Co-Optimus - Editorial - When Co-Op Becomes a Necessity - The Changing Face of Single Player

Lost Planet 2

  • Online Co-Op: 4 Players
  • Couch Co-Op: 2 Players
  • LAN Co-Op: 4 Players
  • + Co-Op Campaign

When Co-Op Becomes a Necessity - The Changing Face of Single Player - Page 2

Sheva and Chris were best buds.  The croc?  He just wanted to play alone.

Patrick's article really is quite interesting, because in a way, it echoes the complete opposite of the tone of Co-Optimus's community.  The most famous instance I think comes with an example Patrick is using to defend his position, and it involves Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.  Readers of this site will remember when community manager Robert Bowling gave the reasoning for lack of campaign co-op in the game.  The main reason was that it broke the single player game, it ruined the cinematic experience, and simply didn't fit with what they were trying to do.  

What I said in that article covering it still holds true today...

Now I like Infinity Ward, I really do, and they make an amazingly immersive single player experience in the Call of Duty games; but perhaps they just can't craft that into something two players can enjoy?  It's not like it can't be done, with titles like Halo 3Gears of War, and Resident Evil 5 showcasing an awesome co-op experience through the game's single player.

I would have liked to see them take the "leave it as an option" route though - something Treyarch did with Call of Duty: World at War.  Was it ideal in the game?  No, not at all.  Was it fun?  Hell yeah it was.

Whatever your thoughts are on that subject, it'll be interesting to see how co-op continues to evolve game design in the next couple of years.  Developers are coming up with unique and interesting ways to solve "that" problem, and with passing time it can only get better.

We constantly hear clamoring for split screen play, for online play, for split screen with online, drop-in/drop-out and so on.  People want every feature imaginable in their co-op experience, and to get those, you may have to sacrifice something else.  While traditionally we saw co-op being the sacrifice for single player features, perhaps times are changing.  In a world that was and still is dominated by these solo affairs, it's tough to accept that our single player and multiplayer experiences may be melding together. 

I remember reading an article years ago, at the advent of online services on consoles, that stated there will come a day when AI in a game is not needed, because every role in the game can be filled with an actual player.  We'll all be constantly connected through the Internet and can enjoy the game in a different way.  Mind you, this was a good 6 or 7 years ago, right before Xbox Live launched.  Why I think we're a long ways off from something like that, I think we're beginning to see how parts of the game are being replaced by human players.  

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