Craving local multiplayer… that camaraderie.

I enjoy online gaming, it’s taken me a while, but I’ve finally come around and learned to enjoy myself (I even use a mic now!). Most recently, I’ve had a blast with Destiny. Bloodborne too, although I am usually chatting in a “party” with someone while we play different segments of the game, dropping hints and exchanging expletive laden moments of surprise and frustration.

But the experience doesn’t compare to back when I was a kid playing Super Smash Bros. Melee, Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2, NBA Live and the original Halo with my best friends. There’s something really special about playing a game together in the same room. The moments of victory more triumphant, the bitter defeats more demoralizing and the laughter more infectious. The amount of hours I spent messing around with the “Warthog Jump” from Halo 1 was so entertaining because I was doing so with a buddy…. while we laughed our asses off.

For those not in the know:…

Street Fighter 4 was the game from the PS3/360/Wii generation that I spent the most time playing with friends. That menu music is still ingrained in my brain. The sad thing is we never even got to be that great at it (seriously, how cheap was Seth?) but we had a lot of damn fun fighting against each other. If you put together NBA2k9-12 and all the games I played, it’d be well into the hundreds. I really miss it. As you grow older and your responsibilities increase, people move away and the nights you do spend with friends are often times in a bar. But when the opportunity does present itself, new games should have the capability. Also, kids still play games, they deserve to stay up all night doing the modern equivalent to the “Warthog Jump” too.

Despite all the ways Nintendo has remained behind the curve, I appreciate their continued emphasis on local multiplayer games. I haven’t had a chance to try it yet, but Super Smash Bros. 8 player mode sounds insanely fun. I am truly jealous of those with that many controllers (and friends). Local multiplayer is still in some games, but it’s gotten to the point where most FPS games don’t even feature 2 player split screen. I’d like to see that change. I was happy to learn the other day that Star Wars: Battlefront would have it, although it’s missing from Destiny, Far Cry and a slew of others. Halo: Combat Evolve’s split screen co-op was sheer joy. Just because our internet speed has improved over the last ten years, why should the traditional social MP change? Playing games socially (in the same room), has given me some of my fondest gaming memories. I hope to create some more soon.

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