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My "Better Together" Games of 2023

I’m looking back at my favorite games that I played last year, specifically the ones that were best played with friends and family.

Lethal Company

If you know what this is, I think you’d be shocked if it weren’t at the top of this list.

The idea is simple. You and your buddies have been hired on to a company that flies around to buildings scattered across different moons in search of scrap that can be sold off for a profit. Along the way you’ll run into different hazards and creatures that I’ll just say are best left alone. You have a couple days to work together to hit your profit quota.

It feels like Lethal Company is the sum of the best parts of many of the popular co-op games that have come before it. Pretty much every horror co-op game ends up being funnier than it is scary, and while Lethal Company is no exception, it’s also completely self-aware. It leans heavily on its dark sense of humor and ends up being one of the funniest games I’ve played in recent memory because of it. Seriously, my friends and I have had so many moments with perfect comedic timing that I’d almost swear that the game itself is listening in to our communications solely to deliver the perfect death punchlines.

Easy pick for 2023 game of the year. Drop what you’re doing and find some people to play this with if you haven’t. Heck, I’ll even play it with you if you need someone.

Onward

It’s been a while since I’ve talked about Onward, but I’ve gotten back into it lately due to more of my family members getting VR headsets recently.

Onward is a VR military shooter that in my opinion does a good job of rewarding teamplay and communication. Most of what my family plays is the co-op mode which makes it easier to stick together, but we’ll also occasionally play against each other in private matches.

I’ve said it before but one of the best things about VR games is that when you’re playing them with friends and family, it really feels a lot like you’re just hanging out with them in person. Because of that and how much Onward encourages teamwork, it makes for a really fun time together.

Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga

My wife and I have both been fans of the Lego games for a while, even 100%-ing some of the older games that were released on the Wii earlier this year together. We were really looking forward to playing the newest Lego Star Wars game when we heard about it and now we’ve got a PC that can run it!

I like what they’ve done with this game. It’s familiar enough to be slightly nostalgic for people like me who grew up on the original Lego Star Wars games (which this game is not a remake of), but they’ve also added more depth to it while still keeping the game feeling pretty casual. It’s not perfect — some of the missions can feel like filler and we’ve run into several minor softlock bugs during our playthrough, but it’s still a pretty easy recommendation if you’re looking for a casual co-op game.

Recommendations for me?

If anyone else has some “fun together” games they’ve been enjoying recently, please let me know about them!

— JP

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