The Top 7... games that should've had co-op

Needed co-op because: the co-op it does include isn’t good enough.

Above: Not gonna cut it

We’re spoiled and ungrateful brats. Last year, GTA IV delivered on pretty much every promise made and, in doing so, met or surpassed almost every one of our expectations. But as we drove around the game’s incredibly detailed world, soaking in the superbly told story and losing dozens of hours to the ridiculously open-ended gameplay, we couldn’t feel 100% satisfied. A single thought kept nagging us... this would be even better with a friend.

Above: Two people, one player

Yes, we know you can explore (a limited version of) Liberty City with up to 15 other people. We know you can team up for cop-and-robber style chases or load up specific, standalone missions built entirely around cooperative play. Sorry, that’s not enough. That’s not the real deal.

We want to join forces in the main game. We want to claw our way up the criminal ladder with an ally. We want to rule over virtual New York with a partner. When we’re forced to clean out an entire warehouse of crack dealers in order to progress through the story, we want a reliable wingman. When we need to chase down a biker gang while simultaneously escaping an armada of six-star law enforcement, we want someone in the passenger’s seat who can actually aim.

Mostly, though, we just want to play as Brucie.

Needs co-op because: the game was built with it in mind from the beginning.

Above: Guess what was cut from the final version?

How do you turn the sequel to one of the PS2’s most vibrant games into an exercise in dull, soul-crushing frustration? Swapping the bright colors of The Mark of Kri for a dull, grayish color palette is a good start, but if you really want to leave a bad taste in people’s mouths, you design it around a specific feature - in this case online co-op - that you then cut at the last minute because of technical problems. If you’re feeling especially sadistic, you can then replace said feature with a dull-witted computer-controlled sidekick who likes nothing better than to blow players’ cover when they’re trying to be stealthy, and to not watch their backs when they’re getting mobbed by enemies. Doesn’t matter if you’re playing as bulky warrior Rau, his nimble kid sister Tati, their mentor Baumusu or his partner Griz – sooner or later, your “helper” will get you killed.

Above: When can we officially say tribal tattoos are over?

We’re not going to pretend that delaying the game to keep in the co-op would have made Rise of the Kasai great, but it would have removed one of the game’s main irritations. We’d still be left with a bleak, unsatisfying follow-up to one of the most original (and creatively violent) action games ever made, but not having to babysit an AI idiot all the time might have kept Rise of the Kasai from being a hollow disappointment.


Top 7


  • Curtis_Stone - February 2, 2009 8:45 p.m.

    I just think every FPS should have the option of being CO-OP in this day and age... Why wouldn't it...I hate to say it but, Halo 2 did it last gen, so...
  • monojono - February 2, 2009 8:53 p.m.

    Dead rising should be on this list. U were constantly surronded with crappy AI partners, and messing around with a mate on this would of rocked.
  • curtw_819 - February 2, 2009 9:02 p.m.

    the game that comes to my mind is Fallout 3... how bad a$$ would it if u and 3 others roam around the wastelands... raidin the talon mercs hideout... just look at fable 2
  • GamesRadarCharlieBarratt - February 2, 2009 9:08 p.m.

    I particularly enjoyed the entry on GTA IV. Masterfully worded.
  • Hypermonkey262 - February 2, 2009 9:25 p.m.

    Im surprised Mass Effect didnt make an appearence. Im sure my team wouldnt have died as often if I had someone else controling tham.
  • Christopia - February 2, 2009 9:40 p.m.

    I also had been thinking fallout 3 would have ruled with an actual human buddy, the AI side kicks were limited to say the least. Going back a few years, any one remember power rangers on the SNES? Awsome game but why leave out co-op?
  • twishart - February 2, 2009 9:47 p.m.

    I vaguely remember reading something about SOTC being a 4 player game originally? Or maybe it was some mod someone was dreaming up - either way, it sounds pretty cool, and would add a whole new dynamic to taking some of the colossi down (all four players need to stab seperate areas at once, form 'human chains' to reach inaccesible areas, etc). Overall, it would detract a little from the isolated feel of the game - but it would certainly be a blast to play...
  • GoldenMe - February 2, 2009 10:53 p.m.

    @Joe- I recently heard that Bioshock MIGHT have multiplayer (Maybe even co-op). Still, it might either enhance the perfection of Bioshock, or utterly ruin it.
  • TheSuburbiaRuins - February 2, 2009 11:05 p.m.

    Jericho.. If it had co-op, the person would have to be good with whatever character they were going to use. Because some peoples techniques and skills are needed to kill certain enemies, and get through certain parts of the game. I would know, I played the SHIT out of that game.
  • T0M95 - February 2, 2009 11:47 p.m.

    fallout needs coop
  • vic88 - February 3, 2009 1:06 a.m.

    devil may cry or ninja gaiden would be more hectic and fun with two or three other characters ( Dante, Nero, Trish and Lady all fighting at the same time
  • Over1imit - February 3, 2009 1:58 a.m.

    I really love the way you wrote up the TMNT part. Really hilarious :)
  • tysr36 - February 3, 2009 1:58 a.m.

    lol killzone
  • SketchLemon - February 3, 2009 2:07 a.m.

  • toobs - February 3, 2009 2:42 a.m.

    Gears of war 2 and Gears of war do not need not online co-op. They need normal co-op with moren 2 player they should have 4. Halo3 need more play on normal co-op SO IN THE NEXT HALO OR GEARS OD WARS GAME MAKE MORE CO-OP PEOPLE!!!
  • xFnKxTaLeNtx - February 3, 2009 3:29 a.m.

    why would TMNT be on the #1 for this list? it was a garbage game and co-op would only make your friends hate you for making them play But otherwise a good feature.
  • Yellowhat17 - February 3, 2009 3:43 a.m.

    I would've loved a co-op (Well, better co-op) GTA IV and Modern Warfare. Golden Axe: Beastrider also deserved up to three players. If they had developed co-op for Golden Axe though, they probably would've added a new character to the original three. I'm sure though, that most of the great FPS and/or RPG games in the future will have co-op after seeing this year's load of cooperative games. @saveTehcheese I think he was joking.
  • Cwf2008 - February 3, 2009 4:06 a.m.

    I dont really think CoD4 needed Co-Op. It was fine the way it was
  • DawgsFan117 - February 3, 2009 5:13 a.m.

    Well I agree with everything in this article and I can not wait for COD Modern Warfare 2 simply because its the follow up to my favorite online multiplayer game ever. However are some of you guys out of your minds. Stop naming RPGs for coop. That is stupid because an RPG is all about the story and that would be ruined by coop. However the stupidest comment i have seen is that Bioshock needed coop. Are you just a moron. That was the greatest experience on the 360 and all of its elements worked because it was a single player game. It was only you and against the horrors of rapture and the experience was epic.
  • AyJay - February 3, 2009 7:46 a.m.

    donkey kong country shoulda been up there

Showing 1-20 of 67 comments

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