The holidays are arguably the ideal time of year for playing the very best cooperative video games. Cozy up with some hot cocoa and some munchies (either in person or virtually) and see what kind of mayhem — or problems — you can solve with these games that were specifically designed for cooperative play.
Our ranked list of the greatest cooperative video games consists of only those titles that have been chosen specifically for their emphasis on the cooperative gameplay experience. These games will never be the type that includes co-op as an afterthought or a tacked-on experience; rather, they will give the cooperative play the attention and focus it merits by devoting sufficient time to it and putting it in the forefront. These are the games that are far more fun when played with another person (or two), and some of them can’t even be played unless you have a companion to play them with you. And that is just how it ought to be done.
Because of this, we strongly recommend that you play each of these top cooperative video games with a buddy, a partner, or a member of your immediate or extended family.
If it were playable on consoles of the current generation, Portal 2 would almost certainly be at the top of this list. The fact that Portal 2 may currently only be played on personal computers should not be held against the game. If you and a friend each have a computer that is capable of running the game (and the majority of them are), then you are in for one of the most memorable and enjoyable co-op experiences of your whole life. The difficulty of the single-player campaign is significantly increased in the multiplayer mode, which was previously quite challenging. Not only will you and a friend, who both control lovable robots, need to collaborate to figure out how to complete a test chamber, but you will also frequently need to time your movements and actions exactly perfectly. If one of the players jumps only a fraction of a second too soon or presses a button a fraction of a second too late, the entire scheme is going to fail.
It makes communication very necessary and the satisfaction of solving each issue that much greater. On top of those challenges is a layer of Valve’s signature humor, and GLaDOS (do you remember her?) is back in the lead role this time. You can give your pal a high five, play rock paper scissors, or, if you’re in the mood for some mischief, you can take the bridge out from under their feet and submerge them into some poisonous slime.
You can play it on your personal computer, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X.
Fortnite is a wonderful example of a game that becomes more fun the more friends you have playing it with you, and what’s even better is that its incredibly popular Battle Royale mode is completely free to play for everyone. You will always have something new to do thanks to the weekly challenges that keep things interesting. Additionally, when each season draws to an end, there are new upgrades added as well as big map alterations to reflect the story’s subtle progression.
Even though it is still in Early Access, Epic’s adorable base-defense/shooter/survival game mashup Save The World provides a better platform for playing with other people than many games that have been fully released. You not only have a better chance of fending off waves of husks or building the ultimate base when you play Fortnite with a handful of friends, but those friends can also provide you with valuable XP boosts and a better chance of nabbing some of the rare loot that is scattered throughout the game’s massive catalog.
Play it on PS4, Xbox One, PC, Switch, PS5, Xbox Series X, or any of the other Xbox consoles.
A Way Out
It’s not often that a game restricts you from playing it solely with other people, but that’s the case with A Way Out. It doesn’t matter if you’re splashing the water to herd fish toward each other, going back to back to shimmy up a wall gap, passing a chisel between cells to find an exit route, or even if you’re just playing Connect Four, or a game of basketball together; the cooperative mode never feels like an added extra. Everything is designed for you to enjoy together in a way that is satisfying and worthwhile regardless of the scale of the interaction.
You and your partner are criminals who are trying to discover a way out of prison and come one step closer to atonement, but more importantly, this is a journey that the two of you have to go through together. Additionally, we have never experienced a better cooperative game than this one. You may play it on PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and PC. PS5 is also supported.
Whether you’re playing with friends online or in person, co-op games are a fun way to spend time together and put your minds to the test. Playing games is a lot of fun, whether you’re fending off a horde of zombies, trying to solve a tricky puzzle, or killing a huge, fierce monster. A common trait among those who battle side by side is a will to remain united.