Margin Makers: Guide to co-op merchandise

From teaming up to take down a dragon to living out a virtual life as a criminal gang, gaming is often better with friends.

MCV gets together with the latest co-op products

As long as there has been video gaming, there has also been gaming with friends.

Whether it’s a second player taking control of the other paddle in Pong, a teammate reviving a downed ally in Battlefield or a rival racer pulling ahead metres from the finish line in Gran Turismo, the chance to butt heads or work together has long excited gamers.

Local multiplayer titles remain highly popular, providing retailers with the opportunity to upsell additional controllers alongside games that support couch co-op, such as big hitter Call of Duty and Nintendo fan favourite Mario Kart.

Improved online and social functionality in games has allowed friends to play with each other over long distances in a greater variety of titles, too.

The desire to chat to teammates will inspire many consumers to search for a suitable headset, making that segment another prime focal point for stores.

Both triple-A and indie games feature a range of co-operative experiences for players, and have proven highly successful at retail.

Co-op crime game Payday 2 was so popular on its release that many retail outlets sold out of boxed copies, leading publisher 505 Games to urgently order in extra stock.

Some games have even used the appeal of co-op as a marketing ploy. Far Cry 4 offered PS4 players ‘Keys to Kyrat’, which allowed them to play the title’s co-op mode with friends who didn’t own the game.

Meanwhile, Valve’s co-op zombie-shooter franchise Left 4 Dead has now sold more than 12 million units since its inception in 2008 – and resulted in consistent speculation among fans of a third entry in the series.

The developer of Left 4 Dead, Turtle Rock Studios, returned with a brand new co-op-focused IP this month, Evolve.

The Art of Evolve

This hardcover book chronicles each step in the creation of 2K’s monster-versus-hunters co-operative shooter. It follows the development of the title from character design to motion capture. The book features an extensive range of concept and development art, as well as in-depth creator commentary revealing more behind the game.

SRP: 24.99

Manufacturer: Titan Books

Distributor: Titan Books

Contact: 020 7803 1913

Turtle Beach Ear Force XO Seven Pro

This headset for the Xbox One features the new Audio Controller Plus, which adds the firm’s Superhuman Hearing technology, as well as selectable game and microphone presets. Turtle Beach has been selected by 2K as the official headset manufacturer of Evolve, and interchangeable speaker plates based on the game will be available to coincide with the title’s launch.

SRP: 129.99

Manufacturer: Turtle Beach

Distributor: Exertis

Contact: 01279 822 822

Portal 2 ChamberSquares Scarf

Those who survive Portal’s multiplayer co-op testing can remember their hardship fondly with this knitted scarf.

SRP: 14.99

Manufacturer: Crowded Coop

Distributor: Crowded Coop


Assassin’s Creed BrownNecklace with Logo

Assassins friendly with each other after playing Assassin’s Creed Unity’s co-op modes can dress the part with this necklace.

SRP: 10.99

Manufacturer: Bioworld Merchandising

Distributor: Gaming Merchandise UK


Left 4 Dead Ultra Deluxe Boomer Action Figure

The explosive undead enemy comes to life in this detailed figure. It splits in two for added gory effect.

SRP: 19.99

Manufacturer: Neca

Distributor: Star Images

Contact: 0207 249 4662

Fable III Chicken T-Shirt

With co-op offering Fable Legends due out later this year, now is a great time to be stocking up on related gear like this top.

SRP: 24.99

Manufacturer: Gaya Entertainment

Distributor: Gaming Merchandise UK


Borderlands: Origins

Fans of Gearbox’s chaotic shooter can find out more about the world and its characters in this fittingly high-octane prequel.

SRP: 13.50

Manufacturer: IDW Publishing

Distributor: Diamond Book Distributors UK

Contact: 01928 531 760

Payday 2 Masks

Modelled on the masks of Wolf, Dallas, Hoxton and Chains, this vinyl headgear features a backstrip for a tight fit.

SRP: 39.99

Manufacturer: Gaya Entertainment

Distributor: Gaming Merchandise UK


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