Wild Guns (Super Nintendo) Review

By Camilo Aránguiz González 06.02.2017 1

Review for Wild Guns on Super Nintendo

What makes a cult classic? Is it just a random agreement of some people that, for some reason, expands and spreads? Perhaps it's the well-deserved respect that we give as a community to an underappreciated piece of art in an attempt to "correct" an unfair judgement of the past? What answer will Wild Guns deliver us?

Any proud SNES collector knows something that maybe our beloved readers don't know: an original Wild Guns cartridge is rare and quite expensive. After asking why that is, the answer will probably be "because it's a cult classic!" A strong weight to have on its shoulders, that's for sure, but, even till this day, Wild Guns delivers an absolutely amazing experience.

The first thing any person will notice is that this Natsume adventure belongs to a subgenre that hasn't seen the spotlight in a long time: the shooting gallery genre. That feature alone makes Wild Guns a breeze of old fresh air, strengthening the legend of a cult classic.

Screenshot for Wild Guns on Super Nintendo

The second thing is that this 16-bit bounty-hunting has an extremely arcade feeling, which affects a number of gameplay elements: infinite continues, a countdown game over screen, controls, bonus stages, and - unfortunately - a very brief length. Don't be misled, though; this isn't a toned-down port of an early 90s arcade game - a very common practice at the time - this was an exclusive SNES title.

After taking control of Clint or Annie, our protagonists, the player will find themselves in the middle of a steampunk Wild West, where skills and bullets have the last word. Movement is varied, with double jumps and quick hops, and so is the shooting: melee attacks, free aiming, ammo-limited guns, dynamites, screen-cleaning bombs, and a risk-reward mechanic that will give the character a powerful shotgun if he or she shoots enough enemy bullets - instead of avoiding them like a coward.

Screenshot for Wild Guns on Super Nintendo

The majority of stages can be passed in any order, à la Mega Man, and they're divided in three sections: the first two with lots of enemies and a small boss, and the last one with a big boss showdown, which is one the best facets of the game. Huge robots with loads of tricky bullets, minions and even flamethrowers, will test the player's expertise, reflexes and thinking-ahead skills.

The challenge ramps up quickly - which isn't strange if we consider that there're six stages in total - but its fair nature and infinite continues will permanently encourage the player to keep trying. Challenge can be soothed with the help of a friend, as Wild Guns allows two-player cooperative mode, which is the most important feature of the game in terms of replay value, its weakest aspect.

Screenshot for Wild Guns on Super Nintendo

Aesthetically, Wild Guns oozes action: an excellent pumped-up soundtrack that stimulates shooting all the interactive backgrounds and enemies, which are well-animated and look alive (there're even some enemies that have personality, like the guys that do a mocking dance on the minecarts). Sci-fi Western motif contributes to its personality, and landscapes are iconic and distinct.

In brief, Wild Guns absolutely achieves its goal of being an exciting and action-packed sci-fi Western adventure. In spite of not being superlative in any aspect of the game - with the exception of the boss fights - its great execution in almost every other element, packaged in an exhilarating and colourful experience, makes it an undeniably fantastic game, which just fails at giving to the people what they wanted: more.

Screenshot for Wild Guns on Super Nintendo

Cubed3 Rating

8/10
Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

Wild Guns is an outstanding action game that delivers excellent boss battles and great personality, at the cost of being too short-lived. Its title of "cult classic" is well earned, not just for its undeserved frequent absence in the SNES halls of fame, but also for its satisfying implementation of the nowadays-lost shooting gallery subgenre.

Developer

Natsume

Publisher

Natsume

Genre

Shooter

Players

2

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

I. LOVE. THIS. GAME

A lot of quotes in the Internet are attributed to the wrong person
                                -Georgios Karaiskakis

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