Looking for a game to play with others that doesn’t force you to compete with your friends? You’re looking for one of the best co-op games of 2019.
It’s been a great year for co-op titles, which is somewhat surprising given that the industry for such experiences wasn’t exactly bountiful not too long ago. Regardless, 2019 offered plenty of excuses to try to get along with others at least for a little while.
Here are some of the best co-op games of 2019.
We’re going to look at a few unique co-op games on this list, but none is more unique than Death Stranding.
On the surface, Death Stranding isn’t a co-op game. Actually, it doesn’t even appear to be a multiplayer game. Yet, the game’s central mechanic is based on the idea that you share this world with others and get to benefit from the structures that everyone builds.
Many of the best moments in Death Stranding occur when you get to help others and enjoy the help they’ve provided. It’s one thing that this controversial game excels at.
World War Z
World War Z didn’t get enough love when it was released, and it’s not getting enough love as we enter awards season. However, it remains the best game of its kind since Left 4 Dead.
World War Z taps into the inherent fun of shooting zombies with others, but it raises the stakes by increasing the number of zombies on-screen and adding a few slightly more complex mechanics. The result is a meatier co-op shooter that offers hours of enjoyment.
Risk of Rain 2
We’ve spoken about Risk of Rain 2 when talking about the most underrated games of the year, and it’s certainly deserving of being honored as one of 2019’s best co-op titles.
This ambitious roguelike manages to add more players to the genre formula without compromising the difficulty and inherent appeal that makes that genre special. It’s simple, challenging, and utterly addictive, and you can share the whole thing with your friends.
Tom Clancy’s The Division 2
The Division 2 got swallowed by Anthem and the hype of the Destiny 2 Activision/Bungie split, but it may just be the best online multiplayer shooter of 2019.
It’s also one of the most enjoyable to play with friends. The Division 2’s mission structure and co-op incentives beg for you to invite people to play with and rewards you tangibly and with real-life experience for deciding to do so.
Man of Medan
Along with Death Stranding, Man of Medan is one of the most unique co-op experiences that we’re highlighting on this list. In fact, it’s so unique that we can’t really dive into it without spoiling its best moments.
However, the long and short of it is that Man of Medan manages to turn the best aspects of Until Dawn into a true co-op experience. If you’ve ever wanted to share a horror game with others, Man of Medan offers something truly special.
Remnant From the Ashes
The elevator pitch for Remnant From the Ashes basically boils down to “co-op shooter Dark Souls,” and that’s basically what you get here. There’s more to it than that, but if that idea gets you excited, then Remnant will certainly deliver.
Remnant From the Ashes taps into that wonderful level of challenge that the Dark Souls series offers while allowing you to share it all with your friends. It also benefits from some truly excellent shooting mechanics.
Luigi’s Mansion 3
Luigi’s Mansion 3 is another game that didn’t get enough love in 2019, and that’s especially true of its surprisingly excellent co-op mode.
You may initially think that Luigi’s Mansion 3’s co-op mode is “tacked-on,” but for a feature that wasn’t clearly advertised, the ability to play this game with others proves to be a surprisingly deep (some would argue it’s optimal) way to play the game. It’s also great to play with children and other inexperienced gamers.
Super Mario Maker 2
Super Mario Maker 2 kind of came and went this year, which might have something to do with how it only really improved upon the already great Mario Maker formula in incremental ways.
Still, one of its best improvements was the addition of a co-op mode. While it’s not quite everything that it could have been, Super Mario Maker 2’s co-op levels still allow you to experience the creative brilliance of this game with others. That makes it an invaluable addition to this series.
Heave Ho won’t show up on too many game of the year lists, but it most certainly deserves to be included on any list of the year’s best co-op experiences.
The game’s basic premise sees you work with others to make bridges across deadly platforming levels. It’s a simple concept that proves to be excitingly challenging once you try to actually work with others. It’s a lot like Overcooked and other great co-op games in that respect.
The Gears series has settled into a sometimes frustrating groove at this point, but it still offers one of the best co-op experiences of 2019.
Gears 5’s co-op offerings may not appeal to those who just want to experience the Gears story with their friends, but it offers a fascinating way to enjoy the franchise’s famous shooter gameplay with others. It’s arguably one of the best reasons to download the game.