With the rise of online gaming, it seems as though the gaming industry has forgotten the charm and wholesomeness of couch co-op games.
While dropping into an arena with 99 other players is great, it doesn’t replace the art of grabbing a couple of controllers, ordering in a pizza, and sitting down for an evening of video games with a buddy.
Enter It Takes Two, which reminded us all what a fantastic experience local co-op games can be. They allow us to connect as gamers, and more importantly, friends, in a way that playing exclusively online simply can’t.
If you and a friend have recently finished It Takes Two and are looking for a new co-op game to get stuck into, here’s our list of the best co-op games like It Takes Two.
Sackboy: A Big Adventure
Platforms: Windows, PS4, PS5
Out of all the games like It Takes Two on this list, Sackboy: A Big Adventure is probably the closest when comparing visuals. Like It Takes Two, Sackboy has a Pixar-like visual style, so much so that playing it feels like you’ve walked into a child’s storybook. Sackboy is a spiritual successor to Little Big Planet, mimicking that game’s world design. Each level you play through is made up of fabrics, wool, felts, and all the other materials you’d expect to find in a crafters workshop.
Although the game can be enjoyed solo, many of the stages were designed for multiplayer.
It’s a perfect follow-up if you enjoyed It Takes Two and are looking to recapture that feeling.
Platforms: Windows, Nintendo Switch, Playstation, Xbox, Nintendo Wii
Rayman Legends basically takes what is great about It Takes Two and Sackboy: A Big Adventure and slaps it into 2D platforming adventure. This game looks exactly like those pop up books we all used to read as a kid, with 5 gorgeous worlds to play through with a friend.
Rayman Legends is simple enough to begin with, but ramps up in difficulty as you progress through the game. The level designs are extremely creative; be prepared to jump, glide, bounce, swing, swim and slide through a variety of whacky, fairy-tale inspired stages. Like It Takes Two, Rayman Legends cycles through tons of different gameplay mechanics, and never loses momentum.
Platforms: Windows, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch
Unravel 2 is another game where you’d be forgiven to mistake it for a kid’s movie. In this 2D puzzle platformer, you and a friend can team up as a pair of ‘Yarnys’, that aren’t too dissimilar in design to Sackboy from earlier in this list. As the title of the game suggests, you use the ability to ‘unravel’ your limbs to navigate through levels and solve traversal puzzles.
Like It Takes Two, you’ll need to rely on each other to progress through the game; it’s not designed to allow for one person to carry the other. Some puzzles can be challenging but never enough to be frustrating, so you should have a ton of fun working through them together.
Platforms: Windows, Mac, Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch
If you’re looking for another cartoony game like It Takes Two, Cuphead might be up your street. Cuphead is more Looney Tunes than Pixar, but nevertheless a fantastic game to play co-op as long as you’re both up for a challenge. In this 2D run-and-gunner, you’ll take on the role of 2 anthropomorphic cups, Cuphead and Mugman, as you collect souls to repay your debt to the Devil. This quest sees you take on a gauntlet of wickedly difficult, multi-phase bosses with some of the most creative designs in video games.
The gameplay in Cuphead is no slouch, but it’s in the aesthetics department where the game truly shines. It takes heavy inspiration from traditional cartoons from the likes of Disney and Warner Bros, and if it wasn’t for the controller in your hand, you likely wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. Prepare for some hilarious – and terrifying – boss encounters that you won’t forget!
Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga
Platforms: Windows, Nintendo Switch, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S
Games like It Takes Two should make you feel like a kid again. Lego games have always been best in class for couch co-op, but Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga takes it to another level. There’s never been more to see, do, and explore in a Lego game as you and a friend play through the story of all 9 mainline Star Wars films, and explore much larger environments than in previous games.
The Skywalker Saga also features over 350 characters to unlock from across the franchise, as well as an improved combat system, character progression, and the ability to pilot your own starship. There’s no experience quite like it for a pair of Star Wars fans, so if you’re to explore a galaxy far far away, grab a friend and jump in!
Platforms: Windows, Mac, Nintendo Switch, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X
Overcooked 2 is the perfect pick up and play co-op game for quick-fire rounds or a treat for those friends who love to work as a team. Each stage will see you cooking up a storm as you manage your own kitchen top to bottom, from preparing ingredients, cooking dishes, serving customers, washing up, and even putting out fires.
Teamwork is essential, requiring you to delegate responsibilities and switch up tactics on the fly if you want to beat each stage with a coveted 3 star rating! It’s charming and chaotic, but be warned: it will definitely test your friendship!
Platforms: Windows, Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One
While Diablo 3 has an entirely different tone to It Takes Two, it’s definitely one of the best couch co-op games out there. In this ARPG, you and a buddy will carve a path through hordes of demons, undead, and many more otherworldly creatures on a quest to vanquish evil from the world. You’ll be showered with tons of loot as you progress through the game, becoming more powerful and learning new abilities.
Anybody who is familiar with the ARPG genre will know how addicting they can be, especially with a friend. Diablo 3 is widely considered as one of the more accessible titles in the genre, so it’s ideal to pick up and play with a buddy. While picking it up is easy, it’s much harder to put down!
Divinity: Original Sin 2
Platforms: Windows, Mac, Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One
Keeping with the fantasy setting for a moment, Divinity Original 2 is one of the best RPGs available on the market, and you can play through the entire game in co-op. Seriously, you’ll want to schedule several weekends for this one, as it’ll take you at least 80 hours to get this huge game ticked off.
Playing Divinity: Original Sin 2 feels like you’re playing through a D&D campaign. You’ll pick your starting class, and then have the freedom to develop them how you see fit. There’s dozens of skills to learn and hundreds of choices to make, an enormous world to explore, and a huge variety of enemies to fight. The combat itself is turn-based, and each encounter feels like a puzzle to solve.
If you’re both willing to commit to the long haul, Divinity: Original Sin 2 is one of the best and most rewarding co-op experiences right now.
A Way Out
Platforms: Windows, PS4, Xbox One
A Way Out is one of the more obvious games like It Takes Two to put on our list, as this too is an exclusively co-op title. A Way Out is much less fantastical than It Takes Two, and sees you and a friend take on the role of Vincent and Leo as you escape from prison and evade the authorities.
It’s an extremely well-paced game that balances exciting chases with tense stealth sequences, and unlike our previous entry, you should be able to play through this one in a couple of sittings.
Platforms: Windows, Mac, PS3, Xbox 360, Nintendo Switch
Portal 2 might not be as new and shiny as It Takes Two, but it’s an iconic game that everyone should experience. It doesn’t matter if you’ve played through the game solo before, because Portal 2 has its very own co-op campaign that is specifically designed for two players in mind. It’s got a different story, different puzzles, different rooms; it’s basically a completely separate game!
If you’ve somehow never heard of Portal before, it’s a first-person puzzle platformer where you use a portal gun to move through chambers and solve puzzles. It’s a unique concept that allows for some truly creative puzzle design and equally creative player solutions.
While co-op games aren’t as popular now as they were in the late 90s and early 2000s, It Takes Two is hopefully the beginning of a resurgence of the genre. While the games on this list might not be in the same style as It Takes Two, they’re all fantastic co-op games in their own right, and we’re confident they’ll keep you and a friend busy for a long time.