10 best indie horror games on Itch.io

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Since horror is one of the most popular genres of video games, it is easy to find a lot of horror games no matter where you look. With stellar games created by AAA developers and wide availability on well-known sites like Steam, it is evident that the genre has a strong presence in the industry.

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But, with the large number of titles available in the market, the rarest and most specialized indie horror games tend to get lost among the rest. Fortunately, Itch.io, a website that hosts indie games, has some unique horror titles that gamers won’t find anywhere else.


ten Jam and the mystery of the mysteriously spooky mansion

A young girl holding a flashlight in Jam and the Mystery of the Mysteriously Spooky Mansion

Rather than a pure horror game, Jam and the mystery of the mysteriously spooky mansion is more of a comedy game with horror elements. Jam, who is a self-proclaimed detective prodigy, has finally captured their nemesis, Alexander V. Badmann, in an abandoned house. But Jam has yet to find out what crime he committed, so they must explore the house and find evidence of his crime.

As the player explores the different spooky rooms and solves point-and-click puzzles, they will collect multiple pieces of evidence. Depending on which pieces the player presents to Alexander, the player will get one of 16 different endings.

9 0_abyssalSomewhere

A dark silhouette in 0_abyssalSomewhere

Created by Itch.io user “nonoise”, 0_abyssalSomewhere is an atmospheric horror game that combines elements of titles such as silent Hill, Dark souls, and angel egg. The player starts out as an unknown armored humanoid creature that has just woken up in a desolate location. As you explore the dark and empty halls of this abandoned concrete world, the player will slowly discover the civilization that existed before and what happened to it.

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Although there is combat in the game, the player can choose to attack other creatures or remain passive. These creatures will attack the player only if they choose to attack first. All in all, it is a game for players to experience on their own.

8 The night darkens

A haunted house in The Night is Darkening

With an aesthetic reminiscent of old DOS 3D games, like the FMV game Realms of Haunting, The night darkens is a sci-fi horror game where the player takes a long journey in a flying ship controlled by a drunken sailor. When the ship crashes on one of the small floating islands, the player must explore the island to find a gravity stone to get the ship back on track.

As the player explores the small island, he will encounter “Angel Blessed Refugees”, who are consumed by new powers acquired from the “Angel War” and a mysterious mansion with ghostly secrets. Despite the short experience, the game tells a complete story that leaves an unforgettable impression.

7 Glitchhikers: first try

First view of a driver driving through a dark field with a red moon in the sky

Released in 2014, Glitchhikers: first try is a surreal driving simulator where the player explores the eerie liminal space of driving with various aliens at night. During each of the random encounters, the player will have the option of selecting different dialogue choices to lead the conversation.

Although this game is a fairly short experience, the conversations explore heavy topics about self-identity, the universe, and the meaning of life. At the end of this spooky journey, the player may find themselves better understanding the world through these fictional characters. In 2022, a sequel, which is called Glitchhikers: the spaces between, should be released on Steam.

6 Rust pillar

A young woman walking towards a rusting pillar house

While many horror games in recent years explore the psychological horror and despair of the death of a loved one, few games explore the feelings that come with losing a relationship. Created by Itch.io developer, “Valerie Dusk”, Rust pillar follows a woman as she climbs a tower as she battles post-rupture depression.

Similar to the influential horror video game franchise, silent Hill, the setting of the game is a physical representation of the main character’s mental struggles as she navigates the impossible geometry of the decaying structure. As the player progresses, they learn more about the story and help the protagonist out of the past.

5 Haunted towns

Title card for haunted cities

Even though Kitty Horrorshow is Anatomy is an obscure horror game and yet the best known work of the developer, they have released many other interesting horror games. One of the other great headlines on their page is Haunted towns, which is the first volume of the Haunted towns series. Each volume contains several short games that were originally awards for the developer’s Patreon members.

If gamers have never experienced this developer’s unique horror brand, these short vignettes perfectly capture the atmosphere and style. The first game, Penté, asks the player to explore a strange memorial that changes strangely each time the player enters and exits the main building. Leechbowl asks the player to throw bundles of blood on the walls of a spooky city. Finally, the last game, Grandmother, forces the player to decide which person to sacrifice to a strange creature in the woods.

4 The open day

A house in the game The Open House

Created by the developer Itch.io “corpsepile”, The open day is a horror game that initially claims to be a simple “open house simulator”. A company, known as Northtree Real Estate, has created a way to virtually explore homes on the market, and the player is a beta tester for this new software.

But, as the player explores this house, he soon discovers that there is more to this software than what it seems at first glance. If they delve too deeply into it, they may find themselves sacrificing their soul as real estate.

3 You left me.

Title screen for You Left Me.

Angela He is a relatively well-known game developer on Itch.io whose indie games are unique because of their amazingly gorgeous art style. While they’ve created several different games over the years, most of them focus on struggles related to loss, sanity, and relationships. One of the games that focuses on all of these recurring themes is the point-and-click surreal adventure visual novel by You left me.

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The player controls a woman who has just woken up in a strange world with no memory. She must rediscover her memories by exploring the various surrealist places before time runs out.

2 Gyossait Deluxe Edition

Gyossait Deluxe Edition title screen

While Gyossait was originally a free-to-play flash game that was released on its own websites like Newgrounds, now players can purchase the Gyossait Deluxe Edition on Itch.io, which includes the original game as well as several other pixelated surreal horror platforms from the developer. Similar to Gyossait, these games all manage to take simple graphics and create detailed disturbing experiences filled with gore, body horror, and spooky imagery.

Besides a first prototype of Gyossait, an unreleased prequel entitled Uzaza, and other additional materials related to the game, this pack also includes three other separate games. Two of them, All our friends are dead and In the sand, can also be purchased separately on the creator’s page. All our friends are dead is a platform shooter with a story that should be left to interpretation. In the sand, meanwhile, focuses on a red-haired female protagonist who searches for her sister, Harmonia, in an evil forest.

1 Consumer night

Title card for the game The Night of the Consumers

Created by the developer Itch.io “germfood”, Consumer Night is a PS1 style horror game with its own unique art style added to the mix. Unlike most horror games where horror comes from death or supernatural creatures, this game simulates a type of horror that occurs in everyday life: retail work.

The player is a new employee of a supermarket, and the goal is to restock all the shelves before closing. But, there are customers everywhere who constantly want to ask the player for help with various tasks. If the player is unable to complete these tasks quickly enough, customers will complain and the player will fail.

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