Top 5 Two-Player Video Games

Video games have come a long way since nuclear physicist William Higinbotham invented “Tennis for Two” in 1958. There now exists a plethora of gaming choices. Lone wolves can sit at home and shun society playing single-player games or connect online and play with people they never have to meet. Multiplayer games allow groups to fight with or against each other, using the same system. Yet two-player games possess a special something that traces all the way back to the first video game.

5 “Resident Evil 5:” The Latest and Greatest of an Impressive Franchise

The popularity of “Resident Evil” in society is unparalleled; it is one of the only video game franchises to produce as many movies as games, yet the most recent addition, “Resident Evil 5,” is definitely the most thrilling. The game is boring if you play alone, the female character, Sheva, being useless when controlled by the computer. When two people play, Redfield and Sheva make an excellent team, passionately taking on undead zombies and frightening creatures as if the future of the world depended on it, which it sort of does. You simply can’t get the most out of the game without two conscious players. When you do find the right partner, the potential two-man tactics make the game addictive.

4 “Portal 2:” Fun With Robots and Puzzles

“Portal 2” is a thinking person’s video game. When two people play, the puzzles are deliciously complex. The main play involves getting through portals, which requires teamwork to set up the other player to make it through each opening. “Portal 2” gives you even more creative options than the first installment.

3 “Contra:” Third Time’s the Charm

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Before today’s advanced, multiplayer first-person shooters, gamers who wanted to pick up a gun and kill bad guys could chill out with a friend and blow off some steam with “Contra.” The series gives players control of Jimbo and Sully, two Special Forces heroes fighting the evil Red Falcon. The original game was low-tech, but the newer “Contra III” puts players through what will feel like a full-on military engagement. You can play alone, but the real beauty of two-player fans for “Contra III” is that you have two options for two-player mode. One mode lets you see the players on the same screen from the top view, and other puts players on a split screen.

2 “Street Fighter 2:” A Unique Approach to Conflict Resolution

The second “Street Fighter” created a great way that you and friend could kick the stuffing out of each other without actually coming to blows. The game spawned a movie and sold more than 31 million copies for home video games. The arcade version was also popular with 500,000 “Street Fighter” machines out there since the beginning. Later versions allowed for multiplayer, online action, but the original pitted you against a competitor, mano a mano, for an all-out, knock down battle.

1 “Super Mario Bros.”

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The original “Mario Bros.” was fun but a bit limited with only the one scene. “Super Mario Bros” became a widely popular game where two buds could play the Italian brothers Mario and Luigi, taking turns making their way through various lands and adventures. The graphics were terrible, but at the time, fireballs, hidden treasures and a fire-breathing dragon seemed pretty cool. The two-player game went on to inspire many more “Mario” games and a “Super Mario Bros.” movie, but nothing beats the first “Super Mario Bros.”

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