Wccftech’s Best Horror Games of 2022 – Frights Both Fresh and Familiar

Nathan Birch
Best Horror Games of 2022

2022 was a solid, if not quite killer, year for those looking for some scares. We didn’t get that big, original tentpole horror release as Resident Evil took the year off (DLC for RE Village aside) and The Callisto Protocol ended up being a bit of a dud. That said, there was still plenty to sink your teeth into, as Naughty Dog delivered the polished remake The Last of Us Part I, Supermassive Games returned to big-budget fare with The Quarry, and Dying Light 2 delivered another fun zombie-slaying playground. Meanwhile, on the indie front, games like Martha is Dead and Scorn pushed players’ sensibilities to their limits. Summon up your courage for Wccftech’s Best Horror Games of 2022…

Also in Wccftech's Best Games of 2022 lists: ShootersFightingPlatformerAdventure, Indie, and Action

Resident Evil Village: Shadows of Rose

Resident Evil games aren’t really known for their strong post-launch support, but thankfully, Capcom went above and beyond for last year’s premier horror game, Resident Evil Village. The “Winters’ Expansion” offered a variety of new features, but its headline addition was the new “Shadows of Rose” story content. Focusing on Ethan Winters’ troubled and powerful teen daughter Rose, the DLC remixed the best parts of RE Village (Castle Dimitrescu and House Beneviento) in fun, creepy, and unexpected ways. I was surprised by how much I was grabbed and pulled back into the world of Resident Evil Village when I went hands-on with the DLC

“Shadows of Rose is a relatively brief yet surprisingly meaningful addition to the Winters saga we’ve seen play out in RE7 and RE Village. Rose is a likeable character, and thankfully, this story remains largely about her character and growth rather than any of the usual over-complicated Resident Evil plot silliness.”

Dying Light 2

Dying Light 2 Stay Human (8)

Dying Light 2 Stay Human was the subject of some concerning behind-the-scenes reports prior to launch, and the finished game does feel a bit stitched together. That said, Techland’s parkour-meets-zombies formula remains fun and they’ve created another entertaining open world that will viciously devour your free time if you let it. Here are my final thoughts from my full review…

“Dying Light 2 Stay Human is another exhilarating parkour and zombie-pummeling playground from Techland, although at times, the seams holding it all together are a bit obvious. Given the game’s glitches, minor gameplay annoyances, and crudely bisected story and world, reports of behind-the-scenes issues feel all-too-plausible. That said, the foundation here is rock solid, and Techland has proven they’re capable long-term builders, so I’m confident Dying Light 2’s embers can be stoked to a full flame in time.”

Martha is Dead

Martha is Dead (9)

Martha is Dead has proven to be one of the more divisive horror games of 2022. The game’s slow-burn psychological story and extreme shock moments have turned some off, but others have found the game bracing and memorable for exactly those reasons. Wccftech’s Rosh Kelly was one of the game’s supporters, praising its commitment to making players genuinely uncomfortable…

“Martha is Dead is an actively sinister game. It is trying to upset you. It is trying to cling to the shadowy thoughts as you sleep. It tells a genuinely tragic tale and does so with a level of commitment and detailed pace that few games are brave enough to attempt. But it is not a comfortable journey. Nor is it a friendly one. If Dear Esther or Everyone Has Gone To The Rapture made you squirm, Martha is Dead will make you abandon your living room altogether.”

The Quarry

The Quarry (9)

And now for a game that’s the polar opposite from Martha is Dead! The Quarry never tries to be anything more than dumb slashy fun, but developer Supermassive Games delivers their goofy thrills in style. Fans of the studio have been waiting for a true successor to their cult-classic Until Dawn, as follow ups like the Dark Pictures games were clearly made with far more constrained budgets. That’s not an issue with The Quarry, which has the full backing of 2K Games – this is a meaty experience, featuring impressive visuals and a host of smart multiplayer features. Wccftech’s Chris Wray was certainly a major fan of Supermassive’s return to the “big screen”…

“The Quarry is yet another impressive title by Supermassive Games. While it doesn't veer away from their previous titles, their ability to write an interesting story with compelling characters is only improving. There are still a few issues here and there, but this looks better than ever and features an excellent soundtrack. If you're a fan of Until Dawn or The Dark Pictures games, you'll like this, particularly as the larger budget comes with a much bigger cast and a much larger and more branching story.”

Last of Us Part 1 Remake Intro Best Horror

The Last of Us Part I (9)

The debate over whether The Last of Us Part I was the best use of Naughty Dog’s limited resources rages on, but there’s really no debating that this is the prime way to play one of the best and most influential games of all time. TLOU’s makeover is truly eye-popping, bringing both the game’s scary and dramatic moments to new life. A raft of new accessibility options also make the game more customizable and playable than ever. Wccftech’s Kai Powell was wowed by this new version of Naughty Dog’s classic…

“Worthy of being hailed as a potential Game of the Generation when it was first released, The Last of Us Part I is fully remade for a new generation of PlayStation consoles. With some of Naughty Dog's best graphical tech to date, this is one you'll have to see to believe.”

Honorable Mentions

The games listed above definitely aren’t the end of the story when it comes to 2022 horror, as a number of titles fell just short of the top 5. Scorn featured the most impressive presentation of any horror game this year (even better than TLOU Part I) although its punishing gameplay wasn’t for everyone. Madison is one of the best PT-likes to date, although the novelty of those type of games has worn off a bit. Signalis was a fun PS1-era throwback, but newer players may not quite get it. The Dark Pictures: The Devil in Me is solid fun, but Supermassive did better work with The Quarry. And finally, there’s The Callisto Protocol, which suffered from a lot of design and tech issues, but was undeniably impressive in some respects.

So yeah, 2022 probably won’t be remembered as a banner year for scary games, but if you dig down there definitely wasn’t a lack of options. Any good horror games I missed? Don’t agree with Wccftech’s top five? Hit the comments and hash out your own action favorites.

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