Best Couch Co-op Games 2021

Sit back, relax and play some nice co-op games from the comfort of your couch. Here are the best couch co-op games to play right now.

Although couch co-op and split-screen games had their heyday during the late 1990s to early 2000s, you’ll still find a decent amount of console and PC games still include local multiplayer as an option.

 In this list, we’ll highlight the best couch co-op games on Steam, PS4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch to play at home with friends, family, or significant others.

We’ll primarily focus on new co-op games, including indie games with couch co-op and the best couch co-op games throughout history.

We’ll be updating this list in the future with new titles, so make sure to check back and let us know if we missed any games!

Related:Best Party Games 2021Best Online Co-op Games 2021Best Upcoming Indie Games 2021 (And Beyond)

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Phogs (or rather PHOGS!) is a couch co-op puzzle-platformer that sees you and a partner controlling an adorable pair of dogs who share the same body.

In order to clear platforming challenges and solve puzzles, the two of you have to communicate in addition to barking, biting, and bouncing your way through levels.

The game has a lighthearted and cheery vibe that gets mirrored through its themed-worlds belonging to Food, Sleep, and Play.

There are over 24 levels to complete and hidden Golden Bones you can collect to unlock new hats for you and your partner’s dogs to wear.

Nintendo’s been spending a lot of time porting Wii U and 3DS games over to the Switch, and their latest effort is Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury.

The original Wii U title saw Mario and friends attempting to rescue cute fairy-like creatures from the clutches of Bowser after he invades the Sprixie Kingdom.

Gameplay is similar to previous Super Mario games with the addition of a character selector and the new Super Bell power-up, which turns the player into a cat that can climb on walls and scratch enemies.

The Switch version includes the base game and a new standalone story in which Mario and Bowser Jr. team up to defeat Fury Bowser and save Lake Lapcat.

Spiritfarer is a cozy indie game with management sim gameplay akin to Animal Crossing that includes local split-screen multiplayer for up to two players.

One player controls Stella, a young woman tasked with helping departed souls transition into the afterlife, while the other player controls her cat, Daffodil.

Related:Spiritfarer Guide: How To Set Up Multiplayer (Local Co-op)

Both characters control similarly and move throughout the ship independently in order to cook passengers’ meals, complete tasks, and help NPCs along the way.

Despite the game’s grim premise, it manages to cover a wide range of emotions throughout the many anthropomorphic animals that join your crew.

Other than spawning some of the best fowl-related memes to date, Untitled Goose Game offers a humorous, albeit simplified stealth experience centered on unruly geese.

In it, you and a friend control maniacal fowls whose sole purpose is to annoy their fellow man in just about every imaginable way.

Sandbox environments are packed with random items that can be interacted with in unique ways, mainly to upset any nearby humans.

While UGG may not offer the most extensive or robust stealth-based gameplay, it’s good for a few laughs with friends or family.

Overcooked! All You Can Eat bundles the first two games in the series with new content that has been remastered for PC and the latest consoles.

Presented as a competitive co-op cooking game, it sees up to four players collaborating to prepare and cook food orders in unconventional kitchen setups.  

Levels feature different workstations designated for everyday cooking tasks like chopping, frying, and plating, along with obstacles and hazards to consider.

One might see you hurling onions at a teammate from across a moving truck, while another has you dodging attacks from kitchen ghosts. 

Created in the same vein as games like Mario Party and Overcooked, Moving Out takes the concept of moving furniture and flips it on its head for competitive co-op chaos. 

The game sees up to four players training to become Furniture Arrangement Relocation Technicians (FARTs), highly unskilled movers with a knack for haphazardly transporting furniture.

Moving jobs start simple enough but quickly take a turn for the bizarre as you’re tasked with moving furniture across a factory, a moving airplane, and even meteors in space.

Its co-op-focused gameplay means you can expect to share plenty of laughs and quarrels with your buddies from start to finish.

Cuphead is modeled after challenging run-and-gun games from the SNES and Neo Geo generations; back when memorizing enemy attacks was less of a strategy and more of a necessity for survival.

What’s more, this action-platformer does an excellent job of luring you into a false sense of security with its joyful 1930s hand-drawn cartoon visuals before revealing its true sadistic nature.

Related:Best Games Like Cuphead

In it, you and a friend take on the roles of Cuphead and his brother Mugman as the duo complete a series of boss rushes and platforming levels to repay their outstanding debt with the devil.

These lengthy boss battles will put your platforming skills through the wringer, complete with shifting background environments and increasingly hostile enemy attack patterns. 

Considering games like A Way Out are becoming much rarer with each passing year, we’re grateful that Hazelight Studios managed to fully realize their vision with help from EA of all publishers.

The game is built from the ground up with co-op in mind and tells an engaging story about two buddy criminals who escape prison and have to evade the law.

Vincent and Leo are well-written characters with unique motivations and traits that both help and hinder their plans as well as cause drama and arguments between the two.

You and your friend are likely to do the same since many obstacles demand communication and good timing to be successful.

Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime is a couch co-op shooter that sees up to four friends working together to manage a spaceship and eliminate enemies while traveling through space.

Here’s how it works: there are numerous stations throughout the ship dedicated to specific tasks like piloting, firing cannons, activating shields, and so on. 

However, each player can only operate one station at a time, requiring you and your teammates to coordinate who’s doing what at any given time.

The game has a fun and upbeat vibe that’s further complemented by colorful 2D visuals and satisfyingly chaotic gameplay.

Some may be surprised to learn there’s an offline split-screen co-op mode in Portal 2 that lets you and a pal join forces using controllers or a mix of mouse and keyboard.

Set within the Half-Life universe, the series’ story focuses on a woman named Chell as she completes various puzzle-platformer tests at the behest of an evil AI called GLaDOS.

Related:Best Games Like Portal

What makes these games so great is the portal gun’s functionality, which allows the wielder to create human-sized wormholes that act as a bridge between two flat surfaces.

While the original is good in its own right, Portal 2 improves upon the formula with additional puzzle elements and the aforementioned co-op mode.

The Darksiders franchise is comprised of four games, three mainline and one spin-off, Darksiders Genesis, which we’ve chosen to highlight in this list.

The reason being that it takes the best parts of the series’ frenetic hack n slash combat and mashes it with local couch co-op for up to two.

To achieve this, the game takes a few cues from Diablo, namely zooming out the camera for an isometric view that lets both players see the battlefield at all times. 

Genesis is also a must-play for Darksiders fans since it marks the first time Strife (the fourth horseman of the apocalypse) has been featured as a playable character.

Another isometric hack n’ slash game that continues to dominate the dungeon crawler space, Diablo III is a solid couch co-op recommendation for RPG fans.

Originally released back in 2012, the game sees you playing as one of seven possible character classes before setting off on a quest to defeat the Lord of Terror himself, Diablo.

Along the way, you and up to three other friends will encounter and battle droves of enemies and bosses while increasing your power through loot drops.

It’s easily one of the most accessible games on this list and offers a simple gameplay loop whose difficulty can be raised or lowered accordingly.

Who said co-op games had to be about dark fantasy characters with an affinity for bloodshed? Heave Ho manages to induce the same amounts of stress and anxiety using simple controls and objectives.

It’s best described as a cooperative platformer where the goal is to make it to the finish line without falling by grabbing and climbing walls, objects, and even your friends.

Related:Best PC Party Games 2021

You’re encouraged to work together by linking arms and swinging yourselves to reach the end, but this can often lead to hilarious deaths that are accented by colorful explosions and fart noises.

Heave Ho supports up to four-player local co-op using controllers and includes nine sets of levels with unique themes and hazards.

Human: Fall Flat is another platformer with wonky physics that greatly benefits from couch co-op, allowing you to talk things out as you and your buddies guide each other through obstacle-laden levels.

It’s one of those kinds of games that gets better the less coordinated you and your teammates are, resulting in laughter-out-loud moments and a couple of headaches.

Ultimately, it all feels worth it once your squad manages to reach the end of a level after the umpteenth attempt and join hands to celebrate.

Developer No Brakes Games has rolled out consistent content updates since the game’s launch, adding new free levels, character costumes, and other goodies that warrant coming back.

Unravel Two is a co-op platforming adventure experienced from the perspective of two Yarnys (small living beings made of yarn) controlled by you and another player.

The Yarnys share a connecting thread that allows them to run, jump and swing to solve puzzles and traverse tricky environments filled with dangerous animals, sharp objects, and brutal weather.

It’s a very visually striking game, complete with detailed environments ranging from coastal shorelines and damp caves to mechanical workshops and abandoned warehouses.

The contrast between the Yarnys themselves and the massive world they inhabit make Unravel Two a delightful co-op adventure that will leave a lasting impression on you and your partner.

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Justin Fernandez
Justin Fernandez

As a fan of both indie and triple-A games, Justin finds joy in discovering and sharing hidden gems with other passionate gamers. In addition to reporting on the latest and greatest titles, he manages GamingScan’s social media channels.

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