Lists: 3 or 4 Player Multiplayer Shmups and Borderline Shmups

First, a note – I just added Horror Story to the previous list, because it’s a two player co-op run & gun.  Go see that list for more.  But on to this new one, of 3+ player multiplayer shooters!

Yes, 3 or 4 player (or more) shooting games this time. This is a much shorter list than the previous one because very few shooters support more than two players. This list is probably not complete, because most of the games come from when I first compiled this list in a forum thread in 2009; I have only added a couple of games to this list since then, most importantly the recent release Geometry Wars 3.  I am sure that there are other shmups and shmuplikes, probably indie or homebrew games and the like, which have 3+ player support, but what are they? This actually is pretty hard info to find, so if anyone knows of more, please mention them in the comments! Thanks.


List initially posted in early 2009 with just a few games on it.

Jan. 2009: Added Turbo Force, Blast Works, Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2, Exception and Exception Conflict, Laseroid, Shooting Love 200X, Bangai-O Spirits, Ketsui Death Label, Moero! Twinbee

12/10/2014: Added Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions, Metamor Jupiter, Valkyrie Sky, Sunset Riders, Mystic Warriors

3/26/2015: Added Otomedius Gorgeous (aka Otomedius G) and Otomedius Excellent


Three or More Player Simultaneous Shmups

Single System or Single System and Online

Aegis Wing (Xbox 360 XBLA) (4 player single system or online)
Blast Works: Build & Destroy (Wii) (4 player single system)
Giga Wing 2 (Dreamcast) (4 player single system)
Laseroid (PC) (3 player single system)
Metamor Jupiter (TurboGrafx CD) (code unlocks a 3 player mode — others play as the options) (Japan only release)
Moero! Twinbee (Famicom – Japan version only, requires a Famicom and Japanese multitap to work) (3 player single system) [This is the Japanese version of Stinger (NES). The Western release is two player max only.]
Otomedius Gorgeous (Xbox 360) (Japan only release) (3 player single system or online) (aka Otomedius G)
Otomedius Excellent (Xbox 360) (US/JP only, not Europe) (3 player single system or online)
Shooting Love 200X (Shooting Ginokentei (Shmups Skills Challege) mode only) (Xbox 360) (Japan only release) (4 player single system)
Turbo Force (Arcade) (3 player single system) [aka Hyper Force]

LAN, Online, and/or System Link Only Multiplayer

Exception (PC) (4 player max lan/online) (borderline arena shmup)
Exception: Conflict (PC) (16 player max lan/online) (borderline arena shmup)
Ketsui Death Label (DS) (8 player wireless system link) (semi-alternating, only one person plays at once but everyone always needs to be paying attention, as it switches automatically during play…)

Discontinued and now unplayable Online-Only Game

Valkyrie Sky (PC) (Shmup MMO) (4 player online play in levels; towns are open, missions instanced) [The game was shut down in late 2010 and I can’t find any information about private servers out there, if there are any.  If someone knows of one mention it!]

3+ Player Borderline Shmup-like games

Single System or Single System and Online Multiplayer

Armada (Dreamcast) (4 player single system only) {this game is sort of a space shooter action-RPG.}
Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2 (X360 XBLA) (4 player single system only) {arena shooter}
Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions (PC/Mac/Linux/PS4/PS3/XONE/X360) (4 player single-system or 8 player online) (only 10 stages are available in multiplayer, not the whole game) {arena shooter}
Sunset Riders (Arcade version only) (4 player single system only) {run & gun}
Mystic Warriors (Arcade) (4 player single system only) {run & gun}

LAN, Online, and/or System Link Only Multiplayer

Bangai-O Spirits (DS) (4 player wireless system link) {open-level missile shooter}
Fire Fight (PC) (4 player LAN play, 2 player modem play) — {top-down free-roam game, could consider it a shmup depending on your definition, sort of like, say, Zone 66 or the top-down levels in Thunder Force II}
Subspace (PC) {MMO shmuplike} (still playable via Continuum client)

About Brian

Computer and video game lover
This entry was posted in Arcade Games, Classic Games, Dreamcast, Lists, NES, Nintendo DS, Nintendo Wii, PC, PC, Turbo CD, Xbox 360 and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Lists: 3 or 4 Player Multiplayer Shmups and Borderline Shmups

  1. David says:

    My friend recently asked me if I had any 3-player shmups in my expansive rom/emulator collection and I could only think of Moero! TwinBee. It baffles me how few there are.

    Thanks for the list. I’ll have to add TurboForce to my collection.

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