Wild Guns (SNES 1994)

The wild west…and robots! Genius idea. This gallery shooter from Natsume reeled me right in with it’s concept and the four selling points on the cover. This game is “The first Sci/Fi Western” ,awesome, an “Intense shoot’em up action” , pretty awesome, it has “True arcade feel!”  awesomer! And is”2 player simultaneous” Awesomest!
Let’s see if the game lives up to the extreme expectations set by the cover.

UPDATE! It’s worth looking into the PS4 remastered edition! Wild Guna Reloaded. It’s a bit expensive but it has an online leaderboard 2 more characters and 2 more stages! The 2 new stages are only available in single player and the multiplayer has no continues so it can get pretty brutal and boring playing the 1st stage over and over again. This remake is a bit disappointing if you wanted to play the new stages in co-op.

You and your friend pick between the ruggedly handsome Cliff and the beautiful but dangerous gunslinger Annie. Their goal is to beat whoever is in control of the bad guys and giant robots. Where did those guys get robots!? Does not really say…

Clint and Annie, both badass.

Anyway, both characters have the same controls and stats so you probably just want to pick different characters so you won’t confuse yourself with the other player. The characters have different color variations so i recommend you making them as different as possible because the action can get pretty overwhelming and you will at one point you will confuse yourself with the other player or the other players’ cursor.

Stage 1: Shoot the bad guys, dodge the bullets. Cliff has picked up a shotgun with limited ammo and both have 3 bombs indicated by the purple dots.

Alright, after you pick your character and color scheme you are thrown right in the action. You shoot with one button, jump with one, and use a bomb that you have in limited number that damages everything on the screen with an other button. You have unlimited ammo in the basic starter gun but you can find more powerful guns in the game which have limited ammo. As you move your character with the d-pad the cursor moves in the corresponding direction but much faster then your character, but if you are shooting as you are moving the d-pad only the shooting cursor moves. This is a bit confusing in the beginning but you will get the hang of it very fast so i can’t really say that this game has a steep learning curve. You also have a lasso to ground tanky or fast enemies, and a bat for if some poor fool comes in too close.

Section cleared!

Each section in a stage completes when the time runs out and you move to the next session. Technically the game is more about surviving than killing because of this so dodging is essential since you die from one shoot and only have 3 lives per stage but if you accumulate enough points you get for bonus items and enemies you can get extra lives. When a bullet is heading right for you you character makes a noise and a talky bubble appears above them saying “look out” so you know when to move jump. You can double jump and change your direction in the air freely, or if you have very little time to dodge you can press the jump and a direction while shooting to dive. Diving makes you invulnerable for a short time but it takes you a while to get up which is the drawback of diving.

Look out! better dodge, that gatling gun is coming for you!

All these controls feel very tight once you get used to them. It makes up for some very fun, intense, shooting action that makes you want to come back for more. The stages are a bit difficult and you will need multiple tries for most of them at least on the normal setting (it has easy, normal, hard). I would say that it is pretty hard to clear even on normal but you have unlimited continues so you won’t have to start from the beginning if you lose all you lives. Instead you can always try the stage again with 3 lives. We cousins beat the game i normal in one night, but had to go through some of the 6 levels pretty often, especially the last one. The game is thus not frustrating at all since the penalty for dying is just starting the stage over like in Contra:Alien Wars, not like in Sunset Riders or Knights of the Round were you have to  start from the beginning of the game. I do not really have a preference of which is better, unlimited continues or not. Normally the ones that do not last longer which is good but it might get tedious going through the 1st level dozens of times. Anyways, this game has unlimited continues so it was fresh the whole time, but still it was over in one night. Of course we have the hard setting, and the game is just so damn fun that i know i will play it again multiple times. It is always fun to shoot the smirk off the final boss, the mastermind of the robot army who no one knows how he got his hands on.

Giant robot boss….And bombs away for green pants Clint while purple pants Cliff should get out of the way. I like Annie though, she is badass.

The game looks very good, it comes at the later stage of the SNES lifetime so that might be expected, but the theme of the game is so cool, so enticing that it makes the experience a lot better. The music also helps setting the tone, it is fast paced, action filled Wild west style SNES music goodness that matches the intensity of the game perfectly.

Overall i think this is a super fun fast paced shooter that never gets boring. I can play it again and again, and have with other people other then my cousin Gunnar and i always have a good time doing so. I listen to the music on my phone when i go for a walk and the game’s theme always makes me think “so awesome!”.  Such an awesome game.

Here is a longplay so you can see what it is all about, these guys are pretty good, and actually make it look easy. ***spoilers***

I noticed that the game did not sell very well, seems like the game was released at an unfortunate time or something went wrong in marketing. Because of this a physical copy of the game is extremely expensive so i recommend the Wii and WII U virtual console.

UPDATE! It’s worth looking into the PS4 remastered edition! It’s a bit expensive but it has online functionality, 2 more characters and 2 more stages! Great addition to an already great game!

Gameplay: 9,5
Visuals: 9
Last appeal: 8.5
Music: 9
Is it fun? 9,5

Overall: 9 an awesome game

Thanks for reading 🙂

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