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Teamwork Puzzle Game

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A type of Video Game where the player, instead of controlling a single character, controls a group of characters, and progress frequently depends on puzzles making use of this fact. (Multi-player games can also be teamwork puzzle games, but often aren't.)

In its simplest form, the characters are interchangeable, and the puzzles merely make use of the fact that there's more than one of them—for instance, by presenting the characters with a door that only opens when somebody holds down a switch on the far side of the room. In more sophisticated games, each character has a unique set of abilities (and disabilities) — in a game like this, the door switch might only work if operated by Alice the Locksmith, but be located on a high ledge that Alice can't reach without the assistance of Bob the Very Tall Weightlifter.

The actual genre/type of gameplay of a teamwork puzzle game may be Platform Game, Point-and-Click Game, Interactive Fiction, or any other that supports storytelling and puzzle solving. (So probably not actual Puzzle Game, which is usually a lot more abstract.)

Compare Plot Tailored to the Party.


Video Games
  • 7 Billion Humans is a Programming Game where a swarm of office workers all run the same program.
  • The Adventures of Cookie & Cream: You control both characters at once to solve puzzles. On different screens. In different areas. It's... complicated.
  • The Animaniacs Licensed Game for the Sega Genesis has you play as Yakko, Wakko, and Dot in their quest to collect movie props. You can switch between each character with the push of a button, and they all have their own unique abilities that are required to progress through the game.
  • Armikrog features two playable companions - Tommynaut and his alien dog Beak Beak. The two repeatedly utilize their size difference and Beak Beak's visor to get access to locations and information that Tommynaut wouldn't be able to have on his own.
  • Banjo-Tooie: The game has a greater emphasis on teamwork than its predecessor, not only because Banjo and Kazooie continue exploring their surroundings together, but also because the new "Split Up" ability makes it possible for them to act independently and acquire their own unique moves.
  • Beyond Good & Evil has several puzzles of the first type, bleeding into the second. Main character Jade has two partners who have different abilities than her, which you sometimes need to get through obstacles. In addition, it's frequently to do things like hit distant switches, so you can get through doors.
  • Clive Barker's Jericho. You get seven characters at the start, only one of whom can be controlled, but later the cast is reduced to six and you can take control of everyone else, all of whom play quite differently. There are also a few puzzles that require you to split the group up or that require multiple characters to work together to do something.
  • Crash Twinsanity, which due to the whole Enemy Mine between Crash and Dr. Cortex often means that making Cortex suffer is key to progress.
  • In CreaVures the player controls five characters, each with its own unique ability.
  • Dearth (link) requires the two players to work together to smash the water monsters. There are two versions: one for two human players, and one for a single human player with the help of an AI.
  • The Earth and Sky series features a pair of siblings with themed superpowers. In early installments, the game dictates which is the player character for each section, but part 3 introduces the ability to switch between them at will, and has a lot of puzzles that require both their abilities to solve.
  • In certain dungeons of Final Fantasy VI you need to split into two or three groups and alternatively walk into different switches to open up paths.
  • Fireboy and Watergirl is a series of puzzle-platformers where you play as the two eponymous characters, having to get through obstacles that may require the characters to cooperate to get both characters to their respective exits.
  • Fish Fillets: The player controls Tina Guppy and Max Flounder. These two fish need to push objects around in order for both of them to reach the exit, where objects are subject to gravity. Tina is smaller and can fit through smaller gaps, while Max can push steel blocks. They also have conversational banter within the level.
  • In the Frenetic Five game series, the player controls five superheroes with a variety of abilities.
  • Fury Of The Furries, an old game for Amiga, Mac and DOS (and its later sprite swap the DOS, Mac and Game Boy versions of Pac-In-Time; the divergent SNES version of that, not so much), used a variation on this: the entire party traveled around at once, rather than moving independently, but each member of the party had skills that could be used at certain points in the level.
  • Gobliiins games:
    • In the original game, you have three characters — a technician, a wizard, and a warrior — and must use their respective abilities in the right places to complete levels.
    • In Gobliins 2, you have two characters with slightly different abilities — one is weaker but more intellectual, the other one vice versa — which affects their interaction with objects; many puzzles also require both characters to perform some tasks simultaneously. When you get the third character, he is useful too in several scenes.
    • In Gobliins 3, you have only one character, who, at several points, gets sidekicks (who are also under your control), allowing for solving puzzles that require using two characters at the same time.
  • Golden Sun has the Colosso sequence, where you can have the three party members who aren't participating in the event "cheer" main character Isaac (read: use Psynergy to give him an advantage in navigating the maze, like creating shortcuts, disabling obstacles, or in one case, time-stopping the man operating the traps). The puzzle aspect comes from figuring out which Psynergy is required for the traps, which character to use (as they all have different Psynergies, some of which are granted by items), and which trap takes priority (as there are more than three stages, and you can only put one character and therefor disable one trap per stage).
  • Guy And Buddy (here): A guy sets out to avenge his murdered buddy, with his buddy's ghost tagging along. Each can go places and do things the other can't.
  • Half-Life:
    • Half-Life: Decay is a PS2-only Half-Life Expansion Pack in which the player controls two characters (or two players each control one character) who must work together to proceed.
    • There is also a Half-Life mod called Sven Co-op where players online work together to complete a level. At least two players are necessary, as levels will have switches where one player must hold down a button to allow another player to pass through. Possibly the most famous series are the "Secret City" maps.
  • In Head over Heels, the player controls two characters, each with three abilities the other lacks, and in addition some puzzles can only be solved with Head standing on top of Heels.
  • In The Humans, the player controls a tribe of cave-people. In the original game, the cave-people are largely interchangeable (with the exception of a Witch Doctor who appears in some levels), and the puzzles are of the things-a-person-can't-do-alone type; the sequels added other individuals with specific abilities.
  • Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis can be played three different ways, with varying emphasis on puzzles or action adventure; one is a teamwork puzzle game with Indy assisted by a former colleague.
  • Karoshi Factory. A worker team up with other workers to find a way to kill themselves...
  • In Key To Adventure, an internet flash game, the player controls both a traditional platform character and an electric... not-traditional platform character.
  • The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon: Cynder and Spyro have different "elements". Each element can interact with different obstacles, and the player has to figure out which character's elements are needed to get past a certain obstacle.
  • In Lemmings, each level gives you a number of lemmings, ranging from 1 to 100, to control by assigning skills to them. Most of the easy levels can be solved by having one lemming do all the work while the others hang in a crowd until the end, but later puzzles often require teamwork. The lemmings are identical at first, but two of the skills (Climber and Floater) give them permanent abilities, so puzzles where climbers have to cooperate with floaters are possible.
  • Luigi's Mansion 3. Luigi is accompanied by "Gooigi", a slimy clone of him that shares the same abilities as well. Progress through the game requires the player to switch between both characters at several points (or, alternatively, have a second player for co-op).
  • A few rooms into the indie point-and-click adventure game LUNA: The Shadow Dust the protagonist discovers a cat-like creature buried under the rubble, who, after being rescued, becomes a controllable character. The creature's small size and ability to turn into a shadow allow it to explore places that would've been out of reach otherwise.
  • Marvelous: Another Treasure Island, a Super Famicom title developed by Nintendo late in the console's lifespan. You control a trio of summer campers who do develop individual abilities based on the inventory items the plot hands them, but there are also obstacles that just require the three kids to act together to get past.
  • Martian Gothic Unification has you controlling three astronauts in a deserted Mars base. Played with in that the characters can never actually meet: they're each carrying one-third of a deadly virus, and if any two of them are in the same room, terrible things will happen.
  • Some versions of Math Blaster have a navigational puzzle where you control three distinct characters, each of which is needed to get past one of three distinct obstacles: A character tall enough to reach the pull-chains on the ceiling, a character stout enough to set off the floor switches, and a small floating character that can travel through narrow openings.
  • Both the agents in Max Blaster and Doris de Lightning Against the Parrot Creatures of Venus have special and unique abilities they contribute to solving puzzles.
  • The Neopets game, Hannah and the Ice Caves. The two playable characters have slightly different talents, but both must reach the exit door to finish each level.
  • In Never Alone, the fox is more agile and can get places Nuna can't, but Nuna can move and carry things the fox can't.
  • A fair share of games in the Nicktoons Unite! series:
    • The console version of Nicktoons Unite is best described as a lighter X-Men Legends with a heavier focus on puzzles requiring usage of one or more of the four characters' different skillsets than on combat.
    • The version of Nicktoons Unite on the Nintendo DS and the Game Boy Advance version of Battle For Volcano Island are akin to the above-mentioned Fury of the Furries and Looney Tunes Collector. The former, however, is distinct by being set on a 3D plane.
    • The DS version of Globs Of Doom has the player controlling a different protagonist-antagonist pair per world (for five world), the 10 characters each having unique abilities. (For the record, the only moment where the player can choose which pairing to control is for the final boss.)
  • In Once, Twice, Thrice! (link), the player controls three wizards with different sets of Elemental Powers.
  • Pet Alien: An Intergalactic Puzzlepalooza has the player switching between each of the five aliens to solve puzzles and rescue Tommy. All of them have their own abilities: Dinko can outrun conveyer belts, Gumpers can smash fragile objects, Swanky can push and pull crates, Flip can fly over obstacles and Scruffy can use his Overly-Long Tongue to grab objects from far away.
  • Pheus And Mor has the title characters. In addition, to switch puzzles and the like, Mor, the dog, is needed to pass any watery area due to his owner Pheus's Super Drowning Skills.
  • Pikmin 2 has you control both Olimar and Louie or later as the President to control two sets of Pikmin. Pikmin 3 ups this to three captains, Alph, Brittany, and Charlie, each of whom can control their own Pikmin army.
  • Problem Sleuth plays out much like this, owing to the three protagonists' varying statistics.
  • Some installments of the Resident Evil series:
  • Schizm: Mysterious Journey involves two search team members, Sam Mainey and Hannah Grant, sent to look for their fellow scientists who went missing on the planet Argilus, only to be stranded on opposite sides of the planet when they abandoned their spaceship before the game started. The player can switch between Sam and Hannah at will, and the first goal is to get both in radio contact with each other. From there on, certain puzzles require using both of them at once, where setting one of the characters to move or hold something keeps the other person from progressing.
  • Shrek 2: You're almost always playing as a team of four characters, though which characters are in the team varies depending on the level; each has their own set of abilities that allow them to do things the other members cannot. Shrek can pick up and throw enemies and specifically-marked objects, Donkey can kick open specific locks and activate machinery, Puss can walk on tightropes, etc.
  • Snipperclips is a two-player co-op game where both players can snip off a piece of each others' bodies by overlapping them to create a matching shape or solve puzzles.
  • Sonic Heroes: The player is always given a team of three heroes to work with in the level, separated into a Speed, Power, and Flight-type team member. The levels will always have some sort of gimmick or obstacle that is suited for a certain member of the team to get past, such as blocks only being able to be broken by Power-type characters or enemies that require the Speed-type character to generate a tornado to strip them of their defenses. Sometimes all three team members are required to solve a puzzle, such as placing them in areas to activate three switches.
  • Sponge Bobs Atlantis Square Pants has two levels that involve switching between different characters to get through. The first level exclusively uses SpongeBob (who can flip obstacles with his spatula) and Patrick (who can throw allies and anchors across gaps), while the second throws in Squidward (who can run on treadmills), Sandy (who can lasso objects and allies to her) and Mr. Krabs (who can fly towards and remove money piles).
  • Star Fox Adventures makes use of this with Fox and his Tag-Along Sidekick, Tricky the Triceratops EarthWalker. In addition to Tricky having different abilities than Fox (he can dig and breath fire), you sometimes have to get him to press switches and do other things for you. Despite this, he still grumbles at you when you leave him to sit on a switch.
  • In Suspended, an Infocom Interactive Fiction game, the player controls six robots, each with different capabilities.
  • Sweet Home (1989) has five characters who could form into parties of up to three and could be switched between at any time. Each character has a special object such as a lighter (burns rope barriers) or a vacuum (clears debris).
  • Trine has you control a Fighter, Mage, Thief trio that are Sharing a Body to solve puzzles and slay enemies.
  • In the online versions of Uru: Ages Beyond Myst, the Bevins (neighbourhoods where players can meet) include one of two randomly selected garden levels, Eder Tsogahl and Eder Delin, which have no purpose other than including a similar puzzle that absolutely needs at least four to five people to be completed easily. It involves pushing a series of buttons in a certain order (different each time), said buttons being scattered around the environment. The simplest way to complete these is to have a button "caller" and have someone waiting close to each button, in order to activate them in a timely manner.
  • The What-Iffers in: Final Fancy stars four heroes representing common RPG classes, who must use their unique abilities in tandem to reach the goal of each stage.
  • Yeah Jam Fury: Yeah can create blocks, Jam can boost himself off blocks, Fury can destroy blocks. Use all 3 abilities in tandem to obtain mangoes.