Tis the season to be jolly, surrounded by loved ones and that one creepy uncle who’s always drunk. Because of this, The Indie Toaster is here to give you a rundown of some couch co-op games to play over the holidays.
To get into the Christmas, spirit my brother and I sat down and enjoyed some local co-op fun. Welcome to Couch-mas: The Toaster’s list of five indie games to look out for this holiday.
Blast Off This Christmas
Let’s kick off with one of my favourite games this year: the ever fantastic Adios Amigos. A game I reviewed a few months ago, and a game I still go back to often; for the simple reason that it’s a pure joy to play, and it only gets better with friends.
Traversing space with a companion is more relaxing than going it alone; at least it should be. As my brother hurtled towards the sun to save me from a mild sunburn, I remember how my favourite part of Adios Amigos is the story the players make. These stories get better with a friend. The events that lead to my excursion to the sun couldn’t happen on my own.
It all started when I left the ship to grab some fuel. The planet we were on had less gravity then I expected, one overzealous jump left me drifting through space. On my own, I would remotely fly my ship to pick me up. However, I had my brother, Who up until that point had let me do the flying. Instead of a gentle, graceful rescue mission, he managed to nudge an asteroid into me. This sent me racing towards the giant, burning orb in the centre of the galaxy. Regardless, he tried again: he carefully plunged our ship into the sun.
These stories, these adventure are what makes Adios Amigos stand out. It’s currently £11.39 on steam, it’s also available for PS4 and Xbox One, and I can’t recommend it enough.
The Monster Mash
Skelittle: A Giant Party is a strange game: Not a bad game, not a great game. At its current stage, it is the equivalent of a Christmas cracker. It is fun at times, but it also feels empty. All that said, Skelittle is in early access and it is a good couch co-op game.
Essentially this is a collection of mini-games for two or more players, ranging from racing down a creek to jumping over a spinning helicopter blade. The biggest problem we found was that with just two players some of the games felt empty. This was a shame because, if we had one or two more people, I think we would have enjoyed our time with it more.
There was also a worrying lack of sound effects for the players. Jumping, dashing and even falling off the edges where met with silence. This sadly took away the impact from what was happening. Like I said, Skelittle is still in early access, so we have our fingers crossed that some of the issues are fixed down the line.
Skelittle is available on steam for £9.99. Honestly, I think if you have three or four people you could have a lot of fun.
Big Crown Snow-down
I wrote about Big Crown Showdown just over a week ago; I recommend reading that review for more information. To keep it nice and simple, this indie game is pure couch co-op fun. There was no way I could not have it on this list. My brother is very competitive when it comes to games. At first, this made him insufferable when he mastered punching me off the edge.
After a while, though, things went back into being fun. This is why I adore Big Crown: the competition never overtakes the fun. The levels are different enough to to make it feel fresh. The one-button combat feels like it has weight and, let’s face it, everyone wants to wear the crown.
Big Crown Showdown Is also £9.99 on steam, and for that price, it’s the perfect Couch Co-op game this Christmas. Also available on PS4 and Xbox One.
Nidhogg is coming to town
Nidhogg 2 is a beautiful example of a simple idea executed perfectly. I wrote about it earlier this year. It’s a game I love, so does my dad, and now my little brother also loves it.
Nidhogg 2 is a deadly game of tug-o-war. Players try to get to the end of the map to throw themselves to the Nidhogg, doing anything they can to get past their opponent. This includes Stabbing, slicing, cleaving and shooting with arrows. It is also endlessly fun.
As far as couch co-op goes, Nidhogg 2 does not disappoint in the slightest. I love this game possibly more now then I did a few months ago. There isn’t a shadow of a doubt that it will be on over Christmas when I have family around.
Nidhogg 2 is on steam for £10.99 and it’s a steal at that price; it’s one of the games anyone should own. It is also available for PS4, Xbox One and, as of November, it is on Nintendo Switch.
Jingle Bats All The Way
The last indie game I want to talk about is a title that snuck up on me. Bomb N’ Bats is inspired by Bomberman, Unreal Tournament, and Pac-Man. It’s also as insane as it sounds. I genuinely loved every second of it.
There are 30 different levels, and I mean different! take this one for example: the cute little square block in the middle periodically fires a bomb out of its mouth. This wouldn’t pose too much of an issue, except all the players can also shoot bombs out. Admittedly that still doesn’t sound too bad but, you see, this is a nighttime battle. This means you can only see bombs that are in your circle of vision. Now things are fun.
Fun is what Bomb N’ Bats does so well: there are levels with invisible walls, levels with multiple blocks that fire bombs out and some even just have mazes of walls that the bombs bounce off. Things get insane and out of hand fast. Bomb N’ Bats is a simple game, with a lot of fun to be had with up to four players. It’s also another game I wholly recommend for some seasonal couch co-op.
Bomb N’ Bats is only £3.99 on steam. Do not let the price fool you, there’s a lot of game for that price and a lot of fun to be had!
Merry Couch-mas To All!
Christmas is a wonderful time of year, regardless of whether itss something you celebrate. It’s time to see our families and friends, and nothing is more enjoyable than relaxing and playing games with those you love.
So from myself, and from the entire staff at The Indie Toaster, we wish you a Merry Christmas and happy holidays!