Christmas time is the dreaded time of year when you have to spend time with family and pretend you wouldn’t rather be gaming. For some though, it is a good chance to spend some time with family and friends and do some gaming at the same time! Surprising for sure, but also true for the lucky few. For those lucky few, here are some fantastic local multiplayer games that you might not have thought of.
Who’s it for: Fans of the olden days.
Easy to pick up: The systems aren’t complex, but wrapping your head around the concept can be.
Description: Screencheat is an FPS where everyone is invisible. The only way to spot each other is by paying attention to the screens of your opponents. The levels are all full of colour coded areas so that you can easily find each other. The array of weapons all leave a trail behind them to make spotting each other simpler if you don’t get hit straight away. This is a game for those who remember crowding around an N64 and hunting each other down in Goldeneye.
Who’s it for: RPG players and those who like the eldritch.
Easy to pick up: Simple to play, hard to master.
Description: If you’ve ever wanted to journey into an eldritch dungeon and eventually possess a hydra then have I got a game for you. You and three other people have become lost in dungeon. Madness sets in and you all try and kill each other, and it’s here that the game begins. With three of you becoming spirits and one of you being an adventurer your aim is simple, either kill the adventurer to become them, or escape the dungeon while you are still alive. The feel of this game is fantastic, it has a wonderful soundtrack, and a round can go from five minutes up to several hours if you are all on equal footing.
Jackbox Party Pack
Who’s it for: Pretty much anyone with a phone and a sense of humour.
Easy to pick up: Incredibly easy.
Description: The Jackbox Party Packs have been around for a little while now, each one containing a selection of games designed to be easy to play. You simply use your phone to play along with the various mini-games and enjoy the weird sense of humour that you all share. The latest one is a lot of fun and contains a robot rapping game that is worth the price of entry all on its own. The games all scale up from family-friendly to don’t-show-your-parents based on how the group answers, so it is a very flexible choice.
Super Mario Party
Who’s it for: Fans of board games.
Easy to pick up: Definitely, plus each mini-game is explained beforehand.
Description: This is a classic series that is very much back to its best with the latest entry. There are a few different modes, but the main attraction is the board game mode where you and your family try to get as many stars as possible. You need to roll high and try to do as well as you can in the mini-games to get the coins you need to stay ahead. The each of the mini-games is easy to play and this is sure to be a winner at any post meal chillout.
Who’s it for: Everyone.
Easy to pick up: Nobody ever knows what they are doing… so yes?
Description: This game is what happens when you take a fighting game and cross it with trying to make silly string stand up straight. All you need to do is be the last beast standing, to do this you can either stay out of the way and hope for the best, or try to through the others into the sea, the fire, or off of a building. This game levels the playing field completely by being incredibly odd to play, and the better you get the funnier everything is.
Who’s it for: Platformer fans.
Easy to pick up: Incredibly simple to pick up.
Description: Platformers are one of the earliest genres, and one that remains fun to this day when done well. This is a very colourful platformer that has you racing other players through obstacle laden courses that constantly change. The platforms can only be used when they can be seen, if the colour of the platform is the same as the background then the platform simply doesn’t exist. It is a fun take on an easy to play genre that leads to some pretty competitive moments.
These are just a few of the great games that you can play with your family and friends. Just be aware that no matter which game you choose, there’s always a high risk of sore losers and sore winners being insufferable, so plan accordingly. Of course, you can always ignore everyone and play whatever gargantuan single-player jaunt you bought for yourself instead.