Watch Owen and Tom's disastrous game of Frozen Synapse co-op

Tom Francis at

Frozen Synapse Co-op

Frozen Synapse's new DLC adds co-op play and a new shield unit. Owen and I tried out both at lunchtime, with disastrous results. Our 20 minutes of planning resulted in the 33 seconds of catastrophe below, so I should explain what the hell we were planning.

Our objective was to defend the NPC (cyan coloured) from incoming attackers, so I said I'd hold the north (I'm in green) and Owen (yellow) would hold the south.

My plan was solid: my machinegunner would provide overwatch from behind cover, my shield unit would block the only north entrance, then drop her shield a second before the turn ends, so my grenade guy could fire past her to flush out anyone who was hiding from my gunner.

It didn't go well. My shield unit put her shield back up at the end of the turn, ricocheting the grenade back at us. It didn't blow, but in my next turn, I have a very large and explosive problem at my feet.

Meanwhile, Owen was taken by surprise when an enemy shotgunner ran right up to the south wall, hugging it so he could peek in and blast us at close range. Shotgunners beat everything at close range, so Owen had to do something inventive. He moved both his shield and grenade units away from the windows, and had the grenade one shoot at the shield, angling it to ricochet out of the window and blow up the shotgunner. I was impressed with his guile.

What I didn't realise was that he hadn't simulated this. You can share your plan in co-op, so you can see how it'll play out, but only for the next five seconds. The grenade didn't land in that time, but I assumed Owen had seen from the trajectory that it would sail clear out of the window.

It did not.

It tinked pathetically off the shield and fell at its owner's feet. So in the same turn, both of us had to escape deadly blasts of our own creation, while enemies flooded in.

The difference was that my blast didn't kill the NPC we were here to protect.

What I love about the video is that it looks like Owen's two units disagree: the grenadier wants to do the shield-bounce, and the shield lady is having none of it. My guys manage to survive by dashing round a corner and huddling behind their shield, but it's no help: the mission was the NPC, and we killed the NPC.

The new DLC is called Red, and it's $10 if you own Frozen Synapse. If not, you can buy both together for $27. They're also both on Steam.