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My kids and their friends have lots of games that they want to play together.

If the game supports online multiplayer, through some game server, they're fine.

Is there some easy way, ignoring steam, for them to be playing as if they were on the same network, couch coop, sitting side by side?

I can do whatever is required on my sons computer - but I can only do basic requests for his friends.

How can I make sure they can connect their PC games, no matter what?

I think I can get them to each install some software to do this, and I've tried Hamachi, but that didnt seem to work - they still seemed to have firewall issues.

PS: As an aside, this seems to me the main difference between consoles and PCs, that and controller support.

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  • Kind of depends on the game? If the multiplayer aspect is all on game-hosted servers (i.e. the game developers host), and said servers are down or experiencing issues, you can't really do much more. But games like Minecraft, where you can host the server yourself, makes things a bit more controllable, but even then it's still quite broad. – Timmy Jim May 16 '20 at 5:44
  • Thanks for the feedback... yeah it's not really about games where there is a developer hosted server - it's more like couch co-op across the internet. I will clarify in the question! – Brad Parks May 16 '20 at 11:21
  • Steam has a thing called Remote Play now, but I can't tell you how well it works. – Powerlord May 16 '20 at 14:24
  • Interesting... didnt know this... thanks for the info @Powerlord store.steampowered.com/remoteplay You should add this as an answer! – Brad Parks May 17 '20 at 22:07
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Try Parsec . It allows for low-latency couch co-op through mirroring your sons PC on his friends and has full controller support. Setup on host and client ends are super simple and it has support for mac and linux too. This does mean that the game being played needs to support local co-op, like Cuphead or Spelunky. I play Super Smash Bros. (through emulation) with my friends using this method and it works well. I know you said to ignore Steam, but Steam has its own remote play function that it implemented recently that works similarly to Parsec, though I haven't used it enough to give a fair comparison.

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