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6 Best Solo Co-Op Games That Have Great Partner AI

Highlights

  • Solo co-op gaming offers players the chance to experience cooperative gameplay within a single-player setup, thanks to sophisticated AI systems and mechanics.
  • Games like Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, A Way Out, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands, and The Last of Us provide engaging AI companions that enhance gameplay and storytelling.
  • The use of AI partners in these games adds depth, support, and teamwork, making solo co-op gaming a fulfilling experience that continues to evolve and improve.

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Solo co-op gaming has established itself as a unique trend in the ever-changing world of gaming. It provides players with the chance to experience the kind of cooperative gameplay normally reserved for multiplayer games within a single-player setup.

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Through the use of artificial intelligence, many developers have successfully crafted sophisticated systems and game mechanics that have led to well-controlled additional characters and followers. In turn, having these supporting characters on hand allows players to interact with them and even strategize with convincing AI teammates. This creative approach offers some worthwhile advantages to players who either prefer going it alone or are currently unable to get involved with any major multiplayer sessions. With rapid advancements in AI technology coming and going so frequently, it’s safe to say solo co-op gaming is only going to continue to improve. Even so, it’s already provided players with some classic entries to enjoy.

6 BD-1 Is A Recurring Scene Stealer In Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

Star-Wars-Jedi-BD-1-cute-bot

While the highly acclaimed first installment in the adventures of young Jedi Cal Kestis is primarily designed to be a single-player game, there is a trusty droid companion controlled by AI. BD-1 provides a variety of uses for the player, including hacking certain systems and scanning the environment.

Perhaps most importantly of all, BD-1 can provide healing to the player, ensuring those grueling battles don’t result in a frustrating death and do-over. As an AI companion, the best quality BD-1 possesses is how smoothly integrated into the gameplay they are, adding effective depth and support without ever distracting from the action or making the gameplay too easy. Much like R2-D2 and BB-8 in the films, BD-1 is a charming droid character who adds some humor and color to the game’s adventurous, often dramatic proceedings.

5 Brothers: A Tale Of Two Sons Offers A Solo Co-Op Experience Like No Other

The two brothers looking over the land in Brothers: A Tale Of Two Sons

This supremely imaginative fairy tale epic provided gamers with a fine example of high art in the medium thanks to its complex, thoughtful narrative. Directed by Swedish filmmaker Josef Fares, the game follows the journey of two brothers on a journey to collect potentially life-saving water for their ailing father.

RELATED: Story-Driven Games You Can Play In Co-Op

Along the way, the boys encounter a variety of challenging obstacles, including bullies, trolls, and wolves. For players, the co-op proves to be impressively engrossing as both brothers have to be controlled almost simultaneously. Players must utilize both characters to solve puzzles and complete challenging objectives in a masterfully rendered, immersive world. The AI-controlled brother functions as a trusty and dependable partner, ensuring worthwhile teamwork and cooperation throughout the game’s proceedings. Between effective AI integration and inventive control mechanics, this underrated gem is an exceptional piece of solo co-op gaming.

4 A Way Out Offers An Extremely Convincing AI Partner To Play With

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EA’s prison-breaking, revenge odyssey provided players with a gritty, harsh adventure through a sinister criminal underworld upon its initial release back in March 2018. Ideally played as a multiplayer campaign, A Way Out also has solo players covered with an elite-level AI partner to work with.

A Way Out provides a unique cooperative experience, with options to play it either online or in split-screen mode. For solo players working with the game’s complex AI, a convincing partner in crime positively impacts the game as it successfully mimics both the narrative decisions and the general gameplay. The result is a seamless co-op gaming experience about as on point as playing opposite another human. Coupled with a dramatic storyline focused on payback and a tough closing decision and death scene to deal with, A Way Out is a thrilling piece of multi-person gaming.

3 Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands Gives Players A Dynamic Team To Operate With

Two ghost motorcyclists atop a Bolivian mountain in Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Wildlands

This Bolivia-set installment in the beloved, long-running tactical shooter series boasts a crisp emphasis on teamwork through its effective AI cooperation. While both the single and co-op players modes here are engrossing, playing solo is where the thrills of this game’s AI are most noticeable.

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When going solo, players acquire three AI teammates for the thrilling campaign missions on offer. Much of the game’s core plot revolves around taking down the dreaded Santa Blanca cartel via all-action shootouts and missions. The co-op AI is impressively intuitive in its behaviors, including flanking allies and providing revivals and healing for injured teammates in order to keep them moving. Considering the immense intensity of the missions, having such effective teammates on hand to watch the player’s back makes for a much more efficient gaming experience than the near-impossible task of going into battle alone.

2 The Last of Us Uses Solo Co-Op To Develop A Moving Bond Between Its Protagonists

Joel and Ellie in The Last of Us

The intense, morally complicated journey of Joel and Ellie has proven to be a smash hit in both gaming and, more recently, on television. Journeying through a hellish world where fungus has led to a zombie apocalypse, The Last of Us provides a masterclass in AI partnership.

While players take control of Joel, the AI does a remarkable job of developing Ellie into a realistic, reactive, and developing character. She also comes in handy for a variety of gameplay features, including reloading ammunition, assisting in both combat and stealth gameplay, and communicating with Joel effectively to maintain a sense of dramatic urgency and interest in the game’s narrative. The multi-faceted, human-like AI behavior adds a great deal of depth to the pair’s partnership, enhancing the overall gaming experience by making the lead protagonists more engaging and lifelike.

1 Resident Evil 4 Boosts The Game’s Stakes Through Its AI Partner

Leon on the lift

This classic entry in the beloved Resident Evil series saw the franchise bid farewell to the steady camera angles and slow-burning horror focus of prior games, opting for a more hectic, action-heavy pace and style. Another key aspect of this iconic survival horror game is the unique co-op mechanic the player gets with AI partner Ashley Graham.

RELATED: Reasons Why Resident Evil 9 Should Take Inspiration From Resident Evil 4

Players hoping for Ashley to pick up a gun and ease the offensive load will be disappointed, as it’s the player character Leon S. Kennedy’s job to protect her at all costs. The US President’s daughter, Graham is the key figure in moving much of the game’s plot. Upon becoming Kennedy’s follower, she greatly amps up the intensity of the game, as guarding her from the near-endless number of threats on offer becomes paramount. With crisp character work, excellent voice-acting, and a well-executed plot, Resident Evil 4 has more than earned its place as a seminal gaming classic. The dynamic between Kennedy and Graham is just one of the many things Capcom’s masterpiece nails.

MORE: Best Co-Op Third-Person Shooters You Can Play On PS5

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Leah Sirama
Leah Sirama
Leah Sirama, a lifelong enthusiast of Artificial Intelligence, has been exploring technology and the digital realm since childhood. Known for his creative thinking, he's dedicated to improving AI experiences for all, making him a respected figure in the field. His passion, curiosity, and creativity drive advancements in the AI world.
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