Eight Games That Shouldn’t Be Played Alone

Today, preferences and play styles within games are nearly as varied as the people engaging them. Some love a good single-player campaign without ever dealing with players online, while others might be more inclined to invite a friend into the fray or even play multiplayer matches exclusively. Thankfully, this diversity has led to many games that are designed to cater to all play styles, be they solitary or part of a group.

But, there are some games that, while allowing you to play alone, are only heightened by the presence of other people. Here are eight recently-released games you really ought to play with others in order to fully appreciate.


Exploring the world of Minecraft is an engrossing experience indeed, but why go it alone? Building, exploring, and crafting epic fortresses and making your own meta games out of this sandbox world is easily one of the best features Minecraft has to offer. Endless mods and activities such as The Hunger Games have led to Minecraft absorbing hours upon hours of people’s lives, and everything is better when you’ve got friends joining in on the fun.



Rust is an enigma. It has no instructions or demands, instead relying on you to craft your own narrative and take on whatever personality suits your fancy. As such, this game is best played with friends who will willingly join you in your craziness. Want to become a bandit? Enlist your friends in your fiendish endeavors! Have a need to built your own fortress? It’ll be difficult to do so with all the other survivors hellbent on stealing your stuff creeping around. If ever there was a game that demanded you play with friends, it’s Rust.


Diablo III

Diablo III rewards players with a greater challenge by scaling enemy difficulty according to however many people are in your party, loot is specific to all the players involved, and trading allows you to swap your precious plunder with another in order to obtain the best items possible for your character. Sure, playing alone or jumping in a random public party can be fun, but the perks are well worth inviting your friends to join you in your conquest of the demons in Hell.

In true Blizzard fashion, they will never release anything they believe isn't of the utmost quality, even if it means taking their sweet time.

Super Mario 3D World

Super Mario 3D World‘s multiplayer appears to be cooperative, but when it’s used properly, many will find that it has the potential to destroy just as many friendships as the likes of Mario Party or Mario Kart. In 3D World, players are ranked according to how much they achieved throughout a level, and the game rewards the top points-earning player with a crown that asserts their dominance. A seemingly small feature, the crown actually proves to be an incredibly motivating factor that adds a new layer of depth to the gameplay. When you’re in pursuit of that crown, trying desperately to achieve the top score, you’ll do anything to anyone in order to grab the most valuable items and power-ups. Anything. That might include throwing your friends into bottomless gaps, fighting for an item, or even resorting to outright brawls. It’s fun, it’s hilarious, and it’s caused just the right amount of pent-up rage to incite feverish competition.


Animal Crossing: New Leaf

Building up your town and interacting with its myriad NPC citizens is certainly fun and has eaten up hours upon hours of playtime for many fans of Animal Crossing: New Leaf, but there’s something inherently fun in visiting your friend’s towns and experiencing their creations firsthand. Or, you know, you could always just grief the heck out of it and start a war between cities. It’s up to you…just be wary of the consequences.

animal crossing

Risk of Rain

Risk of Rain is a fantastic roguelike whose gameplay becomes doubly more fun when joined with a co-op partner. The game is built around a timer that scales up the game’s difficulty as time goes on, making things all the more challenging for those who are able to survive for long amounts of time. Play as different classes with unique strengths, use strategy and shared power-ups to adequately fight the enemies in your way, and work together to reach the teleporter and take out bosses at the end of each level. The challenge of a roguelike is made even more fun when you have friends with you to share in your pain.


Surgeon Simulator 2013

Surgeon Simulator 2013 isn’t meant to be played with friends because of great co-op or multiplayer modes. Instead, it should be played with friends gathered around your computer for the sole purpose in sharing the absurdity of the game’s nearly impossible mechanics. Watching someone attempt to control individual fingers, throwing lungs across the room, breaking beakers into the patient’s chest, and trying their best to master intricate heart surgery with the delicate dexterity of an elephant is never quite as hilarious without the camaraderie of friends.


Grand Theft Auto V

With and engaging story and massive open world to explore, one could easily make the argument that Grand Theft Auto V is really a game that should be experienced alone in order to be fully appreciated, and they would be 100% correct. However, it’s the force known as GTA Online that really calls for jumping into the town of Los Santos with your friends in tow. There’s plenty of activities to do and more than enough city to explore, and engaging other players in the streets are some of the best moments you’ll have in Grand Theft Auto V. After all, everyone needs a crew to roll with, and a gangstas roaming the streets alone aren’t really gangstas at all, are they?


Have any other games you’d add to this list? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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  1. tgruver

    Nice piece. Now that you mention it, I just might have to get around to that town war you suggest. . . 😉

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