More Co-op, Please
Killzone: Shadow Fall

I’ve always been a fan of co-op games. There’s nothing like sitting on your couch with a friend and tearing through some fantastical world you could never be a part of otherwise. Unfortunately, it seems like “couch co-op” is slowly becoming more and more of a rarity. Online co-op reigns supreme now, if a game has co-op functionality at all. My only question is – why?

I can understand games not having co-op--it doesn’t work with all types of games and I can respect that. But if a game does have a co-operative section, why couldn’t it be played locally?

Recently, I had the opportunity to play the new “co-op” (I use that term loosely) expansion for Killzone: Shadow Fall – Intercept. I was excited to play the next-gen shooter with a friend, even if it was only online. But when I sat down to play, I realized that the definition of co-op must have been loosened considerably. I suppose it was co-op in the academic sense--I mean you were playing on the same team as other people--but all this expansion really amounted to was a glorified horde mode. There were some victory conditions and a point banking system, but it wasn’t enough to save this shell of a DLC.

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Gameplay amounts to nothing more than a domination style game that earns you points towards victory. There are four different classes to choose from, but don’t worry, none of them are really unique in terms of combat effectiveness so you can pretty much go any direction you want. The biggest difference between the classes are the default weapon loadouts and unique abilities (medics healing, etc.) Basically, you can turn a medic into a sniper if you so desire, because nothing really limits you from doing so. This lack of class diversification stagnates gameplay and turns “co-op” matches into boring point scoring marathons of varying length. 

Killzone: Shadow Fall

All of that being said, the game was not without merit. It could be fun at times, mostly because of the tightly worked-out control scheme and excellent visuals, but it was an overall bland addition to a game that really needed some next-gen love.

And this is exactly what I’m talking about. Where are the good co-op games? It seems that only 1 out of every 10 or so games even has co-op functionality, and of those that do, only 1 out of every 10 of those is any damn good. This is by no means completely accurate I’m sure, but if true then that would mean only 1% of all mainstream games have a solid and functional co-operative game mode. Really?

Am I alone in this? Surely, I can’t be the only gamer out there that wants more great co-op gameplay. Gears of War, Borderlands, Portal 2, Diablo III–These are the games of co-op legend. Sure, online multiplayer is great, but is there some unwritten rule somewhere that says you can’t have both?

So, come on developers, give us what we want. You can still do what makes you money, but don’t forget about the people who got you to where you are – the fans. Give us what we want, or more directly, give me what I want. I’m sorry, I can be quite selfish.

Joshua Bruce
Joshua Bruce
@JoshuaBruce9

Video Content Director
Date: 07/03/2014

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