This is what the game looks like in motion, so long as the camera isn't obscured.
Anarchy Reigns' co-op mode can be found under the "Multiplayer" menu. Like all the multiplayer modes, it's an online only affair, there is no local play. In the standard version of Anarchy Reigns, co-op consists of a simple Survival Mode where you and two friends can take on waves of NPC enemies such as Killseekers, Drones, armored cars, and super mutants. I found it quite challenging. Like most multiplayer modes in Anarchy Reigns, there's a 10 minute time limit. If your team hasn't defeated all the waves by the time the clock expires, you lose. Each wave gets progressively more difficult, and each session features a finale with a badass boss unique to each of the five different stages. The ten minute timer doesn't stop until the boss's death animation is complete, so it's easy to get screwed out of a victory. Watching the timer tick down as a giant creature is in its death throes is unnerving. To be denied victory because some gargantuan beast won't do you the courtesy of dying quickly is absolutely infuriating. At the end of each public co-op match you're awarded some XP which goes toward unlocking new characters.
If you can acquire a Game Stop exclusive preorder, there's also a downloadable mode called "Mad Survival," where you play against other player characters, rather than the NPC grunts. I found this mode much more enjoyable. Hopefully Mad Survival becomes available as a fee add-on. I wouldn't hold my breath concerning the "free" part.
As an added bonus, you can set up private matches, invite some friends, and play any of the 13 different multiplayer modes with bots. So if you want to participate in a bot Battle Royale with a few buddies, go ahead. I would expect most players to play in the team battles against the enemy AI. That way you can't hurt each other. Battle Royales can get pretty sloppy, and friendly fire from thrown vehicles can be hazardous to your co-op partnership. The only downside to private matches is that you aren't awarded any XP, so you won't be able to unlock any characters from the 16-plus character roster, or earn any shiny emblems. You can, however, unlock all the characters (except Bayonetta, another Game Stop exclusive) through completing campaign missions.
Bayonetta is pretty cool, but once again, she's similar to all the smaller characters.
Multiplayer matches are where it's at. Private co-op matches with bots are satisfying, especially if you really don't like adversarial game modes, but more competitive players will want to crush real human opponents. Whether you're playing bots or humans, the matches are fast paced and chaotic. Tag matches offer special team attacks, which would have been awesome in Max Survival, but are unfortunately seem to be exclusive to Tag battles. Each character's Killer Weapon is a devastating force to be reckoned with, and when a player activates their Rampage Mode the only thing that can stop them is another Rampaging player. When two powered up characters clash on the field of battle they must mash specific buttons or be annihilated. Locke captured some of the frenetic madness in the following video. (NSFW subtitles)
Anarchy Reigns first a foremost a multiplayer brawler. The campaign and cooperative modes are adequate, but don't do anything to stand out. This game is a glorified button masher -- a fun glorified button masher. It may be too shallow for fighting game enthusiasts, but gamers who enjoy a good choaotic romp fueled by cheesy one-liners and particle effects will find some enjoyment here. I did.
The Co-Optimus Review was of Anarchy Reigns was based on the Xbox 360 version of the game. A review copy was provided by the publisher.
The Co-Op Experience: Three players can team up in an online survival mode. Two to four players can play against AI opponents in private online matches.
Co-Optimus game reviews focus on the cooperative experience of a game, our final score graphic represents this experience along with an average score for the game overall. For an explanation of our scores please check our Review Score Explanation Guide.