In the mood to dive into some post-apocalyptic games? Luckily for you there are a ton of different video games that feature the undead and there’s definitely a massive catalog of video games to pick through thus creating this list was extremely difficult. We tried our best to narrow down the best video game title that are worth picking up. All the titles listed below are available for purchase right now as full title release or for early access.
1. Left 4 Dead 2
Left 4 Dead 2 is a 2009 multiplayer survival horror game developed and published by Valve. The sequel to Turtle Rock Studios’s Left 4 Dead, it was released for Windows and Xbox 360 in November 2009, Mac OS X in October 2010, and Linux in July 2013.
Left 4 Dead 2 builds upon cooperatively focused gameplay and Valve’s proprietary Source engine, the same game engine used in the original Left 4 Dead. Set during the aftermath of an apocalyptic pandemic, Left 4 Dead 2 focuses on four new Survivors, fighting against hordes of zombies, known as the Infected, who develop severe psychosis and act extremely aggressive. The Survivors must fight their way through five campaigns, interspersed with safe houses that act as checkpoints, with the goal of escape at each campaign’s finale. The gameplay is procedurally altered by the “AI Director 2.0”, which monitors the players’ performance and adjusts the scenario to provide a dynamic challenge. Other new features include new types of special infected and an arsenal of melee weapons.
The game made its world premiere at E3 2009 with a trailer during the Microsoft press event. Prior to release, it received a combination of positive and negative critical and community reactions. It attracted an unusually high volume of pre-release controversy about the game’s graphic content. In response, alterations were made to the cover art and both Australia and Germany refused to rate the unmodified edition at the time of release. After release, however, the game was met with positive reviews by critics.
2. The Last Of Us
The Last of Us is a 2013 action-adventure game developed by Naughty Dog and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. Players control Joel, a smuggler tasked with escorting a teenage girl, Ellie, across a post-apocalyptic United States. The Last of Us is played from a third-person perspective. Players use firearms and improvised weapons, and can use stealth to defend against hostile humans and cannibalistic creatures infected by a mutated strain of the Cordyceps fungus. In the online multiplayer mode, up to eight players engage in cooperative and competitive gameplay.
Development of The Last of Us began in 2009, soon after the release of Naughty Dog’s previous game, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. For the first time in the company’s history, Naughty Dog split into two teams; while one team developed Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, the other half developed The Last of Us. The relationship between Joel and Ellie became the focus, with all other elements developed around it. Actors Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson portrayed Joel and Ellie respectively through voice and motion capture, and assisted creative director Neil Druckmann with the development of the characters and story. The original score was composed and performed by Gustavo Santaolalla.
Following its announcement in December 2011, The Last of Us was widely anticipated. It was released for the PlayStation 3 in June 2013, and for the PlayStation 4 in July 2014. Upon release, it received critical acclaim, with praise directed at its narrative, gameplay, visuals, sound design, characterization, and depiction of female characters. The Last of Us became one of the best-selling video games of all time, selling over 1.3 million units in its first week and 17 million by April 2018. The game won year-end accolades, including multiple Game of the Year awards from several gaming publications, critics, and game award ceremonies, and is considered one of the greatest video games ever made.
After the game’s release, Naughty Dog released several downloadable content additions. The Last of Us: Left Behind adds a single-player campaign following Ellie and her best friend Riley. A sequel, The Last of Us Part II, was announced in December 2016.
3. The Walking Dead
The Walking Dead is an episodic adventure video game developed and published by Telltale Games. Based on The Walking Dead comic book series, the game consists of five episodes, released between April and November 2012. It is available for Android, iOS, Kindle Fire HDX, Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, Ouya, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch. The game is the first of The Walking Dead video game series published by Telltale.
The game takes place in the same fictional world as the comic, with events occurring shortly after the onset of the zombie apocalypse in Georgia. However, most of the characters are original to the game, which centers on university professor and convicted criminal Lee Everett, who rescues and subsequently takes care of a young girl named Clementine. Lee becomes a protective figure to her to help reunite her with her parents. Kirkman provided oversight for the game’s story to ensure it corresponded to the tone of the comic, but allowed Telltale to handle the bulk of the developmental work and story specifics. Some characters from the original comic book series also make in-game appearances.
Unlike many graphic adventure games, The Walking Dead does not emphasize puzzle solving, but instead focuses on story and character development. The story is affected by both the dialogue choices of the player and their actions during quick time events, which can often lead to, for example, certain characters being killed, or an adverse change in the disposition of a certain character or characters towards Lee. The choices made by the player carry over from episode to episode. Choices were tracked by Telltale, and used to influence their writing in later episodes.
The Walking Dead has been critically acclaimed, with reviewers praising the harsh emotional tone of the story and the empathetic connection established between Lee and Clementine. It won year-end accolades, including Game of the Year awards from several gaming publications and is considered to be one of the greatest video games of all time. More than one million unique players have purchased at least one episode from the series, with over 8.5 million individual units sold by the end of 2012, and its success has been seen as constituting a revitalization of the weakened adventure game genre. In July 2013, Telltale released an additional downloadable episode, 400 Days, to extend the first season and bridge the gap towards Telltale’s second season, released later that year. Season 3 and Season 4 of The Walking Dead were released in 2016 and 2018, respectively.
4. Resident Evil 4
Resident Evil 4 is a third-person shooter survival horror video game developed by Capcom Production Studio 4 and published by Capcom. The sixth major installment in the Resident Evil series, it was originally released for the GameCube in 2005. Players control U.S. government special agent Leon S. Kennedy, who is sent on a mission to rescue the U.S. president’s daughter Ashley Graham, who has been kidnapped by a cult. In a rural part of Europe, Leon fights hordes of villagers infected by a mind-controlling parasite, and reunites with the spy Ada Wong.
Development began for PlayStation 2 as early as 1999. Resident Evil 4 underwent a long development during which four proposed versions were discarded; the first attempt was directed by Hideki Kamiya after producer Shinji Mikami. The game was announced as a GameCube exclusive as part of the Capcom Five, but a PlayStation 2 version was announced before it was released. Resident Evil 4 was ported to Windows, Wii, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch and in downsized versions for iOS, Zeebo, and Android.
Resident Evil 4 garnered critical acclaim, with praise for its narrative, gameplay, voice acting, and characters. It received multiple Game of the Year awards for 2005 and was seen as a successful cross-platform hit that influenced the evolution of the survival horror and third-person shooter genres. It popularized the “over the shoulder” third-person view perspective in video games. It is considered to be one of the best video games ever made. A sequel, Resident Evil 5, was released in 2009.
5. Dead Island
Dead Island is a 2011 survival horror action role-playing video game developed by Techland and published by Deep Silver for Microsoft Windows, Linux, OS X, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360. Centered on the challenge of surviving a zombie-infested open world with a major emphasis on melee, the plot focuses on four playable survivors trying to survive and escape off the fictional island of Banoi.
The game was announced at the 2006 Electronic Entertainment Expo, but was delayed until 2011. The game’s cinematic announcement trailer was met with controversy over its depiction of a dead child, but reception was nonetheless positive, with praise going towards the emotional impact, animation, and story, with the trailer being held as one of the best in any medium. The game was released in September 2011 for North America and Europe, with an October 2011 release in Japan. Despite the pre-release acclaim, the game received generally lukewarm reviews. While praised for its atmosphere, gameplay, and playable characters, it was also criticized for the large technical difficulties and in-game glitches, graphics, and most notably being hampered for lacking the emotional themes presented in the trailer.
A stand-alone expansion, Dead Island: Riptide, was released in 2013. A spin-off, Escape Dead Island, was released on 18 November 2014. A sequel, Dead Island 2, was set to be released in 2016, but has been delayed indefinitely. A remastered version of the game was released for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on 31 May 2016 under the title Dead Island: Definitive Collection; it bundles the game with Riptide, all DLC, and a 16-bit side-scrolling game called Dead Island: Retro Revenge.
6. Dying Light
Dying Light is an open world first person survival horror action-adventure video game developed by the Polish game studio Techland and published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. Announced in May 2013, it was released in January 2015 for Microsoft Windows, Linux, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The game was once planned to be released on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, but was later cancelled due to hardware limitations.
The game revolves around an undercover agent named Kyle Crane who is sent to infiltrate a quarantine zone in a city called Harran. It features an enemy-infested, open-world city with a dynamic day and night cycle, with climbable structures that support a fluid parkour system. The day-night cycle changes the game drastically, as the zombies become more aggressive and more difficult to deal with during night time. The gameplay is focused on weapons-based combat and parkour. The game also features an asymmetrical multiplayer mode (originally set to be a pre-order bonus), and a four-player co-operative multiplayer mode.
The development of the game began in early 2012. Prior to the game’s official announcement, several reports claimed that Dying Light was a sequel to Dead Island, another franchise created by Techland, but that rumor was later denied. The game’s parkour system puts emphasis on natural movement. To implement that, Techland had to abandon most of the story elements and build them again from scratch. The music development was handled by Paweł Błaszczak. According to him, the soundtrack was inspired by movie soundtracks of the ’70s and ’80s.
At release, Dying Light received positive reviews from critics, with praise mainly directed at the combat, graphics, co-operative multiplayer, navigation and the day-night cycle, while receiving criticism regarding the story, difficulty, and technical issues. The game was the best-selling title for the month of January 2015 and broke the record for the first month sales for a new survival horror intellectual property. Techland announced that they would be committed to the game after its release. As a result, in May 2015, they put another project on hold to concentrate on the post-release development of Dying Light. The team released numerous updates, and two downloadable content (DLC) packages, namely Cuisine & Cargo and The Bozak Horde. An expansion, titled Dying Light: The Following, was announced as well and was released on February 9, 2016.
7. Dead Rising 2
Dead Rising 2 is an action-adventure video game developed by Canadian company Blue Castle Games, published by Capcom, and released between September and October 2010 for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Microsoft Windows. It is a sequel to Dead Rising, and is the second entry in the series of the same name. The game features a number of new features and improvements to its predecessor, including multiplayer options.
The game’s story see players controlling Chuck Greene, a former motocross rider, who finds himself at the centre of another zombie outbreak taking place in a casino resort and shopping complex in Nevada, and becomes involved in uncovering the truth behind it. Not only must he survive against the zombies roaming the complex by scavenging weapons and supplies, along with rescuing survivors caught up in the incident and dealing with crazed psychopaths, Chuck must also ensure that his young daughter receives regular treatments of a medication that prevent her from becoming a zombie herself, after being bitten by her mother during a previous outbreak in Las Vegas. Like the previous game, players must complete major missions to advance the story, but can undertake optional tasks and explore the complex, with various endings available depending on actions taken during the main game.
The game’s success led to it receiving two downloadable episodes – one being a prologue to the main story, the other taking place moments after achieving its canonical ending – along with a remake entitled Dead Rising 2: Off the Record, while as part of the Dead Rising’s ten year anniversary, a ported version of the game was released in September 2016 for PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
8. Left 4 Dead
Left 4 Dead is a 2008 multiplayer survival horror game developed by Valve South and published by Valve. The game uses Valve’s proprietary Source engine, and is available for Windows, Xbox 360 and OS X. Development on the game was completed on November 13, 2008, and two versions were released digitally: A downloadable digital version, released on November 17, 2008, and a digital retail disc version, with a release date determined by region. The digital retail disc version was released in North America and Australia on November 18, 2008; and in Europe on November 21, 2008.
Set during the aftermath of a worldwide zombie outbreak, the game puts its four protagonists—dubbed the “Survivors”—against hordes of the infected. There are four game modes: a single-player mode in which allied characters are controlled by AI; a four-player, co-op campaign mode; an eight-player online versus mode; and a four-player survival mode. In all modes, an artificial intelligence (AI), dubbed the “Director”, controls level pacing and item placements, in an attempt to create a dynamic experience and increase replay value.
Left 4 Dead was well received by the industry media upon its release, with praise given for its replay value, focus on cooperative play, and movie-like experience. Several criticisms were aimed at the limited level selection and the lack of a narrative. The game has won several publication awards, as well as distinctions from the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences and British Academy of Film and Television Arts. As was done with Team Fortress 2, Valve supplemented the game with free downloadable content. The first, called the “Survival Pack”, was released on April 21, 2009. The second piece of DLC was charged for on Xbox Live and came in the form of a new Campaign entitled “Crash Course,” released for both the PC and Xbox 360 on September 29, 2009. Left 4 Dead was released for the Mac on October 28, 2010.
9. State Of Decay
State of Decay is an action-adventure survival horror stealth video game developed by Undead Labs and published by Microsoft Studios. It places emphasis on how the player’s leaderships skills fare against an onslaught of problems, such as diminishing survival resources, group trust and morale, zombie extermination, base defenses, and people’s lives. The game combines elements of shooters, stealth, role-playing and strategy games and the game challenges players to survive by exploring, scavenging, and fighting the undead.
It was released for the Xbox 360 on June 5, 2013 and was met with positive reviews. A Microsoft Windows version was released on September 20, 2013 via Steam’s Early Access, with a release following on November 5, 2013. A remastered version called the Year-One Survival Edition was released on April 28, 2015 for Microsoft Windows and Xbox One with mixed reviews.
State of Decay 2 was announced at Xbox’s E3 2016. The game introduced cooperative multiplayer. It was released on May 22, 2018.
10. Resident Evil 5
Resident Evil 5 is a third-person shooter video game developed and published by Capcom. It is the seventh major installment in the Resident Evil series, and was announced in 2005—the same year its predecessor Resident Evil 4 was released. Resident Evil 5 was released for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 consoles in March 2009 and for Microsoft Windows in September that year. The plot involves an investigation of a terrorist threat by Bioterrorism Security Assessment Alliance agents Chris Redfield and Sheva Alomar in Kijuju, a fictional region of Africa. Chris learns that he must confront his past in the form of an old enemy, Albert Wesker, and his former partner, Jill Valentine.
The gameplay of Resident Evil 5 is similar to that of the previous installment, though it is the first in the series designed for two-player cooperative gameplay. It has also been considered to be the first game in the main series to depart from the survival horror genre, with critics saying it bore more resemblance to an action game. Motion capture was used for the cutscenes, and it was the first video game to use a virtual camera system. Several staff members from the original Resident Evil worked on Resident Evil 5.
Resident Evil 5 received a positive reception, despite some criticism for its control scheme. The game received some complaints of racism, though an investigation by the British Board of Film Classification found the complaints were unsubstantiated. Resident Evil 5 was re-released for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in June 2016. As of December 2019, the original release has sold over 7.6 million units. A special edition of the game and releases on other platforms sold an additional 3.9 million units, bringing the total sales to 11.5 million. It is the best-selling game of the Resident Evil franchise, and the original version remained the best-selling individual Capcom release until March 2018, when it was outsold by Monster Hunter: World. A sequel, Resident Evil 6, was released in 2012.