Let's face it horror fans, this spooky genre isn't always known for giving us the sunniest of conclusions. Sure, there is often a silver lining, but in the process, friends have died, people are left traumatized, and sometimes our heroes don't make it out at all.
However, there are some games that have decided to leave their fans on a lighter note. These games reward the player for having fought through the horror and provide them with a much-needed sense of resolution.
10 Silent Hill
As dismal and dark as Silent Hill may be, it does include a happy ending as one of the options. Given the protagonist of Silent Hill 3, we know that ending is, to some degree, canon. That isn't meant to be an inflammatory remark, Silent Hill superfans. The bad ending is arguably more poignant, and it can still be true for your playthrough, but Silent Hill 3 definitely carries on with the timeline where the good ending happens.
After experiencing numerous horrors, Harry escapes Silent Hill with his reborn daughter, having defeated the cult that attempted to use her to birth a god. If you want things to be even happier, Cybil can survive alongside Harry if you get the happiest ending. It may not be the Jacob's Ladder-esque ending that ties the thematic elements all together so perfectly, but it is nice to be rewarded with a bit of happiness after all the misery.
9 Haunting Grounds
Haunting Grounds is a spiritual successor to the Clock Tower games. However, unlike those games, where it is hard to call any of the endings particularly happy, Haunting Grounds ends with our protagonist, and her dog, walking away in one piece.
There is even an ending where the first (misguided) antagonist, who is spared, pays his respect to her before she leaves. It is a satisfying and triumphant end to her quest.
8 Parasite Eve
Although the standard ending of Parasite Eve cannot be said to be good or bad, there is a hidden ending that can only be accomplished in New Game Plus that sees Aya have her body return to normal and allows her to gain a sense of closure over the death of her sister.
This special ending isn't canon to the rest of the series as Aya keeps her powers in the sequel, but it is still nice to have an ending that gives her a final resolution.
While Koudelka's ending does see James sacrificing himself, it is a heroic and honourable ending for the character. Edward and Koudelka, on the other hand, have grown together over the course of the game. While they do go their separate ways, the tone is hopeful as Koudelka believes they will be reunited.
Moreover, a family's haunted past has been put to rest, and the spirits of the angry dead have been soothed, allowing there to finally be peace in the Nemeton Mansion. Koudelka is a haunting experience but at least it's is one with an uplifting ending.
6 Resident Evil 2 Remake
While the first Resident Evil title seemingly ended on a bit of a sombre note (none of the people in that helicopter looked particularly happy), Resident Evil 2 has our protagonists escaping alongside Sherry and feeling pretty good about being alive.
There's even a little light flirtation going on between Leon and Claire. We are going with the remake here as it is largely the same as the original's ending, but with a little more lighthearted dialogue. This ending requires completing the game twice, but it is well worth the effort.
5 Alien: Isolation
Amanda Ripley goes through a lot in Alien: Isolation. In the end, she sacrifices herself in order to protect the whole of mankind. However, when the light hits her helmet at the very end, it's clear that she will be rescued.
She even got to hear the message her mother left her and learned that she may still be alive. All-in-all, Ripley gets to walk away from the whole fiasco not only being victorious but also having achieved everything she set out to do. By horror game standards, that's a pretty big win.
4 Sweet Home
A fantastic unreleased JRPG horror title for the Famicom, Sweet Home is one of the best games that never made it to North America for the NES.
However, there is a complete translation of this absolute gem still floating around and it does, in fact, have a rather happy ending (depending on your ability to keep everyone alive). Everyone survives and you exorcise the ghost of Mamiya, who is able to ascend and leave behind her tremendous grief.
3 Revelations: Persona
Over the years, the horror aspect of the Persona games has been gradually diminished. However, in the first few games in the series, the horror was front and center (and we aren't just talking about the translation). Ultimately it is revealed that one of the protagonists in the game, Maki, has inadvertently been linked to the chaos that has consumed the city of Mikage-cho.
While part of her materialized as a healthy version of herself (she is generally a sickly person), another aspect of her seeks to cause destruction and devastation. The party is able to reunite all these fragmented parts of Maki and she emerges whole again (and free of illness). It's a happy ending where everyone gets to walk away, some better off than they had been before this whole mess started.
2 Amnesia: The Dark Descent
For a Lovecraftian game, this one has two pretty positive endings. One has Daniel walking away after having killed Alexander. His final narration is oddly triumphant and he appears to have rid himself of the shadow.
The other has Daniel sacrificing himself, but being rescued in some ambiguous manner by Aggripa and Weyer, possibly being saved from the eternal darkness, but maybe even being brought to another world. Either way, Daniel has a number of positive endings (depending on your perspective), especially given regrettable past actions.
1 Fatal Frame (Xbox Version)
So, the different endings in Fatal Frame all have a sense of bleakness to them. Either Mafuyu stays behind to comfort Kirie, sacrificing himself in the process, or Kirie's spirit is left alone for all eternity, acting as a seal for the gateway. Arguably, the ending where she is comforted is the better one, but both are notably sombre.
However, there is an ending that is exclusive to the Xbox version. Here, Kirie stays behind but is reunited with the spirit of her lover. This may be a little too saccharine for some, but it is nice to not always have to end things on the dourest note possible.
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