One of the best things about video games is how they take you to places you wouldn’t visit in real life. Box Mike Tyson, fight futuristic wars, swim in shark-infested oceans – all things most people hope they’ll never do except in games.
Even the wacky worlds of Nintendo’s Mario games aren’t exactly hospitable, but they’re downright intimate compared to most horror games with their haunted forests and zombie infestations. Like hot sauce, horror games range from mild to unforgiving, because not everyone who loves flavor wants the high heat.
Here are some Halloween game suggestions for gamers of all tastes.
Luigi’s mansion 3
Evaluation: Extra soft (suitable for players of all ages)
Platform: nintendo switch
If there’s one company that knows how to make things spooky and fun, it’s Nintendo. With that in mind, it’s no surprise that Nintendo’s 3-year-old Luigi’s Mansion 3 remains the best choice for family ghost hunting.
In his third adventure, Mario’s older but less confident brother, Luigi, finds himself trapped in a heavily haunted hotel. Relying on his ghost-sucking vacuum cleaner and his spirit dog, Polterpup, Luigi must search the hotel for elevator buttons that will allow him to access higher floors, fight bigger ghosts, and hopefully… to rescue captured friends.
The fear level in Luigi’s Mansion 3 may be family friendly, but don’t consider this game a “kids thing”. Filled with intricate puzzles, challenging battles, and a 17-story haunted hotel, this is no casual game.
Evaluation: More like salsa than hot sauce (suitable for players 13+)
Platform: PlayStation 5, Windows PC (Xbox version expected in 2023)
When Akito wakes up from an accident, he finds himself possessed by an angry spirit in a demon-infested version of Tokyo. Good news! KK, the spirit, acts like a disembodied version of Vin Diesel from the “Fast & Furious” movies. He’s tough, prickly, and ready to save the world.
In Ghostwire: Tokyo, Akito provides the legs and arms while KK provides the supernatural powers and ongoing storytelling needed to keep the living world from merging with the dead. Stopping the bad guys means fighting an endless horde of demons and saving Akito’s sister.
Ghostwire: Tokyo isn’t so much a horror game as it is a horror-themed adventure. Instead of fleeing from indestructible creatures, players fight them head-on using magical hand movements and an archer’s bow.
The mortuary assistant
Evaluation: The hottest horror game of the year. (This game has not been rated by the Entertainment Software Rating Board. Theoretically suitable for players 18 years and older.)
Platform: PC and Apple computers via Steam
As games go, The Mortuary Assistant is a paradox. It’s both thrilling and dreary, mundane and beautiful, a game that’s both deeply repetitive and captivating (with an emphasis on the “gross”). Film critic Roger Ebert said that “video games are not art”. The mortuary assistant might have changed his mind. It’s dark art, sure, but also a masterpiece for dark art connoisseurs.
Seen from a first-person perspective, The Mortuary Assistant offers a quick yet lively introduction to the wonderful world of embalming. Each body comes with a list of tasks that includes finding injuries, closing the mouth, putting tabs under the eyelids to keep them from opening, and pumping out liquid.
If you’re disgusted, it’s not too late to return to Luigi’s haunted hotel.