With the rise of internet-enabled gaming (specifically Xbox Live for me). There is a lack of “couch co-op”. That is, co-op gaming where both players are sharing a couch. I love to play Destiny because of its cooperative gameplay. While it’s too redundant for my wife to play, she’d love to play things too. But the only couch co-op things that do co-op well are shooters like Halo and Call of Duty. And again, without a storyline, they’re not going to hold her attention.
We looked over a number of Xbox One games this weekend and found some stellar-looking title such as Never Alone and Child of Light. But in reading reviews, the co-op is either a pain to deal with or relegates the second player to a minor role in the overall game.
That’s disappointing. We are two grown adults who want to play something together. And it’s getting harder and harder to find games that hold our attention. We enjoyed Fable III, even though it had its issues with the co-op system mostly around camera angles and the relegation of player 2 to a supporting role. Which I was fine with, but it was still disappointing.
There are so many games which don’t even offer the option for co-op at all. Online or local. But it’s even harder to find anything with a story line that has a good cooperative experience. There are a number of games which offer co-op modes. Such as a survival mode, or something tacked onto the game. Again, this is fine for a few playthroughs but eventually becomes tedious and repetitive.
One of the best co-op games to my mind was Chrono Trigger, which I played with my brother on the SNES growing up. We each had a character to play. We were both fully invested in the story. We both had characters we could upgrade, buy new weapons for and customize to our liking. Neither of us was sentenced to sitting and watch the other person play, only helping in minor ways.
It’s maddening when browsing Xbox online to try to find games because it doesn’t list whether a game is multi-player or not. The Xbox itself shows whether a game is single player only or provides co-op either through Xbox Live or locally. The web site doesn’t offer any of that information. As a result, I usually go to Cooptimus and get a list of their games since they’re focused on the co-op experiences.
I’ve found a couple of possibilities and will report back once we get a chance to play them. But it’s getting harder and harder to find something to play for two adults. Especially when we recently picked up a few tabletop games that we’ve had a blast with.