Spooky’s Jumpscare Mansion is a pretty unique horror game. If someone were to tell me that they wanted recommendations of horror games similar to Resident Evil, I could easily come up with several similar games in aesthetic, gameplay, and story. If someone asked me for a list of games similar to FNAF, I could easily list a bunch of FNAF clones and similar style games. I say this not to put those games down, just to emphasize the point that I can’t do that so easily with Spooky’s Jumpscare Mansion. There definitely are games like it, but I can’t think of any at the moment, and I’m currently on a quest to find similar games. (Maybe Sunshine Manor will be one?)
Spooky’s Jumpscare Mansion is actually pretty simple at its core. Playing from a first person perspective, you must navigate 1,000 rooms in a haunted castle. There are very controls, just your moving buttons (and one to run), an interact button, and a button to swing your ax when you get one late in the game. A number on the upper left corner of the screen tells you your current room number. There are safe spaces (marked by a purple cross in an elevator) once every fifty, then every hundred rooms.
The aesthetic of the game is cute and charming, and at first many players think this won’t be that scary at all. My favorite section of the castle in the main game is a sinister restaurant with Arby’s vibes. But slowly, things get scarier bit by bit as you encounter stranger and stranger things, and yet the charm of the game never vanishes. You also discover notes from an adventure loving romanticist, who you’ll be rooting for and wondering what happened to her. There are notes by many others too.
You are guided by a cute blue ghost girl. She’s Spooky, and occasionally comes in to give you a little encouragement, and sometimes she’ll have a little surprise for you that you may or may not like. Her backstory is connected to the story of this castle, something that you uncover more of in the DLC’s.
The two DLC’s are the Dollhouse and Karamari Hospital. It is unknown if the protagonist in these expansions is the same protagonist as in the main game (but I think this is unlikely considering how the main game ends) or if they are two or one new characters. Karamari Hospital is in my opinion the scariest of the three games – it is also where you can find my favorite character: Ume Ito. (She is pictured at the top of this article.) Saving her was something I became 100% committed to, but I won’t say more so as to avoid spoilers. The Dollhouse brings the story to a close with the true good ending, and it’s heartwarming.
There is also an endless mode and an upcoming customize your own mansion. While I would be excited for a sequel, I am also happy with the ending that Dollhouse.
Spooky’s Jumpscare Mansion is on Steam now. If you haven’t played it and if this sounded interesting to you, I’m sure you’ll love Spooky’s Jumpscare Mansion.
Neira is the author of YA fantasy/horror novel Raven’s Dream.