[Disclosure: The following article is a sponsored post from G2A]
Christmas is a great time to be with family and friends. It’s one of the main lessons given to us by countless holiday specials (including the Star Wars Holiday Special) and who are we to disagree? In the past families and friends would gather around the fireplace, basking in its warmth, but it’s the 21st century, after all, so a little change once in a while may be good.
How about gathering around a warm glow of a hi-res TV and a gaming platform of choice, and sharing some words of encouragement to other players on your team who really should learn how to play already!
Regardless, if you have gaming relatives, a significant other, or friends, playing a game together is a sure-fire recipe for some quality time. If you have trouble picking a good game to play with them this Christmas, don’t worry, we have some suggestions for you.
Couch games to keep the good cheer
Are you done eating and unpacking and you want to sit back and have some simple fun? This is the perfect time for some casual games, and these are some of the finest.
The Worms series has a long history, going back a little over two decades. This year we got another entry, entitled Worms WMD. In addition to traditional worm-to-worm combat, WMD introduces interactive vehicles and buildings.
As usual the titular Worms have funny expressions, characteristic voices and a decent amount of customization available. Oh, and there are some guns in there, of course. As well as some less conventional methods of causing widespread destruction and loss of HP.
A great entry in the classic series and a wonderful game for everyone.
A cute little game about smashing everything within sight, but with friends! Castle Crashers launched in 2012 and took the world by storm.
Castle Crashes is a fun side-scrolling beat’em up game with an arena mode, where you can fight other players. The graphic style is very friendly and expressive, easily described as “cartoonish”, full of detail and polish.
CC can handle up to four players, putting them in the shoes of four knights tasked with retrieving a magical gem and four kidnapped princesses. A shared sense of purpose makes this a very different kind of party fun, and a good reconciliatory game to play after Worms WMD.
Ultimate Chicken Horse
Remember how well you played together in Castle Crashers? Throw it all away, because Ultimate Chicken Horse is a platforming game you build together in an attempt to be the only player to reach the end of the level.
The players take forms of wacky animals which get to insert certain objects (traps, floors, etc.) into the levels before attempting to run it. The more complicated and deadly, the better, but remember, your goal is to prevent others from reaching the end. If you are the only one to survive, you get a point.
Co-op games to play with your closest friends
Party games are incredibly fun, but when the kids and casuals from your family leave, it’s time for a real gaming team-up. This is where co-op games come in, so let’s take a look at some of them.
Gears of War 4
Did you think the Phoenix family has no more stories to tell? Think again. Marcus got himself a family and a beard, clearly following in the footsteps of Kratos. In Gears of War 4 we follow the story of Marcus’ son, J.D., as he and his group of allies fight a new threat to planet Sera.
Cover-based shooting, chainsaw-bayonets, burly armor, and bloody combat return in style. There’s even a bigger, faster, strong Horde mode with new bells and whistles to enjoy with friends.
GoW 4 a two-player co-op mode, making it a great game to share with a friend that’s as bloodthirsty as you are, in an experience just as enjoyable as Marcus and Dom’s cooperation.
Welcome back, Vault Hunters. Are you ready to ungodly amount of procedurally generated loot, rabid enemies, and an exquisitely entertaining villain? Because Borderlands 2 has that in spades, enough to handle four players at once, with even more dramatic and comedic flair than its worthy predecessor.
Pick a character from four core classes and two from add-ons, get three people to join your game (or bribe a friend with pizza and play locally as a duo) and shoot your way through to Handsome Jack. Which class will you choose and shape? The choice is yours, but remember to make sure you and your teammates complement each other’s abilities.
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes
Ever watched an action movie hero defuse a bomb and said “yeah, I could do that”? Because now you can, as long as you have friends to help you. Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is a game for a least two people, one trying to defuse a bomb, the other (or others) acting as Experts, guiding the Defuser through various bomb modules.
The game truly earns its title. The Experts can’t see the bomb and you have to describe it, and only the Experts have the manual of defusal. Your communication skills are tested to the highest degree. Numerous puzzles, complications, and variable modules make this game an evergreen fun.
Games for couples
When the last friends are gone, the lights are out, and you are alone with your significant other…that’s the time to play some REAL co-op games! Few distractions, peace and quiet, let’s play.
Orcs Must Die! 2
What’s more fun than becoming a mighty wizard and going from fortress to fortress exterminating sentient life forms en masse? Doing so with your girl-boyfriend!
Orcs Must Die! 2 is a sequel to a very successful Orc Must Die!, a tower defense game with more “oomph” than any other TD.
Team up with your significant other and become the ultimate power couple. As War Mage and Sorceress you will fight against the Orc hordes assaulting mystic Rifts. Set up traps, summon powerful Guardians, and cast devastating spells in an effort to stop the greenskins from succeeding. The fate of the world depends on how well you can work together!
Divinity: Original Sin – Enhanced Edition
There is only way to make an epic tale of past lives, world-crushing threat, time travel, and discovering your destiny even more epic. Playing it with your significant other.
D:OS is an excellent mesh of a classic and modern role-playing game, and is tailored to being enjoyed by two people. Even the dialogues can be played cooperatively, with a convenient and entertaining version of rock-paper-scissors to determine who gets to decide. Together you will learn a story of corruption, legendary generals, and interact with the world in ways few games allow you to!
A sequel to one of the best, and definitely the most memorable puzzle game in recent memory. And while the game lets you play as Chell once again, it’s not where the main fun of the game comes from.
Say hello to Atlas and P-Body, two Laurel and Hardy-like robots with portal guns. What could possibly go wrong! Portal 2 co-op campaign is set some time after the singleplayer one, and presents a new set of challenges you can face with a partner. Or, you know, watch yourselves die in funny ways. Whichever is more to your tastes.
When you feel overwhelmed by the number of good games to play this winter, remember to look to the person next to you. No game is as important as the people you play with, because you don’t expect the game to revive you instead of grabbing loot and running away cackling like a madman!
Either way, remember to get some great gifts for gamers, stay warm, and share joy with people important to you.