10 Cruel Tricks Horror Video Games Played On Players

A Xenomorph never forgets.

Until Dawn

As much as we all love horror movies, horror video games are simply on a whole other level.

Beyond the added terror of our own interactivity, which makes it impossible for us to be mere passive observers as while watching a film, smart and creative developers can stretch the medium to its limit to keep us on our toes.

The possibilities of video games are near-limitless at this point - with sufficient invention, horror games can keep throwing us off-kilter by subverting the conventions of the genre and what we generally expect from video games.

But beyond simply defying what's expected, these 10 video games all toyed with players in supremely devious and mischievous ways, going out of their way to play cruel, nasty, terrifying pranks on paying customers.

In each case it was in the stead of making the game more scary, and without exception that ended up being true.

From delivering all-timer jump scares to creating a false sense of security, blurring the lines between game and reality, and everything else in-between, these games pulled off brilliantly vicious tricks on unsuspecting players...

10. The Double Dog Window Jump-Scare - Resident Evil

Until Dawn

The Resident Evil series has shown a downright sadistic penchant for toying with its own fans, but Capcom has never quite matched the brilliance of that opening jump scare in the original 1996 game.

Near the start of Resident Evil while you're exploring the Spencer Mansion, you'll walk through an L-shaped hallway and, as you pass the window, a zombie dog (aka Cerberus) will burst out of it.

As anyone who played the game without prior knowledge of this will attest, it's a positively pant-filling moment - a totally unexpected jump scare and still one of the most effective uses of the tired technique in video game history.

Worse still, once you've dealt with the dog and moved further down the hallway, another dog will jump through another window, assuring players they can't let their guard down.

And because this jump scare became so well known, for the 2002 remake Capcom ingeniously changed things up.

The first time you pass through the hall in the remake, the glass windows simply crack from the dogs' attempting to get inside, but when you go back through the area later, only then will the dogs successfully smash the glass. Sneaky.


Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.