I had a friend over who wanted to sit down and play through the Transformers: War For Cybertron’s Co-op campaign. We were surprised to see that the local cooperative mode was unavailable. We started talking about a simpler time when men were men and games new their place. It should be noted that while writing this I wore a cowboy hat and slim-fitting jeans. It's to remind me of a time where pressing start wasn’t just for one anti-social gamer on a couch, but sometimes two-to-four.
It is really odd for me to write this article seeing as I have long-time championed the power and effectiveness behind single-player games. It almost felt hypocritical until coming to the realization that games have so many effective moving parts. Maybe for some, exploding heads at 60-frames per second is what gets their spurs a spinnin’.
I see games where co-op thrives and is keeping hope alive in regards to encouraging players to playing with a friend in real life and, dare I say, their families as well. Most current console co-op games are bite sized, like Critter Crunch and re-released puzzle games from the golden era.
The reason I say the traditional mode of cooperative play is dying or a loyal dog whose just attained rabies from the neighboring possums -- is because the concept seems to escape even those remaking a game like Turtles In Time or Final Fight. Have you played these rehashed pale imitations? In the case of Final Fight: Double Impact, a game whose claim to fame was its huge spritely characters and simple co-op beat’em-up play, can only be played if connected to the internet on PSN.
I want you to participate in an experiment. Venture over to Co-optimus and find a handful of games you liked that came out this year or any year of this current generation. How many of them have offline co-op? How many of them require the internet to utilize the local co-op?
We should make a bigger deal about local co-op and offline play in general. I dare say that there could be a day where the internet may not be the most optimal way of playing with a friend. When every game requires a key-code via the internet and your friends to leave your home in order to play with you -- something should seem off about that. It could be too late for us old wranglers. Maybe I miss more games with local co-op because it reminds me of arcades and playing games with friends after dinner. Two things I hear happens very seldom minus an ethernet cord.
Its almost high noon and its time to go varmint hunting so let me try and sum up all of these oddly placed words. I could be wrong. Maybe the designers and publishers know what the gaming community wants better than I do.