Crossfader’s Super Spooky Listicles: Horror Games to Play With Friends
*Thunder, bat screeches.* So you want to play a game that’ll chill your spine? And you don’t want to be alone while doing it? *Creaky door noise.* Then step on in and peruse this list of multiplayer games with a spooky twist. We here at Crossfader enjoy sharing the scares, and these are some of our favorite games to play in the dark. *Scream.* Take a look….if you dare! *Skeleton noise.*
CRY OF FEAR (PC)
Team Psykskaller’s AFRAID OF MONSTERS: DIRECTOR’S CUT was a neat (and spooky) Half-Life 1 mod that dropped onto the internet back in 2007. While the mod was purely a single-player experience, it didn’t take long for its campaign to get ported over to multiple co-op mods. It’s no surprise then that the developer’s next mod, CRY OF FEAR, featured four-player co-op from the get-go. The game is set in Stockholm, Sweden, which is hair-raising in its own right, but some absolutely crazy-looking monsters roaming the streets at night seal the deal. Maps are practically pitch-black, meaning all four players need to keep their flashlights scanning in all directions, lest twenty-foot giants or flying beds with scissors (you read that right) ambush the group from the shadows. CRY OF FEAR is free on Steam, and although it doesn’t look it, it uses the Half-Life 1 engine, meaning a calculator could probably run it.
DEAD RISING 2 (PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)
Capcom’s gleefully stupid DEAD RISING 2 still holds up five years after release, thanks in large part to its vast array of items to experiment with. As motocross star Chuck Greene, you’re set loose in a casino/mall packed with zombies with three days until rescue arrives. Until then, you (and a friend) can loot the various shops and attractions of Fortune City for your zombie-killing needs. Yes, you can use guns and knives as weapons, but mannequins, foam fingers, and dildos can get the job done as well. There are hundreds of items that Chuck can use, and even more when he decides to tape them together. There’s nothing quite as satisfying as wading through a crowd of the undead using a kayak paddle with chainsaws strapped to each end, or attaching a lawnmower blade to a helmet and slicing a zombie in half with a headbutt. You can even sic a tiger, infected bees, or remote controlled teddy bears on the shamblers if you’re not feeling up to it. DEAD RISING 2 is twenty bucks on Steam and consoles, but keep in mind that there is no local multiplayer.
RESIDENT EVIL : REVELATIONS 2 (PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4)
Capcom’s other big zombie franchise, RESIDENT EVIL, gets a bad rap these days thanks to a soulless horde of Paul W.S. Anderson movies and some recent games that eschew horror for MATRIX fights and boulder punching, but I’d be selling the series short if I said that it didn’t still have some life in it. RESIDENT EVIL: REVELATIONS 2 is the episodic sequel to the super successful reboot on the 3DS, and like every RE title since 5, splitscreen co-op play is an integral feature. The game has two campaigns, both taking place in an island asylum with one player on gun duty and the other serving in a support role, whether that be weakening zombies with a flashlight or calling out invisible enemies. Melee combat is the best it’s been in RE, whether it’s knives, crowbars, or bricks being used to pulp brains. The game is a bit more tongue-in-cheek than other titles in the franchise, which is saying a lot, and there is some truly astounding usage of the word “fuck” to be witnessed. Outside of the story mode there is also a time trial Raid mode where you can play as some of the ridiculous side characters. Episode 1 is six dollars and available on most platforms.
OBSCURE 1&2 (PC, Xbox, PlayStation 2)
OBSCURE, in keeping with its name, is a little known horror series crafted by Hydravision Entertainment a couple of console generations ago. Playing as one of five high school cliches, you and a friend have to find a way to break out of a mutant-infested campus. Each character has a unique aptitude, like better lockpicking or healing, and you can freely switch between them. The twist here is that OBSCURE features permadeath, so any student that gets wasted will stay dead. Like the aforementioned REVELATIONS, enemies in OBSCURE are sensitive to light, but this game is set in a universe where duct tape exists, so both players are welcome to go ham on the monsters. The game didn’t win any awards for its campy writing, and the more traditional RESIDENT EVIL-style camera can take some getting used to for newer gamers, but OBSCURE is a fun ride as long as you’re playing it with a buddy. If you weren’t one of the twelve people who picked up OBSCURE back in 2005, Steam has you covered with gamepad-compatible versions of both games for a mere seven dollars a pop.
Okay, you got me. DEPTH isn’t a horror game per se, but if you don’t think getting mauled by a shark is scary, you’re a fool. DEPTH is one of the more unique multiplayer games out there. Teams of divers have to recover sunken treasure while the sharks have to defend their territory by eating all the flippered meals. As a shark, you are tough, fast, and able to tear a human apart in seconds. In addition, you can smell the divers’ blood, meaning that no snack is able to hide from you, and you can regenerate health by devouring the opposition or any other aquatic life you swim across. Divers, on the other hand, get access to an arsenal of spear guns, air pistols, and mines that prevent the fish from getting too close, and skilled divers can snipe an unwary shark in open water. Experience earned in matches can be spent on new guns for the humans and additional species and traits for the sharks, giving the game a good amount of replay value. DEPTH is available on Steam for twenty five bucks and is best played before a trip to the beach.