It’s October, and many gamers will play or stream horror games to celebrate the Halloween season. Pumpkins have been carved, and decorations of skeletons and spiders are draped over lawns across the country–so why not get festive and play spooky games? The horror genre appears clear cut from a distance, but when I saw Xbox Game Pass’ “Shocktober” list, I was surprised by a few there such as Batman: Arkham Knight, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, Hollow Knight, and What Remains of Edith Finch.
What is “horror”? Its simplest definition could be seen as generating the feeling of fear. We can see how titles such as Resident Evil 7, Silent Hill, Dead Space, and The Medium easily fall into this bucket. However, I do appreciate that the “Shocktober” list included games that aren’t traditionally seen as horror but can be played to get that Halloween vibe, especially for those like myself who aren’t so into getting their pants scared off. Sure, I will would not consider What Remains of Edith Finch a horror game by any stretch of the imagination, but this does make you think about what would make a good Halloween-worthy game to play to get in the mood for the holiday. Video games with horror elements, tense action, or even just an air of unease, could be just enough to send chills up your spine right up until kids ring your doorbell and shout “trick-or-treat”! In fact, many are turning to the newly released Metroid Dread (see our very own LeRon’s review on it here) to be their Halloween game of choice. It’s not survival horror, but moments of being hunted down by an E.M.M.I. will get your heart racing.
What games are you playing to get into the Halloween spirit? Check out a Podclip from our Xbox podcast, Arsenal X, discussing spooky games to play on Game Pass. Also, feel free to share the spooky games you are playing on our Boss Rush Discord channel.