Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Horror Games You Should Play If You Love Stranger Things

Netflix's Stranger Things is one of the biggest successes in the streaming service's history, and for good reason. Created by the Duffer Brothers, the story follows a group of small town kids taking on extradimensional forces of evil. Even with that exciting premise, it's the strength of the characters and the charming '80s setting that has captured the imagination of fans. As Time's Daniel D'Addario wrote, "in synthy music, vivid shooting style, and deeply earnest performances, the show is committed to selling you a sort of story that doesn't exist in mainstream pop culture anymore."


Unfortunately, there's a massively long wait between individual seasons of Stranger Things, which can leave superfans of the show with a lot of time on their hands. If you've gotten tired of rewatching the show from beginning to end, maybe another hobby can help fill the gap between new adventures of the Hawkins kids. 

Video games are another medium with a unique way of building off of nostalgia for the past, not mention delivering plenty of solid scares. With that in mind, let's take a look at a few horror games that you should play if you love Stranger Things


Night School Studio's Oxenfree is an adventure game that follows a young group of friends as they uncover the supernatural events occurring on the island they're visiting. While a great deal of the gameplay is taken up by extensive dialogue options that shape the story, Oxenfree will also throw some wild curveballs at the player. For instance, as pointed out by IGN's review, occasional time loops will force players to find different (and more urgent) ways of dealing with certain conversations. This can impact how the characters' relationships develop or erode over the course of the game.


Also, like Stranger Things, Oxenfree draws quite a bit from older movies and American history. In an interview with ComicBook.com, Night School CEO Sean Krankel explained that the development team was heavily inspired by 80s films like Poltergeist and The Goonies. He said that these influences were important in establishing a "sense of wonder" in Oxenfree's narrative. Stranger Things fans will respond not only to Oxenfree's spookier elements, but also the believable and relatable interactions among this friend group.

Also, Oxenfree can be completed in one sitting — but you're going to replay it to see how different the story can get.

Alan Wake

Alan Wake is a peculiar survival-horror game that takes a good bit of inspiration from the works of horror author Stephen King. The Duffer Brothers have claimed that King was likewise an influence on their television series, so there's already some shared DNA between Alan Wake and Stranger Things.


The narrative of Alan Wake takes several unexpected twists and turns, dealing with multiple realities in a similar fashion to Stranger Things. A great deal of the story in Alan Wake and its expansions involves a nightmarish dimension known as the Dark PlaceStranger Things fans who have seen the horrors of the Upside Down may find that it has quite a few elements in common with the Dark Place. 

Alan Wake also follows a lead character battling with the darkness inside of himself, something that both Eleven and Will have had to deal with over the first few seasons of Stranger Things. Beyond the thematic similarities, Alan Wake also matches Stranger Things by packing in more than a few skin-crawling scares.


Life Is Strange

Aside from the somewhat similar title, Stranger Things has a few things in common with 2015's Life Is Strange. This episodic graphic adventure game put players in the shoes of Max Caulfield, a teenage girl who learns that she can manipulate the fabric of time. Much like Eleven from Stranger Things, Max is initially wary of her ability, but she eventually learns that she can use it to help the people in her life. The horror elements are downplayed a bit more here than the other games on this list, but they're certainly there.


Life Is Strange explores the ways in which the smallest changes can have the biggest impact. The game was met with critical praise, and was followed by a prequel and a sequel that expanded the world and introduced more characters with abilities, including Daniel, a young boy with telekinesis.

Life Is Strange deals with many of the same themes as Stranger Things, telling an occasionally heart-wrenching coming of age story with a tinge of the supernatural. Also, much like when binge-watching Stranger Things, you're going to want to play the next Life Is Strange episode immediately after you finish the first one.