Love is in the air - and so to, is the sound of much heated debate amongst couples. After all, what should you do this Valentine's day with your significant other? Head to a fancy restaurant to pay £20 for a tiny slither of meat? Go to the cinema, and try not to get too violent with the people who insist on checking Facebook throughout the screening? Or perhaps, the most romantic thing to do could be to stay in, and play a good game together? As the old Dreamcast advert said - we all like to play games. Why don't we play together?
While some may scoff at the idea to begin with, there's nothing quite like sharing a game with your significant other - and so the team at Everybody Plays have put our heads together to come up with a list of games that everyone should be able to find something on, for the boyfriend/girlfriend in their life.
So, without further ado, here's our pick of the games to play with your significant other this Valentine's Day, whether they're new to games themselves or seasoned pros. The only real requirement to feature on our list is that all the games below have to support same console multiplayer, making them perfect for snuggling up on a sofa together:
Lego Marvel's Avengers
Easily one of the best series for getting people into games in the first place, whatever their age, LEGO Marvel's Avengers
is a fantastic, pick up and play co-op adventure that only the most cold-hearted wouldn't enjoy. The latest installment in the long list of brick-based film adaptations, LEGO Marvel's Avengers lets you be the Black Widow to his Hulk - or the Hawkeye to his Iron Man, we won't judge - as you fight crime on the streets of Manhattan. Taking in the events of the both Avengers films, plus a slew of the super hero-specific stories too, such as Iron Man 3, all retold in the light-hearted, slapstick LEGO style. It's the perfect thing for a nice day and/or night in, beating up bad guys, Hulk SMASH-ing everything in sight and solving a few co-operative puzzles together.
Buy LEGO Marvel's Avengers from Amazon.com
Buy LEGO Marvel's Avengers from Amazon.co.uk
A bit of an older adventure, but still a goodie, the third entry in Lionhead's light role-playing adventure series, Fable III
, is a great game for couples to play through together, as they explore the kingdom of Albion, righting the wrongs of their tyrannical older brother, King Logan, and saving the land from ruin - providing you make all the right moral choices along the way, anyway. But Fable is as much about living the life of an adventurer too, and it gives you the freedom to fall in love, get married and have children too (along with everything that comes before that...). You can skip through the forests holding hands with your co-op partner in crime (yes, there's a hold hand option), before having a nice romantic brawl with some goblins. Or if you're a bit less sentimental, there's always the option of becoming a nude wandering carrot salesman that enjoys make lewd gestures at the local ladies.
Buy Fable III from Amazon.com
Buy Fable III from Amazon.co.uk
A cutesy co-operative platformer that puts creativity at the heart of what it does, the LittleBigPlanet series is a definite winner when it comes to light-hearted multiplayer fun. Playing as the adorable, and highly customisable, Sackboy, you'll need to run, jump and swing your way across the crazy hand-crafted world of Bunkum, to stop the evil Newton from stealing the land's creativity. The only way to put a stop to his crazy scheme is by awakening the three legendary heroes, Oddsock, Toggle and Swoop, who each have their own unique powers and abilities to help you in your quest. But LittleBigPlanet is a game that keeps on giving, because once you've finished the story mode, there's an incredibly powerful level editor to get stuck into too. And while you could just download the community's best creations (and there are some stunning ones on offer), what could be more romantic than putting your stamp on your very own level, made with your co-op partner?
Buy Little Big Planet 3 from Amazon.com
Buy Little Big Planet 3 from Amazon.co.uk
Yoshi's Woolly World
A wool-derful Nintendo platformer that's perfectly suited to those who may be a little lacking in the skills department, Yoshi's Woolly World
sees the knitted dinosaurs embarking on a quest to save their Yoshi brethren, who have been unstitched and scattered to the four corners of the world. What follows is a collectable-stuffed jaunt across flower-filled forests, lava-littered deserts, and candy coloured desserts, making use of Yoshi's wool egg-laying skills to open up new areas, tie up bad guys and restore the Yoshi kingdom to it's former glory. With two player co-operative throughout, its cutesy, friendly exterior should appeal to even the most reluctant player - and did we mention you can also bring a lolopping great dog, Poochy
, along for the ride too, to help you tackle enemies, sniff out secrets and more.
Buy Yoshi's Woolly World from Amazon.com
Buy Yoshi's Woolly World from Amazon.co.uk
Mario Kart 8
For those of you that might prefer something with a bit more of a competitive edge, Mario Kart 8
is the ultimate in easy to pick up and play racing. Simply pick your favourite characters from the Mushroom Kingdom - maybe Mario and Peach or Luigi and Daisy if you want to be extra cheesy - pick your vehicle and put your foot to the floor (or at least, finger on the A button), in a no-holds barred battle for first place. With all kinds of items and power ups to help give you the edge against your other half, and a slew of computer-controlled opponents, things may get a little heated if you're not careful - many a relationship has been wrecked by a misconstrued blue shell at a critical moment - but this is still great for those looking for a slice of more competitive fun.
Buy Mario Kart 8 from Amazon.com
Buy Mario Kart 8 from Amazon.co.uk
Super Smash Bros
Why pay for pricey relationship therapy when you can Falcon Punch your other half into next week? Potentially a good one to relieve some of the Mario Kart 8-induced frustration, perennial Wii U beat 'em up Super Smash Bros
. lets you pummel your other half with everything from bombs and baseball bats to Pokemon and lightsabers, without the risk of a jail sentence. Joking aside, it's a competitive brawler, where you face off against each other, using a variety of weapons to cause as much damage as possible before punting them off the side of the screen to send them towards a firey explosion of death, and score points - and the person with the most kills at the end wins. With a whole stable of familiar Nintendo faces, from Mario and Wario to Donkey Kong and Pikachu, there's also a number of co-operative challenges you can take on too - but if you fancy a meatier co-operative adventure, its Wii predecessor, Super Smash Bros. Brawl
will serve you better, and is playable on the Wii U too.
Buy Super Smash Bros WiiU from Amazon.com
Buy Super Smash Bros WiiU from Amazon.co.uk
Just Dance 2016
Hot, sweaty, breathless - those are just some of the words you can use to describe this next Valentine's Day pursuit. No, we're not talking about that one, but about the king of dancing games, Just Dance 2016
, which is both easy to pick up and play, and hilarious in multiplayer. Loaded with easy-to-follow, often silly and cheesy dance routines for all your favourite songs, all you need to do is stand in front of your Kinect Sensor/Playstation Camera on Xbox/Playstation, or grab a Wii Remote on Wii/Wii U, and wang it about following the on-screen prompts to an array of top tunes (the Wii Remote, that is). From Katy Perry's This Is How We Do to Uptown Funk from Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars and from The Little Mermaid's Under The Sea to Lady Gaga's Born This Way, there's plenty to choose from - and now, every song can be played in either a competitive get-as-many-points-as-you-can mode or in a more co-operative way, working together for the best score.
Buy Just Dance 2016 from Amazon.com
Buy Just Dance 2016 from Amazon.co.uk
Beyond Two Souls
But what if your other half has never picked up a controller before, and wants something that's not really all that game-y - something with almost literally no barrier to entry? You'll be wanting something like Beyond: Two Souls
, a paranormal interactive drama that effectively plays out like a choose your own adventure novel. Following the story of Jodie, a teenage girl that's bonded to a being from the other side, you take control of the troubled teen as she goes through life, making key choices for her that change how the story plays out. Kind of like watching a film, only where you get to control the main character, you can either play this as a team with one person playing, and the other advising on what to do next - or, you can play in the game's co-op mode, where one player controls Jodie, and the other takes over her "entity" partner, Aiden, with the gameplay switching between the two players during puzzles. A great way to spend a night in - and a pretty moving one too, Beyond: Two Souls is available on both PS3 and PS4.
Buy Beyond: Two Souls from Amazon.com
Buy Beyond: Two Souls from Amazon.co.uk
For those looking for something with more science, puzzles, teamwork and, well, cake (or perhaps not - Ed
) Portal 2
is an often overlooked classic. Faced with a number of test chambers that put a whole host of objects in between you and your goal, your only weapon here is a portal gun - a gun that lets you link any two white walls in the stage. Fire with the right trigger to fire an orange portal, then fire somewhere else with the left trigger to fire a blue portal, and you'll be able to pass through the portal, helping you get about - and this is where the magic happens. Full of brain-bending, mind-teasing puzzles - and an awful lot of witty dialogue - what many people don't realise is that Portal 2 has a full co-op adventure, so you can take on the evil sentient AI/potato GLaDOS together. One for the scientists amongst you, who want to test your brains and teamwork.
Buy Portal 2 from Amazon.com
Buy Portal 2 from Amazon.co.uk
If you're looking for a game that'll really test your co-operation, you may also be interested in something like Chariot. A 2D puzzle game, Chariot asks you (and a friend/partner) to work as a team to lug a rather fancy looking chariot through a cave. How do you do that, we hear you ask? By strapping yourself to it by rope, and using momentum, physics, and an awful lot of teamwork to shift it, slowly, through the levels. Perfect for working on communcation, and giving you a great sense of achievement when you pull it off together, this is great - and as a digital download, perfect if you've forgotten to get them anything!
Of course, no Valentine's day piece would be complete without something for all the single ladies (and guys) - and so for those who're going to be spending the big day on their lonesome, we have a couple of romance-related suggestions for you to get stuck into - because why should all the couples have all the fun?!
This one's a bit out there, but Hatoful Boyfriend
is essentially a cross-species dating game - although it's not quite Zoophilia: The Game. Playing as the only human female in a prestigious school for birds, this tale of daredevil spies, pudding-related enlightenment and cross-dressing doves is more than a little bit random - but underneath it all lurks a surprisingly sinister subplot. A visual novel (essentially a choose-your-own-adventure book in game form), the game is driven by the choices you make in conversations, perhaps helping you grow closer to a particularly dishy bird, or otherwise moving the story down a different path. It's not really much of a 'game' in the traditional sense - and definitely one for the keen readers out there - but it's a great pick for those looking for a little romance on the big day.
Code: Realize - Guardian of Rebirth
A more traditional romantic visual novel, Code: Realize
is set in an alternate steampunk version of Victorian London, inhabited by highly stylised versions of famous literary characters - from vampire hunter Van Helsing to master thief Arsene Lupin to a surprisingly timid Frankenstein, all recreated as hot anime dudes, all keen to get into the female protagonist's pants. Except that's a noble goal that this time will come with its own risks, as the lovely lady heroine is blessed with a rather unusual condition that means her skin is highly poisonous, and would burn whomever came into contact with it to a crisp. Between trying to get to the bottom of her condition, searching for her estranged father and avoiding the authorities hot on their heels, your decisions and conversation options will bring you closer to one of the guys too - and with multiple endings, a suitor for every taste, and a surprisingly solid story tying it all together, it's the perfect thing to cuddle up in bed with this Valentine's.
So there you have it! If you'd rather spend the big day making some lasting memories rather than being ripped off on a couple's outing, why not pick up one of the game's we've listed above, and get a little close to your other half this Valentine's day!
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