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#1 Edited by Jeust (10643 posts) -

Of all the games I've played I think probably Dead Space is the one that nails it better. Solitary, scary and opressive.


Typo - In the title instead of "was" should be "has".

#2 Edited by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -
  • Fallout games
  • Stalker games
  • Bioshock
  • Witcher 1&2
  • Max Payne 1&2
  • Deus Ex, Deus Ex: Human Revolution
And i guess you might throw in Mafia as well.
#3 Posted by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -

Dark Souls. 

#4 Edited by mylifeforAiur (3483 posts) -
#5 Edited by PeasantAbuse (5138 posts) -


Parts of Fallout

Metro 2033

Red Dead Redemption

#6 Posted by Zacagawea (1593 posts) -

Bioshock and Fallout 3+New Vegas

#7 Posted by SpencerTucksen (423 posts) -

Bioshock, Dead Space 1&2, Demon's Souls, Stalker games, Fallout, to a degree, Metro 2033, Amnesia, and Penumbra, among some others I possibly forgot.

#8 Posted by august (3845 posts) -
#9 Posted by TruthTellah (9000 posts) -

I've really enjoyed the atmosphere in Skyrim. When you're out there hiking through the countryside and the snow starts coming down... it's just something beautiful, and you really get captured. There's always this great sense of freedom, and to me, that's an interesting kind of atmosphere versus the more traditional examples of oppressive or depressing atmosphere.

On that note, though, I definitely think Amnesia: The Dark Descent, the original Silent Hill, and Bioshock had brilliant atmosphere. I might throw Portal in there, as well.

#10 Posted by Ctmskater75 (31 posts) -

Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, Flower and Bioshock.

#11 Posted by RedCream (705 posts) -

Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodlines takes the cake although Metroid Prime comes as a close second.

#12 Edited by whyareyoucrouchingspock (975 posts) -

Total War. It captures each history period like you are really sitting in it, killing Japanese and French people.

#13 Posted by StrikeALight (1114 posts) -

Bioshock, Demon's Souls, Journey, ICO/SOTC.

#14 Posted by Willin (1280 posts) -

Dark Souls. It just constantly makes you feel like your one step away from being fucking murdered horribly (which usually is the case).

#15 Posted by Bell_End (1208 posts) -

others have said it but bioshock stands out for me. as does Dark/Demon souls.

Amensia is another that springs to mind

#16 Posted by Daiphyer (1337 posts) -
  • Bioshock
  • Dark Souls
  • Deus Ex: Human Revolution
  • Mass Effect games
  • Red Dead Redemption
  • LA Noire
  • Witcher 2
#17 Posted by mynthon (53 posts) -

System Shock 2 and the Souls games definitely for me.

#18 Posted by FesteringNeon (2164 posts) -

Surprisingly, Dark and Demon's Souls didn't come first to mind...

Red Dead Redemption, however, did. I felt like I could break a horse fo realz.

#19 Posted by SomeDeliCook (2341 posts) -

Metro 2033 and STALKER are both great post-apocalyptic atmospheres

Bioshock at times made you feel like you really were in a city under the sea that has gone mad

Alan Wake was rightfully creepy in spots

LA Noire was pretty good

Deus Ex and Syndicate both achieve that futuristic aesthetic really well

#20 Posted by StrikeALight (1114 posts) -

Forgot to add Silent Hill 2. One of the most evocative games ever.

#21 Posted by Morningstar (2157 posts) -

Demon's souls and Bioshock. Few even come close.

#22 Posted by Sayishere (1840 posts) -

Resident evil 2 music was so eerie, it scared me so much

Also Amnesia is pretty terrifying at times.

I agree with Dead space as well.

#23 Posted by DeF (4887 posts) -

nobody mentioned Alan Wake yet.

#24 Posted by GS_Dan (1403 posts) -

Amnesia is pretty thick in it.

#25 Edited by zaglis (910 posts) -

Half-Life 2

#26 Posted by JasonR86 (9697 posts) -

Bioshock, Limbo, Braid, Flashback. I know there's more I'm just have a hard time remembering them at the moment.

#27 Posted by PenguinDust (12512 posts) -

I don't think it would cut the mustard today, but a decade ago, System Shock 2 was very atmospheric. Not just the visuals (for the time period) but also the sound. The PS2 game, Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly had a very spooky vibe to it, too.

I'm not a fan of horror or scary games usually, so I liked the colorful but ruined setting in Enslaved: Odyssey to the West. Fallout 3 was too bleak looking, but Enslaved was bright. It reminded me of the outlands in the movie, Logan's Run.

#28 Edited by Sooty (8082 posts) -

Amnesia is the most atmospheric game ever made.

Don't underestimate how important good sound is bros.

#29 Posted by Nux (2356 posts) -

Alan Wake and Dark Souls.

#31 Posted by Hector (3364 posts) -

Rapture from Bioshock.

#32 Posted by zombie2011 (4973 posts) -

Alan Wake for me.

#33 Posted by James_Giant_Peach (751 posts) -

Amnesia builds an atmosphere like nothing else. Bioshock is decent too but doesn't really maintain the atmosphere throughout the entire game. I'm trying to think of an example nobody else has used but I've got nothing...

Anybody said Condemned yet? That's nearly on par with Amnesia. I think I remember The Suffering being tense as shit too but I might be recalling it incorrectly.

#34 Posted by Addfwyn (1922 posts) -

ICO, Fatal Frame, Journey, possibly even Heavy Rain.

#35 Posted by TobbRobb (4639 posts) -

My personal favorite is probably Vampire Bloodlines. But Bioshock does it really well, Fallout does as well, Dark and Demon's Souls have good atmosphere, Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, Condemned, Amnesia, Penumbra, Alan Wake, Silent Hill 2, Mafia....

So many games man, I almost exclusively enjoy games with a good atmosphere, even if the gameplay is borderline bad.

#36 Posted by Make_Me_Mad (3088 posts) -

I'd throw Shadow of the Colossus out there. There's a point when you notice how beat-down the protagonist is looking, clothes ripped up and stained, face sunken in, and you realize that he's killing himself fighting these things to bring the girl back. It's an impressive feeling of loneliness.

Also Silent Hill 3. That game mixes abandoned, quiet environments and oppressively hostile Otherworld sections pretty much perfectly, and props have to go to the music for always matching the situation at hand. It's marvelous how well that game manages to get you into Heather's head, setting you up for a real knockout punch a few hours in...

#37 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3865 posts) -

The Condemned series absolutely nailed it.

#38 Posted by RenMcKormack (1074 posts) -

@TheSouthernDandy said:

The Condemned series absolutely nailed it. WHERE IS CONDEMNED 3 MONOLITH!! WHY ARE YOU MAKING ME WAIT!!



Silent Hill 2

Yoshi's Island (it really looked like a place yoshis would live, it made sense, baby mario is fine)

#39 Posted by Dots (115 posts) -

Demon's Souls, I fucking love that game, but when I first started it I played through 1-1 and then I didn't play it for weeks because I was so afraid to die. I'd start up the game, load my character and then you stand in the nexus for about 10 minutes before I just turn it off again. I did finish it in the end though...

#40 Posted by Vigilance (270 posts) -

Fallout for me, especially Fallout 3, the first person view made the game even more immersive for me.

#41 Posted by Example1013 (4834 posts) -

Champions of Norrath has some of the most amazing sound design I've ever heard in a video game. Besides amazing weapon and enemy sounds, awesomely atmospheric music and pretty good-quality VO, the ambient sounds just put the game on another level of quality. Every level of detail was covered with amazing care, so much so that the locations and times where you're in absolute silence are a noticeable design choice in their own right. Truly a game worth noting.

#42 Posted by mordukai (7150 posts) -

Shadow of the Colossus.

#43 Posted by SoledadBrother (38 posts) -

Bioshock and Dead Space

#44 Posted by Kidavenger (3546 posts) -

Mass Effect 2 , it killed Sheppard, that is some powerful atmosphere.

#45 Posted by Ravenlight (8040 posts) -

In the spirit of not just listing all the games that have been listed (I agree with all of them so far), I'm going to throw Diablo 1 out there.

That game did a great job of giving you a feel of just how fucked of the Tristram Cathedral had become with each level you descended.

#46 Edited by BonOrbitz (2193 posts) -

Journey, BioShock, Batman Arkham games, The Legend of Zelda series, KOTOR 1, Elder Scrolls IV and V!

Interesting that so many are listing horror games as those with the best atmosphere. To me, atmosphere is more than an environment that elicits fear.

#47 Posted by TerraMantis (283 posts) -

Dark Souls. No other game brings about such heightened levels of tension and terror to peek your head around a corner for fear of losing it. Not to mention, it is also extremely beautiful while doing so. It truly is the greatest dungeon crawler survival horror game ever made.

#48 Posted by Zero_ (1973 posts) -
#49 Posted by slyspider (1225 posts) -


Persona 3 and 4

#50 Posted by WickedCobra03 (2106 posts) -

Shadow of the Colossus, Half-Life 2, Metal Gear Solid 3, and most recently, Halo 3: ODST. ODST had amazing environments, skylines, and most importantly, the soundtrack was and still is incredible!