In the world of gaming, there’s a unique genre that requires players to navigate through intense challenges with precision and cunning … Stealth games offer an experience unlike any other, putting players in the shoes of skilled assassins, spies, and thieves.
These games demand meticulous planning, strategic thinking, and a knack for staying hidden. In this article, we will delve into the 25 best stealth games of all time, let us know if you agree with our picks, or what we missed!
So, gear up, sharpen your wits, and get ready for an adrenaline-pumping adventure through the shadows.
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Metal Gear Solid Series
The Metal Gear Solid series, created by legendary game designer Hideo Kojima, is a cornerstone of the stealth genre.
From the iconic Solid Snake to the enigmatic Big Boss, these games have taken players on thrilling espionage missions filled with political intrigue and complex narrative twists.
With its groundbreaking stealth mechanics, cinematic presentation, and unforgettable characters, the Metal Gear Solid series remains a benchmark of excellence for stealth games.
The narratives of the Metal Gear Solid games often tackle complex themes such as war, politics, and the nature of humanity. The games explore the moral dilemmas faced by the characters, blurring the lines between right and wrong, and forcing players to question their own beliefs and values.
The games introduced the concept of stealth action, where players must carefully navigate through enemy-infested areas without being detected.
It has inspired countless other games to incorporate stealth elements into their gameplay, and its influence can be seen in titles across various genres.
The Metal Gear Solid series is a true masterpiece of gaming. Its combination of gripping storytelling, innovative gameplay mechanics, and attention to detail has made it a beloved franchise among gamers worldwide.
For those who crave the thrill of thievery, the Thief series is the perfect antidote. Putting players in the shoes of master thief Garrett, these games offer a unique blend of stealth, exploration, and puzzle-solving.
With its emphasis on light and shadow, the Thief series introduced a level of immersion rarely seen in other stealth games.
As you navigate the dark and treacherous streets of a Victorian-inspired city, you’ll encounter a richly detailed world filled with secrets and hidden treasures.
The gameplay mechanics are equally impressive. As Garrett, you’ll need to rely on your wits and cunning to outsmart the ever-watchful guards and navigate complex security systems.
The Thief series is renowned for its realistic AI, which reacts dynamically to your every move. Sneak past guards by hiding in the shadows, distract them with well-placed objects, or use your trusty blackjack to knock them out cold. The choice is yours.
The Thief series also weaves a compelling narrative that delves into Garrett’s complex character and the world he inhabits. From political intrigue to supernatural mysteries, the Thief series offers a captivating story that will keep you hooked from start to finish.
Splinter Cell Series
If you seek a more tactical approach to stealth, look no further than the Splinter Cell series. Playing as the skilled operative Sam Fisher, players are thrust into high-stakes missions filled with political conspiracies and international espionage.
The series is known for its innovative gadgets, realistic stealth mechanics, and intense multiplayer modes. Whether you choose to silently eliminate your enemies or avoid confrontation altogether, the Splinter Cell series offers a truly immersive stealth experience.
As you progress through the series, you’ll also have the opportunity to utilize a wide array of gadgets and tools that enhance your stealth capabilities.
From night vision goggles that allow you to see in the dark to sticky cameras that can be used to scout ahead, the Splinter Cell series offers a diverse range of equipment that can be customized to suit your playstyle.
Unlike other stealth games that may rely on scripted sequences or predetermined enemy patterns, the Splinter Cell series emphasizes player agency and improvisation. Each mission presents you with a variety of options and approaches, allowing you to adapt to the situation at hand.
The Splinter Cell series is a must-play for fans of stealth games. Its attention to detail, innovative gadgets, intense multiplayer modes, and realistic stealth mechanics combine to create an immersive experience that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
When it comes to blending stealth and assassination, the Hitman series reigns supreme. In these games, players step into the shoes of Agent 47, a genetically enhanced assassin.
With its intricate level design, numerous disguises, and open-ended gameplay, the Hitman series allows players to fulfill their murderous fantasies with style.
Whether you prefer a silent, unseen approach or a chaotic, explosive one, the Hitman series gives you the freedom to shape your own destiny.
For those seeking a truly immersive stealth experience set in a unique, dystopian world, the Dishonored series is a must-play.
These games transport players to the industrial city of Dunwall, filled with political intrigue and supernatural powers.
With its blend of stealth, combat, and magic, the Dishonored series offers players a wide array of options to navigate through its intricately designed levels. Will you choose to be a benevolent savior, a cold-blooded assassin, or something in between? The choice is yours in this captivating series.
Deus Ex Series
The Deus Ex series combines elements of stealth, role-playing, and first-person shooting to deliver a truly immersive gameplay experience.
With its cyberpunk setting and intricate narrative, these games invite players to explore a future ravaged by conspiracy and technological advancements. Each installment in the series offers players a wealth of choices and consequences, allowing for a highly personalized stealth experience.
Whether you choose to hack into security systems or take down enemies with deadly precision, the Deus Ex series never fails to keep players on the edge of their seats.
Mark of the Ninja
Mark of the Ninja, an indie gem from Klei Entertainment, takes a unique approach to the stealth genre. Combining 2D platforming with stealth mechanics, this game puts players in control of a ninja seeking vengeance.
With its beautifully animated visuals, precise controls, and emphasis on player choice, Mark of the Ninja offers a refreshing take on stealth gameplay.
Whether you prefer to silently eliminate your enemies or manipulate your surroundings to confuse and distract, this game will test your skills to the limit.
If you have ever dreamt of being a ninja, the Tenchu series is the closest you can get to realizing that dream. These games allow players to step into the shoes of stealthy assassins in feudal Japan.
With its breathtaking environments, authentic combat, and emphasis on silent takedowns, the Tenchu series delivers an unparalleled ninja experience.
Whether you choose to blend into the shadows or engage in direct combat, the Tenchu series offers a wide range of stealthy options to suit your playstyle.
Assassin’s Creed Series
While the Assassin’s Creed series is primarily known for its parkour-inspired traversal and historical settings, it also offers players a satisfying stealth experience.
Playing as members of the Assassin Brotherhood, players embark on epic quests through different time periods, blending into bustling crowds and striking from the shadows.
With its vast open worlds, intricate stealth mechanics, and engaging narratives, the Assassin’s Creed series has carved a niche for itself in the stealth genre.
The Styx series introduces players to a unique protagonist: a foul-mouthed goblin thief named Styx. These games offer a fresh take on stealth, focusing on verticality and environmental manipulation.
Players must use their cunning and agility to navigate treacherous environments, outsmarting enemies and avoiding detection.
With its dark humor, intricate level design, and challenging gameplay, the Styx series is a delight for fans of the stealth genre.
The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay
The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay takes you on a thrilling journey as you assume the role of the iconic anti-hero, Riddick. Developed by Starbreeze Studios, this game is an undeniable masterpiece that seamlessly blends stealth, action, and intense storytelling.
Set in the dark and gritty universe of the Riddick franchise, Escape from Butcher Bay immerses players in a world where survival is paramount.
The game introduces you to the notorious Butcher Bay prison, a place known for its impenetrable security and ruthless inmates. As Riddick, a dangerous and enigmatic criminal, you find yourself locked up in this unforgiving facility.
Butcher Bay is not your ordinary prison. It is a sprawling complex with multiple levels, each filled with its own dangers and secrets. From the grimy and claustrophobic confines of the cell blocks to the treacherous underground tunnels, every corner of Butcher Bay holds a new challenge and opportunity for escape.
The gameplay in Escape from Butcher Bay is a perfect blend of stealth and action. As Riddick, you have the ability to see in the dark, giving you a distinct advantage over your enemies.
Sneak through the shadows, silently dispatching guards with brutal takedowns, or engage in intense firefights using an arsenal of improvised weapons.
With its innovative gameplay mechanics, immersive atmosphere, and compelling storytelling, The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay is undeniably one of the finest stealth games ever created.
Ghost of Tsushima
Embark on an epic journey through feudal Japan in Ghost of Tsushima, a visually stunning stealth game by Sucker Punch Productions. Set during the Mongol invasion, you play as Jin Sakai, a samurai forced to adopt stealthy tactics to liberate his homeland from the clutches of the ruthless invaders.
As you traverse the expansive open world of Tsushima, you’ll be captivated by the breathtaking landscapes that await you at every turn. From lush forests to serene bamboo groves, each location is meticulously crafted to immerse you in the beauty and tranquility of feudal Japan.
Ghost of Tsushima seamlessly blends stealth mechanics into its gameplay, allowing you to silently eliminate enemies from the shadows.
Whether you choose to strike from above, using your trusty grappling hook to traverse rooftops, or prefer a more direct approach, engaging in intense sword fights, the choice is yours.
Ghost of Tsushima is a masterpiece that deserves a place among the best stealth games of all time. Its seamless blend of stealth mechanics, swordplay, and immersive storytelling will keep you hooked from beginning to end.
Alien: Isolation from Creative Assembly brings the terrifying extraterrestrial creature from the iconic Alien franchise to life in a heart-pounding stealth experience.
Set fifteen years after the events of the original film, you find yourself trapped aboard a space station with a relentless Xenomorph hunting you down.
The game’s atmospheric tension and the relentless pursuit of the alien create a sense of dread that is unparalleled in the stealth genre.
With its emphasis on hiding, planning, and outsmarting the deadly creature, Alien: Isolation delivers an unforgettable and spine-chilling experience.
The game’s stealth mechanics are finely tuned, allowing you to hide in lockers, crawl through vents, and use distractions to evade the alien’s deadly grasp. Each encounter with the creature becomes a nerve-wracking test of your wit and resourcefulness.
You must carefully plan your next move, weighing the risks and rewards of each action. Will you risk making a noise to distract the alien and create an opportunity to escape, or will you choose to remain hidden and hope that it passes by?
Whether you’re a fan of the Alien franchise or a lover of intense stealth experiences, Alien: Isolation is a must-play game that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
The Last of Us Series
The Last of Us series, developed by Naughty Dog, is a masterclass in storytelling and stealth gameplay.
Set in a post-apocalyptic world overrun by infected creatures, these games follow the journeys of Joel and Ellie as they navigate perilous environments and confront hostile human factions.
As you traverse the beautifully crafted landscapes, you’ll have to employ stealth tactics to avoid detection and make strategic decisions that can mean the difference between life and death.
The Last of Us series captivates players with its emotionally charged narrative, realistic characters, and intense stealth gameplay.
Manhunt, developed by Rockstar Games, pushes the boundaries of the stealth genre with its dark and gritty gameplay.
In this controversial title, you portray James Earl Cash, a death row inmate forced to participate in a sadistic game of cat and mouse orchestrated by a snuff film director.
As you navigate through dilapidated environments, you must cleverly use stealth to execute your enemies in brutal and gruesome ways while avoiding detection.
Manhunt’s uncompromising brutality and atmospheric tension make it a standout title in the stealth genre.
Sniper Elite Series
The Sniper Elite series by Rebellion Developments offers a unique take on stealth gameplay, combining it with the thrill of long-range sniping.
Set in various World War II locations, these games put you in the shoes of a skilled sniper tasked with eliminating high-value targets and unraveling complex conspiracies.
As you meticulously plan your shots, taking into account factors such as wind speed and bullet drop, you’ll experience the satisfaction of executing the perfect kill.
With its emphasis on patience, precision, and strategic thinking, the Sniper Elite series is a must-play for stealth and sniping enthusiasts.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, developed by FromSoftware, challenges players to embrace the way of the shinobi in a beautifully designed feudal Japan.
As the one-armed wolf, you must navigate treacherous landscapes, engage in intense sword fights, and utilize stealth to overcome powerful adversaries.
The game’s exhilarating combat system, steep learning curve, and breathtaking vistas make it a standout title in the stealth-action genre.
Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice rewards patience, precision, and mastery, offering a deeply rewarding experience for those seeking a challenge.
Velvet Assassin, developed by Replay Studios, offers a unique blend of stealth, action, and historical accuracy.
Set during World War II, you assume the role of Violette Summer, a British secret agent on a mission to weaken the Nazi war machine.
With its atmospheric environments, immersive storytelling, and emphasis on tactics, Velvet Assassin places you at the heart of the resistance movement, challenging you to outwit and outmaneuver your enemies.
This underrated gem deserves recognition as one of the top stealth games of all time.
Invisible, Inc. from Klei Entertainment is a turn-based stealth game that combines strategy, tactics, and espionage.
As the operator of an elite spy agency, you must infiltrate corporate facilities and hack into their systems to uncover a global conspiracy.
Balancing risk and reward, every decision you make can have far-reaching consequences, making each playthrough unique and challenging.
With its innovative gameplay mechanics, stylish aesthetics, and intricate level design, Invisible, Inc. is a must-play for fans of strategic stealth gameplay.
Step into the shoes of an undead assassin in Aragami, a visually stunning stealth game developed by Lince Works.
As you navigate through a hauntingly beautiful world inspired by Japanese folklore, you’ll master the art of shadow manipulation to eliminate your enemies from the darkness.
With its captivating atmosphere, challenging gameplay, and cooperative multiplayer mode, Aragami offers an immersive experience that stealth enthusiasts won’t soon forget.
Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun
Set in feudal Japan, this tactical stealth game puts you in charge of a group of skilled assassins. As you navigate through beautifully crafted environments, you must silently eliminate enemies and complete various objectives.
The game’s intricate level design allows for multiple ways to approach each mission. Whether you choose to use distractions, disguises, or direct combat, the choice is yours.
The challenge lies in finding the perfect balance between stealth and action. “Shadow Tactics” offers a true test of your strategic abilities.
As you progress through the game, you’ll encounter a variety of environments, from bustling cities to serene temples. Each location is meticulously designed, with attention to detail that brings the world of feudal Japan to life.
With its challenging gameplay and attention to detail, “Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun” rightfully earns its place among the best stealth games of all time.
Seven: The Days Long Gone
Next on our list is “Seven: The Days Long Gone,” a post-apocalyptic stealth RPG that takes place in the open-world sandbox of the Vetrall Empire. As a master thief named Teriel, you uncover secrets, complete quests, and embark on a quest for redemption.
The game’s unique isometric perspective offers a fresh take on the stealth genre. You’ll find yourself traversing rooftops, sneaking through heavily guarded areas, and using gadgets to outsmart your enemies.
The freedom to approach each situation in various ways adds depth to the gameplay, allowing for creative and unpredictable outcomes.
While “Seven: The Days Long Gone” incorporates stealth as a core mechanic, it also features RPG elements such as character development and choices that impact the storyline. The immersive world and captivating narrative ensure an unforgettable experience.
With its minimalist art style and atmospheric soundtrack, “Neon Struct” offers a different take on the stealth genre. In this first-person stealth game, you take on the role of Jillian Cleary, a former government spy framed for treason. As you navigate through a dystopian world, you must avoid detection and gather evidence to clear your name.
The game’s emphasis on infiltration and evasion makes every move crucial. You’ll need to carefully plan your route, outsmart surveillance systems, and utilize gadgets to overcome obstacles. The sense of tension and the constant fear of being discovered make “Neon Struct” a truly immersive experience.
“Neon Struct” may not boast the latest graphics or the most expansive world, but its unique gameplay mechanics and engaging narrative make it a standout in the stealth genre.
In “Gunpoint,” you play as a freelance spy who must infiltrate buildings, hack security systems, and unravel a conspiracy. Equipped with the power to rewire electronics and manipulate environments, you must use your wit and agility to complete missions.
The game’s pixelated art style and clever dialogue create a charming and engaging atmosphere. Each level presents new challenges that require you to think on your feet and adapt to changing circumstances. Whether you choose to go undetected or engage in combat, “Gunpoint” rewards creativity and problem-solving.
“Gunpoint” is a testament to the fact that a game doesn’t need flashy graphics or elaborate worlds to be enjoyable. Its addictive gameplay and innovative mechanics earn it a spot on our list of the best stealth games.
Rounding out our list is “Volume,” a stealth game with a unique twist. Created by Mike Bithell, the mastermind behind the indie hit “Thomas Was Alone,” “Volume” offers a fresh take on stealth mechanics.
In this top-down game, you control a thief named Locksley who uses a virtual reality device to simulate heists. As you progress through the game, you’ll encounter challenging puzzles and hone your skills in the art of stealth. The ability to create your own levels and share them with the community adds replayability and endless possibilities.
With its sleek visuals, innovative gameplay, and engaging story, “Volume” is a standout title that showcases the evolution of the stealth genre.
There you have it, the 25 best stealth games of all time. From “Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun” to “Volume,” each of these games offers a unique and thrilling experience for fans of the genre. Whether you prefer immersive open worlds, tactical gameplay, or innovative mechanics, you’re bound to find something that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
So, gather your gadgets, hone your skills, and step into the shadows. The world of stealth gaming awaits you.