Zombies have terrorized the world of video games for decades, sinking their rotting teeth into our fragile human brains and clawing at the insides of our consoles. In this list, we’re bringing the best zombie games of all time back from the dead; these games took the undead genre and reanimated it with fresh gameplay, dramatic stories, and unforgettable chills. From iconic series like Resident Evil to visceral, action-packed titles like Left 4 Dead, this collection of games truly defines why we love to be scared.
As we shuffle through this list of decomposing delights, let’s pay homage to the developers who skillfully honed their craft and turned our nightmares into adrenaline-fueled gaming experiences. So grab your supplies and steel your nerves, because this horde of undead masterpieces is about to descend on your screen. It’s time to dive into the world of the best zombie games ever made.
The Last of Us
Set in a post-apocalyptic world devastated by a fungal infection, the game follows protagonists Joel and Ellie as they traverse through zombie-like infected humans called "Clickers" and other hostile survivors. The game's intense storytelling, character development, and emotionally charged atmosphere have garnered widespread acclaim, selling over 20 million copies across its two main entries.
Telltale's The Walking Dead (2012-2019)
Based on the popular comic book series, this episodic adventure game follows the story of various survivors in a world overrun by zombies. The game is known for its choice-driven narrative, where players' decisions have lasting consequences on the story and characters. The emotional storytelling, memorable characters, and immersive gameplay have made the series a critical and commercial success, selling millions of copies and winning numerous awards.
Call of Duty: Zombies (2008-)
As a popular game mode within the Call of Duty series, Zombies features wave-based survival gameplay where players must fend off increasingly difficult hordes of undead. The mode is known for its deep lore, hidden Easter eggs, and a variety of weapons and power-ups. Its cooperative gameplay and addictive progression system have contributed to the mode's success and popularity within the Call of Duty community.
Left 4 Dead series (2008-2009)
This cooperative first-person shooter pits a group of four survivors against hordes of zombies called the "Infected" in various apocalyptic scenarios. The game's dynamic AI system, known as the "Director," keeps the gameplay fresh and unpredictable, tailoring the experience to the players' performance. The emphasis on teamwork and replayability has made the series popular, selling over 11 million copies.
State of Decay series (2013-)
This third-person open-world survival game tasks players with managing a community of survivors in a zombie apocalypse. The game's emphasis on base-building, resource management, and permadeath mechanics create a tense and immersive experience. The series has found success with its unique blend of gameplay elements, selling over 5 million copies.
Plants vs. Zombies series (2009-)
This tower defense game features a unique twist, with players using a variety of plants to defend their garden against waves of cartoonish zombies. The game's charming art style, humor, and strategic gameplay have made it a hit, with the series selling over 11 million copies and spawning multiple sequels and spin-offs.
In this open-world action-adventure game, players control Deacon St. John, a bounty hunter navigating a post-apocalyptic world overrun by zombie-like creatures called "Freakers." The game features a dynamic weather system, day-night cycle, and a focus on crafting and stealth. The engaging narrative, expansive world, and thrilling action sequences have contributed to the game's success, selling over 5 million copies.
Dead Rising series (2006-)
Set in various locations, such as shopping malls and cities, players control photojournalist Frank West as he battles through hordes of zombies while uncovering the truth behind the outbreaks. The series is known for its open-world sandbox gameplay, creative weapon crafting, and time-sensitive mission structure. The unique blend of humor and action has made the franchise successful, with over 13 million copies sold.
In this open-world first-person survival game, players navigate a zombie-infested city using parkour and crafting makeshift weapons. The dynamic day-night cycle adds an extra layer of tension, with the zombies becoming more aggressive and dangerous after dark. The combination of innovative gameplay mechanics, immersive world-building, and a robust crafting system has resulted in over 17 million copies sold.
Resident Evil series (1996-)
This survival horror franchise is known for its slow-paced, atmospheric gameplay and deep narrative. Set in various locations, such as Raccoon City and the Spencer Mansion, players must navigate through zombie-infested environments and uncover the sinister Umbrella Corporation's secrets. The series' emphasis on tension, puzzle-solving, and limited resources has made it a staple in the genre, selling over 110 million copies worldwide.
7 Days to Die
This open-world survival horror game combines elements of first-person shooters, tower defense, and role-playing games. Players must scavenge for resources, build defenses, and survive against relentless zombie hordes. The game's sandbox gameplay, crafting system, and procedurally generated worlds have made it popular among fans of survival games, with over 12 million copies sold.
Dead Island series (2011-)
Set on a tropical island resort during a zombie outbreak, players must scavenge for resources, craft weapons, and battle hordes of the undead. The game features a heavy emphasis on melee combat and character progression, with four different playable characters. The series' unique setting, cooperative gameplay, and RPG elements have made it popular among fans, selling over 11 million copies.