Eric fired off the challenge, and like one of his sniper rifle shots in Ghost Recon Future Solider it was spot on. Brilliant idea BTW Eric. I have a many I hit only frequently, so this will be a look at the mainstays.
I'm curious now as I'm one of the most vocal guys I know. I talk a lot and I'm not sure that all my co-op partners like it, but so far no real complaints. I'm usually the assertive one giving orders and deciding what we'll do. Mostly its because I'll ask and everyone is too easy going to say what they want to I decide for them. But beyond that I'm just kinda a bossy guy in general. In all games I'm usually the conservative one, slowly walking the perimeter before advancing, looking for every nuance in the game and scoping all details. Some guys don't like this but most of my guys are good with it.
My "go to" crew is short: SWAT Wombat and Darth Lupus. I've known these guys for a while and they're great. SWAT knows a lot of good games and is simply amazing as a partner. Since I'm kinda bossy, it helps that he's real relaxed. He knows how to approach any game, and most importantly we have similar tastes in games, so chances are I'll always have him to play a game with. I can't count how many games we've finished or played together. Plus we like to talk about movies and everything else while gaming. SWAT is a true friend outside of gaming as well. Though we've never met, he'll call me on the phone and listen to my problems. He is awesome.
Darth is hands down the easiest going guy I've ever games with! He's incredibly relaxed and so mellow. If there's a weapon to pick up in a game like Borderlands, he'll ask EVERYONE before taking it. If it's a collectible in Raccoon City, he won't just grab it but instead ask first. I love this trait. Sometimes I have to tell him to be more direct!
Now, if I'm playing a shooter (especially anything with Tom Clancy in the title) I absolutely want Bakken Hood in my game. He's nearly infallible, so sometimes it means he kills 3 or 4 times what I do, but he's quite cool and easy to game with. I don't always hear Bakken well. He's soft spoken and I think his mic doesn't pick him up enough, but he's rarely phased by it so we must have something right. Bakken is a neat combo of tactical genius and perfect memory of where everything is on any given map. Plus he's great for advice on RPG builds, so that's a double for him.
Lately Smurphster and BobbyThumbs have made it in my list too, especially completing Future Solider together. I've gamed with Smurph a few times and it's great to game with other parents since they understand if I have a crying kid interrupt. Smurph is pretty quiet, and if his Minecraft sever goes down in a game he'll be distracted, but he laughs a lot which I like. Bobby is good as he too is a gaming parent. He dies like crazy in games, but he's such a nice guy it never matters. He doesn't get mad when I repeat thinly veiled hints like "Maybe we should all slow down and wait behind these sandbags?" over and over. Oh and he has a Canadian accent which always helps.
SilentStrider and EngineerSeven are good guys too. We've done Lost Planet 2 and some Trine 2 together, plus a few more like Dungeon Defenders I think? I like these guys as they think my impressions of the Metalocalypse guys are funny. I think I slow them down in their games a bit, but they still let me play with them so that's a plus.
Finally one of my oldest co-op guys is one of my least used but still worth a mention: BioHzrd451. I call Bio "The Questmaster" as I've never seen ANYONE tear through games like him. If you're doing any game with a co-op campaign, especially an action RPG, you need Bio. He'll rip through and show you all the collectibles. He and Bakken are great when I'm trying to beat something like Gears on the highest difficulty. I just wait until they kill everything and bam! Achievement get. Bio's pulled me through Sacred 2, Halo Wars, Gears 2 and 3 (nearly all my Horde achievements are from games Bio's hosted), plus many more
My newest potential co-oppartner is LlamaD. Only gamed with him once, but he fit in well, so he might become a regular.