Gaming alone is fun but it can be even more fun when playing with others. Here are the best cooperative multiplayer games of 2012.
Mass Effect 3 (by Patrick Cassin) – Be honest — we all thought this was going to be a trainwreck. Turns out, leveling up a character with new abilities and spending money on random loot packs in the hopes of getting better weapons is a really solid hook. With ME3’s gunplay improvements, that sealed the deal.
Diablo 3 (by Kyle Orr) – Loot-driven dungeon crawlers are always a blast but when you invite three friends to tag along it becomes something special. Drop-in, drop-out made it seamless to play with friends and by giving each player their own loot drops players could spend less time fighting over items and more time crushing the spawn of Hell.
Minecraft XBLA (by Kyle Orr) – If you’re going to spend countless hours building a massive castle or exploring an elaborate cave, having a buddy with is certainly going to help. Whether it’s running back home to smelt more iron ore or watching your back for those dastardly creepers, Minecraft’s co-op just further extends the addictiveness of the game. Let’s be honest, you’re not going to build that replica of the Starship Enterprise all by yourself.
Nintendoland (by Addam Kearney – The pack-in for the Wii U, Nintendoland, does exactly what Wii Sports did so many years ago in showing how unique the system can be. The use of both the TV and the Wii U gamepad means that players get a truly different experience by playing on each. It shows how easily the gamepad allows for split-screen gaming while still allowing each player to have their own screen and that alone is a massive victory.
AND THE WINNER IS:
Borderlands 2 (by Patrick Cassin) – Could there be any other? With more guns and more bad guys, everyone’s favorite cooperative loot and shoot triumphs once again. Sure, the personalities of the new characters were just as weak as the first — but you get to shoot stuff. Sure, there’s some down time between finding bad-ass guns — but once you get a new one, then you get to shoot more stuff! Toss in a few arenas, a whole host of challenges that increase persistent stats across all playthroughs, and Borderlands 2 is a game that practically demands to be played with your friends.