Atari—a name synonymous with video games—has released an update to their 2600 cartridge, Outlaw. So, it’s time to get your inner Yosemite Sam fired up. Draw your shootin’ iron and bring to justice those claim jumpin’, horse thievin’, bush whackin’ varmints.
What is it?
In Outlaw, you are a bounty hunter charged with rounding up and/or taking out the local criminal element. The environment is the old west, so there are plenty of crusty old guys in beat up ten gallon hats.
To start, all you have is a loaner pistol. As you play, you can earn silver to buy new weapons and upgrades. The silver is acquired by completing levels in addition to an “allowance” of 500 silver, available for collection every 5 hours, from your boss’ moonshine operation.
How does it work?
The interface only requires your thumbs. The left thumb “joystick” controls where your weapon is aimed. The right thumb gets the fire button along with a weapon select button. Simply line up your sights with your target and shoot them before they shoot you…and shoot they will.
You can take a few hits before you die but I wouldn’t recommend wasting time.
The game also offers med packs, ammo, etc. you can shoot to collect. Each opponent will slide into view, weapon already aimed at you, and a countdown timer will appear over his head. It’s a kind of crescent where the color “drains” out. When the red is gone (usually in a couple of seconds) the bad guy starts shooting at you. You won’t have much time to draw a bead and fire, so stay on your toes.
The graphics are fairly well done and the imagery is suitably evocative of the old west. The background sounds are good and the game play straightforward and, after a few levels, duly challenging.
Is it contagious?
As one may expect from a developer with Atari’s pedigree, the game is really nice. My only beef is gameplay frustration. I want the reloads and the rate of fire to be a bit faster so I don’t die quite so often, but hey, that’s kinda what it’s about. Outlaw is yet another worthy offering from Atari.