Atlas Fallen Creative Director Talks About Split Screen Co-op Challenges

We wanted to know why there isn't a Split Screen or Local Co-op in Atlas Fallen. The developer was able to explain why.

Even if most developers these days don’t give much importance to Split Screen Co-op, the feature still remains to be one of the most popular ones among gamers. We have seen a lot of games being very popular mainly due to their co-op but despite the popularity, there are some caveats that usually hinder developers from implementing local co-op in modern day games.

Atlas Fallen, as you might already know has an online co-op and players can play throughout the game in co-op. That’s good but we wanted to know if the game could also feature a local co-op with split screen. The creative director of Atlas Fallen explained that why they couldn’t implement it for the game:

One of the hurdles is that in order to make local co-op work, it more or less means that two game instances are run and processed on one single machine, including the rendering of the graphics. While graphics don’t take up the same screen space for each player when the screen is split, you still need to process the complete scene and everything in it. Now if you add streaming to the mix, meaning that both players could look at very different parts of the level which both need to be loaded into memory at the same time, there are tough decisions to be made, especially on consoles, to reduce quality or framerate. And that’s just some of the problems.

So usually, it’s the challenge of running multiple instances of the game when it comes to Split Screen. Some games Like Diablo 4 however, have different issues as explained by Rod Fergusson. So the type of game is also a big factor when it comes to deciding the local co-op function for games. In case of Diablo 4, it’s PC and account handling that’s an issue while in case of Atus Fallen, it’s apparently the case of resource limitation of consoles to run multiple instances of the same game.

We also talked a little about the online co-op functionality of Atlas Fallen and how will that work. The Creative Director, Jan Klose explained:

It’s two-player online co-op, and we tried to make it as enjoyable as possible! For example, both players have equal abilities in everything they do, so each player can accept quests, start dialogues, open treasure chests and collect equipment. Of course, one of the important parts is fighting tough enemies together and there are several mechanics where players can call each other into a fight and also there are some abilities that can be shared with the co-op partner. Loot will be shared by both, as the goal is to work together and not steal items from the other player! Also, players can join and leave the game of others rather freely, so you can enter into a game of your partner later in the process to join them, and leave without destroying the progress.

So on paper, it sounds like a great co-op experience but only if we could have a split-screen as well. One can wish, right? For the moment, we aren’t really sure if the game will also offer some sort of matchmaking for the co-op or will there be crossplay. Hopefully, things will get more clear down the road.

Atlas Fallen is scheduled to release in August 11 for PC, Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5.

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Ali is a passionate RPG gamer. He believes that western RPGs still have a lot to learn from JRPGs. He is editor-in-chief at but that doesn't stop him from writing about his favorite video ...