Analog horror is a niche horror genre that employs technology and media from the 80s and 90s to elicit fear, paranoia, and/or dread. Analog horror clips are frequently played out of order, appearing normal and somewhat ordinary at first before becoming more and more unsettling with time. Existential dread is also a common emotion that accompanies analog horror, basing the piece in enough realism that it feels nearly reasonable and familiar – perhaps even nostalgic in some ways – but diverging in disturbing and even paranormal ways.
Unlike the early YouTube horror series that mainly dealt with cursed internet URLs or possessed Nintendo game cartridges, the following 25 Analog Horror Series tackle existential dread and creatures from other dimensions. If you’re one of those people who love scary movies and find modern Hollywood horror trite, this is the list you’ve been waiting for.
Here’s the list of the 25 Most Terrifying Analog Horror Series on the Internet.
Eventide Media Center
Some of the scariest movies include alien invasions. Similarly, many analog horror stories revolve around the idea of some type of invasion or other appearance of dreadful beasts in a specific area. One of the most mysterious is Eventide Media Center, possibly due to its relative novelty (the first video was released in 2020). Compared to previous series that consist of different clips that gradually blend together, Eventide Media Center’s videos appear disconnected from each other, like any other classical horror anthology.
Of course, there are puzzle pieces and bizarre sequences involving things like animals rising from the ground and water, an apparently demonic town excavation operation, not to mention super beings that own televisions. Although the creator removed the series from Youtube, the archived videos are still available online.
No Through Road
No Through Road is a horror series created in 2009 by Steven Chamberlain, a 17-year-old from Stevenage, Hertfordshire. It follows four teens as they drive home on a real-life private ‘no-go road’ at the main entrance to Broomhall Farm. They get locked in a space-time loop, encountering the same two road signs marking the junction between Bennington and Wotton over miles of marginal space terrain.
A creepy-as-heck-threatening character appears when they try to manipulate the loop back into the archway. Other story elements include all the event footage seized from MI6 and posted on YouTube. No Through Road has a cult following and is regarded as one of the cornerstones of the analog horror genre.
Horror stories involving cursed objects have been around for a very long time. Some became famous, such as Koji Suzuki’s novel Ring series and its film, comics, video game, and other adaptations. They inspired a slew of creepypasta horror stories, including cursed Spongebob episodes like Squidward’s Suicide, online memes like Smiledog and video games. Ben Drowned is a tale about a haunted copy of “The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask.”
The game’s already melancholy and frightening atmosphere, combined with the distorted music and glitchy movements, made it a compelling early example of the genre. The story became remarkably influential, spawning the GIFfany character in Gravity Falls, who in turn inspired Monika in Doki Doki Literature Club.
Super Mario 64: CLASSIFIED
The Nintendo 64 title Super Mario 64 has sired several bizarre urban legends, including that each cartridge is personalized to an individual user. One person’s copy of the game always performs better because it was custom-made for them. Although it is satire at its best, Greenio’s YouTube series imagines what it might be like if it were true. The episodes take the form of VHS tapes of a broken demo build of Super Mario 64.
As the videos progress, it becomes clear that Nintendo hid a very dark secret about the creation of the game, a secret that could potentially threaten every single person on Earth. Despite being satirical, the series is unsettling and disturbing at the same time. The show ended on January 20, 2023, so viewers can now enjoy all the episodes on YouTube
Petscop isn’t a textbook example of analog horror, but it has many of the genre’s hallmarks and helped to popularize a new wave of retro-inspired digital short films. Petscop is a compilation of twenty-four videos that appear to be a playthrough of an unreleased PlayStation game.
It steadily combines nostalgia with terror in a way that burrows in the brains of anyone who fondly remembers ’90s gaming. Of course, this series is much more than a let’s play parody. It contains heavy themes of abuse, neglect, and vengeance; some believe it is an allegory for the exceedingly controversial process known as rebirthing therapy.
Mystery Flesh Pit National Park
Mystery Flesh Pit National Park started as a worldbuilding post on Reddit that now finds its home on a Tumblr blog and a smattering of YouTube videos, a great example of an analog horror series that manages to span mediums.
Mystery Flesh Pit National Park details the story of the creation of a National Park in the continental US. But it is not just any park. The park itself was housed inside a massive underground beast of unknown origins and scale before a catastrophic incident in 2007 caused the park to shut down.
This series takes care to build up its world and create a detached, almost banal sense of normality when it comes time to deliver the actual horror, which only serves to elevate the situation to the audience. The series is lighter on video mediums, making it an excellent choice for viewers looking for a series they can read and interact with at their own pace.
Local 58, like others in the subgenre, tells the story of a strange and horrifying invasion from the perspective of a local television channel. Although it isn’t very long, this series leaves a tremendous impression on the viewer due to the near-jumpscare intensity of its darker content and the wonderfully diverse mediums it combines.
While the Lovecraftian Cosmic Horror subgenre is undeniably popular, Local 58 separates itself by showing just enough to terrify viewers while keeping them intrigued by the unknown. Even though the risk isn’t explicitly stated, the repeated warnings to avoid looking at the night sky are enough to make anybody uncomfortable.
CH/SS might be one of the lesser-known entries on today’s list – but we are here to change that. The series appeared shortly after the release of Local 58, and its creator remains largely unknown – but it is a masterful example of the analog horror genre. The videos include informative clips and ads for a government-sponsored mental health organization from the 1980s (or thereabouts). They quickly get more creepy as they hint at deception, espionage, and paranormal forces in the form of mysterious Russian dialogue and supernatural creatures.
What we loved about the series is that it included alternate reality elements like downloadable links and in-character Twitter accounts; however, even without them, the videos are a scary experience, and it is very hard not to get pulled into the void.
The Backrooms began as a creepypasta after a snapshot of a pale, yellow hallway was shared as a picture that felt “off”. According to the lore, the Backrooms is a presumably unending labyrinth that people can “noclip” into in specific parts of the globe. Kane Pixels’ YouTube series of the same name is one of the larger projects to make use of The Backrooms.
The videos are mostly made up of found footage from those unfortunate enough to have ended up in The Backrooms, and they also include archival data from the clandestine Async Foundation’s research on the occurrence.
ECKVA is a garbled sequence of recordings taken by someone known as S. H. Hawkins and is said to be a sequel to Marble Hornets, an internet Alternate Reality Gaming series that began in 2009. The horrific and mysterious video clips are claimed to have emerged from the now-abandoned ECKVA broadcasting studio. Much of ECKVA, like other analog horror series, is ambiguous and difficult to decipher.
The main draw is its distinctive presentation, with episodes occasionally deviating from the typical fuzzy faux-VHS style to feature high-definition found footage type material or short segments of animation.
If you follow Gooseworx, you will know that they are best known for their bright and stylish animations. In 2018, the channel’s creators stunned their subscribers with a bizarre video named The Blue Channel, which seemed to be a clip of a television broadcasting nothing but static and the color blue. Things became much stranger in 2021 when the video Blue_Channel: Thalasin was released.
The video, a parody of a very old paid-programming type commercial, is about the drug Thalasin, which allows its users to deliver any emotion on demand. The video goes from weird to scary at the speed of light when we see a version of the medicine that can “expand the emotional palette.” We believe it is worth a watch. We’ve also come to believe that some emotions are overrated.
I Am Sophie
Young, wealthy, and powerful. These three phrases sum up the young influencer’s life, from private jets to costly automobiles to her signature party lifestyle. Sophie distinguishes itself with incredibly high production values and excellent editing. The plot is so intricate that it requires a 200+ page Google Doc to outline the events.
But beware, all is not as it seems, and the story quickly gets scary. I Am Sophie was featured at the Unnamed Footage Festival when it was shown in its entirety, and it led hundreds of fans down the rabbit hole of the channel and the chronology above. Trust us when we say that it gets really creepy!
The Walten Files
Diehard fans of the Five Nights at Freddy’s video game franchise may find this horror series similar to the video games. Martin Walls’ YouTube channel, The Walten Files, is concentrated around Bon’s Burgers. This children’s restaurant, similar to Chuck E Cheese, boasts a roster of acting animatronics, at least until it has to close due to an undisclosed incident.
The number of mysteries grows, with one of the restaurant’s founders missing, along with his children and spouse, and the other founder being accused of conspiring against him. The actual horror factor comes from the crew of violent, seemingly possessed animatronics.
Cornerfolk is a single-episode example of analog horror about a guy who believes weird entities use his home as a type of nexus when crossing between dimensions. He claims these individuals are the only species capable of this type of interdimensional travel. Still, his fixation increases to the point where he tries to accompany them to their “corner world.” Cornerfolk is far from frightening, but it is an excellent example of the genre’s originality and versatility.
Cornerfolk is little more than a slideshow, yet it’s innovative enough to keep viewers interested even when the primary subject is something as unremarkable as the corners of a person’s house.
Harmony & Horror
From the corners of your house to something truly terrifying. What makes Harmony and Horror so frightening? Well, it is inspired by the works of Squimpus McGrimpus, and instead of murderous animatronics, it focuses on demonic clowns and mysterious dolls.
Oh, the possibilities… This online series documents a sequence of strange, incomprehensible events involving the allegedly joyful and innocent icons of children’s entertainment. Its unsettling content is set in a seemingly innocuous world, leaving viewers with lingering anxiety and dread.
Surreal Broadcast, like Eventide Media Center and Gemini Home Entertainment, is a collection of television programs with something unusual happening in the background. What’s intriguing about this is that the videos are labeled according to different years, allowing viewers to put together a timeline while they watch.
As a fair warning, arachnophobes should maybe avoid this one. However, Surreal Broadcast has everything that makes for a terrific horror story. There’s an isolated county with a peculiar past, monsters who reportedly feed on fear, and a typical troubling cult devoted to a being believed to have descended from the sky.
Are you one of those people that keep a dream journal? The Somnium Dreamviewer is a product of Somnium Technologies. First appearing in January 2022, the Somnium Dreamweaver lets its users print images straight from their dreams. You simply attach the device to your head before falling asleep and print the photographs when you wake up.
Although the technology is amazing for the 1980s, it has intrinsic flaws, and the succeeding videos show how Somnium Technologies operates, inducts its new staff, and deals with legal action related to their technology (hint, it causes horrific nightmares!) Suffice it to say Somnium Technologies, its machine, and its adverse effects bring more than meets the eye. It might be healthier to just stick to journaling.
The Tangi Virus
The Tangi Virus is relatively straightforward: a scientist documents her investigation of an unusual and fast-evolving bacterium discovered in the water of several nearby lakes. She attempts to raise the alarm, only to find out that her attempts to call the CDC were unsuccessful because the local authorities didn’t want to scare away tourists from the area and miss out on that delicious sweet lake money.
Some might argue that this series isn’t as frightening as others, but fear is subjective, and we found something about this particular series, especially disturbing. It’s gloomy and nihilistic, yet utterly plausible in portraying the wealthy and influential few sacrificing the many for-profits – something we’ve already witnessed during the COVID pandemic.
Gemini Home Entertainment
Gemini Home Entertainment, launched in late 2019, is nearly beyond explanation. The series recounts a horrifying tale of parasitic human-like animals, alien invaders, and cosmic horrors well beyond human comprehension, and is almost as well-known as Local 58, the series frequently associated with kicking off the analog horror craze.
Gemini Home Entertainment, which appears to be a collection of VHS tapes, is uncannily accurate, and anguish follows anyone who might be tricked into believing they are actual films. The series ended in 2021, and it’s a must-see for fans of lo-fi horror.
The Monument Mythos
Unlike other series where the horrors are primarily isolated in small towns or haunted restaurants, The Monument Mythos spends its time all across America. The series depicts an alternate history of the United States, allowing the audience to see what the country might have looked like if James Dean had been elected President, for example. However, The Monument Mythos’ most fascinating and horrifying aspects are the real national landmarks themselves.
The series examines landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty and the Lincoln Memorial, giving each a stranger, darker side. Not only that, but there appear to be fragments of a massive conspiracy that seems to extend all the way to the top.
Winter of ‘83
Lewis Lovhaug released a series of terrifying videos in April 2022. Winter of ’83 chronicles the demise of an entire town’s population during the winter of 1983. After the snow melts, only human bones, damaged structures, and a strange collection of audio and video tapes remain. The videos include advertisements, TV signal hijackings, council meetings, and amateur footage of residents falling victim to something terrifying that stalks the town from the surrounding snow.
Even though the series contains primary characters and a story arc which can make it less mysterious than some of the other items on our list, the weird messages, visual distortions, and insane conspiracies will have you on the edge of your seat until the very end. It is definitely one of our favorites.
The Smile Tapes
Some argue that scary faces in analog horror are overused. That is a reasonable assessment, especially when it comes to spooky face jumpscares. However, while analog horror does not require the eerie, scary face or the jumpscare to be effective, it may still be employed to great effect, as The Smile Tapes demonstrates. Beginning with a frightening PSA about a new medicine that causes the affected to behave violently, the series follows many cases, starting with two young guys examined at the hospital as the disease worsens.
Needless to say, it’s not pretty. Consider your body rotting away and your facial muscles trapped into a grotesque grin. It’s excruciatingly painful, but you can’t stop smiling. And even if you aren’t unfortunate enough to get infected, you may come into contact with the infected, who has tremendous strength and a mindless bloodthirst. Think World War Z zombies, but stronger and smiling while they’re ripping you apart.
This House Has People In It
This House Has People In It, a 2016 avant-garde horror film created in part by Adult Swim, is an esoteric short film about a sequence of strange incidents that occur during what should be a routine birthday party in a suburban household. Most of the strangeness occurs in the shape of blink-and-you’ll-miss-it Easter eggs. However, even the most inexperienced viewers will find the film terrifying.
The film, which purports to be footage collected by a home surveillance system, directs visitors to the AB Surveillance Solutions website, which links to a larger Alternate Reality Game. While This House Has People In It isn’t generally mentioned as a work of analog horror, it paved the way for later viral YouTube.
Hi I’m Mary Mary
Hi I’m Mary Mary one of the more abstract analog horror projects, set out to be very different from the typical found footage-type channel from the very start. Rather than a collection of clips and weird recordings from various people, Hi I’m Mary Mary focuses on one girl’s battle against suffocating fear. The plot revolves around Mary, who awakens in a seemingly familiar house with no idea how she got there and no way out.
While that is unusual enough, she is visited at night by a slew of terrifying monsters, each one uniquely harmful. These videos, like many other horror stories with a serious underlying topic, can be both terrifying and emotional; as such, we must mention that viewer discretion is advised.
The Mandela Catalogue
Landing at number one on our list today, The Mandela Catalogue, a relatively new series created by Alex Kister, gained a massive following shortly after its release in 2021. The series covers the discovery of an invasion of hostile organisms that, much like in Gemini Home Entertainment, look a lot like humans. However, these creatures, known as Alternates, have impossible physical characteristics, which makes them all the more terrifying.
The series reveals that the Alternates have been here since Biblical times when they appeared as “angels” to individuals such as Maria and Noah. Though some may find it offensive, the combination of horror and religious elements makes this series incredibly creepy, and it will leave you feeling hollowed out for a long, long time to come.