The age of split-screen co-op may be fading away but when it comes to playing with your friends, gaming just keeps offering more and more with each passing year. This time around was no different as we saw new series take hold of the world and old series re-emerge to reclaim the throne. Here are the nominees for the best co-op title of 2016.
Gears of War 4
Four player co-op may have been downgraded to two players but for all intents and purposes, this was the return of the king. Gears of War 4’s campaign allowed for the same diverging paths and collaborative approaches the defined the first game’s co-op. Horde mode also returned in full force, accommodating up to six players, a new card-based system and tons of wicked challenges to keep us entertained.
Tom Clancy’s The Division
Ubisoft Massive’s MMO/shooter had to undergo some serious revamps over the past few months but from update 1.3 onwards, The Division became one of the best co-op experiences available. Loot drops are now readily available in all activities and the open world. If that weren’t enough, the recent Survival DLC puts a new spin on everything as you struggle to survive in the huge open world, either against NPCs or other players.
Killing Floor 2
The early access title finally saw the light of day, releasing with a variety of maps, Zeds, weapons and characters to choose from. In terms of depth, Killing Floor 2 is deceptively simple and the sheer terror in trying to survive against overwhelming odds is very real. Bullet-time and scores of mutated creatures to murder don’t hurt either.
Monster Hunter Generations
As the newest iteration to the much-loved hunting series, Monster Hunter Generations provided another awesome co-op experience thanks to new classes and abilities, new ways to hunt and even more overwhelming beasts demanding in-depth strategies. You may need a New 3DS to fully enjoy its visuals but Monster Hunter Generations is one of the best possible reasons to finally upgrade.
Shadow Warrior 2
What’s crazier than a chainsaw wielding ninja with dual SMGs running around? Try four ninjas, all armed to the teeth, hopping and bopping enemies like there’s no tomorrow. The core kill-and-loot nature of Shadow Warrior 2 was practically built for co-op and it raises the experience to an all-new level. Plus who doesn’t love arrows, bullets, daggers and elements flying around indiscriminately?
Forza Horizon 3
When you think “campaign co-op”, Forza isn’t exactly the first game to come to mind. Forza Horizon 3 changed that by offering a wide-ranging campaign for different styles of racing, seamless joining and solid net code. Even better, completing events and races in a friend’s game would go towards your own progress. Whether it’s chilling in a convoy or going on a high-stakes adventure, Forza Horizon 3 debuted it’s co-op amazingly well.
Gears of War 4
The Coalition was already fighting an uphill battle by not having four player co-op for the campaign. However, it defied the odds to create a traditional but still highly enjoyable story filled with danger, excitement and variety. Horde mode further catered to co-op players and while we’re not fans of the borderline pay-to-win card system, it does add a whole lot of variety to the experience. It also helps that Xbox One and PC owners could play together without too many issues. Finally, it comes down to the gameplay. Gears of War 4 is a manic experience that just begs to be enjoyed with friends, whether you’re strategising or chainsawing foes left and right.
Note: GamingBolt’s Game of the Year categories, nominations and awards are selected via an internal nomination, voting and debate process. You can check the rest of categories and the respective winners here.