We're living in an increasingly connected age. The current generation of consoles enables lots of people to play online simultaneously. Want a 32-player team deathmatch? Go for it! Back in the old days, however, most of us were limited to playing with just a single person (and we had to be in the same room to do it). Finding games that allowed players to smash at one another were not hard to find, but what about playing with someone in a cooperative adventure? The Sega Genesis has quite a few cooperative multiplayer titles in its library and Sega-16 has taken a moment to list the best games that require teamwork and coordination.
If there was one game made to be played co-op on the Genesis, it was ToeJam & Earl. Not to say that it can't be played alone but making it through over twenty levels is an experience to behold that requires a few hours to kill. It's not a terribly difficult game in that regard, it doesn't take too much skill to beat. The controls are simple enough for first time players (A tip-toes or uses whatever item you currently have, B brings up the present screen, and C shows the map). The real joy of the multi-player comes from the dialog between ToeJam and Earl in the elevator between levels that can be acted out with your buddy along with the fact that you're never playing the same game with randomized levels. Many games lose their luster after racing the same track or beating the same level over and over but not in ToeJam & Earl. Multi-player does have it's occasional frustrating moment like when your partner decides to open a certain present the first time and it happens to be "Total Bummer!", stealing a life from each of you but even that is not as bad as the fights over who gets to be the dwarf in Golden Axe. If you have a friend and time to kill, ToeJam & Earl is for you.
I did not have a Sega Genesis as a teenager, but a friend did, so between the two of us we had access to the best of both the Genesis and Super NES gaming libraries. Unfortunately, his mother was rather stern on how long video games could be played, so when we played the Genesis it had to be in bite size chunks. It was just about impossible to make any progress in a game before his mother ordered the console to be turned off and actually disconnected from the television (it had to be kept in a closet in a box when it wasn't turned on for some parental reason, and the time spent connecting and disconnecting the console counted as part of the twenty minute restriction). At my house we could play Super Mario Kart for hours and hours, but at his home we were limited to only twenty minutes of Sonic the Hedgehog 3. Obviously we spent much more time gaming at my place than at his.