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32 Great Games Like The House of the Dead

Our experts have spent time searching for great games similar to The House of the Dead. We also offer games selected by matching genre and age rating.
 

The House of the Dead is a horror-themed shooting game where you control the targeting but not the movement. Unlike general on-rails shooting games, this was controlled using a light-gun pointing at the screen (or similar controller). This gives the game a novel fairground attraction feel. Add to this the branching paths and stories, the prestigious history and arcade legacy and this is a notable and unusual series.

Unfortunately, The House of the Dead is not available on Android, Mac, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S or iOS. However, we recommend the following games that offer a similar experience or theme, and at a lower age rating:

DetailsGame Details

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 01/01/1996, updated in 2018

Platforms: PC, PS2, PS3, Switch, Wii and Xbox

Genres: Action and Shooting

Players: You can play this with 4 players online

Costs: Purchase cost

Hand Picked Games Like The House of the Dead

These are our hand-picked games similar to The House of the Dead. We don't use automatic matching, instead, we identify games that are good to play if you have enjoyed The House of the Dead, or as younger rated alternatives for players not ready for PEGI 18 or ESRB MATURE 17+ games. These selections also include games that offer a different experience but address a similar theme or topic.
 

The Last Of Us Part II

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 19/06/2020

Price: 36% off

Platforms: PS4

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative, Role-Playing and Shooting

Accessibility: 49 features

Developer: @Naughty_Dog

Players: This is a single player game

The Last of Us Part II is an action-adventure game set five years after The Last of Us. You control two characters in a post-apocalyptic United States. Ellie is out for revenge after suffering a tragedy, and Abby is a...

The Last Of Us

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 14/06/2013

Platforms: PS3 and PS4

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Narrative and Shooting

Accessibility: 22 features

Developer: @Naughty_Dog

Players: This is a single player game

You play a father, Joel, whose daughter was killed during the early stages of a deadly fungal outbreak. It’s now 20 years later, and he has clearly suffered from the loss. When Joel is given charge of a girl, Ellie, about the same age his daughter...

Unturned

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Release Date: 08/07/2014

Platforms: Mac, PC, PS4 and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Adventure, Creative, Fighting, Open World, Simulation and Strategy

Developer: @Sdgnelson

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room and up to 100 players online

Unturned is a strategy survival game where you are in a Minecraft and Roblox-style world filled with zombies. You have to carefully explore the world, gather resources and craft weapons. You might go in guns blazing, sneak around making use of...

Plants vs. Zombies (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 8-14 year-olds

Release Date: 04/09/2019

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4, Switch, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Fighting, Shooting and Strategy

Developer: @PopCap

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room and up to 24 players online

Plants vs Zombies Garden Warfare is a series of third-person shooting games about the battle for supremacy between weaponised plants and attacking zombies. It's good for families because the comedic zombies and funny plant powers keep things away from...

Fruit Ninja (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 3-8 year-olds

Release Date: 21/04/2010

Platforms: Amazon Fire, Android, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS

Genres: Action

Developer: @Halfbrick

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room

An array of brightly coloured fruit flies into the screen area and you need to slice each piece in two before it falls to the floor. The technicolour action combines with simple interactive taps and swipes to make it accessible to all ages.

Returnal

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Release Date: 30/04/2021

Platforms: PS5

Genres: Action, Narrative and Shooting

Accessibility: 21 features

Developer: @HouseMarque

Players: This is a single player game

Returnal is a sci-fi shooting game played in repeating rounds that slowly change the world and your character. You are a pilot stranded on a mysterious planet and must investigate and fight through the world to both survive and solve the repeating...

Resident Evil Village (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 22/03/1996, updated in 2021

Platforms: PC, PS3, PS4, PS5, Stadia, Wii, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Genres: Action, Narrative and Puzzle

Accessibility: 19 features

Developer: @CapcomUSA_

Players: You can play this with 6 players online

Resident Evil Village is a survival horror adventure. It follows on the narrative of Resident Evil 7: Biohazard and the first person perspective. As in the other games, you play Ethan Winters who is searching for his kidnapped daughter in a village...

Dysmantle

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 16

Release Date: 06/01/2020

Platforms: Mac and PC

Genres: Action, Adventure, Open World and Strategy

Developer: @10tonsLtd

Players: This is a single player game

Dysmantle is a survival strategy game where you play a character emerging after the apocalypse. The world is now inhabited with dangerous creatures and you only have your bare hands to survive. It's novel because most items in the world can be destroyed...

New Pokemon Snap

Content Rating: PEGI 3

Skill Rating: 5+ year-olds

Release Date: 30/04/2021

Platforms: Switch

Genres: Adventure, Puzzle and Simulation

Accessibility: 21 features

Developer: @NintendoAmerica

Players: This is a single player game

New Pokemon Snap is the latest in the series of Pokemon Snap games. It's a puzzle safari where you are guided through the natural world of Pokemon creatures to take pictures of them in the wild. The aim is to time your photos to capture them in specific...

Ghost Squad

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Release Date: 18/01/2008

Platforms: Wii

Genres: Action, Narrative and Shooting

Accessibility: 18 features

Developer: @Sega

Players: You can play with 4 players in the same room

Ghost Squad is a shooting game where you use a lightgun or Wii Remote for shooting. This was converted from an Arcade game to the Wii (also playable on Wii U) to create a convincing and highly skilled light-gun shooting challenge for up to four players.

Rez Infinite (Series)

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Release Date: 11/01/2002, updated in 2020

Platforms: Android, Oculus, PC, PS2, PS4 and Xbox 360

Genres: Physically Active, Rhythm and Shooting

Accessibility: 24 features

Developer: @Mizuguchitter

Players: This is a single player game

Rez is a shooting game where you fire musical energy rather than bullets. As you guide a figure through the darkness of space you bring down enemies in time with the music. Rez is novel for its use of music and vibration feedback to create a sense of...

Aliens: Fireteam Elite

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Skill Rating: 15+ year-olds

Release Date: 24/08/2021

Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S

Genres: Action, Adventure, Narrative and Shooting

Developer: @ColdIronStudios

Players: You can play this with 3 players online

Aliens: Fireteam Elite is a cooperative shooting game set 23 years after the original films. Unlike the stealthy Alien: Isolation, Fireteam Elite draws on Aliens: Colonial Marines' breathless shooting and racing pulse.

Days Gone

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Release Date: 26/04/2019

Price: 63% off

Platforms: PS4

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fighting, Open World, Role-Playing, Shooting and Simulation

Accessibility: 3 features

Developer: @BendStudio

Players: This is a single player game

Days Gone is a survival adventure game set in a post-pandemic Oregon. You roam an open world pulsing with life (and zombies). It's unusual for its scale and sheer number of enemies. Add to that the changing light and weather and Days Gone creates a...

The Gunstringer

Content Rating: PEGI 12

Release Date: 13/11/2011

Platforms: Xbox 360

Genres: Action, Narrative, Physically Active, Platform, Puzzle and Shooting

Developer: @Twisted_pixel

Players: This is a single player game

The Gunstringer is an Xbox Kinect camera game where you use your body to control a cowboy puppet and shoot the villains by forming a gun with your fingers. You can play with two people working together, with one player controlling the character’s...

Western 1849 Reloaded

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Skill Rating: 10+ year-olds

Release Date: 29/08/2018, updated in 2017

Platforms: PC and Switch

Genres: Action, Physically Active and Shooting

Developer: @NawiaGames

Players: This is a single player game

Western 1849 is a shooting game designed to imitate light-gun games of the 90s. It's a fast shooting gallery through different western locations. The Western 1849 Reloaded version brings it to Switch where it feels at home with Joy-Con motion-aiming to...

Zelter

Content Rating: PEGI 16

Release Date: 22/10/2020

Platforms: PC

Genres: Action, Open World, Role-Playing and Shooting

Accessibility: 12 features

Players: This is a single player game

Zelter is a zombie survival game. But you aren't only defending yourself from the oncoming hordes of zombies but developing a safe haven for a new life like Stardew Valley.

Dead Containment

Expected Content Rating: PEGI 16

Skill Rating: 14+ year-olds

Release Date: 01/11/2021

Platforms: PC

Genres: Action and Shooting

Accessibility: 31 features

Developer: @GrumpDogGames

Players: You can play this with 2 players online

Dead Containment is a shooting game where you only control the aiming. It's inspired by on-rails shooting games found in 90's arcades, played with light guns. You use your weapons to fend off the undead as they race towards you in city locations.

Child of Eden

Content Rating: PEGI 7

Release Date: 17/06/2011

Platforms: PS3, Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Genres: Action, Physically Active, Rhythm and Shooting

Developer: @Mizuguchitter

Players: This is a single player game

Child of Eden is a dance and motion game that uses the Xbox Kinect camera. You use your body to shoot and move. Rather than fruit, however, here it’s beautiful firework-style visuals and music that are the challenge.

Dead Space: Extraction

Content Rating: PEGI 18

Skill Rating: 15+ year-olds

Release Date: 24/09/2009, updated in 2011

Platforms: PS3 and Wii

Genres: Narrative, Puzzle and Shooting

Developer: @EA

Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room

Dead Space: Extraction is a shooting game where you only control the aiming, like a light gun game. It's a spin-off prequel from the main Dead Space series and follows survivors of a mining colony as it is overrun by deadly monsters.

Games Like The House of the Dead Based on Genre

These are games of a similar genre mix to The House of the Dead. This includes games from the Action and Shooting genres. We pick out games of a similar PEGI rating to further hone these generated suggestions.
 

The House of the Dead is in These Lists

In addition to the similar games listed above, which have been linked to this game specifically in the database, you may find games with a similar theme to The House of the Dead in the following lists:

Work Together to Thrive

Play is more fun when it’s shared. This is as true about video games as it is when building a massive sandcastle on the beach or playing hopscotch in the playground. Finding brilliant team games is a great way to involve more people in the fun and share the experience together as a family. More experienced players naturally help novices contribute to the team.
Along with teamwork, the games I’ve selected here use the fact that players are all sitting next to each other.

These are games where players take on different roles in order to complete unusual tasks. The fun is often as much about the conversations (and arguments) that happen in the room as what’s happening on the screen.
 
PixArk
PEGI Rating 12 for PixArk
Ink
PEGI Rating 3 for Ink
Pode
PEGI Rating 3 for Pode
Haven
PEGI Rating 12 for Haven
Nira
Lego
PEGI Rating 7 for Lego

On-Rails Shooters

Video games are often enjoyable because they task you with juggling multiple responsibilities at the same time (not unlike other parts of life). However, there are some games that focus on just one aspect of play.

Shooting games usually require you to navigate through the world as well as dealing with targeting and shooting enemies. On-Rails Shooters and Light-Gun games take over the movement and navigation side of things for you. You are left with the task of targeting and shooting the enemies as they come into view.

These can be classic shooting games, tailored for an on-rails experience. Sometimes a stand-alone game, and sometimes a special edition of an existing franchise. Games like Point Blank, Until Dawn Rush of Blood, House of the Dead, Dead Containment and Dead Space Extraction.

This can also be games with shooting style targeting that aren't specifically about shooting. Games like Child of Eden, Rez Infinite or New Pokemon Snap. Or games that use targets as part of a skill challenge like Osu!, Pianista or Elite Beat Agents.
 

Branching Stories With Multiple Endings

All games offer you agency. You can win or lose. You can complete them or stop at any time. But there are some games that offer a story that genuinely branches. Where you end up will be different from other players. This not only makes your actions really matter but also gives you a reason to play them again.

Setting aside games that evolve through simulation, or games where once you die it's game over, these branching narrative games tell a story that ends in a certain way because of the choices you made.
 
Ord
PEGI Rating 3 for Ord
Pyre
PEGI Rating 7 for Pyre

PlayStation Move Games

The PlayStation Move controllers look similar to the Wii Remote, although black and with more buttons and a rubber light-up bulb. They offer a different and intuitive way to control compatible games.

Although it's possible to use them without a camera, best results require a PlayStation Eye or a PlayStation VR camera. This increases the fidelity of tracking and enables other interactions.
 

Persevere After Losing

Video games where you adventure into a harsh setting, try your hardest to survive and slowly develop your abilities but then inevitably die are often called Rogue-likes. This is because one of the first games that offered this style of play was called Rogue.

These are interesting games for families, not only because their difficult nature leads to shorter sessions, but also because they foster perseverance and coping with losing. After dying you are sent back to some sort of central village where you can choose upgrades for your next attempt. The incentive to play again once you have been killed is usually that you start with some more equipment or skills.

In this way, by belligerence and a slowly learned understanding of how the game world works and how best to survive, you incrementally get a bit further each time you play. Here are some really good roguelike games for families:
 

Reimagined Retro Classics

Growing up playing video games creates a strong sentimental connection to the sounds, sights and feeling those experiences gave you. Returning to these games in adulthood is a un diversion, but often the experience doesn't live up to the memory.

The games in this list have been recreated (sometimes officially and sometimes unofficially) by developers who love and respect the original while also wanting to update it for modern technology and players.
 
Horace
PEGI Rating 12 for Horace
198x
PEGI Rating 12 for 198x

Light Gun Shooting

Not all video games are about shooting, is something we often say to parents. But also, not all shooting games are the same. As you can see in the related lists here there are many ways these games offer competition, collaboration and a challenge to players.

On-rails shooting is one niche where you don't control the movement and instead are just tasked with targeting. This may seem like a niche, but there is a smaller niche within this of Light Gun shooting games. These not only task you with just targeting enemies, but require you to do this with a pointing device similar to holding a real gun.

Light Gun shooting games game to popularity in the 90's arcades. These offered big cabinets sporting brightly coloured large plastic guns. Time Crisis, House of the Dead, Operation Wolf and Virtua Cop were popular examples.

These games have become harder to find, but recently are seeing a resurgence. On a console you need a way to target the screen:
  • Motion Controller: Games use the Wii Remote, Switch Joy-Con and PlayStation Move controllers in place of a gun,
  • Mouse Controls: Some games offer mouse targeting as an alternative.
  • Kinect: Some games used the Kinect camera or similar devices to let you shoot at the screen with your body.
  • Light-Guns: You can purchase a light gun (such as the Sinden) for use with PC games.

 

Mechanical Challenge

Games offer us challenges on many levels. When someone plays a game too much it’s easy to think they are taking an easy route to something entertaining, like junk food. But video games are generally hard work. It takes time to understand their systems, mechanics, objectives and worlds.

There are a small group of games that hone this challenge down to the mechanics of moving around the environment. Whereas many games simplify getting around, these games make the complexity and depth of their movement systems part of the joy of playing them.

Rather than relying on the stats of your character or player, you have to execute the moves yourself with timing proficiency and instinct. Rather than offering assistance, these games leave you to it. Whether you rise through the league tables, or just improve compared to your family, the satisfaction or getting to grips with something so monumentally challenging is really satisfying.

This might be understanding how the propulsion of your car lets you take to the air and hit a perfect shot in Rocket League. Or, perhaps, it’s using the limited running and jumping slightly better than other players to get a win in Fall Guys. Maybe it’s learning the perfect combination of angles and trajectories in Videoball. Or it could be learning the complex move lists in a game like Street Fighter.

These games all have in common, a complex control system that can be put to use in imaginative and creative ways to get the edge over your opponents.
 
Arms
PEGI Rating 12 for Arms
Sifu
Pyre
PEGI Rating 7 for Pyre

Motion Plus Wii Games

The Wii created a new genre of motion-controlled video games. But it's initially Wii Remote controller was a little limited. Nintendo shortly brought out addition that added more one-to-one detection of movement: Motion Plus.

You could purchase the Motion Plus block and plug it into existing Wii Remote controllers, or purchase updated Wii Remote controllers that included Motion Plus. These newer controllers are indicated by the Motion Plus nomenclature on the bottom. This nuanced motion-controlled continued on to the Wii U in games that used the Wii Remote controls and needed extra fidelity for the player.

Wii U Party minigames, Nintendo Land, Table Tennis and Archery in Wii Sports Resort as well as the exploration and combat in Zelda Skyward Sword each stand out as really good use of this extended Motion Plus controls.
 

Play And Connect

Online games are great because you have a world of opponents to take on and defeat (or be defeated by). But beyond the competitive element of these games are often a strong sense of community and camaraderie.

We’ve partnered with NHS's Every Mind Matters to bring you some games that help you connect with friends and family while you look after your mental health. Players enjoy making new connections in these games, as well as connecting with wider family and friends. Listen to the chatter while children play these games, and you hear as much talk about homework, television, YouTube or what's happening in the world as who to shoot in the head next.
 
Haven
PEGI Rating 12 for Haven


Image of the cover of the hardback edition of the Taming Gaming book  by Andy Robertson Image 311 Thank you for using our resource, supported by AskAboutGames, ParentZone and PlayAbility Initiative. We are editorially independent, written by parents for parents, but welcome sponsorship, partnership and suggestions. Email our editor for details on these opportunities.

The information on this database is designed to support and complement the in-depth discussion and advice about video game "addiction", violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. If you have any concerns or questions in these areas, email our editor who is quick to respond or can arrange for a one-to-one conversation.

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