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The 25 best co-op games on PC in 2024

Grab a pal

Playing games with other people is one of the beloved traditions of liking video games at all, and if you're the friendly type like us at RPS, then you'll enjoy games where you work with others, rather than against them. That's why we've put together our list of the best co-op games on PC for you to find common ground with your besties. Whether you want to shoot monsters together, shoot robots together, or get a divorcing couple to work together as they run around their own home as tiny doll versions of themselves, then you can find something to enjoy on this list of co-op games.

We have broad tastes and definitions sometimes, but key for a co-op game is that you can play with a pal without fighting against each other - even if there might be friendly fire. This means you won't find any team-based competitive games on this list, such as Dota or Counter-Strike, for example. That's what our best multiplayer games list is for. We’ve also excluded games that switch between PvP and PvE like Sea Of Thieves of DayZ. They're all great games, but they belong on a different list.

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The best co-op games on PC

Here's our full list of the best co-op games on PC. You can have a casual scroll through or click the links below to be directed straight to the game in question.

25. Monster Hunter Rise

A Monster Hunter Rise character battling a large, purple-glowing monster with the aid of several Buddies.

After Monster Hunter World rampaged onto PC, the bar for Capcom’s next entry in the dino-adjacent beast-hunting series was high, but Monster Hunter Rise is every bit its predecessor's equal and makes for a thrilling co-op adventure. That’s why we’ve booted World off the list and replaced it with Rise. That's evolution, baby.

If you’re not familiar with Monster Hunter, it’s essentially a giant playpen where you and your friends can go out and, well, hunt monsters. The biggest appeal is a group of you wailing on some titan, but there’s a comradery and teamwork in Monster Hunter Rise that is different from other co-ops. You all have to meet in a tavern, eat a big hearty meal before you set off, make sure you all have everything you need, and then off you go, skipping into the deep dark woods where the scary monsters await. It’s these little rituals that really make it shine as a co-op.

24. Lethal Company (early access)

The player shines a flashlight around a derelict moon in co-op horror game Lethal Company
Image credit: Zeekerss

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Steam always has to have at least one co-op ghosty game in early access, over which people are going bananas. Right now that game is Lethal Company, and not without reason. It's a bit of a horror game, as you form up in teams for some good old PVE. As contractors for the Company, you collect scrap from abandoned haunted moons that used to be industrial centres. Successfully salvaging enough scrap earns you cash, which you can use to jet off to new moons with more rewards. The trade off, of course, is higher risk.

There are mundane risks like traps, which one player can spot from the ship scanner and call out to those on the mission. But there are, of course, monsters to contend with, especially at night. Some you'll only find indoors, while others stalk you on open ground. It's a great mix of learning a bestiary and knowing what to do in different situations, with having a concrete goal (get salvage), and there are many and varied ways to die, so you learn quickly. If you got tired of Phasmophobia and are looking for something new in the same vein, this is it.

23. Escape Academy

A curious door from an Escape Academy escape room.

Escape rooms in real life are a lot of fun but extremely expensive for it. Escape Academy combines the twin benefits of being comparatively cheap and being designed by developers who made escape rooms in real life! It's a great co-op game, whether you're playing online or via asymmetrical couch co-op (i.e. one of you playing the game and the other writing things down and shouting).

The titular academy is a school where the entire curriculum is based around room escapes. Even art, which seems like a stretch. Each level is a timed escape, often in somewhat dangerous circumstances that you'd imagine would drive the school's insurance premiums up, with secret codes, cryptic clues, and much frantic running around a library or a locked office as you collect special books, or put post-it notes in the right order. It's the right balance of fun and tense, and gets you all reacting exactly as you would if thrown into the Crystal Maze, fruitlessly telling each other you've found a paint tin, is that anything? The big, colourful 3D world is non-violent but successfully thrilling, and there are a bunch of DLCs to get stuck into, too.

22. V Rising

V Rising vampire stood inside their castle next to two servant coffins. A forge is lit nearby

V-rising casts you as a freshly awoken vampire on a quest to conquer the human world. It’s an open-world survival game where you and your vampire squad reap havoc on neighbouring towns in search of blood, all while building a lavish castle and exploring the surrounding gothic world.

Crafting and combat are easily accessible - this isn’t a mega difficult survival game - and gaining your vampiric powers (the best part of the game) is quick work, since V Rising's boss-focused progression is easy enough to follow. You can decide to join PVP or PVE, but if you’d rather have your vampire rule their own little slice of the human world, you can set up your own world and invite your mates to join. V Rising is highly recommended for folks who are looking for a breezy survival sim, but with just enough meat to sink your teeth into.

21. Overcooked 2

Four players attempt to prepare food in a barn-themed kitchen in Overcooked 2

Overcooked and its sequel Overcooked 2 are both are silly games of simmering and sizzling, the physical manifestation of the phrase "too many cooks spoil the broth". You're in a kitchen with up to three other players, and you have to make food to order by preparing and combining certain ingredients. To get this done properly, everyone needs to carry out their appointed tasks pronto. Thing is, it doesn't always work out that way.

The kitchens of Overcooked are constantly changing. Narrow spaces mean players get in each other's way. Sometimes the whole level shifts. Benches on a ship will slide down the deck with each large wave, altering the layout entirely, while cooking in two trucks means that one part of the kitchen will occasionally accelerate, suddenly becoming off-limits. How will you get the chow off the hob before it boils into an inedible paste? By shouting at your fellow chefs, of course.

Overcooked 1 and 2 are much the same, but it's 2 we'd recommend. For one, it's now got online multiplayer as well as local, letting you play with those geographically distant friends. For two, you can now throw ingredients back and forth between chefs. Your co-chef needs more mushrooms? Maybe he'll catch the one you just threw to him; maybe it'll bonk him right in the face.

20. Stardew Valley

Fishing from a pond in a Stardew Valley screenshot.

There is a lot of shooting and adventuring on this list, but very few opportunities to hang out in a turnip field. Stardew Valley lets you live out an alternate life as a farmer, away from the hustle and bustle of cities and video games with guns. It's about escape. Ever since the multiplayer update, you can now escape with friends.

It provides a place to be rather than a challenge to overcome. Each of you gets to dodder around town, either working together and divvying up tasks or ploughing away at individual farms. It's not that the Valley feels sterile without other humans, but there are only so many blackberries you can hand over to your NPC neighbours before your relationships start feeling one dimensional. With real people in the mix, you get an actual community. Maybe your pal has a spare melon you can give to Penny for her birthday. Maybe they'll bake you a cake. Or steal your chickens.

People breathe warmth and life into this farming game fantasy that's already about those things. You've got the freedom to pursue whatever charming humdrum activity takes your fancy. Go fishing. Comb the beach. Or, if you want, mercilessly compete to see who can optimise profits. It's your farm.

19. Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Vegas 2

A gunfight on the streets of Las Vegas in a Rainbow Six Vegas 2 screenshot.

You can play through the whole of Vegas 2's brilliant but flawed campaign with a friend, rappelling down walls, breaching windows and taking out terrorists in unison. While that will keep you busy a while, it's Terrorist Hunt - a mode where you team up with three buddies to hunt down a set amount of enemies across large sandbox maps - that will keep you coming back.

Guns are powerful and fast; death comes faster. This makes methodically creeping through the maps as a unit, covering corners and assaulting defended positions, an incredibly tense affair. This only ramps up when your squad inevitably gets picked apart on the harder difficulties, right up until three of you are sat watching the lone survivor, the whole success of the mission pinned on them scraping through. It could even be down to you and you'll feel the tension ramp up as you suddenly become aware of being judged.

18. Payday 2

The player fires on a guard inside a bank in Payday 2

If you've never played Payday 2 or its predecessor, you'd be forgiven for thinking it was about perfect planning, stealth and crowd control. The reality is a bit different, and it usually goes like this: the four of you excitedly chat about how you're going to approach a heist, you split up, someone fudges it almost instantly and every police officer in the world turns up to shoot you all in the head.

It's more wave defense than precision stealth, with each player setting up traps, sharing ammo and trying to keep the police at bay as a timer ticks down. It's chaotic and messy, but the shooting is weighty enough and the skill trees are satisfying to advance through. It's possible get through each of the heists without raising an alarm, but it's bloody hard and you stand very little chance until you've unlocked some of the more advanced skills. Still, the possibility hangs there like a 24 carat carrot, nudging you all to have another go until you've perfected every scenario.

17. Keep Talking And Nobody Explodes

A bomb you must defuse that's packed with puzzles in Keep Talking And Nobody Explodes

The best example of asymmetry in co-op. It involves at least two players - one of you is defusing a bomb with judicious mouse clicks and cautious wire snips, the other is giving instructions from a bomb-defusing manual. Neither player can look at what the other is doing. It's one of the most perfect set-ups for the destruction of a healthy relationship and a fantastic example of leaving the screen itself behind.

You don't have to print out the manual to read from it (you could just read the PDF file from a laptop) but we think it's the best way to play. You flip hurriedly through pages, trying to decipher the theory of these explosive devices. Then comes the challenge of communicating the quirks and symbols of the page in a way that won't be misunderstood. As the bomb handler, you're consistently double-checking and second-guessing your team mate as they stammer out their directions. In the end, you've just got to trust them.

16. Arma 3

A sniper and spotter in ghillie suits in an Arma 3 screenshot.

Arma 3 takes place on a pair beautiful fictional Greek islands. It does have a single-player campaign, but it's that island, the vehicles, guns and mechanics, and the painstaking attention to detail, that makes Arma 3 great. It's a platform for the community to create their own games upon, and there's enough community made content that if you get into it, you could be playing Arma 3's cooperative mode to the exclusion of any other game.

There's something about Arma's design philosophy that makes it especially well suited to playing with other people. Partly there's the realism, which obviously lends itself well to the kinds of genuine squad tactics you can enact when playing with some dedicated friends or a committed community like ShackTac. Partly it's the way in which the islands are designed in spite of you, not in service to you, making your steady journeys across the landscape with another person feel more satisfying than overcoming a set of contrived obstacles. Hopefully one of you is a good pilot.

15. Dead by Daylight

Murderous action in a Dead By Daylight screenshot.
Image credit: Behaviour Interactive Inc

This is one for folks who love playing as the monster. Dead By Daylight is an asymmetrical survival horror sim not for the squeamish. In this 4vs1 co-op, three players take on the role of survivors and one player the killer, in a cat-and-mouse style multiplayer game with simple goals. Survivors must repair five out of seven generators scattered throughout a level to power the exit and escape. The killer, meanwhile, is hunting them, and can strike survivors with a weapon, and then drag them to a hanging hook and impale them on it. Ew.

Skills and abilities are balanced between the survivors and the killer; the killer, for example, is faster than the survivors in general, but is slower at specific tasks, like having to destroy obstacles instead of vaulting over them. With a spookily long list of Killers to play as (including horror film and game favourites like Ghost Face, Pyramid Head, and Michael Myers) there’s plenty of spooky fun to be found with this one.

14. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge

April, Donatello, and Raphael fight Foot Clan members in front of some caged monkeys in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder's Revenge

Here’s a good ol’ fashioned beat-em-up, courtesy of Tribute Games. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge is an old-school side-scroller that pays homage to the TMNT games of bygones past. If you're a fan of the sewer-dwelling reptiles then you'll love the pixelart renditions of favourite characters from the series, both heroes and villains alike.

This entry is a little different from others on our co-op list, in that its co-op playstyle is much more laid-back than many others of its stress-inducing co-op cohort. What’s great about Shredder’s Revenge that its undemanding basic button-mashing becomes one of its biggest strengths, making it perfect for groups of friends who just want an arcadey jaunt while also having a nice chinwag surrounded by empty pizza boxes.

13. Valheim

Valhiem’s Steam page describes it as “brutal” but I actually think this is one of the most relaxing co-op games on this list. There’s something for everyone here. If you’d like to focus on laid-back Viking settlement building and boar hunting in a peaceful environment you can hang out in the sandbox’s first area and do exactly that; if you and your friends are looking for some proper Viking action, you can head off into the world and get your butt beaten by skeletons, grey dwarfs, trolls, and its beastly Norse-themed bosses.

Valheim is still in early access, but there is already loads stuffed into its open world for you to dive into. A beginner’s tip: watch out for falling trees. Seriously, they can straight-up kill you in one splat.

12. Deep Rock Galactic

An armoured dwarf fires a gatling gun underground in Deep Rock Galactic

It's a simple pitch: a group of dwarven friends with class-based skills walk into an asteroid, mine for materials, and fight back the critters who fancy them for dinner. What complicates matters is the need to leave again: once their pockets are full, the dwarves have got five minutes to down pickaxes and reach an escape pod before it leaves without them.

This is even more complicated than it seems, because the asteroid's tunnels and caverns are a twisting warren interspersed with enormous drops. Re-trace your path inwards in reverse, in a rush, and it's easy to get lost - and those drops are now, of course, climbs. If you thought to make your ad hoc constructions two-way when you threw them up on the way in, then no problem. If you were hasty, or if your platforms were destroyed by explosive enemies, then you're going to need to construct a new route. The adrenaline rush of your extraction is a thrill with friends over voice comms all panicking together.

11. Diablo 4

A necromancer using a blood drain spell in Diablo IV
Image credit: Blizzard, Rock Paper Shotgun

Like Diablos before it (notably Diablo 3), Diablo 4 is a muddy, grim fantasy world beset by demons, which means it's sensible to take a friend or two. And, again like previous Diablo games, it's playable with a squad of four from start fo finish, with drop in multiplayer that tracks progress you made so you can go back to it in single-player if you want. But why would you bother! Exploding skeletons and werewolf monsters is a breeze in Diablo 4, requiring a lot of clicking and spamming your favourite DOT spells, but little else. This means you have a lot of time to bond with your friends.

That's maybe reductive; one of the best things about Diablo 4 is that it has an admirably freeing levelling system for all the classes, so you can respec on the fly to suit whoever you're playing with. And if a particular boss is giving you trouble, you can change tactics. Get your Rogue a spell to go invisible so you can more easily res your colleagues, while you can change your Necromancer's spell path to have more debuffing spells, giving your Barbarian attacks more bite, and you're on your way to victory.

10. Borderlands 3

Borderlands 3 - The four playable Vault Hunters stand together shooting at enemies.

Borderlands 3 is classic "bigger is better" sequel design: everything you liked in Borderlands 2 (still a great co-op romp in itself) but with more. More gun variables, more character abilities, more locations, more vehicles, more rifles that grow legs and run around as a lead-spewing sidekick. The only thing it has less of is Claptrap, which is a blessing. And so it makes sense that co-op is the way to go in this bombastic FPS game.

At any one time one friend could be ordering a giant battle ant into the fray while another hops into a Titanfall-ish mech suit, a third activates a drone and a holographic double and the fourth performs psychic powerbombs in the middle of it all. The way these character skills can be further differentiated means you never really know which version of each character you'll be rubbing shoulders with, turning co-operative sessions into a showcase for builds. Of course, the main takeaway is always: I want my own battle ant.

Importantly, it's a friendlier co-op game than Borderlands 2, too. With instanced loot drops, players don't have to fight over the same spoils of war, and the difficulty scales to each combatant, so a casual dabbler can comfortably leap into an old pro's game.

9. It Takes Two

Hazelight have a knack for designing clever, co-op-only puzzle games, and It Takes Two is definitely their best yet. You and a mate play as bickering couple May and Cody, who get turned into tiny doll versions of themselves after upsetting their daughter. Despite their relationship being the verge of a big divorce bust-up, they must work together to get back to their normal selves, and maybe learn a few life lessons along the way.

It's not the happiest of stories, all told (and features some truly horrifying moments involving stuffed toys and broken vacuum cleaners), but its puzzles are absolutely top notch. Players must really work together to conquer It Takes Two's imaginative obstacle courses, and its range of ideas is a clear step up from Hazelight's first co-op-only game, A Way Out. Even better, only one person needs to actually buy the game, as every copy comes with a free friend pass for your player two.

8. Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition

A knight readies their shield as they fight an even bigger knight in Dark Souls: Prepare To Die Edition

While many are purists when it comes to From Software's masterful action RPG, refusing to summon help or forcing themselves to equip just underwear whilst wielding only an overgrown twig, Dark Souls is fantastic in co-op. You can jump in with a friend, with a bit of planning, taking turns to help each other through each section. Even without friends, though, Dark Souls will have you forming bonds with silent strangers.

There's an unwritten etiquette to the Souls games that sees people treating each other with respect, bowing to each other once summoned and waving each other off or cheering after a defeated boss. There's nothing quite like the feeling of relief when a summoned co-op partner helps you finally beat Ornstein and Smough - the only thing that comes close is paying it back later, becoming the saviour in someone else's story. Adam said it best in our review: "It's superb, populating an already haunted world with phantoms and memories, and providing an eventual gateway by which to become an all-but anonymous hero or villain."

7. Spelunky

Four players duke it out underground in Spelunky
Image credit: Mossmouth

Spelunky is a moreish 2D platformer with roguelike elements that kicks your arse until it straightens your spine. Although the geometry might be constantly shifting with each frequent death, the rules that govern the enemy types remain constant. After a while, reflexes handle the enemies of The Mines - it's like peeking into another dimension, but instead of losing your mind you become Neo. Can you dodge bullets? Yes.

Co-op changes the rules, making it perfect for seasoned players to team up. You might think things would be easier with more health and attack power, but stunning, whipping and blowing each other up will be a regular occurrence in the claustrophobic confines of the levels. More players only add more complication and four player co-op is chaos, creating more hilarious ways to fail. Timing, as ever, is key. Now see if you can make it to Hell with friends.

6. Grand Theft Auto V

Two men do wheelies on motorbikes in GTA 5

Los Santos is a gorgeous playground, each bend in the road bringing you level with a postcard view - every angle feels scrutinised. Trace a route from the peak of Mt. Chiliad, driving down through the dusty plains of the Grand Senora Desert, snaking by the hilltop mansions of Vinewood Hills, cruising on through the twinkling city itself and finally coming to stop at Vespucci Beach - all this, including the skies above and the sea beyond, is your online playground.

Grand Theft Auto Online is stuffed full of co-op scenarios, but the best experiences are found in the Heists. These multi-part missions ask you and three other players to take part in everything from the setup - casing the joint and grabbing getaway vehicles - all the way to the caper itself. While not all of them are literal heists, each one does an incredible job of making sure all four players are busy. Everyone has their own job to do, sometimes all together, sometimes in pairs and sometimes alone. This, along with the randomness of the open-world's systems, gives each one massive replay value. The only real downside is that you really need to play with three friends to get the most out of it. With each heist taking a couple of hours from setup to execution, it can be as difficult to organise as an actual heist.

5. Minecraft

A screenshot of a Minecraft volcano build.

Nobody knew how huge Minecraft would be when the alpha released in 2010, but there were hints of it even from the first few hours, when the game's initial players started building rudimentary shapes and sharing screenshots of what they'd created.

Today, Minecraft is played by people of all ages. Part of its appeal, aside from its openness, is the social aspect. Whether helping your child stave off monsters as you build a fantasy land together or collaborating with a group of adults to make a working hard drive, there's something for everyone.

You can even play it as an RPG, killing mobs with your co-op partner, levelling up and building equipment to grow stronger, with the eventual goal of taking on the final boss, the Ender Dragon. Minecraft is whatever you want it to be and you can play it all with friends.

4. Baldur's Gate 3

An intense turn-based fight in Baldur's Gate 3. A tavern has been attacked by demonic monsters.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun/Larian Studios

Baldur's Gate 3 is based on the Dungeons & Dragons world and ruleset, and that's a party-based tabletop roleplaying game - so why wouldn't you want to make it a party in its digi-form? BG3 is the tale of a rag-tag bag of heroes saving a lush fantasy world, getting into scrapes, meeting weird NPCs, and engaging in huge turn-based battles against monsters and ghouls. Much of this, like Larian's Divinity games, is based on using the different skillsets and abilities of your characters effectively, and that's much easier to do when the different characters are specced and controlled by other people, rather than you juggling it all yourself.

Unlike other co-op games, Baldur's Gate's co-op is tied to a single save and campaign. No fairweather dropping in and out! But this makes it feel like more of a collegiate story that you're telling together, like an adventure you're having as a group. Like, in fact, a game of Dungeons & Dragons. It's worth the effort, and the game itself is a beautiful and complex playground for you and some friends to explore.

3. Left 4 Dead 2

Three characters aim their guns at a zombie on the floor in Left 4 Dead 2
Image credit: Valve

Panicking with friends can be sublime. That shared fear and desperation, the yells and shrieks of people facing the same horde, each convinced they're moments from being overwhelmed. In a sense, they already are.

Horror games reach into your lizard brain and convince your amygdala that you're in trouble. Left 4 Dead 2 is one of the best, because it's built around saving your friends from that state. When the necrotic tongue of a Smoker comes grasping for your mate, you get to save the day with a well placed shot. When a Hunter pounces on your pal who's straggling at the back, there you are with a punch and shotgun blast. When a Tank jumps right into the middle of your group... well, you can't survive every time.

That's part of what makes triumph taste so sweet. You're pulling together against an AI director that keeps you on your toes, sending in hordes when it thinks you can take them, but rarely throwing so much at you that it feels unfair. Every level is an appropriately intense ordeal, where cries of frustration can quickly turn into tears of laughter. Ten years on, Valve are still the kings of co-op horror. Especially if you play Versus mode, and know the Hunter tearing into you is your mate Dave.

2. Portal 2

The two robot pals get ready to solve puzzles in Portal 2
Image credit: Valve

What happens when you take a single-player game about traversing intricate puzzle rooms with portals, and then double everything? It becomes twice as complicated and twice as satisfying. Portal 2 already expands on everything introduced in the bite-sized Portal, adding things like Excursion Funnels, Thermal Discouragement Beams, Propulsion Gel and other fancy sounding words, but the addition of another player changes things the most.

Four portals make each room more confusing to explore, especially when you consider both players need to reach the exit. In essence, many rooms require two solutions. Some puzzles require both thought and dexterity, and firing your friend across a chasm by moving a portal while they freefall through another eventually becomes as normal as walking.

There's a lot of personality in the design of the two robotic protagonists, too - the Laurel and Hardy of shiny metal. When you're working together, you'll be high fiving each other's metal hands and barking possible solutions through your headset.

If you're not using chat, Valve were kind enough to provide lots of ways to communicate in-game, with players able to place markers and emote. Every puzzle solution is punctuated by a dance. Portal 2's co-op is an experience you can't quite replicate, its systems a perfect balance of cooperation and friendly rivalry. Grab a friend and become the most stupid pair of geniuses around.

1. Helldivers 2

Two Helldivers blast away at approaching alien bugs in Helldivers 2
Image credit: Arrowhead

In like a bullet to the top of this list is the extraordinarily popular Helldivers 2. Robots to the left of you, bugs to the right, here I am stuck in the middle with you, a squad of my pals, merrily immolating all the enemies before us and, quite often, each other.

Helldivers 2 combines a lot of things. Great shooting against horde-style enemies? You betcha. Improbably huge special abilities like actual nukes? Sure thing. Pretending you haven't set off the bomb in the enemy nest and then exploding your mates for the jape? Absotively. The titular Helldivers are teams of hard-hitting expendable soldiers sent to clear enemies on planets surrounding Earth, which is at the centre of a global war with giant bugs on one side and advanced robots on the other, so you head down in timed missions do beat them back a bit. The always-on friendly fire is a daring choice, but one players have embraced, along with furious debates over whether the Terminids or Automatons are the worse enemy to come up against.

Buried in amongst this, though, are hints that actually both murderous robots and murderous insects are both the fault of the Super-Earth, though many players enjoy the roleplay aspects of screaming "For democracy!" as they call down an airstrike on a giant monster spitting acid at your mate. Helldivers 2 is simultaneously layered and simple, and it is an instahit you're sure to love.

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