Admit it, there’s nothing better than sitting on the couch on a sunday morning , playing games with your significant other and sharing experiences in the best form of media there is – gaming of course! But if you are like us, when we started gaming together, the tough question is “where do we start”?
To answer that, we listed the top 10 video games you should start playing together right now based on our experience, as we dwelled deep into the world of co op video games.
Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime
PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC and Mac
In this game you and your partner control a character inside of a spaceship, flying through different constellations, on a mission to rescue your lost bunny friends.
On each stage you generally need to find and rescue 5 or more bunnies to open up the heart portal and move on to the next stage.
Controlling the spaceship is what makes this game such a unique co op experience, as each of the actions your spaceship can perform is allocated to a different console within the spaceship. Any and every console, and therefore any and every action your ship can take, is up to one of the players to consider at any given time. Such actions include basic movement, adjustments to the ship’s shield, operation of the four cannons that surround the ship and a fifth, special rechargeable cannon, utilizing the world map and so on. Each station can be upgraded with gems you find in the world to make your life a bit easier.
Multitasking and constant communication is absolutely mandatory, as both of you need to handle various stations throughout each level, working together to survive the onslaught of different types of enemies constantly coming at you.
While movement feels somewhat frustrating at times, this is a good game to start with, if you and your partner lean toward the more action oriented games. That said, this game can get hectic at times. It’s general aesthetics and design make this game somewhat less threatening compared to other twin stick shooters on the market.
In this game, there are 8 different characters with intertwining story paths, each of whom can die or live by your decision making. The relationships between the different characters and interesting and deep, getting very complicated at times.
You will soon find that your most and least likable characters might change when horrifying events start taking place.
Throughout the game you will find hidden collectible totems that can reveal a glimpse into the future. Some totems can provide hints on a positive turn in the story, and some could lead to a potentially deadly event, which you’ll obviously want to avoid. Between chapters, you control an unknown character experiencing intense encounters with a mysterious psychiatrist. As this mystery person, you will be interviewed about different characters in the story and how you feel about them, about what really gives you the chills (whether it’s snakes or spiders, knives or needles) and of course, these decisions will play into your game, strengthening what it is all about. Remember – every choice has a consequence! (those bastards!).
Life is Strange
PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC, Mac, iOS and Andriod
Sam, the main protagonist, has the ability to go back in time and rewrite the chain of events thus changing to the current timeline.
The time rewinding mechanism feels like a way to cheese the game at first, but when the choice and its’ outcome is not so obvious, this mechanic will make you sweat, as you rewind again and again until you make the final call.
Another small (and optional), but very enjoyable part of the game, is Sams photo scrapbook where you need to take photos of scenes in the environment. This will make you and whoever sits next to you continually scour the environments for clues from the scrapbook. Finding one such clue feels rewarding and makes you run back to find some more.
The strength of the game lies in the relationships you build along the way between Sam, Chloe and the other characters. We can’t elaborate more details about the story itself without telling too much. Trust us, you want to experience this for yourselves.
A Way Out
PS4, Xbox One and PC
A Way Out is a co-op only 3rd person adventure game that takes you on a thrilling journey of two main protagonists, Leo and Vincent, escaping prison and surviving together outside as wanted fugitives.
The is set in 1970’s America, starting in a ruthless highly guarded prison where you first meet your two playable characters.
Being cell neighbors, Leo and Vincent survive prison life with wits and courage while planning their grand escape, driven by their desire for revenge at the same person who falsely put them behind bars.
The game is played entirely in a first of its kind cinematic split screen mode, where the division between the two screen constantly shifts and warps intelligently as different scenes and events occur.
The game gives you a freedom only a few co-op games did before.
For example, One player can go around the courtyard gathering information from other inmates while the other player can get himself involved in a bloody prison brawl, this makes the game always feel fresh and you will never feel that you both are always doing the same thing, each player has its separate goals and activities.
The interesting parts of the game come when Leo and Vincent need to work together to solve problems together, like Vincent distracting a prison guard while Leo sneaks around to steal a wrench or Leo keeping a lookout while Vincent tries to escape his cell through the wall.
Game mechanics are fairly simple with basic movement and button prompts to initiate various actions making this game highly accessible to anyone who knows his way with a controller or keyboard.
While the story can be a bit tacky and on the nose at times, playing this story together cooperatively makes it much more exciting and it certainly a unique experience we never had before.
The visuals are top notch with some high-intensity set pieces, the voice acting is very believable and filled will interesting dialogs that gives the story much more depth and the game runs smoothly on both screens. There’s just something really enchanting about watching your partner from another perspective through your screen while he/she is in a middle of an intense cutscene or an action-filled setpiece.
Another sweet bonus to this game is that you only need one copy of this game to play online, it just shows how thoughtful the developers of A Way Out are about trying to give you a never before co-op experience and they wonderfully hit all the right spots with this title.
PS4, Xbox 360, PS3, PS Vita and PC
Spelunky is not the easiest game to start with and can be tough to handle since death to all players means going back to the very start of the game. Despite the permadeath it’s got enough going on to keep you coming back and try again. The co-op mechanics let you divide roles in various ways and adapt to each player’s skill level, meaning one player can carry more responsibilities while the other lands support.
While in co-op mode only, a player’s death results in transforming that player into a ghost. This is very useful since ghosts can support the living players by blowing air that can move objects, nudge enemies off ledges and trigger traps to clear the way. In every stage you will find a coffin that resurrects dead players by breaking it, thus getting them back into the game in living form with full health. This aspect of the game encourages the players to be consistently engaged in the game, even if they die, so there is never a situation where one must sit out and wait for the next round. Even if you have a hard time staying alive, you are still participating and able to provide significant assistance.
PS4, Xbox One, Switch and PC
Overcooked is a fun jolly game about cooking various dishes in bizarre kitchens all over this fantastical world while trying to deliver them as fast as you can to all the hungry patrons in the restaurant.
Communication is key! Since one player cannot handle all the workload alone, this game relies on you to constantly update your partner about what’s coming next, what ingredients are missing, and which dishes are ready to be served. Faults in communication will leave your kitchen a hot mess (quite literally) while the constant exchange of information will help you prevail and move on to the next challenge. The game’s mechanics are fairly simple, with just a few buttons to learn the movement and basic actions. This makes the game highly recommended for novice players. Stages are ranked using the 3 star method you may find in many mobile games, so you can start with the easy difficulties, then go back and perfect them once you get the mechanics down properly. The game supports up to 4 players so it’s also a very good party game, but be ready for some serious mayhem in the kitchen!
PixelJunk Monsters 2
PS4, Switch and PC
One of the game genres we both adore but never got to cover before is Tower Defense games, until now.
PixelJunk Monsters 2 is a unique tower defense game with an online and couch co-op component.
In this game, you play as the adorable Tiki Man characters in charge of protecting the Tiki’s village from swarms of different types of monsters coming to steal your little Chibis away.
In order to stop these continues waves of monsters, you are handed with a wide variety of towers with various abilities to build on a predetermined path which the monsters take on their way to your base (although the game tricks you from time to time with alternating paths).
Each tower is used for different situations and enemy types, some for squads of ground enemies, some for flying enemies and some for specific enemies with elemental characteristics.
To build these towers, you collect gold coins and gems from fallen enemies and random spots on the map. Tower costs vary between cheap to very pricey so you always need to consider where and when to spend your hard earned gold.
Tower upgrades is an intriguing and crucial mechanic in this game, Upgrading your tower makes the tower stronger and often extends your tower’s range.
To upgrade your towers you need to dance around them for a certain amount of time until the meter fills up and levels up. This mechanic will make you run around the map and strategically leveling up essential towers as the level progresses.
The game is divided into five themed areas with 3 stages in each one, to unlock each area you need to get rainbow fragments you get from completing stages on a perfect score (0 Chibi deaths).
Each level has an unlockable 3 difficulty settings that will test your skills to the max.
We had a lot of fun playing this jolly game, strategizing and working out together the best defense compositions tailored to each level.
Like other games on this list, it tested our communication and teamsmanship up until the very end of the game and that’s why we highly recommend this lovely game.
PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac, iOS and Android
The game is slow and meticulous, difficult at times but ultimately rewarding. The actual mechanics are very basic, only having movement controls and a cursor to solve the puzzles. The game’s main focus revolves around exploration and riddle solving.
The world of the Witness is open and wide, leaving you to choose where you want to go.
The world map is divided into different regions with different visual themes and puzzle types, and never forces you into a specific area. If you feel a certain puzzle is too much to handle or you still haven’t figured out how to solve a certain puzzle type, you can always move to another area, and come back later with the knowledge you’ve gained from other challenges to help you.
Mastering this game feels like learning a new language, each puzzle type teaches you a certain method and employs different elements to the solution, some even involve the environment around you in various clever ways, turning the world into something much more than a backdrop to a standard puzzle game.
Although challenging, the game always makes sure to guide you through new puzzle types with some easy riddles at first (except some optional hidden puzzles I won’t spoil here), to teach you the method and the new elements so you can continue on and face harder challenges.
Overall this is an amazing game for playing together, as you may often find that different points of view are crucial for overcoming the challenges. The game left us scribbling notes and theorising endlessly, while constantly working together to solve the mind bending puzzles.
Resident Evil Revelations 2
PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PS3, Xbox 360, PS Vita and PC
The game gives you control over 4 different characters that are split into 2 teams in different timelines. Starting with each episode, you will play both timelines one after the other.
In the first timeline you play as Claire and Moira, two very different protagonists with different abilities and roles. Claire is the more straightforward, gun-wielding tough special agent, while Moira does not carry any firearms, but can land support with a flashlight that blinds enemies and allows you to discover hidden items.
The second timeline splits the roles in a similar fashion. Barry is the capable gun-wielding character that leads the way, while Natalia, a mysterious child with supernatural abilities, can detect enemies from afar, marking their weak spots and is also, similar to Moira, able to find hidden items scattered throughout the environment.
On both episodes, the second player (Moira/Natalia) can only go into a downed state while health automatically regenerates, an aspect that makes the game much more forgiving to the second player. In this way, the game allows for both novice and more experienced players to play together, while providing each with a fitting set of abilities to help them make the most out of the experience.
Resident Evil 5
PS4, Xbox One, PS3, Xbox 360 and PC
Unlike Revelations 2, this is a full 12-hour game filled with cutscenes, dramatic dialogues and set pieces. If you play the remastered version on the ps4, you will notice the game sports fairly decent graphics. You will have a lot to chew on, especially if you dive into the extra DLC and the various competitive modes the game offers, which are surprisingly great.
Since this game is built from the ground up with co-op play in mind, it is a must for our list.
Cooperation is key, as you find yourselves covering each others back time and time again, strategically managing your ammo and supplies between each other and solving numerous puzzles together. It will make you communicate constantly throughout the game as you encounter hordes of angry zombies, a bizarre collection of deadly creatures and some very impressive boss fights.
PS4, PS3 and PC
In this game you will play 4 different genetically modified lab critters with supernatural abilities, that will cleverly help you move through the different puzzle rooms and escape the wacky lab you are trapped in. Each critter has a different ability at its disposal, ranging from teleportation to block building placement, swapping places with objects or pushing and pulling objects. The critters can be switched and swapped in real time to handle the different objectives, working together to find the solution to progress to the next stage. Once you learn the ropes, the game challenges you with increasingly difficult challenges that involve more power swapping, deadly traps and some very humorous encounters against hordes of angry chickens. If you look for more challenge, there are plenty of collectible items (Cheese Blocks…how fitting) that are well hidden in the environment, acquiring them will test your skills and the understanding of your critter’s abilities.
Borderlands the Handsome Collection
PS4 and Xbox One
Interesting combat mechanics, a huge weapon collection to play with, light RPG elements (such as skill trees and gear stats) and a comically driven storyline filled with one-liners and hilarious NPC interactions will keep you engaged throughout.
In both games in the collection (Borderlands 2 and The Pre-Sequel) you start by choosing a character class with different super abilities and three skill trees – aggressive, stealthy and supportive. Despite the differences, the general idea is the same – shoot up hordes of enemies and wreak havoc!
Borderlands serves as an excellent introduction to FPS games. Unlike other popular FPS games, the aiming is fairly easy and not overly realistic and there are 2 modes for split screen (vertical, horizontal) to match your preference. It’s also a great introduction to RPG elements like leveling up, investing skill points in different skill trees and switching up weapons and gear for better stats and performance, while never overcomplicating things in the ways classic RPG games often do.
For your first dip into the Borderlands universe, we recommend starting with Borderlands 2, since there are fewer mechanics to understand and master (like the one involving oxygen in the Pre Sequel).
Also, in Borderlands 2 the playable class Mechromancers offers the skill tree “Best Friends Forever”, which is designed to appeal to new players in the first person genre, with skills that improve aiming and allow to focus on defense and survivability. We should mention, though, that using the aforementioned skill tree is absolutely not mandatory since the game is fairly simple to understand and handle after just a few hours.
Also, here are some honorable mentions that didn’t cut the list, but we highly encourage you to explore :
Little Big Planet
PvZ Garden Warfare 2