In simple terms, a multiplayer video game can be defined as a gaming environment wherein more than one person can play the same game at the same time, either locally and on the same computing system or locally and on different computing systems via the internet. It is common for multi-player games to require that players either share a single game device or connect to a computer network from afar. Players may sometimes compete against other human contestants or work together for the common end. As the crux of multiplayer games is interaction with their humans, they provide a sense of social camaraderie and communication that is absent from single-player games. Nowadays, due to the magnanimity of games, there has been an unprecedented surge in game design courses worldwide. Before diving into the details of the top multiplayer games of the current times, let us take a quick glance at the history of multiplayer games.
However, such games did not explode well until the late-90s, when the internet became commonplace, at least in the technocratic western world. Some of the earliest multiplayer videogames, such as Spacewar and Tennis for Two, were designed for two or more players to play the game on a single computer. Consequently, with the ubiquity of the internet, online gaming took off at a mega-scale, with Quake and Unreal being one of the most popular online games of the late 1990s. With the inception of Xbox Live and Playstation Network in the 2000s, online games took off on consoles, and these consoles now regularly have millions of active users during peak hours. Even today, most online multiplayer games are restricted to a limited number of players, somewhere from 4 to 32. However, in a Massively Multiplayer Online Game (MMO), hundreds of thousands of players can participate in a single game session. Lastly, as gaming has expanded to the mobile landscape, multiplayer has followed precisely.
Now that we briefly touched upon the history of multiplayer gaming let us look at the top renowned multiplayer games of contemporary times.
TOP FIVE MULTIPLAYER GAMES OF CURRENT TIMES
- Among Us – Released in 2018 by Innersloth, Among Us has witnessed unprecedented growth and has amassed a cult following among the gaming community. The game’s concept is that the gamer and their teammates are the crew on a spaceship, and one of the crew members is the Imposter, who is attempting to annihilate other crew members. More often than not, meetings take place wherein the members discuss who can be the potential Imposter and then vote for people to be kicked off the ship. In 2020, the online game’s download rate surged by 661 percent, and went from 1.1 million to 41.9 million in a span of nine months.
- Fall Guys – Battle Royale game Fall Guys, formerly called Ultimate Knockout, was developed by Medtronic. Players control jellybean-like critters that participate in a succession of random mini-games, such as tag or obstacle courses. It was published by Devolver Digital for Microsoft Windows and Playstation 4 on 4th August 2020, and it was made free to play on 21st June 2022 and released on additional platforms like Nintendo, Playstation 5, etc. Fall Guys takes inspiration from game shows like Takeshi’s Castle and Wipeout. Upon its release, Fall Guys was one of the most widely played multiplayer games of all time, and its average number of concurrent players ranges from 6000 to 18000 per day.
- Rocket League – Psyonix created and released this vehicular soccer video game. It was released for PlayStation and Microsoft Windows in July 2015. The online multiplayer game is deemed as a ‘scooter but with rocket-powered cars’ and allows up to eight players in each of the two teams. Despite being launched in 2015, Rocket League is still incredibly popular. In 2020, Psyonix announced that Rocket League surpassed 75 million players – a staggering feat considering the fact that the game initially started as an indie phenomenon. As per experts, the primary reason for Rocket League’s ongoing popularity as a multiplayer game is accessibility and simplicity. In addition, it is noteworthy to mention that Rocket League has also been adopted as an Esports, with professional players participating in the same through ESL and Major League Gaming.
- Counter-Strike Global Offensive (CSGO) – It is a Hidden Path Entertainment and Valve-developed multiplayer first-person shooter game (2012). Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, macOS and Playstation were all supported. Two teams, one representing terrorists and the other representing counter-terrorists, face off in a variety of objective-based game modes in CSGO’s premise. Positive evaluations and a monthly player base of over 11 million have followed Counter-Strike Global Offensive since its start. Moreover, it was awarded the ‘best eSports Game’ in the 2017, 2019, and 2020 Game Awards shows.
- Call of Duty Series – It is a multiplayer first-person shooter video game franchise published by Activision. Released in 2003, the game’s set focuses on World War II, and some of the series have also been set amidst the Cold War, futuristic worlds, and outer space. As of April 2021, the Call of Duty series has sold over 400 million copies. Furthermore, it is also deemed by the Guinness World Records as the best-selling first-person shooter game of all time.
So, there we have it, the top five most popular and widely-loved online multiplayer games of contemporary times. With the world embracing video games in an unprecedented fashion, now is the time to take the unconventional path and opt for game programming courses from recognized institutions. The field has a tremendous scope that is only going to increase in the near future.
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