My Top Five Xbox Live Multiplayer Experiences
Online gaming has become a popular experience among the vast majority of gamers. While Xbox 360 may not have any MMO’s or big 64 player team deathmatches, there are still plenty of games on the market that offer unique or fun gameplay experiences. Below I have comprised a list of my top five multiplayer games and the reasons why I love them.
5: Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare – The first Modern Warfare re-invented the whole multiplayer experience. I still think that this is the best one in the series and the only one that got it right. The series nowadays has too many options to play around with, though this is not always a bad thing as generally the more the better. However when you feel that another player has a better class than you, perhaps a better modified version of the gun you have, and you know that you have got to play for hours in order to reach the same standard as that gun, it makes you feel at a disadvantage. The kill streaks as well have became worse, as in a lot of cases the map is over crowded, with for example a chopper gunner and an stealth bomber. It’s far too complex nowadays where as Call of Duty 4 was more streamlined and simpler making for a more enjoyable experience. You still have all the things that the series is renowned for such as perks and weapon customisation, but it’s all done in a way that feels fair. All players have the same kill streak, a UAV, an Air Strike and then an Chopper, no weapon feels more powerful than another. To sum it up Call of Duty 4 is balanced in every way possible, making for a more fun experience.
4: Halo Reach – Every Xbox gamer has heard of the Halo series and for good reason, as when the first Halo appeared on Xbox it created a new benchmark for first person shooters for consoles. The big open areas that created strategic gameplay options, the amazing vehicle sections and so on, the list can go on forever, it was and still is that good. Then Halo 2 appeared and changed the way we looked at multiplayer, with its fast and frantic gameplay, it was the Call of Duty in its day. Since then, the series has grown for the better and the latest installment in the series Halo Reach, proves once again why it was the king of multiplayer. When you enter an 8 vs 8 big team deathmatch, you realise why it’s so popular; it’s fun, it’s fast moving and it’s always satisfying to blow up a tank with a plasma grenade. It never, ever gets old. With its class loadout system, each one providing a unique power up such as a jet pack and power armour, it can easily meet the needs of every playing style. Halo Reach is a lot of fun with friends; with its forge mode, players can pick a map and then manipulate it to their hearts content, imagination is the only limitation here and once you finish your map, you can then customise all the gameplay options and play with your friends. It’s a blast while also offering strong competitive matches.
3: Dark Souls – This is a unique experience, something that most games miss these days. It doesn’t have strong competitive multiplayer, what it offers instead is interactions with other players that can’t be found anywhere else. For those of you that have not heard of Dark Souls, it’s a Japanese action RPG that is as tough as nails, and laughs at you for trying to play it. This is a hardcore game, one which is meant for the serious kind of gamer, who loves a challenge and who wants to be reminded of how tough games used to be. With its epic scaled boss fights, that can kill you in a few hits, there is no greater satisfaction in gaming when you take down one of these many bosses. The world itself is enticing, deranged and keeps you on your toes at all times as you never know what could be around the corner. To help players with the great adventure that lies ahead, other players are able to leave messages around the world, to either warn you of upcoming danger or trick you to your death. If you are struggling with a certain boss fight, you are able to call on other players to help you, they only appear as ghosts and once you have defeated the boss they disappear. No microphones are allowed so you can’t communicate with the other player on a strategy. It’s a great achievement to feel as though you are never on your own in the world of Dark Souls with the help of other players messages, but at the same time you are feeling thrills, tension and adrenaline that only a single player game experience can offer.
2: Portal 2 – If there is one game out there that shows the charm, challenge and fun of of a co-op experience, then look no further than Portal 2. Valve seems to capture the essence of what co-op is all about with this game. The basic idea of Portal is that there are several different test chambers, each one being a puzzle that can only be solved with the use of blue and orange portals. With co-op you now have the use of four portals, meaning that the test chambers get can get rather tricky, so teamwork is imperative here. The characters you control are robots and their personalities although simple have a charming appeal to them, and with your co-op partner you are able to do fun interactions like high five and rock, paper, scissors. I have never played a co-op game like this before and I probably won’t for a long time. It’s the best co-op game out there, period.
1: Gears of War 3 – It has all the elements that make a multiplayer game great. It’s balanced, in terms that no weapon feels more powerful than the other and there aren’t any perks that give a player a better chance of survival; it’s all about skill. This means that players of all skill have a good chance of doing well as its balanced so well. It’s fun while being competitive and offering enough match types to please all players tastes. It works technically, so there are no lag issues compared to the disaster that was Gears of War 2. The map designs are fantastic, eliminating problems that are faced with another games in the genre such as camping. Epic games offer unique game modes every so often such as torque bow tag, so it’s constantly fresh and never feels the same. Outside of competitive multiplayer it offers excellent co-op modes such as the four player campaign and the infamous horde mode, whereby you take on 50 waves of enemies with the help of tower defence gameplay options. For me it’s just the perfect online experience.
All five of these games should be experienced by you, so what are you waiting for, go out and buy these games! Is there anything that you think should be in the list? Let us know your thoughts In the comments below.