Portal 2 is a marvelous little co-op game that is sure to make you and your buddy close friends. Well, you could also get extremely mad at each other and quickly realize that your friend probably has a jar of chunky peanut butter in their head instead of a brain. You see, Portal 2 is a co-op puzzle game that forces both players to solve complex problems together. This can lead to some very rewarding moments with your friend, but it mostly leads to a lot of screaming until someone has a mental break down and moves away. Deep down, though, isn’t that what friendship is all about?
Rock Band gives you the chance to live the life of a rockstar, but without all the crippling vices! What’s more fun than rocking out on your own, however, is grabbing your friends and cruising the world. With a surprisingly rewarding tour system, as well as the fun of jamming out to great tunes with your friends, Rock Band creates a truly one of a kind co-op experience. Sadly though, even in virtual reality the bassist is still treated like a glorified coat rack.
In terms of modern beat-em-ups, Dynasty Warriors is slowly becoming the king. Although criticized for simply being the same game with each new release, avid fans will always come back. The Co-Op aspect is what truly takes the feudal Chinese cake, however, as the only thing more fun then tearing a bloody swath through China, is teaming up with a buddy. With the conquest game mode you team up, level up, and slowly take over the country. It’s truly a great experience where the body count is second only to the smile count.
Gears of War
Gears of War is a brutal, bloody, and fairly unique experience in gaming. It has an engrossing story, gritty visuals, and so much gore it gives Quentin Tarantino a run for his money. The only thing that could make this gore-fest even more fun? Slaughtering countless hordes of enemies with your best buddy. Crack open your drink of choice, rev up your chain saws, and leave a bloody path of true “bro-mance.” “All aboard the Cole Train, baby!”
TowerFall Ascension is a light in the darkness in the modern world of couch Co-Op gaming. With its fluid controls, challenging levels, and gorgeous design, TowerFall Ascension is a blast in Co-Op history. It’s a true team game that makes players be aware of each other, as well as everything else on the screen. Creating a tense atmosphere that leaves you incredibly satisfied when you win, or determined when you fail. And you will fail a lot, by the way.
Time Crisis has been a staple in arcade shooters since arcades were still relevant. With its fluid controls, absolutely insane bosses, and a cast of characters that belong in a great action flick. The console ports brought these games home and included the most important feature, Co-Op. The invasions of Asitigos got you down? Grab your buddy and deliver some intense street justice through waves of soldiers, ninjas, and father-son cyborg duos. That sentence should tell you all you need to know.
Diablo, in true Blizzard fashion, is an absolute behemoth of a game. With its endless loot, class customization, and expansive world, Diablo 3 is a game best enjoyed with friends. Sit down, team up with your hero of choice, and just go. Explore dangerous environments together as you pull off marvelous combos and tag team demons, until finally making the devil himself your bitch. Diablo 3 is co-op personified.
Straight from the demented hive-mind that is Behemoth. Castle Crashers was made to be that hilarious co-op game that actually works. You sit down with up to three of your friends, argue over who gets to be who, and save the princesses. It’s a simple game with a crazy setting, including amazing bosses, astounding level design, and impressive visuals. With endless replay value, and a simple enough control scheme, it’s a great party game that won’t be forgotten anytime soon.
Hey, you ever wanted to save soldiers, drive a tank, and slaughter adorably unsettling aliens? After the resounding “duh,” you should go get Metal Slug. One of the quintessential bullet hell beat-em-ups of all time, it never fails to deliver a ton of fun. So grab your fellow soldiers, suit up for some legendary co-op, and go out and be an adorable little badass as you tear Gen. Morden a new one over and over again.
Call of Duty 5: Nazi Zombies
A game mode that steered the Call of Duty franchise as a whole, Nazi Zombies in Call of Duty: World at War is one of the greatest co-op games in recent memory. With an enemy you can’t even pretend to feel sorry for, over the top weapons, enough gore to get you by, and the need for teamwork, this mode was the beginning of a new level of Call of Duty. Leading to late night chills, which then followed through into frazzled mornings of emotional stress as you scheme to get to higher and higher levels. There is no doubt you can sit down and have a blast with nearly anyone playing this game.
What are some of your favorite couch co-op games? Is online more your thing? Check out this list here.