The 2011 Grimmys: Co-op Game of the Year

The Grimmys

Overwhelming odds tend to be the standard in gaming, so having a couple of well equiped buddies to back you up is never a bad thing. Douchebags need not apply, these games need teamwork…save your individuality for hipster parties and art school.

The Nominess

Grimmy Winner
Gears of War 3 – The Gears series has been known for being one of the few games that features a 2 player co-op mode that doesn’t seem tacked on, but Gears of War 3′s 4 player co-op campaign just set the bar out of reach for other games. While it was great to experience the story with up to 3 of your friends, the upgrade to Horde Mode and the addition of Beast Mode make this the go-to game for cooperation. Fans of eviscerating your buddies need not worry, the multiplayer is on par with the rest of this game’s features…but more on that later.

Dead Island – Dead Island may have struggled with bugs and other launch-related goofiness, but it was pretty easy to look past all of its flaws while bashing in zombie skulls with a squad of fellow undead hunters. The accessible drop in/drop out co-op mode made it easy to explore the beautiful landscape with others while not feeling like a long term commitment was necessary. Zombies win by utilizing numbers; it’s nice to see that strategy can work both ways.

Dungeon Defenders – 2011 was a kind of renaissance period for tower defense games and while it wasn’t at the forefront, Dungeon Defenders did set the standard for injecting fun and co-operation into the genre. It’s possible to play solo, but it’s standout feature is the co-op play and the fluid way the different hero builds work in sync with each other. Besides, even if you don’t have friends to defend things with, it’s easy to find them online and really sad to attempt a battle with goblins on your own.

Portal 2 – While it’s easy to validate teaming up for battle, teaming up to tackle non-combat scenarios may seem a bit strange. Portal 2 not only proves that having a puzzle buddy is possible but that it can also make for an incredibly entertaining experience. Doesn’t hurt that many already consider this a GOTY contender.

Magicka – The satirical fantasy world of Midgard is one that’s enjoyable on your own, but like a funny movie, best experienced with a group. Having multiple spell combinations going off at the same time is incredibly fun to watch and the ability to “cross streams” with your closest friends creates some incredibly devastating attacks. Besides, wizards do best when rolling deep.

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