PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds – PUBG was the game that began the current Battle Royale craze. Throughout 2017 it was breaking Steam records and taking the world by storm, before eventually releasing fully for PC and Xbox One in December. You and 99 other players battle it out on the same map, trying to get to the best gear and be the final one alive, getting that sweet Chicken Dinner. multiplayer
Fortnite Battle Royale – Fortnite Battle Royale may be at the peak of its popularity now that we’re in 2018, but it first came onto the scene in 2017 as a free add-on to Epic’s base game. Like PUBG before it, it sees you and 99 others fight for the best loot in an attempt to be the last one standing. People may have expected it to buckle under PUBG’s might when it first launched, but they couldn’t have been more wrong.
Destiny 2 – Bungie’s huge online shooter sequel arrived last fall to much fanfare. Offering a deeper single-player story to play though, more variety in mission types, and the impeccable gameplay we’ve come to expect from the developer, millions of players were engrossed. The player count has dropped off a little, but there’s still a hardcore groups of player to join, and that may increase when the next wave of DLC content is released.
Call of Duty: WWII – The most recent Call of Duty game went back to the series’ roots with “boots on the ground” action. The multiplayer player didn’t change as much as the campaign, but it is any less fun. You can fight on well designed maps with weapons from the Second World War and the additions include a new perk/progression system and a objective based mode called War. If cooperative play is more your bag, you can grab some friends and jump into the new Zombies mode.
Cuphead – Cuphead is a beautiful action platformer that sends you back to the games of old. The art style is beautiful, the music is wonderfully nostalgic, the combat is intensely challenging, and the platforming feels great. What makes the whole experience even better is that much of the game can be played alongside a friend in co-op.
For Honor – Released at the start of 2017, For Honor is another of Ubisoft’s online focused titles. It started off slowly, being over shadowed by the like of Horizon Zero Dawn and the new Nintendo Switch when launched, but it’s build a loyal fanbase since then. The tactical combat is fun, you feel powerful, and there’s plenty of content. Dedicated servers have also been added recently, at the request of the fanbase.
Star Wars Battlefront II – It may have been shrouded in microtransaction controversy when it first released, but Battlefront II is for more than just hardcore Star Wars fans. With gameplay that feels similar to the Battlefield games, powerful weapons, and unique modes, it’s a multiplayer shooter at heart. Adding the iconic characters, locations, and music only servers to make it even more exciting for fans of the classic saga.
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildllands – The past Ghost Recon games have always been about being part of a squad, taking on objectives tactically with teamwork. The most recent one allows you to join your friends to form a squad, exploring drug riddled Bolivia in an attempt to take down the mob bosses there. The gameplay is great, the world is full of things to do, and the gadgets are a blast to use, and it’s all made better with three other players.
Divinity: Original Sin II – Divinity: Original Sin II is one of the best RPG experiences of 2017 due to its immersive world and interesting cast of characters that you truly begin to care about. With a friend, you can take control of different characters, making decisions and interacting as you usually would, leading to complete quests in different ways. Playing in splitscreen co-op gives you the chance to experiment and see the variety the game has to offer.
Friday the 13th – Friday the 13th was quite unstable at launch, with server issues affecting players every day, but the issues are mostly in the past and the game can be seen for the fun experience it is. If you join a group of friends, with one of you playing as the iconic Jason chasing down the rest, the endless chances for silly moments and tactical play in equal measure.
Splatoon 2 – Nintendo consoles haven’t been the home for expansive multiplayer experiences or online shooters in recent years, but Splatoon 2 shows that they can still compete in online areas. The gameplay itself is ingenious and differentiates the game from everything else and, while it’s cutesy and colorful, there’s plenty of opportunity for tactical approaches. Also, if you get invested, there ranked system is excellently designed.
Injustice 2 – Most fighting games play wonderfully and features deep multiplayer options nowadays, but Injustice 2 goes beyond what you’d normally expect. There’s a exciting and cinematic story for you to play though that you can have an affect on, on top of all the content and multiplayer options you’d expect to find. It’s a step forward for fighting games.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe – While it may have launched on the lowly Wii U initially, the Switch’s deluxe version is arguably the best Mario Kart to date. Adding the ability to hold two items and any one time to the already wonderful racing added an extra layer of tactics. The courses are wonderful and all the DLC is included, making for some wonderful racing and some intense competition.
ARMS – ARMS is a fighting game with a difference. You can move around the arenas with each character, using their unique moves in the right situations. Playing against another player if where it’s at its best, however. Both players take notice of each character’s unique moves and move tactically to take advantage of matchups and weaknesses. It’s a lot more tactical than you might expect.
FIFA 18 – The primary choice for soccer fans, the FIFA series has always offered a huge amount of content that’s presented with an incredible level of polish, and 2017’s iteration is no different. Whether you want to test you skills against friends from the comfort of your couch, follow the second chapter of Alex Hunter’s story, or build you Ultimate Team, there’s something for everyone in FIFA 18 and the almost constant stream of live content keeps it engaging.
Jackbox Party Pack 4 – The Jackbox Party Packs have always been collections of silly games that are perfect for parties, and the fourth iteration is no different. You’ll find out things about your friends, try to lie to them, engage in monster dating, and bet on stupid arguments, all using you mobile phone. The games are short and easy to learn, and can be picked up by anyone, whether they’ve played games before or not.
Nidhogg 2 – It’s quite a but different to the original, with a quirkier art style, but Nidhogg 2 is still a unique fighting game. Each with a sword, two players face of against each other with the objective being getting to the far end of your opponents side of the arena. Matches can get very intense, especially when someone is on the verge of winning, and it is quite easy to pick up and play.
Snipperclips – Releasing at the launch of the Nintendo Switch, Snipperclips was the multiplayer game of choice if you weren’t invested in Breath of the Wild. With another players, you work together to cut shapes to perfection to solve some complex puzzles. You have to be precise and you’ll inevitably shout at each other, but that doesn’t stop it being great fun.
MLB The Show ’17 – Sony San Diego’s MLB The Show games are always top quality and 2017’s iteration was no different. The baseball gameplay is top very strong, there loads to make hardcore fans of the sport happy, and plenty of ways to play with other people. Whether it be offline in exhibition and franchise modes, or online in ranked or elsewhere, its great fun and a challenge against real-world players. The same can be said for any newer iteration too.
Forza Motorsport 7 – Microsoft’s exclusive racer was widely regarded as the best in the genre last year. Its sense of speed is fantastic, it looks phenomenal, and the cars feel better than they do in any other game. The online multiplayer options are as fun as always too, offering plenty of opportunities for competitive races, albeit with quite a lot of crashes.
Gran Turismo Sport – The PlayStation exclusive racing series returned last year with its PlayStation 4 debut. Looking better that it has ever done before, featuring PSVR compatibility, and celebrating everything that’s great about motorsport make it a great racer for fans of simulations. The online component was also geared towards esports, with plenty of chances to test your driving skills against other racers from around the world.
Everybody’s Golf – The Everybody’s Golf games, that were known in many places as Hot Shots Golf, were extremely popular. Before last year, we hadn’t seen one released since 2011, but thankfully, the new one might be the best yet. The golf gameplay is accessible but challenging as you progress, the tone is lighthearted, the multiplayer options are great, and there’s plenty of chances for customization. You don’t even need to be a gold fan to enjoy it.
Sonic Mania – Sonic Mania not only transports players back to the Sonic games of old with its visuals and music, but with its quality as well. Many of the 3D games of recent years have been poorer than many would want, but Mania takes the series back to where it should be. The multiplayer options are great too, adding a competitive mode than rewards you for more than being the first to finish a stage.
Madden NFL 18 – Almost every sports game is a great multiplayer experience, and the most recent Madden game is no different. Take control of you favourite team and juke it out against you friend, or against someone else online. If you’re a diehard football fan, there’s no other game that’s better for you.