5 of the best spooky games for Halloween on Evercade
Happy Halloween! It’s that time of year when it’s okay to dress up in a distinctly more provocative manner than you would do under normal circumstances, bang on strangers’ doors and demand that they give you chocolate. Or, alternatively, turn all the lights off, be very quiet and hope no-one knocks on your door. If you fall into the latter category, it’s a great time to delve into some spooky games, perhaps with a big plate of brownies or a generous slice of pumpkin pie by your side.
Thankfully, the Evercade library is well-equipped to keep you occupied and entertained while you brood in the darkness, so sit back, relax, and get ready for the best spooky games the platform has to offer.
Dracula: The Undead
Originally released for the technologically advanced Atari Lynx colour handheld platform in 1991, Dracula: The Undead is, as the name suggests, an adaptation of Bram Stoker’s famous vampire story — some might say the most famous vampire story there is. Bram Stoker himself even appears in the game as a narrator, clearly enjoying his eternal life in the digital realm.
Dracula: The Undead was quite an unusual sight at the time of its original release, as it is an adventure game, and in the early ’90s this style of game was almost exclusively confined to home computers. What’s doubly unusual is that the original release of Draclua: The Undead completely lacked a save game facility, meaning that if you ran afoul of one of the many dangers around the Count’s castle, you’d have to start all over again. Thankfully, Evercade’s save game facility allows you to bookmark your progress at any time.
The game is relatively short once you know what you’re doing, as it only adapts the opening segment of the Dracula novel, in which Jonathan Harker gets to know the titular Count and subsequently escapes from his castle. Challenging puzzles abound, though, so put your thinking cap on for this one. And here’s a tip for you: if you want the best ending, be sure to get Jonathan to write in his notebook any time you think something significant has just happened, or you discover something interesting.
Dracula: The Undead can be found on Atari Lynx Collection 1 for Evercade.
Splatterhouse Part 3
All the classic Splatterhouse games are well worth playing around Halloween — opinions vary more wildly on the more recent attempts to reboot the franchise, but you can’t go far wrong with any of the original titles.
One of the most interesting entries in the Splatterhouse series is the third installment, which shakes things up a little from the side-scrolling beat ’em up formula adopted by the first two games. Here, you’re once again playing as troubled protagonist Rick as he explores a spooky old house and attempts to rescue his family, and of course there are plenty of horrible ghouls and ghosts awaiting you, but the twist this time is that you’re not on a linear path.
Nope; in Splatterhouse 3, you have to chart your own path through the levels in order to find the best route to your goal. Play efficiently and you have a much greater chance of Rick’s family surviving this whole ordeal; get lost or take too much time fighting, and things end somewhat less happily. Either way, there’s plenty of bone-crunching, blood-splattering action awaiting you!
Splatterhouse Part 3 can be enjoyed on Namco Museum Collection 2 for Evercade.
For many folks, Deadeus is a highlight of our first Indie Heroes Collection cartridge, demonstrating how it’s possible to tell a genuinely unsettling tale using nothing more than four shades of grey on a low-resolution display, some atmospheric chiptunes and some excellent writing.
In Deadeus, you play the role of a boy who has been suffering nightmares about a mysterious being that is supposedly returning to Earth to reclaim the flesh he “loaned” to humanity. Over the course of several in-game days, it’s up to you to determine how best to handle the situation — if indeed there is a threat at all.
Along the way, you’ll encounter a host of characters, some of whom appear to be wise to the situation and others who remain blissfully oblivious. Who will you trust? Who will you betray? What are your true feelings about the girl next door? Is it worth even trying to fight back against the apparent incoming disaster? With 11 different endings, there are plenty of ways that things can unfold… can you discover them all?
Deadeus is part of Indie Heroes Collection 1 for Evercade.
All three Alien Breed games are well worth playing if you’re in the mood for a spooky game with a sci-fi twist, and each entry in this popular Amiga series has its own distinct twist on the top-down survival horror formula.
In the first Alien Breed, you’re exploring a space station which has mysteriously gone radio silent… and it doesn’t take long to discover why. In Alien Breed II: The Horror Continues, you make an action-packed entrance to a Federation colony that finds itself under attack nine years after the original incident. And Alien Breed: Tower Assault takes a more non-linear approach as you attempt to wipe out the otherworldly forces once and for all across a sprawling research base.
The Alien Breed titles draw inspiration from classic titles such as Laser Squad, Gauntlet and Paradroid, but successfully distinguished themselves as excellent games in their own right. They’re quite rightly regarded as some of the best titles the Amiga ever saw, and you can enjoy them all solo or with a friend on Evercade.
The three Alien Breed games are part of Team17 Collection 1 for Evercade.
This excellent 3D platformer is themed around dreams and nightmares. As the brave kids Ruff and Tumble, it’s your job to rescue the 40 surviving Winks from across six distinct worlds and ensure humanity can continue to sleep easily at night.
As with most 3D platformers, Ruff and Tumble have a variety of different moves that they can make use of to both get around and defeat enemies. On top of their basic abilities, the game places a strong focus on acquiring various costumes that allow the pair to transform into various different characters, each with their own unique skills that can be used to beat foes and solve puzzles.
While cartoony in nature, 40 Winks’ distinctly macabre atmosphere makes it a great game to play on Halloween — and a fascinating look at how 3D games have developed over the years. Still highly atmospheric and playable, this is a substantial quest that will keep you busy long after the trick-or-treaters have gone to bed!
40 Winks can be enjoyed on Piko Interactive Collection 3 for Evercade.
These are just five of the many games now available for Evercade, and we’re sure you have your own thoughts on what the best spooky games to play during Halloween are! So join the conversation — hit us up on our social channels (Discord is typically our most active hangout by virtue of its “real-time” nature) and let us know what your favourites are.
With over 260 games available