Some of the most popular co-op multiplayer games from the 2010s (Image via Blizzard Entertainment, Valve & Hazelight Studios)

10 best co-op multiplayer games of the 2010s

Co-op multiplayer are the best choices from a gaming library to play with friends. These titles allow players to team up online or with two or more controls to enjoy a game with others.

By using any voice chat platform or simply getting their friends on call, users can have a fun time with their friends and test their synergy in such games.

Co-op multiplayer titles began as two-player offerings in the early ’90s, which saw almost all home consoles come packed with two controls. Many of these games at the time supported co-op multiplayer, and some well-known examples would be platform products such as Super Mario brothers. or contra.

In the 2010s, co-op multiplayers were still at their peak, as they are today. Many titles in modern times also include the ability to play with others locally or online.

Note: This article reflects the views of the author.


Ten most popular co-op multiplayer titles from each year in the 2010s

1) Halo: Reach – 2010

Halo is well known for its co-op multiplayer experience, and Bungie’s latest version of this series was no different. It was released on September 14, 2010, as exclusive to Xbox 360 and later for Windows and Xbox One via the Master Chief Collection on December 3, 2019.

The game offers a co-op for four players and can only be played on a split screen by two players and the Xbox. As an FPS, they fight against the union’s forces on the planet Reach and do not play like Master Chief for the first time in Halo’s history.

In this title, users take on the role of Noble Team, a group of Spartan III super soldiers led by a Spartan II command. Takes place before the events of Halo: Combat Evolved, and its story is about the fall of the planet Reach and the prelude to how the spacecraft Pillar of Autumn came on the Installation 04 Halo ring.


2) Portal 2 – 2011

A sequel to the original game, Portal 2, was developed and published by Valve on April 18, 2011. It was the first time the series introduced a co-op multiplayer mode, allowing two players to play it together. This was done through a second campaign, after the single player campaign, after Chell’s story.

Players take on the role of two two-legged robots, passing ATLAS and P-Body, as they navigate the various test chambers of the Aperture Science Facility. Instructed by AI the personality core GLaDOS, the robots are sent on several missions and are also in focus for DLC called “Peer Review”.

Like the two robots, users must work together to solve different puzzles to complete each test chamber. Each robot is equipped with a complete portal gun and can use each other’s portals. Players can play on a split screen on the same device or with two different devices online.


3) Borderlands 2 – 2012

Borderlands 2 is a first-person shooter developed by Gearbox Software and published by 2K Games. It was released on September 18, 2012 for Windows PCs, PS3 and Xbox 360.

This was the second title in Gearbox’s Borderlands series, the story of which took place five years after the events of the first.

Borderlands 2 offers players the opportunity to play the main story, as well as side quests and goals in single player, offline split screen or online for co-op multiplayer. Set on the planet Pandora, users control one of four new Vault Hunters and take on Handsome Jack’s strengths.

The game contains some RPG elements, as its four playable characters make up the four different classes, each of which has different powers and abilities. The world is divided into several sections, each with an explorable open map.

In the beginning, players have access to only one area; as the story progresses, more areas are unlocked.


4) Dota 2 – 2013

Dota 2 is a co-op multiplayer online battle arena game available for PC. It is another title developed and published by Valve on July 9, 2013, which has since seen a sharp increase in popularity. It is played from a top-down perspective in a 5v5 tactical battle format.

Players can choose from many heroes available to play as and in a team, although careful consideration must be given to choosing those who can complement their companions the most. The game takes place over a large map, where primary areas are the lanes over which users can direct their troops and heroes.

Destroying enemy structures and their base Ancient gives the team a win, with matches lasting up to an hour. Dota has been popular enough even to get an anime adaptation consisting of many of its heroes.

Through all this fame, however, Dota’s actual full name: Defenders of the Ancients, has been somewhat forgotten, possibly because it’s not really rolling off its tongue. Maybe it can help to switch to Death of the Angels, which sounds much more metal and cooler?


5) Dark Souls 3 – 2014

It may surprise many that the Dark Souls series can be played in co-op multiplayer. And it would not be their fault either, then developers From software never really market that aspect of the game properly. And yet, most of their games have a co-op multiplayer aspect, in addition to Sekiro.

Dark Souls 3, which was originally released in April 2016 for PS4, Xbox One and PC, also follows this example. In different places in the title, players can see golden glowing summonses left behind by others. These can be used to summon them into the player’s world and make them an ally in this otherwise gloomy environment.

Usually after a “Praise the Sun” feeling, the two users can now venture out into the world in the nearby area and tackle this unforgiving game with a sense of camaraderie. Although changing areas must be done in single player, a summons sign in the new location is enough to solve that problem.

Players can even tackle boss fights together, level the playing field a bit for some tough bosses.


6) Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 – 2015

Almost everything Call of Duty games have the capability of co-op multiplayer, and Black Ops 3 is no different. Developed by Treyarch and published by Activision, this title was released on November 6, 2015 for Windows, PS4 and Xbox One.

The story takes place 40 years after the events of Black Ops 2, which takes place in 2065. In an ongoing third Cold War between two global alliances, warfare via aircraft missiles has become obsolete.

Instead, secret soldiers who take the fight behind enemy lines are how a faction performs its tactics to wipe out important targets. Players take control of an unnamed soldier who must undergo cybernetic surgery to survive after a mission fails.

Like all COD offers, this game is a first-person shooter, and the promotion can be played in up to four users’ co-op. In addition to the main story, they can also participate in a competitive multiplayer and zombie mode.

As cybernetically enhanced individuals, players also have access to special abilities and skills not seen before in the series.


7) Overwatch – 2016

Described as a “hero shooter”, Overwatch is a team-based game that sees PvP matches between two teams of six players. Developed and published by Blizzard Entertainment, released on May 14, 2016 for Windows, PS4 and Xbox One. It is a co-op multiplayer title that can only be played online.

Users can choose from a pool of 34 heroes, divided into three broad classes, and must cooperate to fight the opposing team. The game is played as a first-person shooter, where each hero is equipped with unique abilities and skills based on their class.

There are many game modes, ranging from zone control to escorting a payload. A sequel, Overwatch 2will be released on October 4, 2022, as a free-to-play title, with some game format changes.


8) PUBG: Battlegrounds – 2017

PUBG: Battlegrounds is the first Battle Royale to be widely available, and begins life as a mod for another title. It was officially released as a standalone title by PUBG Studios on December 20, 2017, for Windows PC and Xbox One.

At launch, it was a critical and commercial hit, with players rushing in to play this new concept of a video game.

PUBG offers the opportunity to play in co-op multiplayer in the form of team-based matches. These allow two or up to four people to team up and participate in a game with evenly numbered teams, where the winner is the last team standing, even if only one member survives.

The game takes place in a remote place like an island or a desert, originally uninhabited until users fall down on the map. They must quickly find weapons, ammunition and armor and engage in battle with other teams nearby.

Players must stay within the playing area, which will constantly shrink as the game progresses.


9) A Way Out – 2018

Developed by Hazelight Studios and created by Josef Fares, well known for his co-op multiplayer games, A Way Out is a Action adventure title released on March 23, 2018. It can be played by up to two players and supports co-op co-op in split screen and online multiplayer.

The story revolves around two prisoners who decide to break out and go after the man who is responsible for their prison. Users can play as either Leo Caruso or Vincent Moretti as they work together to approach different scenarios and make decisions that affect both.

Played in a third-person perspective, the story changes things by providing different ways for players to participate in this co-op multiplayer. Some sections involve generic cover-based shooting, while others may focus on providing support to the other player.

Important decisions require both to agree on an alternative for the story to continue.


10) Destiny 2: New Light – 2019

While Destiny 2 was originally released in 2017, it was a paid game back then. However, developers Bungie soon got the license to publish the game themselves and changed it to a free-to-play offer on October 1, 2019, and released it again with the title New Light.

This co-op multiplayer is primarily a PvE experience, as players can collectively participate in the story and expansion missions in groups of three. PvP elements are also available, which allow different users or teams to test their skills against each other in goal-based matches or direct arena battles.

They take control of a Guardian, collaborating with an AI buddy called a ghost. Players can customize their Guardian and Ghost to give them a unique look and take part in the events of Destiny 2’s story.

Since its release, this game has received many updates and expansions on a regular basis. The current ongoing story is called The Witch Queen, and Lightfall will be released later in 2023.


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