In issue 254, we asked readers what improvements they would like to see in new-gen multiplayer games. To our surprise, most players wanted a decidedly old-school feature. Here are some of the responses we received.

Nothing Beats Couch Co-op:

  • I know this may sound ridiculous, but what I really want from new-gen multiplayer games are more local multiplayer games. Sony and Microsoft’s libraries consist mostly of online multiplayer games, or watered-down local multiplayer experiences. Nintendo is the only one still embracing local multiplayer, with games like Super Smash Bros. and Super Mario Kart 8. I don't want to always rely on my Nintendo every time my friends come over.

    Jose Corrales
  • Honestly, I wish that game developers would keep what worked. Some people (like me) love multiplayer, but only a certain kind of multiplayer from yesteryear: local co-op. Now it’s a feature largely saved for simple family games or first-person shooters. I'm not bashing online multiplayer, but it shouldn't be the only option for good co-op games. I hate strangers, and choose not to play with them by avoiding online content that requires me to interact with them. I'm sure most will agree that I'm missing out on a lot of the best content that modern games have because of that. I only wish that developers didn't exclude an offline option so much.

    Caleb Clifton
  • I have always been a huge retro fan. I still have my NES plugged into my television for those days when 8-bit graphics are more appealing. I love playing with people in a split-screen setting. I feel that I can be way more competitive with people that I know versus random people over the Internet. This might sound very old-school, but I enjoy that and really wish that more games would offer split-screen multiplayer during this next generation. The Internet should still be used and I have no issues with its current position in the modern gaming world. I would just appreciate more options for those unable to play online.

  • Same console split-screen. Games like Titanfall are super fun, but if you can’t play with a few guys in the same room, it takes some of the traditional social aspects away from gaming. I'd also like the ability to play online games with a guest. Call of Duty: Ghosts only lets a friend play with you if they have their own PS+ account. I can’t have a guest that doesn’t own a system play with me at my house, even though I have purchased the game and paid for a subscription? That’s some B.S.

    KC Glaser

Meet Your Match:

  • I'm excited about how great new-gen multiplayer games look and run, but I'd really like to see skill-based matchmaking improve. I don't feel like any developer has really knocked that out of the park yet. I'm tired of Battlefield contests being decided by 600 tickets, Titanfall games being decided by 150 attrition points, or Call of Duty matches being decided by 35 kills. I know there are tons of variables in multiplayer games that make it tough to balance, but think how great it would be if almost every multiplayer match came down to the wire.

    Matt Wingler
  • I think I would like to see an easy match finder. With Titanfall and other Xbox One games, it takes me five to ten minutes to find a match. There should be a system where if you kill high-level players you get  more XP. Yes, the game would go much faster, but it would help a low-level player compete in matches with high-level players. 

    Gabe Goodspeed

Who Needs Friends?:

  • I would love to see the option to play any multiplayer game by myself with bots. Personally, I am terrible at multiplayer games and quickly lose interest in them. I have thought countless times that Battlefield 4 would be awesome if I could play with bots – at least I wouldn't die so much. I still play Back Ops 2 simply because I can manage to stay alive. Besides that, it would give players the option to customize the match to their liking, whether they want a quick match or infantry only without a reduction in map size, and being able to pause would be extremely convenient (other human players don't wait if you have to go to the bathroom). Now, I have no idea the technical requirements for something like this; I just know it would greatly improve my experience. 

    Mike Schinlaub

Failure To Launch:

  • One improvement I'm dying to see is better developer commitment to online launches. Despite the fact that we've had online gaming for over two decades, companies still get launches wrong. This last year alone, we've seen games like GTA V, Battlefield 4, and numerous sports games utterly blow their launches even when the same developers were able to get it right just a few years earlier. And yet game companies keep pushing for an online-centric future? What reality do they live in?

    Bobby B.

Not Really An Improvement, But Whatever:

  • The improvement I would very much love to see in new-gen multiplayer games is no more freaking first-person shooters. I feel that they are overrated now and aren’t even fun anymore.

    Kris Thompson-Norfleet

Easy To Please:

  • If I saw fewer subscription services and a little more co-op, and I'd be a pretty happy camper.

    Jake Reed

What improvements would you like to see from new-gen multiplayer games? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!