead

Genre: Adventure, Puzzle, Platform Game

Platforms: Microsoft Windows, iOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Mac operating systems

Metacritic Score: 87%

Steam Review: Overwhelmingly Positive

You will play the role of a young child in the game, Inside. who is fighting to survive the nightmare setting into which he was arbitrarily thrown. You must work through a slew of challenges and puzzles in this game, or you may die in a number of horrifying ways.

There is a lot of fresh material in Inside that is also remarkably comparable to Limbo, its predecessor. Inside differs from Limbo in that it places more emphasis on a deeper storyline. While Inside has excellent puzzles and challenges in addition to a brilliantly written story that will keep you thinking, Limbo concentrates more on the puzzles.

This game is one of those eerie, quiet games that will disturb you; it’s not your typical horror game with terrifying demons chasing you. Inside is a game with a deep story that will leave you questioning a lot of things.

Read Our Inside Review here


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Release Date: August 3, 2011

Developer/Publisher: Playdead/Playdead

Genre: Action-Adventure, Puzzle Game

Available Platforms: Android, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4,

Metacritic Score: 88%

Steam Review: Very Positive

Before the game, Inside, Playdead had Limbo. Limbo is a classic game that has set the bar for future games that have a similar vibe.

In Limbo, you play a nameless boy who wakes up in the middle of the forest with the goal of finding his sister before it’s too late. But before you get to your sister, you have to survive the many dangers, traps, and challenges you will encounter deep within the forest. So, be careful.

Limbo has breathtaking visuals and a superb soundtrack. The game, which is a few years old, has a unique appeal that is matched by a beautifully scary environment, solid gameplay and puzzle components, and simple controls that even the most novice gamers should be able to master. It is an intriguing game with puzzles that go well with the gloomy atmosphere.


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Release Date: October 30, 2020

Developer/Publisher: SadSquare Studio/SadSquare Studio

Genre: Simulation, Adventure, Horror-Survival Game

Platforms: PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X and Series S, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows

Metacritic Score: 81%

Steam Review: Very Positive

In Visage, you take on the role of Dwayne Anderson, a resident who killed his wife and kids before taking his own life. Dwayne is being plagued by paranormal creatures as he is confined within the house. The goal of the game is to escape the house and discover what is causing all of the strange phenomena.

You will have to go exploring around the ever-changing house in a slow-paced setting. This eerie and evocative world includes surroundings that are both cozy and horrifyingly realistic. You will repeatedly become lost while playing this unsettling game while attempting to unravel the secrets surrounding the house. But the real question is, can you survive and uncover the secrets?

Wrap Up

Indie game developers have really outdone themselves with these games. They have created horror games that will become timeless classics that every gaming horror-fanatic fan should try at least once in their lives. And we can’t wait for other future horror game releases they have up their sleeves.

That’s a wrap! We hope you find these games terrifyingly great too! If you want to check out more reviews and articles like this, check out our blog here.

Happy Gaming!