Video Games Similar to It Takes Two

Do you remember the Game Awards 2021? That day, all the world knew about the game It Takes Two won the Game of the Year award. So many gamers started to play this game with their partners and friends, pointing out innovative cooperative gameplay and a heartwarming story. Nowadays, it’s understandable for every player: this game transcends conventional gaming boundaries and offers something more. 

It Takes Two is a game with a unique blend of teamwork, adventure, and storytelling. Many game development studios commended the game’s success and started producing more games like It Takes Two. Some of them are excellent, and some of them are mediocre. But each offers its twist on cooperative play and narrative engagement.

Games similar to It Takes Two, TOP 10 best games similar to It Takes Two

Why Co-Op Games Like It Takes Two Are So Popular?

What good two-player video games did we have before It Takes Two? Minecraft, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, Genshin Impact, etc. were quite good co-op games in their genres. Even A Way Out, the game from the same studio that created It Takes Two, was very good but not perfect and had a lot of negative moments that players didn’t like. But in 2021, It Takes Two was released by Hazelight Studios and changed the world of co-op games forever. Now we’ll explain to you, why co-op games like It Takes Two became so popular.

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    Dynamic gameplay with various game mechanics

    Many co-op games, released before 2021, had a similar limited list of game mechanics that weren't changing from level to level. Various animation studio services with an accent on co-op were limited in their possibilities and couldn’t provide anything extraordinary. Of course, all of the titles they created required focused teamwork and coordination to overcome challenges. But it's easy to get tired of the game when you always have the same gameplay animation and mechanics.

    Dynamic gameplay with various game mechanics similar to It Takes Two

    It Takes Two brought players' engagement to a new level. They created more than 10 various locations, each with unique features gamers have never seen before. This new level of collaboration added an extra layer of depth to the gaming experience.

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    Strong emotional connection

    Co-op games like It Takes Two incorporate very strong narratives and character development. These games aren't just about spending time together in reality. They are about making sense and helping people who play together to understand something important and enhance their relationships. 

    Strong emotional connection in games similar to It Takes Two

    It Takes Two, for example, with the use of outstanding 3D game art, and unique mechanics, tells a compelling story about relationships. The emotional connection to the characters and their journey is intensified when shared with a partner, friend, or family member. That's the main point of the video games like It Takes Two. 

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    Replay Value

    Co-op games have an outstanding collaborative nature which often leads to replayability, especially when the talk is about It Takes Two similar games.

    Replay value in games similar to It Takes Two

    Players may want to revisit the game with different people, including friends and partners, explore choices, or enjoy the experience of the game again. This replay value is an important indicator of the long-term popularity of co-op titles.

Unique Features of It Takes Two

A lot of game developers have noticed that co-op games are becoming more and more popular. Johnny Hughes, the director of Hugecalf Studios, shares these thoughts: “Lots of indies are exploring co-op mechanics and I think there will be some cool things coming out of that space. Coming together, working together is a super powerful way to play games”. He also mentioned that It Takes Two and other good two-player video games are excellent examples. 

Our team agrees with Johnny Hughes too. Also, we think there will be several more trends in co-op games in the future. One of them is AR integration. As AR technology advances with every new day, cooperative gaming will incorporate elements of the real world into gameplay. Shared physical spaces, interactive objects, or even augmented characters are good examples of possible AR integration. 

Also, game developers can come up with more ideas if they dive into the details of It Takes Two from gameplay mechanics to narratives. Let’s take a deep look at the unique features of this game. 

The best two-player video games, unique features of co-op games similar to It Takes Two

Innovative Gameplay Mechanics

As we’ve already mentioned, It Takes Two gave rise to groundbreaking gameplay mechanics, such as the ability to rewind time or replicate the character. The game requires two players to work together, each with their unique abilities, to navigate through a fantastical world. Also, we can’t skip the fact these unforgettable mechanics were reached due to Hazelight’s collaboration with the Unreal game development company. The game was written mostly in AngelScript, which was implemented into the Unreal Engine through Hazelight’s plugin.

Let’s talk about gameplay! A central gameplay mechanic involves the characters changing their size. With this mechanic, players feel an additional layer of complexity to puzzles and environments, as the two main characters must navigate the world from different perspectives.

It Takes Two introduces time manipulation as one of the main gameplay elements. Players can interact with and influence the flow of time in various ways. Due to the synchronization of actions across different timelines, players can easily overcome obstacles. Also, this mechanic helps gamers to boost their strategic and dynamic aspect of the cooperative experience.

Another interesting game feature is parallel environments, where each player experiences a different perspective of the same scene. It’s the best way to boost the player’s desire to play the game again and again. Of course, this aspect enhances the cooperative side of It Takes Two a lot. But what an engaging and visually stunning gameplay experience people have!

In general, It Takes Two seamlessly blends various game genres and mechanics within its narrative, offering diverse gameplay experiences. From action-platforming to puzzle-solving design elements, the game constantly keeps players engaged with endless new challenges and gameplay styles.

Gameplay mechanics of It Takes Two video game

Storytelling and Character Development

Many It Takes Two fans highlight the storytelling part of the game. We can’t argue with that: the heart and soul of It Takes Two lie in the depth of the characters and their story.

The game tells players a heartfelt story about the relationship between two playable characters, Cody and May, who have problems in their marriage. Unlike many co-op games, It Takes Two and video games similar to it place a strong emphasis on emotional storytelling, exploring themes of love, companionship, and personal growth.

One creative choice Hazelight made was to represent Cody and May as anthropomorphized versions of the couple’s human counterparts. This whimsical and fantastical element completely changes storytelling for a lot of players, allowing them to mentally connect with the characters on both a personal and imaginative level.

Storytelling and character development of It Takes Two video game

Character-Driven Narratives

In a lot of co-op games characters are just avatars. But It Takes Two prefers a completely different approach, making Cody and May central to the story and the player’s experience. 

The game revolves around the relationship between Cody and May, offering players a front-row seat to the intricacies of their interactions. The narrative unfolds as a journey of self-discovery, providing a portrayal of a couple navigating the complexities of their relationship. In reality, this approach helped a lot of partners to discover problems between themselves too.

But this result also was reached due to perfectly stylized characters in 3D models of Cody and May. Their creative design makes storytelling deep and memorable, allowing players to connect with the characters on an emotional level. 

It’s important to mention that the characters embody traditional gender stereotypes in their design and roles. Male character concept art (Cody) is associated with more stereotypically masculine traits, while female character concept art (May) is designed with stereotypically feminine characteristics. This intentional choice allows the game to explore and challenge traditional gender roles within the context of its narrative, helping male and female players and couples to understand and deal with their own problems. 

Throughout the game, players witness the growth and transformation of the main characters, Cody and May. The challenges they face together serve as opportunities for self-reflection and personal development, adding layers to the characters’ arcs and reflecting the problems of real people.

Character-driven narratives of It Takes Two video game

Games with Similar Co-op Mechanics

From A Way Out to Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes, there are a lot of games like It Takes 2. Now, we would like to highlight TOP-3 video games similar to It Takes Two:

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    A Way Out

    Created by the same developer, Hazelight Studios, A Way Out is a narrative-driven co-op game where two players must work together to escape from prison and navigate a series of challenges.

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    Brothers: A Take of Two Sons

    While not a traditional co-op game, Brothers features a unique single-player experience where players control two characters simultaneously using a single controller.

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    Salt and Sanctuary

    An action RPG with an excellent 2D game environment design showcases a dark and atmospheric world. Players can explore challenging environments, engage in intense combat, and tackle bosses together, combining their skills and abilities to overcome obstacles.

The best video games with similar co-op mechanics to It Takes Two

We, as a professional 3D environment design studio,  catch a lot of inspiration from Hazelight and its approach.

Game Environments Like It Takes Two

It’s not a surprising fact that a lot of independent game developers and studios caught inspiration from It Takes Two and integrated fresh ideas into their projects. And we understand why!

In It Takes Two, there is a vast variety of environments that symbolize different stages of a relationship.

From the idyllic garden representing the honeymoon phase to the chaotic workshop reflecting conflicts, the settings in It Takes Two are meticulously designed to mirror the emotional journey of the characters.

We can’t guarantee there are a lot of games with similar storytelling approaches and narratives. But we know some outstanding titles similar to It Takes Two with interesting video game environments.

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    Ori and the Will of the Wisps

    This atmospheric platformer boasts lush and magical environments, taking players through a visually enchanting world. The game features a heartfelt story combined with challenging platforming elements.

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    Little Nightmares

    Set in a haunting and surreal world, Little Nightmares explores dark and atmospheric environments. Players navigate through eerie locations filled with intricate details.

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    Hollow Knight

    This atmospheric and beautifully hand-drawn Metroidvania game features a vast underground world filled with diverse environments. From lush forests to desolate caverns, players explore a hauntingly beautiful world with unforgettable level design.

The best video games environments similar to It Takes Two

Games with Unique Art Styles

We’ve already discussed games similar to It Takes Two gameplay mechanics and environment design. But what about art style? 

In the realm of art, It Takes Two stands out for its unique visual style. Delving into the art behind the games, we want to explore how various artistic styles influence the visual narrative of video games, creating unique and memorable experiences.

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    Unravel

    Developed by the same studio as It Takes Two (Hazelight Studios), Unravel features a charming protagonist made of yarn navigating through visually striking natural landscapes. The game's art style combines realism with a touch of fantasy.

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    Gris

    Known for its watercolor aesthetic, Gris offers players a stunning journey through a world filled with emotional resonance. The hand-drawn art style complements the game's narrative, creating an unforgettable experience.

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    Hades

    Known for its isometric perspective and stylized art inspired by Greek mythology, Hades features dynamic character designs, fluid animations, and visually engaging environments.

In our new Kingdom Match Project, our studio was also inspired by Hazelight and its progressive ideas.

Especially if the talk is about isometric game art - we are always looking for new concepts to shape our multi-year professional experience in this field.

Right now, from the concept stage to the rendering part, we’ve already integrated into our game art outsourcing studio workflow some unique techniques based on It Takes Two and their professionalism in isometrics.

The best video games with unique art styles similar to It Takes Two

Table of Games Similar to It Takes Two

For fans of It Takes Two, we created a comparative table of other games like It Takes Two that offer similar cooperative gameplay, engaging narratives, and unique artistic styles. For your comfort, each game on the list provides insights into what makes each one a worthy successor to It Takes Two.

Game
Developer/Publisher
Cooperative Gameplay
Unique Gameplay Mechanics
Art Style
It Takes Two
Hazelight Studios
Split-screen cooperative gameplay with two unique characters. The story and gameplay are connected, requiring constant collaboration
Diverse gameplay mechanics include size-changing, time manipulation, and object possession
Realistic and fantastical blend
A Way Out
Hazelight Studios
Split-screen cooperative gameplay following two characters on a prison escape. Story and gameplay are closely tied, requiring players to work together to progress
Cinematic storytelling with split-screen focus
Realistic with cinematic elements
Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
Starbreeze Studios
Single-player control of two characters simultaneously. Cooperative elements involve puzzle-solving and character collaboration
Simultaneous control of two characters with unique abilities
Fantasy with emotional storytelling
Overcooked: All You Can Eat
Ghost Town Games
A cooperative cooking game requiring players to work together in chaotic kitchen environments
Intense and fast-paced cooking challenges
Cartoonish with a vibrant aesthetic
Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime
Asteroid Base
Cooperative action game where players control different spaceship stations, promoting teamwork to navigate and defend against enemies
Dynamic cooperation in controlling various ship functions
Colorful and whimsical
Unravel Two
Coldwood Interactive
Cooperative puzzle platformer where two characters, made of yarn, navigate through diverse environments
Puzzle-solving with interconnected characters
Realistic with a yarn-themed aesthetic

What Innovations Provided It Takes Two in Game Design?

The gaming industry is constantly developing, with new technologies pushing the boundaries of what’s possible. It Takes Two and other good two-player video games made a breakthrough. Due to this game, many game developers reached unexpected advancements in game design which enhanced the gaming experience. Now, we want to share some of them with you. 

Cooperative Gameplay Integration

The game design of It Takes Two mandates constant collaboration between players. Unlike many co-op games, where cooperation is optional or occasional, It Takes Two ensures that players must work together at all times to progress. Each player controls a character with distinct abilities, requiring cooperation to overcome challenges.

Cooperative gameplay integration innovation in games similar to It Takes Two

Diverse Gameplay Mechanics

It Takes Two creates a seamless synergy between various game genres, including action-platforming, puzzle-solving, and mini-games. This diversity keeps the gameplay experience fresh and engaging, providing players with a dynamic and unpredictable journey. Different innovative gameplay mechanics such as size-changing, time manipulation, and object possession not only help a lot to overcome challenges but also showcase the developers’ creativity in designing unique cooperative experiences.

Diverse gameplay innovative mechanics in games similar to It Takes Two

UI/UX Design Innovations

It Takes Two changed the approach to game UI/UX a lot.

The game employs a minimalistic Heads-Up display that enhances the game experience.

Critical information is seamlessly integrated into the environment, reducing clutter and allowing players to stay focused on the gameplay and narrative.

The controls are also designed to be intuitive, ensuring that players can easily grasp the mechanics without cumbersome tutorials. 

UI/UX design innovations in games similar to It Takes Two