The cold, suffocating silence of space hides many terrors, a truth “Dead Space” conveyed with spine-chilling precision. From its eerie ambiance to the grotesque Necromorphs, the game masterfully blends science fiction with survival horror.
If the haunting corridors of the USG Ishimura left you both terrified and enthralled, and you’re itching for another journey into the dark void of space horror, you’re in luck …
Here’s a list of 20 survival sci-fi horror games that promise to send shivers down your spine.
Dead Space 2 and Dead Space 3
The first alternative that comes to mind for fans of Dead Space is, of course, its sequels – Dead Space 2 and Dead Space 3. These games continue the story of Isaac Clarke as he battles through a haunting space station infested with grotesque creatures known as Necromorphs.
Dead Space 2 takes the horror up a notch with intensified gameplay and even more terrifying enemies. As players step back into the shoes of Isaac Clarke, they find themselves in the midst of a nightmarish journey through the Sprawl, a massive space station overrun by the Necromorphs. The game introduces new Necromorph variations that are even more twisted and grotesque than before, making every encounter a heart-pounding experience.
As the story unfolds, players are faced with psychological challenges that test their sanity. The line between reality and hallucination becomes blurred, adding an extra layer of psychological horror to the already spine-chilling gameplay. The intense atmosphere, combined with the haunting sound design and atmospheric visuals, creates an immersive experience that will leave players on the edge of their seats.
Similarly, Dead Space 3 offers a cooperative mode that allows players to team up with a friend and face the terror together. This addition brings a new dynamic to the gameplay, as players can strategize and work together to survive the relentless onslaught of Necromorphs. The cooperative mode also introduces unique missions and challenges that require teamwork and coordination, further enhancing the replay value of the game.
Despite the introduction of more action-oriented elements, Dead Space 3 still maintains the franchise’s signature horror atmosphere. The game expertly balances intense combat sequences with moments of quiet tension, keeping players constantly on edge. The haunting soundtrack and chilling ambient noises further contribute to the sense of dread, making every step forward a nerve-wracking experience.
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
If you’re seeking an immersive survival horror experience, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard should be on your radar. This game rejuvenated the iconic Resident Evil series by taking it back to its roots.
Set in a dilapidated plantation house, players assume the role of Ethan Winters as he explores a nightmarish environment filled with grotesque creatures. The house itself becomes a character, with its decaying walls, creaking floors, and eerie atmosphere. Every step you take echoes through the halls, heightening the tension and making you question what horrors may lurk around the corner.
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard successfully blends first-person perspective with intense combat and a compelling storyline, breathing new life into the franchise. The game’s first-person perspective puts you directly in the shoes of Ethan, allowing you to experience the horrors of the plantation house in a more personal and terrifying way. The combat is intense and visceral, with limited resources forcing you to carefully choose when and how to engage enemies. Each encounter is a life-or-death struggle, adding to the game’s sense of urgency and fear.
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard is a must-play for fans of the survival horror genre. Its return to the series’ roots, combined with its immersive gameplay, intense combat, and captivating storyline, make it a standout entry in the Resident Evil franchise. Brace yourself for a terrifying journey into the heart of darkness.
Resident Evil 2 Remake and Resident Evil 3 Remake
If you prefer a combination of classic survival horror with modern gameplay mechanics, the remakes of Resident Evil 2 and Resident Evil 3 are excellent choices. These remakes fully reimagine the original games, enhancing the graphics, gameplay, and overall immersion.
Resident Evil 2 Remake puts players in the shoes of Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield as they navigate the zombie-infested Raccoon City Police Department. The game features intense survival scenarios, puzzles, and memorable encounters with terrifying enemies.
As you step into the shoes of Leon S. Kennedy, a rookie police officer, you find yourself in the midst of chaos. The Raccoon City Police Department, once a symbol of safety, is now a nightmarish labyrinth filled with hordes of undead creatures.
But it’s not just the puzzles that make Resident Evil 2 Remake an unforgettable experience. The encounters with enemies are pulse-pounding and nerve-wracking. Whether it’s the relentless Mr. X, who stalks you throughout the game, or the grotesque Lickers that crawl on walls and ceilings, every encounter is a fight for survival. The game forces you to carefully manage your resources, making every bullet and healing item precious.
Similarly, Resident Evil 3 Remake follows Jill Valentine’s desperate escape from the relentless pursuer, Nemesis, in a city overrun by zombies. The game takes place in the same setting as Resident Evil 2 Remake, but with a different perspective and a more action-oriented gameplay style.
Resident Evil 3 Remake also introduces new gameplay mechanics, such as the dodge ability, which allows Jill to evade attacks with precise timing. This adds a new level of strategy to the combat, as you must carefully time your dodges to avoid taking damage.
The remakes of Resident Evil 2 and Resident Evil 3 not only pay homage to the beloved originals but also deliver a fresh and thrilling experience for both longtime fans and newcomers to the series. With their enhanced graphics, immersive gameplay, and unforgettable moments, these remakes are a must-play for any survival horror enthusiast.
If you’re a fan of the sci-fi horror aspect of Dead Space, Alien: Isolation is a must-play. Set fifteen years after the events of the original Alien film, this game puts players in the shoes of Amanda Ripley as she embarks on a treacherous journey to uncover the truth about her mother’s disappearance.
Alien: Isolation captures the essence of Ridley Scott’s masterpiece, creating a sense of constant dread and tension. The game’s AI-driven Alien antagonist is incredibly intelligent and unpredictable, making every encounter a heart-pounding experience. With its survival mechanics and atmospheric setting, this game will keep you on the edge of your seat.
The Evil Within and The Evil Within 2
If you enjoy psychological horror along with survival elements, The Evil Within series is worth exploring. Developed by Shinji Mikami, the creator of the Resident Evil series, these games take players into a twisted and nightmarish world.
In The Evil Within, players step into the shoes of detective Sebastian Castellanos as he investigates a series of gruesome murders. The game combines psychological thrills with intense combat and challenging puzzles. Its sequel, The Evil Within 2, expands upon the original’s concepts, offering an open-world setting and an even more intricate storyline.
System Shock 2
Before the release of Dead Space, another game laid the foundation for the survival sci-fi horror genre – System Shock 2. Although it is an older title, it remains a remarkable experience that influenced many subsequent games.
Set aboard a derelict spaceship infested with horrific creatures, System Shock 2 offers a haunting atmosphere and a deep narrative. Its blend of first-person shooting, role-playing elements, and psychological horror creates an immersive and unforgettable gameplay experience.
Prey, developed by Arkane Studios, offers a unique take on survival sci-fi horror. It takes place aboard the Talos I space station, where players assume the role of Morgan Yu, a scientist seeking to uncover the station’s dark secrets.
Prey combines intense combat with intriguing exploration, allowing players to shape their own gameplay experience through the choices they make. With its atmospheric setting and an emphasis on player agency, Prey offers a compelling alternative to Dead Space.
F.E.A.R., an acronym for First Encounter Assault Recon, is a series that blends horror and action seamlessly. The games follow the F.E.A.R. team as they combat paranormal threats and unravel a complex and mysterious storyline.
With its supernatural elements and intense gunplay, the F.E.A.R. series delivers a unique blend of horror and fast-paced action. The atmosphere of constant tension and the formidable enemy AI make these games a thrilling alternative for fans of Dead Space.
SOMA, developed by Frictional Games, is a thought-provoking survival horror experience set in an underwater research facility. Players must navigate through a haunting environment and confront the ethical dilemmas posed by advanced technology.
SOMA’s deep philosophical themes, atmospheric storytelling, and a sense of existential dread create a memorable journey. If you enjoy narrative-driven games with psychological horror elements, SOMA should be on your list.
Condemned: Criminal Origins
Condemned: Criminal Origins is a first-person horror game that puts players in the shoes of FBI agent Ethan Thomas. As Ethan investigates a series of gruesome murders, he finds himself descending into madness and facing his own darkest fears.
This game’s focus on atmospheric exploration, forensic investigation, and intense melee combat sets it apart from other survival horror games. Its chilling atmosphere and psychological horror elements will keep you engaged from start to finish.
The Bioshock series is a perfect choice for fans of Dead Space who crave dark and immersive storytelling. Set in the underwater dystopia of Rapture, the games offer a unique blend of horror, sci-fi, and moral choices. The creepy atmosphere, coupled with the mutated enemies and thought-provoking narrative, make Bioshock a must-play for any horror game enthusiast.
Incredibly detailed environments and a captivating storyline await you in Bioshock. It’s a game that dives deep into the human condition, exploring themes of power, morality, and the consequences of playing god. You’ll confront eerie Splicers, grotesque Big Daddies, and unravel the mysteries of Rapture. With its intense gameplay, unforgettable characters, and a richly realized world, the Bioshock series is an absolute must-play for fans of survival sci-fi horror.
Every corner of Rapture is meticulously designed, with attention to detail that brings the city to life. From the art deco architecture to the vintage advertisements, the environment is a feast for the eyes. The hauntingly beautiful soundtrack adds another layer of immersion, enhancing the atmosphere and drawing you further into the world of Bioshock.
Outlast and Outlast 2
If you’re craving a harrowing survival horror experience, look no further than the Outlast series. These games combine tension-filled stealth mechanics with heart-pounding chase sequences, keeping players on the edge of their seats throughout the entire gameplay experience.
In Outlast, you play as investigative journalist Miles Upshur, who finds himself trapped inside Mount Massive Asylum, home to horrifying experiments and deranged patients. Armed only with a camcorder, you must navigate the twisted corridors and hide from the terrifying inmates. The asylum itself is a hauntingly atmospheric location, with dimly lit hallways, flickering lights, and bloodstains on the walls. The sound design adds to the sense of terror, with distant screams and eerie whispers echoing through the halls.
Outlast 2 takes you on a wholly new journey, this time placing you in the shoes of Blake Langermann as he investigates a remote village filled with sinister secrets. The game introduces a rural setting, with dilapidated houses, overgrown fields, and a dense forest that conceals unimaginable horrors. The developers have paid meticulous attention to detail, creating an immersive world that feels both authentic and unsettling.
Both games excel in creating an atmosphere of constant dread, with detailed environments, terrifying enemies, and a compelling narrative. The Outlast series is not for the faint of heart, as it delves into themes of psychological horror, violence, and gore. However, if you’re ready to face your fears head-on and immerse yourself in a world of relentless terror, the Outlast series is an excellent choice.
For those seeking a more psychological horror experience, Alan Wake brings the scares in a unique and thought-provoking way. Developed by Remedy Entertainment, the game follows the story of the titular character, a best-selling writer who embarks on a journey to find his missing wife in the atmospheric town of Bright Falls.
Alan Wake combines elements of survival horror with an engaging narrative that blurs the line between reality and fiction. As you delve deeper into the mystery surrounding Bright Falls, you’ll encounter menacing shadows and face off against nightmarish creatures. The game’s episodic structure and cinematic presentation add to the overall immersive experience, making Alan Wake a standout title in the survival sci-fi horror genre.
Alan Wake immersive narrative. Its atmospheric setting, unique combat mechanics, haunting soundtrack, and exploration of deeper themes make it a standout title in the survival sci-fi horror genre. Brace yourself for a journey into the darkness of Bright Falls, where reality and imagination intertwine, and every step forward brings you closer to the truth.
If you enjoy the choice-driven gameplay and interactive storytelling of Dead Space, Until Dawn is a game you don’t want to miss. This cinematic horror experience puts you in control of eight characters as they navigate a remote mountain retreat haunted by a supernatural presence.
Your choices in Until Dawn have far-reaching consequences, determining who lives and who dies. Each decision you make can alter the story in significant ways, providing ample replay value. The game expertly blends the horror genre with elements of suspense and mystery, keeping you engaged and on the edge of your seat from start to finish.
From the creators of Layers of Fear, Observer immerses you in a dystopian cyberpunk world. In this game, you take on the role of a neural detective known as an Observer, capable of hacking into people’s minds to solve crimes.
The game’s haunting atmosphere, brought to life through its cyberpunk visuals and atmospheric soundtrack, adds to the overall feeling of unease. As you navigate through the grimy and oppressive environment, you’ll encounter disturbing scenes and uncover the truth behind a series of mysterious events.
Observer is a game that unapologetically pushes the boundaries of storytelling in the survival sci-fi horror genre. If you’re looking for a game that delves into deep psychological themes and showcases a visually stunning world, Observer is a perfect choice.
Dying Light combines survival horror elements with the adrenaline-pumping gameplay of parkour. Set in a zombie-infested open world, the game throws you into the shoes of Kyle Crane, an undercover agent tasked with infiltrating a quarantined city.
During the day, you’ll scavenge for supplies, craft weapons, and battle hordes of the infected. But when night falls, the game takes on a whole new level of terror as more dangerous and formidable creatures emerge. The dynamic day-night cycle and the freedom of movement provided by the parkour mechanics create an immersive and thrilling experience like no other.
Dying Light offers a vast world to explore, filled with side quests, challenging enemies, and a compelling story. If you’re a fan of Dead Space and enjoy the combination of survival horror and intense action, Dying Light is an excellent choice.
For those who prefer a pixelated aesthetic and psychological horror, Lone Survivor is a hidden gem in the survival sci-fi horror genre. Developed by Jasper Byrne, this indie game follows the story of a nameless survivor trapped in a world overrun by grotesque creatures.
Your character must scavenge for supplies, solve puzzles, and make choices that affect the outcome of the game. The eerie soundtrack, the pixelated visuals, and the haunting atmosphere create a sense of unease that lingers long after you’ve finished playing.
Lone Survivor captures the essence of survival horror with its limited resources and psychological twists. It’s a game that proves graphics aren’t everything when it comes to creating an immersive and terrifying experience.
If you’re a fan of atmospheric and story-driven shooters, the Metro series is a must-play. Based on the novels by Dmitry Glukhovsky, these games immerse you in the post-apocalyptic world of Moscow’s subway tunnels.
In Metro 2033, you’ll follow the journey of Artyom as he navigates the dangerous tunnels, battling mutants and surviving in a society on the brink of collapse. Metro: Last Light continues the story, delving even deeper into the dark and atmospheric world.
The Metro series combines elements of survival horror with intense gunplay and stealth mechanics. The games’ haunting environments, detailed world-building, and immersive storytelling make them a worthy alternative to Dead Space.
Silent Hill Series
No list of survival horror game alternatives would be complete without mentioning the Silent Hill series. Renowned for its psychological horror and surreal atmosphere, the Silent Hill games have captured the imaginations and chilled the spines of countless players.
The series’ most iconic entry, Silent Hill 2, is often considered one of the greatest horror games of all time. It follows the story of James Sunderland as he searches for his deceased wife in the eerie town of Silent Hill.
With its psychological twists, nightmarish creatures, and a hauntingly beautiful soundtrack, Silent Hill 2 delivers an unforgettable horror experience. The series as a whole offers multiple unique and unsettling journeys, each with its own dose of terror and mystery.
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice
Wrapping up our list is Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, a game that seamlessly blends psychological horror with Norse mythology. In this dark and atmospheric journey, you’ll step into the shoes of Senua, a Celtic warrior on a quest to save the soul of her loved one.
Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice explores themes of mental illness and trauma, delving deep into Senua’s mind as she battles inner demons. The game’s stunning visuals and breathtaking audio design create a haunting experience that will stay with you long after the credits roll.
With its unique approach to storytelling and its gripping portrayal of mental health, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice is a standout title in the survival sci-fi horror genre.
No matter which game you choose from this list, you’re bound to find an alternative that scratches that survival sci-fi horror itch. Whether you’re craving a gripping narrative, terrifying creatures, or a psychological journey, there’s something here for every horror game enthusiast. So buckle up, turn down the lights, and brace yourself for some bone-chilling adventures!