It’s friendship day! And we wanted to count down some of the best indie games to spend time with with one or more friends! All of these great indies are either entirely co-op or have a heavy co-op focus. We’ve been sure to choose cooperative games only, as competition isn’t what we want on this fine day, we just want good times and good vibes. With that all said and laid out, let’s get into the list. Here are our picks for the top 5 best co-op games you can play with friends on this international day of friendship!
‘Cuphead is a classic run and gun action game heavily focused on boss battles. Inspired by cartoons of the 1930s, the visuals and audio are painstakingly created with the same techniques of the era, i.e. traditional hand drawn cel animation, watercolour backgrounds, and original jazz recordings. Play as Cuphead or Mugman (in single player or local co-op) as you traverse strange worlds, acquire new weapons, learn powerful super moves, and discover hidden secrets while you try to pay your debt back to the devil!’
Cuphead! One of the biggest games of the last few years, but this one isn’t for the faint of heart, which is why we’ve put it at the start here. Cuphead is a brutal boss rush game where you can play as the titular Cuphead and his brother Mugman to stop paying back your debt to the devil! This is a great, if gruelling time in co-op and we can’t recommend it enough!
Keep Talking and nobody explodes (2+-player)
‘You’re alone in a room with a bomb. Your friends, the “Experts”, have the manual needed to defuse it. But there’s a catch: the Experts can’t see the bomb, so everyone will need to talk it out – fast! Put your puzzle-solving and communication skills to the test as you and your friends race to defuse bombs while attempting to communicate quickly before time runs out!’
Test your communication skills in this VR title where one person is trapped with a bomb and everyone else has the manual for defusing it! This one will trick you into being pretty chill, until the timer starts counting down and you realise it’s all going to heck, good luck out there with this party game that couldn’t be more fun!
DarkTide is a great FPS in a grim place
I’ve spent just over 130 hours hacking and blasting my way through Tertium’s infested corridors and feel qualified to say that…
Defy the Gods as a Witchy Moon Goddess in Hades 2
Greek-mythology-themed roguelike Hades is getting a sequel, but developer Supergiant has kept the details scant beyond a Hades 2 reveal trailer…
Stardew Valley (2-4-player)
‘You’ve inherited your grandfather’s old farm plot in Stardew Valley. Armed with hand-me-down tools and a few coins, you set out to begin your new life. Can you learn to live off the land and turn these overgrown fields into a thriving home? It won’t be easy. Ever since Joja Corporation came to town, the old ways of life have all but disappeared. The community centre, once the town’s most vibrant hub of activity, now lies in shambles. But the valley seems full of opportunity. With a little dedication, you might just be the one to restore Stardew Valley to greatness!’
This is a bit of a different one, whilst most of the games on this list are white-knuckle tension-filled party games, this is a calming and chill farming game where you can build your friends’ little houses next to yours and set up a farm together. Grow crops and your relationship in this smash-hit farming sim.
‘Overcooked returns with a brand-new helping of chaotic cooking action! Journey back to the Onion Kingdom and assemble your team of chefs in classic couch co-op or online play for up to four players. Hold onto your aprons … it’s time to save the world (again!) Out of the frying pan, into the fire… You’ve saved the world from the Ever Peckish. Now a new threat has arisen and it’s time to get back in the kitchen to stave off the hunger of The Unbread!’
Alright, back to white-knuckle tension. The first few levels of this game will seem very simple, but as it goes on you will need to figure out the best ways to work together in this frantic co-op party game that has you cooking dishes at lightning speed until time runs out, can you get three stars on every level?
It Takes Two (2-player)
‘Play as the clashing couple Cody and May, two humans turned into dolls by a magic spell. Together, trapped in a fantastical world where the unpredictable hides around every corner, they are reluctantly challenged with saving their fractured relationship. Master unique and connected character abilities in every new level. Help each other across an abundance of unexpected obstacles and laugh-out-loud moments. Kick gangster squirrels’ furry tails, pilot a pair of underpants, DJ a buzzing night club, and bobsleigh through a magical snow globe. Embrace a heartfelt and hilarious story where narrative and gameplay weave into a uniquely metaphorical experience.’
Ok, alright, this isn’t TECHNICALLY an Indie game, because it was published by EA, but in fairness, they only purchased the publishing rights two-thirds into development. Anyway, this is easily not only maybe the best co-op game ever made but one of the best games over the last few years overall. Every level has new mechanics, every mechanic is great to use and fleshed out, the story is fun and heartfelt, the levels are varied and interesting, and if you have someone to play it with, more than any other game on this list, this is a MUST PLAY.
And that’s that, these are some of the best co-op indie games you can get right now. Have a great friendship day and we’ll see you next time. For more of the latest indie game news, reviews and coverage; stay here on Indie Game Fans.
Liked this list? Why not try Josh’s List of 5 Indies that Belong in a Museum or Jamie’s List of 5 Relaxing Indies to Chill With.