In This Increasingly Online World, It’s High Time Someone Other Than Nintendo Looks At Local Co-op.
For the greater part of the year, I’ve been more than excited for two games in particular. Fable Legends and Evolve both offer robust multiplayer and strategic depth within them.
My enthusiasm for these games has wavered, however.I’ve previously voiced concerns about Fable and its implementation of this co-op mode.
Ever since stable Internet services were able to be provided for gaming, there has been a push to use these services to encourage multiplayer gameplay. For some games, this actually makes a lot of sense.
Call of Duty and other first person shooters enjoy games without friends sneaking peeks at your screen. This strategy has spread to a huge number of games and a lot of the time it’s an advantage.
Don’t get me wrong, I like the expanded realm of possibilities that online gaming has given us.
So why am I worried about how Fable Legends and Evolve are going about things? Well I am of the school that still enjoys having some people over and playing a few games.
Console Diablo 3, for example, was a huge success as far as local co-op was concerned and gave us hours of fun (we’re excitedly awaiting August 19th for Reaper of Souls).
This social side of games is what’s being eroded by the popular shift to online co-op. Many times I’ve looked at getting another game for us to play, only to find out the co-op play boasted about is online only.
Apart from preventing me enjoying a quiet night of, say, Aliens: Colonial Marines with some buddies, my problem here is two-fold. Firstly, I’ve already spent up to $90 on a game. Now I’m expected to pay again for the ability to play the game the way it was meant to be played.
Monetizing online services such as Xbox Live and Playstation Plus helps ensure reliability but I can’t help but be bitter about it. Secondly, having spent years playing MOBAs, I know that random matching of players doesn’t always yield good results. If I’m going to play with friends, it’ll more than likely be at my house; and most of them don’t have an Xbox One or PS4.
Without local co-op on Fable Legends and Evolve, I really feel the wind leaving my sails. I want to play the games with people by my side. I do not want to be expected to pay another subscription fee for the opportunity to play with a stranger – and maybe be called all sorts of names for not playing the way he/she wants me to.
It’s not up to me to say whether this is going to improve or hurt the games overall. The difference between whether or not co-op is online or local is a matter of preference. For Evolve, it looks like the smart option but Fable could just as easily take either option.
Personally, I find the notion of gaming and socialising being mutually exclusive quite odd but it works for some people.
Am I alone in wanting local co-op back on the map? Bring social gaming back to the couch. Many more developers could afford to look at Diablo 3, Borderlands, or Mario Kart 8.