Like many of us, I am often asked “what are the best co-op RPG’s ?” To this I always reply:
Borderlands (Xbox 360) Best Price - Zavvi.com £14.85 (with all DLC)
Terrible graphics, dated menus, repetitive sound clips, boring landscapes, lack of variety and skags aside this is the grand daddy of co-op RPG’s. A nautical ton of missions combined with simple game mechanics have made this the number one game to crack open a couple of cases of beer and play split screen for 5-6 hours.
Borderlands is now ludicrously cheap for the amount of gameplay and has a fantastic array of DLC available. Whilst not perfect, it is perhaps the first ever game to do co-op right in an open world. XP and money is shared, classes well defined, and difficulty spot on. I can only hope they make a sequel when the next gen hits.
Dungeon Siege 3 (Xbox 360) – Best Price – Play.com £18.99
OK I’ll level with ya, I’ve only played this beauty for about 6/7 hours. My gaming buddy Daffy has been busy opening doors and attending weddings. However the precious evening we did play this beauty we did so from 10pm till 5am. I sat down not expecting much, but two bottles of port late I was hooked.
Incredibly detailed, this is not a one dimensional dungeon crawler. Many side quests and fantastically balanced difficulty have made it a winner. One major gripe I have is that the inventory system is only accessible by one player at a time. This means that equipment changing has to be left to regular 30 mins or so stops. Gold is shared directly so if one person spends some, it is gone for both. Finally they mention the game’s lead villain so many times it feels like the writer was doing it for a bet.
Minor gripes for an otherwise exceptionally polished co-op RPG.
Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles (Gamecube)
In 2004 my love affair with the Gamecube knew no bounds. To play this correctly required 4 Game boy advances, 4 connector cables, the game, and a game cube. Which at the time cost a pretty penny indeed. The game itself was a basic RPG where 4 players would save a village by traveling out to the a level to pick up the sap of a magic tree. Whilst not a great idea for a game it did have a few cool innovations. The Gameboys were not just controllers they each contained a piece of the map, meaning a modicum of team work was required.
Worth playing as a novelty but not worth going out of your way to play, but what it did do was set the scene. Perhaps the Wii-U was inspired by the secondary screen idea used here.
Other Co-op RPG’s of note:
Zelda: Four Swords
World of Warcraft
Too Human (haha maybe not)
Warhammer 40k: Kill Team