On March 31, a very unusual isometric game Weird West was released in the style of the wild west from a small indie studio WolfEye Studios. Since the release, the project continues to receive positive feedback from the players and there are many reasons for this. In this review, we will share our opinion regarding Weird West, tell about its pros and cons, and also figure out why users liked the game.
For starters, Weird West is an isometric immersive sim with RPG elements in a wild west setting, where you have a huge array of quest paths to complete, such as quietly making your way to your goal, through a lot of opponents, or destroying everything and everyone around you. In the second case, the player has plenty of ways to arrange fireworks. But more on that later.
The game greets us with a kind of mysterious video, where an unknown person with a bag on his head sits in the center, and two people next to him draw some strange symbols. A little later, the gameplay begins and a bounty hunter whose husband was kidnapped is given control. Our first task is precisely the search for a betrothed, but for this we will have to learn many secrets that are revealed in the course of action. By the way, the huntress is not the only character to play for. We are given several stories that take about 1.5 – 2 hours, and throughout the passage the player will come across various mystical creatures, such as pig-headed people, ghosts, witches, and so on.
As for the plot, it’s really good in Weird West. There are many filled dialogues that are not just a continuous “spill of water”, but give a clear understanding of what is happening as a whole. However, for some, the abundance of textual content can be a minus, because you really have to read a lot, but in this case, you should pay attention to the gameplay. Spoiler alert: he’s pretty good!
In Weird West, the whole world is divided into many sectors, between which we move right on the map. What pleased me was the absence of mandatory movements from point A to point B, due to which the world feels as if open. While moving around the map, you can meet random events: whether they are simple peaceful merchants with valuable goods or vengeful ghosts that came out of the bodies of people you killed earlier.
In addition to the main quests, in the cities there are a large number of third-party and even tasks from the sheriff, where you need to catch especially dangerous criminals alive or dead, depending on the goal. All these activities do not let you get bored and will please those who like to scrupulously study the world. Also in all cities you can find arms dealers, food vendors and so on. Various rubbish is also sold there or there is an opportunity to purchase something useful for the upcoming outing.
So, we got to the most interesting aspect of the game, namely the gameplay. You need to make a reservation right away: if you carefully study the world, carefully look for items for pumping skills and buy good equipment, then even at high difficulty levels, hardcore will sometimes not be enough. With a quick run along the plot, you will have to use all the interactive features and level design chips so as not to die in a few seconds in a daring shootout.
The first and probably the most effective mechanic is slowing down time while jumping. After all, everyone remembers the Max Payne game, where you can beautifully deal with enemies in flight, holding two barrels in your hands? Weird West also has this feature. As long as the hero has special energy, you can arrange firefights in spectacular slow-mo.
The second important aspect is the interactivity of locations: explosive and toxic barrels, kerosene lamps, weather conditions and much more. You can shoot even at the switched off lamp, then fuel will spill out of it, throw something with a spark there and the opponents will turn into fried chickens. Among other things, the hero can kick barrels, dropping them from a hill right on the heads of enemies. Why only from the top? Yes, you can push in any position, but the barrels have the ability to explode almost immediately upon impact and deal damage to the hero – not the best scenario.
During the game, you should also take into account the weather conditions. For example, you decide to throw dynamite at a crowd of adversaries, but right now it is raining. Of course, the wick will go out, and the enemies will immediately go in search of you.
The character can use various revolvers, rifles, shotguns, traps, his active skills and much more. All this gives the gameplay a good immersiveness, where you are free to choose exactly how to destroy opponents. Moreover, the game has the ability to hire companions who will not leave you in trouble. By the way, about pumping. It was previously said that during the passage we have to play for different heroes, and so, passive skills apply to each character.
I completely forgot to mention one interesting mechanic. If during the battle one of the NPCs threatens to come after you even after death, then it would be better to put him to rest by burying him in the ground. Otherwise, an angry spirit will hunt the main character and prevent him from traveling around the world.
With regards to the minuses, here you can highlight the field of view, namely visibility in enclosed spaces and caves. Unfortunately, thick walls have very low transparency, so you will often see almost invisible texture, which has a very bad effect on the course of the battle. Also in Weird West, stealth sometimes works very strangely: sometimes enemies don’t see you at close range, when at another moment they notice you behind cover. Playing from stealth, you expose yourself to unforeseen and dangerous situations, when it would seem that the character is hidden and safe, but then the whole neighborhood starts screaming and shooting at him. Nobody canceled various bugs and jams either.
But how are things going graphically and musically? Externally, the game is made in a rather pleasant hand-drawn style, where it is difficult to find fault with anything. Locations are bright with a slight haze effect a la the wild west, dungeons are gloomy and often with walls smeared with blood. In general, it looks decent and, most importantly, atmospheric.
Musical accompaniment sometimes causes delight. It has nothing to do with the style of the Wild West at all, but it is strikingly in harmony with what is happening around. If you wish, you can find soundtracks from the game on YouTube. The sounds also turned out to be voluminous and pleasant to the ear, but in this case, nothing more than just good.
As a result, WolfEye Studios has created a very worthy immersive sim, where there is an interesting storyline with a sea of dialogues, a nice picture and music, as well as good gameplay that has a variety of tasks. Most likely, not everyone will like the game and it can be called peculiar, but at the same time it is worthy of attention.