Horror movies that would make great games

Incestuous. That’s the best way to explain the ongoing relationship between horror films and games. First games stole from films in early licenses like Halloween and Texas Chainsaw Massacre, then horror films stole from games, most obviously in the ‘works’ of Uwe Boll like House of the Dead and BloodRayne.

There’s been some great bastard babies from this sick union: Resident Evil 4, Dead Rising, Silent Hill 2, Dead Space, Fatal Frame, Siren and Doom 3 all represented the horror genre with aplomb. But we want more. More specifically we want to rape our favourite horror films of everything they've got so we can play the best bits that have never been done properly in games. This is our list.

Cannibal Holocaust

Quick synopsis: A party of film-makers head into the jungle to make a film about a tribe of cannibals. They quickly become lunch after daring to take advantage of the savages' innocent and trusting nature - prompting the question, "Who are the real cannibals?"

Their extraordinarily brutal come-uppance is recorded in a sickening, shaky-cam, gonzo first person-style, with the whole film framed as 'discovered footage' - a trick later replicated in the Blair Witch Project and Paranormal Activity.

Starts like this!


Goes quickly like this!


To this!


And inevitably to this... :-(


Why it would make a great game: As far as we're aware, no-one has made a videogame where your enemies are mud-painted stone-age cannibals. Equally, no game designer has attempted to capture the repugnant grubbiness of 1970s exploitation cinema. Which is a missed opportunity in our view.

In an age of sophisticated gaming, the quasi-moral question that Holocaust poses fits perfectly into a kind of jungle-based survival horror. As a member of the film crew you could play the game without incurring the wrath of the cannibals, pursuing tasks and missions to complete your film or instead piss the natives off (either mistakenly or purposely) and see the game devolve into an Amazonian-themed Manhunt.

The main aim would be to reproduce - in a game - the claustrophobic, transgressive and semi-illicit sensation that the film instils in the viewer. Kind of like Condemned 2 - but with more rainforests, fist-sized spiders and ritual murder. 

Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Quick synopsis: Stupid teenagers decide to pay a visit to an isolated Texan farmstead, which just happens to be owned by a psychopathic family with a son who likes power tools. Let the high-pitch screaming begin.

Why it would make a great game: Because the last time anyone took on the license it looked like this...


Let's take a closer look at that chainsaw...


We suggest a remake that looks a bit more like this...


Gameplay would obviously put you in the shoes of the lovable murderer Leatherface and you just hammer X to chainsaw the hippies.

The Shining

Quick synopsis: Recovering alcoholic Jack Torrance takes a winter job as a janitor in a remote snow-bound hotel. Supernatural cabin fever sets in and Torrance goes mental and tries to kill his wife and kid. They survive, mainly due to his boy’s strange psychic abilities.

Why it would make a great game: We’re aware this is a classic of all classics but we’d be respectful. The thing is there are elements of this film that are already quite ‘gamey’.

For example, most of the film is shot in third-person from an angle just behind or above the protagionists. As evidenced here:



Above: Kubrick obviously had the game license in the marketing plan

Plus the concept of being stuck in an isolated house with one properly scary enemy is pretty unique. In our vision you play as both Danny and the woman, with Danny’s size and weakness made up for with his psychic abilities.

Add in his cool mode of transport used to explore the hotel rooms and the made-for-game maze chase climax and we’re already on the phone to Activision with this one.

Turn to the next page in our List of Death for some top-notch gore 


  • HumorTumor - October 27, 2010 3:48 a.m.

    Interesting that Lucio Fulci's Zombi 2 is called Zombie Flesh Eaters also. Threw me off for a while.
  • B2KSTR8RIPPIN - November 10, 2009 6:32 a.m.

    awwwww man i would love it if they did a shining game. that would be mad running round a giant hotel
  • KingOfBoners - November 5, 2009 1:35 a.m.

    I read that as "Select Hilltop Fortress as your zombie butthole?"
  • dirty1996 - November 3, 2009 1:12 p.m.

    ALright, just so you no, fort zombie is a game like the one you speak of. You can find a spot and hole up etc. Look it up and do your research next time.
  • phoenix_wings - November 3, 2009 2:27 a.m.

    The Shining as a video game would be pretty cool. And Shelley Duvall was totally running around with a knife in her hand. Like, where else would that come in handy other than in a video game? Hmm...Just thinking about talking to Tony though--just make sure Tony isn't like Navi. "Hey! Look! The guy that likes ice cream? Yeah, your dad just axed him in the gut. Hey! Watch out!" (press A to have Tony hide in your mouth).
  • sanitybug - November 2, 2009 4:50 p.m.

    I saw "the mist" the other day, it seemed like a pretty good idea to a make game of it, what with all the monsters it looked like they'de make for some good enemies.
  • Cyberninja - November 2, 2009 12:06 p.m.

    in the clown game let me kill ronald mcdonald and i am sold
  • AuthorityFigure - November 2, 2009 10:56 a.m.

    "As far as we're aware, no-one has made a videogame where your enemies are mud-painted stone-age cannibals." RESIDENT EVIL 5 "Equally, no game designer has attempted to capture the repugnant grubbiness of 1970s exploitation cinema." HOUSE OF THE DEAD: OVERKILL
  • Collymilad - November 1, 2009 11:38 p.m.

    Just make sure the cannibals in CH are white, or you'd be in all kinds of ****.
  • EmmaXII - November 1, 2009 11:53 a.m.

  • TheDude - October 31, 2009 11:57 p.m.

    "Look at this F***ing clown." lol.
  • morbiusdog - October 31, 2009 9:59 p.m.

    Qoute "Equally, no game designer has attempted to capture the repugnant grubbiness of 1970s exploitation cinema. Which is a missed opportunity in our view." I take this to mean that you didn't play House of the Dead:Overkill on the Wii then?
  • TheCatInTheHat - October 31, 2009 3:41 p.m.

    Penny Wise was the scariest of all those clowns.
  • Conman93 - October 31, 2009 3:36 p.m.

    Goog point with the shining. Could be the scariest game ever. Those twins creep me out
  • Hobojedi - October 31, 2009 2:27 a.m.

    Games Radar, you really should consider making games, lol.
  • jar-head - October 30, 2009 10:35 p.m.

    Fabio Frizzi Zombie song is pretty kick ass?
  • Link555 - October 30, 2009 7:58 p.m.

    the shining rules
  • UndyingReaver - October 30, 2009 7:01 p.m.

    most of these would be awesome...maybe make some XBLA game where it just uses scenes from scary films but you play them lol @ GamerTagsSuck: she was being pulled by a zombie towards the splinter..mmm Zombi 2
  • theworldonfire - October 30, 2009 6:07 p.m.

    hahaha "Achievement Unlocked: Ocular Trauma"
  • Fluxnard - October 30, 2009 5:33 p.m.

    Wow, now that I think of it, The Shining as a game sounds like it could work.

Showing 1-20 of 29 comments

Join the Discussion
Add a comment (HTML tags are not allowed.)
Characters remaining: 5000