Weird West is the brainchild of ex Arkane staff and others working under the developer title of WolfEye Studios, will it live up to its legacy or just be another tale lost in the old west?
Weird West is a narrative cocktail of ye olde Spaghetti Western with a dash of the supernatural, Witches, Cannibals, Zombies, Lycans you get the gist partner.
Graphically beautiful, Weird West is an isometric experience that has been given all the bells and whistles of a 3rd/1st person game, fire flickers and flies across the screen, blood gets everywhere and you can just see that no expense was spared when it came to the visual presentation.
The music is your usual western inspired backing tracks but it’s the convincing voice acting that steals the show and gets you fully invested in this tale of Cowboys and Monsters.
Initially you’ll be introduced to this world with a cryptic cutscene and then thrown into the role of Jane, ex-bounty hunter who’s settled down with a Husband and Child.
Because that’s not the most exciting premise for a game, a bunch of Cannibalistic outlaws kill your son and kidnap your husband putting the events of this game into action.
While a pretty good set up, Weird West does something a little unusual with its narrative and sees it across another 4 characters, ranging from a Pig-Man to a Witch.
These narratives cross at points and even allow you to join up with previous playable characters who still have the setup you left them with.
I could never quite tell where the story was going and it absolutely absorbed me from the get go, plenty of world and character building consumed me and even just Jane’s story felt like it could have been enough so I was more than happy at continuing to be in this world through the eyes of another 4 well written protagonists.
Sadly not everything is written equal and the many side quests on offer were just window dressing for fetch quests and as soon as I felt as I had enough of the filthy lucre I dropped them in favour of the main story again.
While fast traveling across the expansive map you’ll hit many random events, could be an ambush, could be a random store or even some kind of story event, these keep you on your toes and just add a little more to the world.
Being this game has immersive sim running through its veins, Weird West is happy enough for you to do what you want, how you want, even down to killing “essential NPCs” to which the game just replaces the quest giver.
You have the option to sneak into places and stealth kill/knockout people or you can go in all guns blazing, making use of that sweet bullet time and make sure everyone knows the legend of your six shooters throughout the West.
Fire is a major game changer in Weird West, quite often a small Molotov will end up engulfing half the map in cleansing flames much like Far Cry 2 did, similarly electric effects water and water effects fire so these are also things you should keep in mind when playing in this Wild West sandbox.
There are 2 skill trees, one unique for your character and one that transfers to every character you play as. These offer you freedom to suit your playstyle and are a healthy reward for exploration and taking on side quests.
People you help throughout your quest through the west become “Friend for Life” and will randomly show up anytime guns are a blazing, you can also find many party members either through hiring them, through quest memes or by tracking down your previously played character, these also come along with any equipment you left them with when you finished their section.
While stealth is an option you have plenty more combat options and skills to unlock, this made me feel better about the many gunfights I triggered because when this game gets chaotic it really really shines.
I love immersive simulations such as Thief, Deus Ex, Prey (2017) and even Cruelty Squad, the freedom and immersion always create unique and gripping experiences. Weird West manages to do everything the above titles did and put it in my new favourite thing “Western Horror”.
If you need something to help ease the wait for more of the fantastic Blood West or that wasn’t quite your fistful of dollars, Weird West is easily the best gaming experience I’ve had this year and is one I’ll come back to time and time again.
The best immersive sim I’ve played in a Cowboys age.
The following two tabs change content below.
Straight from the streets of SouthTown, all Dunks Powah'd and ready to Bust A Wolf. Catch me on Twitch/YouTube.