The charming weirdness of these Nintendo Switch horror games gives them a different and unique flavor.
On the Switch, there are some really scary games. Playing a handheld psychological horror game under a blanket on a cold night while wearing headphones makes me feel warm and cozy. Plus points if you also played with the lights off.
If players want something other than the obvious big names like Alien: Isolation, Resident Evil 4, and the Amnesia games, there are some interesting indie games that explore all things dark and twisted. Here are six weird horror games that do a great job of getting under the skin of their players.
Boreal Tenebrae is a beautiful and moody game that doesn’t have a straight storyline. Because of this, the story can be hard to figure out, and some parts are left open for the player to understand however they want. Even though the story’s message may be hard to figure out (it has to do with the main character, Bree, and the search for her missing sister, Sarah), the player is left with an overwhelming sense of dread.
The images are beautiful but scary. Strange people lurk around suspiciously, and the strange places are scary to explore. The writing is weird, sad, and sometimes very depressing. But the sound is what makes Boreal Tenebrae really creepy. Play it with headphones to get the full effect. It’s hard to put this game into a neat box, but that only makes it more interesting.
Paratopic is another indie game that is best played with headphones. It is an experimental 32-bit game with a very obnoxious soundtrack. It feels strange because the game jumps quickly from one scene to the next. The story is mostly about illegal videotapes, an underground network for smuggling, and a strange supernatural creature.
Paratopic is the kind of game where you don’t have to do anything but sit back and enjoy it. It has a lot of atmosphere and builds up a lot of tension, and the graphics remind me a lot of the PlayStation and N64 era. It’s short but sweet, and players who want a strange experience should try it. Just don’t think you’ll always know what’s going on.
Inside is a puzzle platformer that comes after the very popular game Limbo. It’s hard to put this game in a box because it’s creepy rather than scary, but if players want something unsettling, this is a good choice. It’s very dark and moody, and the sound design does a great job of making it creepy. It has a sense of underlying tension, like something is always there and ready to show up at any time.
The player is in charge of a boy who is on the run and has to avoid enemies to get away. There are two possible endings to the game, depending on whether or not the player gets everything. Each ending has been interpreted in a different way. This story has a lot to think about, but alternative horror fans must play it because of how creepy it is.
Oxenfree is a story about growing up that has a supernatural twist. It came out on the Switch in 2017, and the main character, Alex, and her friends go to Edwards Island. When Alex uses her radio to listen to a strange shape floating in a cave, things start to go wrong. This is the start of a strange, time-looping quest to get off the island without getting hurt.
It has an interesting and touching story with some dark parts, and Edwards Island is a fascinating (and sometimes scary) place to explore. There’s something both cool and annoying about trying to get to another character only to be thrown back in time. It works great on the Switch, and now is a great time to get it because Oxenfree 2 is being made.
Stories Untold is a set of short games that are all connected to each other. Each game is different from the others, from a scary text-based adventure to a series of experiments on a strange object to a set of tricky puzzles at a monitoring station in Greenland. Even though they are all different in how they are played, they all have a creepy, tense atmosphere with twists and turns that you don’t expect.
The story that connects all four games is great, and the ending is brutal and should be seen without spoilers. It also feels very 80s and brings back a lot of memories. It’s the perfect game to play on the Switch on a dark night, and it’s a great example of a game that doesn’t fit into any one genre and feels completely new and different.
Iron Lung is a strange and creepy little game in which the player controls a prisoner who explores an ocean of blood on an alien planet. Players must use coordinates to get to certain places on the map to take photos. The problem is that the player is not alone down there. Exploring in a sea of blood is a strange thing to do, but that’s not the only problem.
8 Ball Pool is only about an hour long, but it builds up a lot of tension in that short amount of time. It’s scary enough to keep the player on the edge of their seat. The graphics look like they came from a PS1, and the sound design is very atmospheric. The ending is also great.