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13 Unlikely Single-Player Games That Had Surprisingly Fun Multiplayer


13 Unlikely Single-Player Games That Had Surprisingly Fun Multiplayer

Single-Player Games that Had Surprisingly Fun Multiplayer

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves

The Uncharted series is known for phenomenal single player experiences that raise the bar for narrative-based games. Every new installment in the franchise manages to eclipse the previous one in terms of the experience and gameplay. However, the multiplayer mode in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves is the exception to Naughty Dog’s rep of constant improvement.

Where the newer interactions focus on working together as a team, Uncharted 2 places a focus on fast-paced gameplay. Standard gameplay modes like Deathmatch and elimination are fun to play. It’s a matter of who has the most skill with an AK or pistol. Players even get to play as the single player heroes and villains, adding an extra flair to each character.

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves definitely has the best map variety of the multiplayer iterations, with 13 maps in total. Nothing beats running around temples and ice caves as Nathan Drake in team deathmatch, wielding your AK throughout.

Red Dead Redemption

The multiplayer mode in Red Dead Redemption doesn’t follow the same lobby structure that most traditional games do.s. Instead, Rockstar implements a free range, open world mode that is rather similar to the beloved singleplayer structure.

Once you hop into multiplayer, join up with friends or explore the world on your own. Competitive games start with a unique mechanic with Mexican standoffs. These serve as fun team death matches before you begin the real matches.

One of the best parts about Red Dead Redemption’s multiplayer is included in the Outlaws To The End free DLC. These co-op missions place you in groups of four, giving you six stories to complete. Players work together to complete these missions. You’ll choose between four different loadouts that add to the extensive customization options in multiplayer.

Bioshock 2

Following the success of the original IP, Bioshock 2 is a considerable disappointment for most. The gameplay and story just didn’t measure up. Despite this, the game does feature an interesting multiplayer mode, known as Fall of Rapture.

In Fall of Rapture, you control a splicer tasked with completing specific events in different multiplayer modes. Using a variety of different weapons and tonics, you’ll capture points, compete in team deathmatches, and try to survive in free for all fights.

The most fun part of the multiplayer is the most disappointing part about the single player: playing as a Big Daddy. Players can become a Rosie via finding the suite at one of several predetermined locations inside the maps. Wielding a Rivet Gun and stomping on enemies makes you feel all-powerful, and was really a mechanic before its time.

This all takes place separate from the plot of Bioshock 2’s main game, even before the original Bioshock. It’s a unique narrative experience, one that a lot of people likely missed out on.  

Max Payne 3

The Max Payne series is known for having a and slow-mo, bullet time action sequences. But the Rockstar shooter has only ever been a single-player experience. Honestly, this isn’t hard to image though, as questions of how bullet time would work against other players arise as soon as the idea of multiplayer ever comes up.

Rockstar makes bullet time multiplayer work amazingly in Max Payne 3 though. The game implements an area of effect mechanic, so bullet time slows down you, anyone you can see, anyone who can see you, and anyone affected by each of the instances stated before this, resulting in slow-mo chaos.

Multiple different maps, guns, game modes, and perk centric characters, in combination with bullet time make the multiplayer almost, if not more, fun than the single-player experience.  

Mass Effect 3

Mass Effect 3’s single player ending disappointed so many people that they fail to stick around and check out the debuting multiplayer mode featured in the game. In this mode, players team up with three other allies against eleven waves of enemies.

The hoard mode based multiplayer pits your team against Cerberus, Reaper, Geth, or Collector troops, providing different difficulty options that result in distinct rewards. Customization is intricate, as you can create characters from a multitude of races (Salarian, Krogan, Asari, etc.) and play as specific classes, just like Commander Shepard.

While it doesn’t have a huge effect on the outcome, this mode contributes to the single-player campaign. When characters reach max level, they become War Assets against the reapers, increasing your readiness and can slightly having an effect on the games ending.

Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory

Spies vs Mercs is one of the few multiplayer game modes that has a huge focus on stealth. While this mode exists in other iterations of the game, Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory features the most fun, yet simplest, version.

Gameplay pits two teams of two against each other, with goals and gadgets varying depending upon the map and game type. The majority of the maps in this mode are shrouded in darkness, allowing for ledge kills, co-op moves, and a variety of gadgets to be used. The intimate 2 v 2 nature and different abilities for each team results in some tense and tactical matches as well.

Couple Spies vs Mercs in with the amazing co-op, and you can see why Sam Fisher’s single player experience isn’t always the first choice for some players.

Fable 3

Unlike most games on this list, Fable 3’s inclusion revolves solely around the co-op mechanic. This has to do with the fact that there weren’t many single-player narrative games that could be experienced with friends at the time. The third installment also greatly improves up the co-op gameplay that is introduced in Fable 2

Fable 3 allows players to host and then invite a friend to play along as a Guest Hero. Guest Hero are granted almost all the freedoms that the host is, having access to their own sanctuary to customize their character as they see fit. The game’s interactive focus was leaps and bounds ahead of most co-op adventures of the time.

While most people agree that Fable 3 is a considerable disappointment, the majority still enjoyed being able to play with friends in its multiplayer.

The Last of Us

Didn’t know The Last of Us even has multiplayer? You likely aren’t alone, as the sheer acclaim that the singleplayer experience receives really overshadows the fun and distinct online experience it only possesses.

Know as Factions, this clan-based multiplayer mode places you with one of two teams well known to the single-player campaign: Hunters or Fireflies. Your initial selection is permanent. The only way you can change it is if your clan is wiped out or if you complete the multiplayer mode.  

The ability to compete against other players and actually complete a multiplayer mode is a fascinating concept, even years later. Couple this alongside the fact that it has you rely on the same mechanics you learn from the singleplayer, but simply replaces the A.I with actual people, and you can see why this title’s online mode is on the list.

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood

The Assassin’s Creed series has evolved considerably since the first installment. What started out as a single-player stealth-oriented title has become a robust franchise, one that even added multiplayer.

Branching off of the main story, multiplayer is introduced in Brotherhood as an Abstergo training facility. Each player is a Templar in training, placed against others in a variety of different test, aka different game modes. In total, there are eight different game modes, all PvP.

Whether it is a capture based mode or a free for all, every mode comes down to who can kill the most. There are plenty of different ways to do so, and a lot of which is based on the class you pick. However, the stealth element implemented in each mode is what really makes them so enjoyable.

Batman: Arkham Origins

Batman: Arkham Origins is the red-headed stepchild of the Arkham series, as it changes a lot of small things fans loved. But while many of the flaws of this prequel are highlighted as negative changes, it adds some interesting variety as well.

Two gameplay modes are present in Batman: Arkham Origins’ online mode: Invisible Predator Online and Hunter, Hunted. Both modes have a fascinating gameplay element to it, as gangs can win by fighting each other and being last alive. They also have to be wary of player-controlled heroes – who have unlimited lives – thwarting their fight and objectives.

Alongside a slew of playable characters, Arkham Origins’ online mode features a fair amount of customization options for both teams.

Like most of the content that came alongside Origins, the multiplayer mode didn’t return in the next game. This is the only one in the series to feature these unique modes.

Dead Space 2

Before Dead Space 3 introduced co-op mode, there was Dead Space 2’s 4 vs 4 multiplayer. This game mode is broken down into two rounds, featuring players that control humans and players that control Necromorphs.

As a human, the objective is to complete a variety of different tasks before the match time runs out. In order to do so, they have to fight against an endless horde of Necromorphs. The Necromorphs team have 4 forms different forms at their disposal, each well known to the single player. The humans aren’t defenseless though, as they are also equipped with some of Isaac Clarke wields.

Similar to Left 4 Dead 2, Dead Space 2 also allows players to play as the monster. Both games prove that this is a mechanic that should be used more.

Tomb Raider

When Tomb Raider released in 2013, it managed to revitalize the series on all fronts. The multiplayer mode is also impressive.

Multiplayer in Tomb Raider is broken down into two teams of four. Survivors and scavengers compete in three different game modes across five maps. No matter what gameplay mode you are in, each 10-minute match flies by because of how much fun you are having. Setting up traps, shooting people with bows, or meleeing with an ax is all simple, yet deeply satisfying. The fact that items carry over from single-player as well makes this a fun and deep, but simple, experience.

Octodad: Dadliest Catch

The concept of Octodad: Dadliest Catch is hilarious in and of itself. You control an octopus pretending to blend in with your human family and complete simple everyday tasks. And you’ll be struggling all the while. The only thing better is playing with a friend.

Unlike most multiplayer games, Octodad doesn’t give players two characters to control in its multiplayer. Instead, you and a friend are each in control of a specific body part. Just like in the single-player, you’ll be tasked with completing certain things together. You’ll need to communicate to maneuver and pick up things using specific limbs.

Never has simply moving arms and legs around been so difficult, yet so hilarious.

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