Picture this: it’s game night, you’re sitting around with your family, and you’re looking for something good to play. You know you can’t dive into some of the best multiplayer games that have you competing with one another, because chaos will envelop the household and your partner is a really sore loser. So, you need the best co-op family games instead.
Co-op video games ensure that no one gets left out of the fun, so if you’re tired of sitting around and watching your kids play video games, then get a game that everyone can play. And with the holidays approaching, the best co-op family games also make great gift ideas.
It’s worth noting there are some good options for this amongst the best retro Nintendo Switch games too. No matter what console you’re on, we’ve gone ahead and made a list of some of the best family co-op games for Nintendo Switch, Playstation, Xbox and PC. So, let’s dive on into the list and see if we can’t bring some unity to your household thanks to some excellent video games.
Best Family Co-op Games At A Glance
- Best Overall: Mario 3D World – $51.99 from Amazon
- Best for Puzzle Fans: Portal 2 – $9.99 from Steam
- Best for Sports Fans: Rocket League – Free from Epic Games
- Most In-Depth: Divinity: Original Sin 2 – $29.25 from Amazon
- Most Absurd: Human: Fall Flat – $21.87 from Amazon
- Most Chaotic: Overcooked! All You Can Eat – $29.12 from Amazon
- Best for Couple: It Takes Two – $30.99 from Amazon
- Most Unique: Snipperclips Plus: Cut it out Together – $33.10 from Amazon
- Best Old-School: Scott Pilgrim vs The World – $34.99 from Amazon
- Most Creative: Minecraft – $29.75 from Amazon
1. Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury
Here we have a double package feature show and how can anyone say no to that? Bowser’s Fury is actually the new game here, but it’s mostly a single-player game with a second player thrown in for fun. That second player can enjoy an easy time of things, but Mario 3D World is where this game shines.
That’s because Mario 3D World is a four-player co-op game that has you and three other people running around classic Mario levels, but you can all pick each other up to either help or hinder. It adds a bit of fun by also having a scoring system too, so you can still get a little competitive if you want to.
2. Portal 2
Best for Puzzle Fans
Portal 2 is a classic puzzle game that has you and one other person thinking your way through mind-warping physics traps to try and overcome a dastardly robotic lord. You’ll need to learn constantly to overcome it, but the joy of the game often comes from destroying one another.
That’s because there’s no dying in this game; you just respawn instantly, So you can get to the end of a puzzle you’ve spent half an hour on, and then just teleport your co-op partner into a bottomless pit for a little bit.
3. Rocket League
Best for Sports Fans
Rocket League isn’t strictly a co-op game, but you can play it like that. This game has you controlling cars as you try and play soccer with them. It’s a very easy-to-understand game, but if you want to put in a few hundred hours, you can learn to fly in it.
You can play splitscreen with your family and either choose to work together against bots or online opponents, or start playing against each other if you need to settle a score. Also, it’s free, which is the best price.
4. Divinity: Original Sin 2
If you’re playing with a group that’s a little more into gaming than most, then Divinity: Original Sin 2 is a damn-near-perfect RPG. You can play this as any group up to four players, and you get to play as custom characters or pre-written ones with special story interactions.
The story is a joy to play through, combat is a blast thanks to elemental interactions and some very silly immersive physics. Plus, you could easily play this game time and time again thanks to how much variety there is in the story events and different builds.
5. Human: Fall Flat
Human: Fall Flat is a genuinely preposterous game that you and one other person flopping around as barely functional people. It’s tough to control, which is the point, and you just need to get through simple puzzles like pulling boxes or throwing controllers.
While it is only two-player in local co-op, you can play with up to eight players online, or you can just take turns. This is one of those games that’s a joy to watch as well as play, thanks to the slapstick nature of its physics.
6. Overcooked! All You Can Eat
If you’ve ever thought, “wow, this family would work great together in a professional kitchen,” then this is the game for you. Overcooked! All You Can Eat is the ultimate version of this four-player game, and you’ll need to survive increasingly chaotic kitchen situations to overcome its campaign.
While it starts off easy, things like lava and floating kitchens start to seep into the levels to keep things fun, and you’ll quickly find yourself yelling at your family to pick up the bun they just dropped because the orders are up.
7. It Takes Two
Best for Couples
It Takes Two released last year and was quickly recognized as one of the best two-player co-op games around. This one’s especially good for couples with kids, because in it, you play as a couple going through some troubles who end up shrunk down to toy size.
Each level offers something different, and the constantly changing gameplay is the star of the show. There aren’t many games like this out there, and it’s a real shame because it’s hard not to enjoy working together with your partner, or just competing against them in some of the mini-games.
8. Snipperclips Plus: Cut it out Together
Another two-player game here, but this one’s fascinating. Snipperclips Plus is an upgraded version of the original Snipperclips, and it has two people using cutting mechanics to make themselves into the right shapes to solve puzzles.,
You have to use the unique Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons to make different shapes and cuts, and it’s awesome because there are lots of different ways to solve each puzzle. This game really rewards working together and thinking outside the box, so it’s a good one to play with kids.
9. Scott Pilgrim vs The World
If you miss the good old days of beat ‘em ups and arcade games, then you’ll love this more modern take on the beat ‘em up through the lens of the Scott Pilgrim franchise. You get to take one of multiple characters through the story of the films and comics, and you can play with up to three other people.
There are some surprisingly in-depth mechanics at play here too, so it should be meaty enough for more experienced gamers, and colorful enough for younger ones. It’s a lot of fun, and that’s often the most important thing with any of the best family co-op games.
Finally we have Minecraft. Look, nearly everyone knows what Minecraft is, but just in case you don’t, Minecraft is the ultimate display of creativity in video game form. It does have a story and adventure for you to follow along with, but most people just like to build in it.
Players who like fighting can go off on adventures, while those who like more peaceful endeavors spend their time putting together incredible houses or railroads. It’s a very chill game, and the simple visual style belies an incredibly deep and enjoyable game.