After waiting for it for several years, Weird West finally it came to the market with an interesting battery of promises and a very particular aesthetic. Players can now immerse themselves in this otherworldly version of the Wild West and forge their own path through five characters and hundreds of decisions.big and small, who will determine their final destiny.
Before Wolf Eye Studios Y Return Digital created their new video game, the expression Weird West referred to a genre of fiction that mixes the theme western with supernatural elements typical of fantasy, horror and science fiction. The genre was born in the literature of 1930 and was later popularized with comics in 1940, but in the field of video games it is not a very exploited type of story, at least for now.
In the game, the players They run through the stories of five very different bounty hunters who share a connection. All five stories begin with the protagonist receiving a strange mark on his neck. The only thing that can be deduced, thanks to cryptic characters and a few lines of dialogue, is that it is possession magic. For gameplay purposes, this allows all information collected and skills learned to be passed from one character to another as the player “possesses” the next hero. In terms of history, it is the great common thread that pushes the player in search of answers about this particular version of the Wild West.
The Weird West adventure is set up with a large map where you can find numerous towns, mines, swamps, deserts, fortresses, temples and all kinds of locations with interesting things to discover. As if it were a paper and pencil role-playing game, Weird West allows players complete freedom, choosing exactly what to do and how to do it.. Once each character’s main story is complete, move on to the next.
Once the destination location is chosen, you can interact with both characters and the environment to find clues, discover treasure, investigate one of the active objectives, buy and sell items, and much more. Different levels feature items that can wreak havoc, from exploding barrels to oil lamps, but many locations also encourage stealth and avoidance for best results.
In the actions of the players, the particular characteristics of each protagonist must also be taken into account. The first is a farmer who must embrace her past as a bounty hunter to rescue her kidnapped husband from her and it’s a very good starting point. But later on, characters who excel in other styles of play arrive, which invites you to be creative when dealing with the many situations that occur in the Weird West.
It is the players who determine how the story of each protagonist progresses through numerous decisions. Although some secondary objectives have a time limit, how that time is spent is entirely up to the player. In other words, you can discover the entire map with the first protagonist, although the game makes it clear, with its difficulty, that it is advisable to go slowly. At the end of the campaign of one of the bounty hunters you can see a summary of the most important events, because another of the key points of Weird West are the consequences.
The absolute freedom of the game is contrasted by the consequences that the numerous decisions of the players can have. If a village is completely slaughtered by one of the characters, it will remain abandoned for a while until people arrive again or it is occupied by monsters of different natures. In this type of section, you can appreciate the living world that they created at WolfEye Studios, where characters remember others for what they did or did not do, something that can later become an infallible help or an undesirable obstacle. Even those who at some point were protagonists of the story can become members of another’s group and can even die.
Weird West was announced in 2019 and finally came to Playstation 4, Xbox One and PC this week to offer a very complete campaign. Overcoming the stories of the five protagonists is a task that takes a long time and, despite taking place on the same map, manages to stay fresh thanks to the freedom of action and the enormous range of possibilities. The game also features a quick save and load system that encourages players to try different approaches without having to suffer the consequences or lose important progress.
As a fan of westerns, I found a very entertaining experience in Weird West, mainly because that freedom of action is very present, which, in other words, means that we are creating our own history in this universe. No two campaigns can be identical in Weird West and it is something that is achieved not only with the many decisions that are made, but with the random encounters, side missions, character abilities and all the systems created to generate this very adventure. particular.
Underneath all the good things Weird West has to offer, there are still some areas that can be improved. For example, the artificial intelligence of enemies is very sharp at detecting bodies that we leave in the way, if we choose to move with stealth and non-lethal takedowns. However, they do not react in the same way to doors and windows opening or objects changing position, which can sometimes take us out of the experience and remind us that we are in a video game. The same thing happens when some small bugs or glitches they make a character fly away or get stuck in a corner.
These are not issues that occur very often, but it does make two things clear. On the one hand, there are still some elements to polish, but they are also things that arise from the enormous freedom of action and the wide range of possibilities when it comes to overcoming any location.
Outside of inadvertent bugs, navigation through the scenarios could also be improved. Although the idea is not that the characters are omnipresent and can see everything, sometimes taking a look inside a building to determine a strategy can be counterproductive. To embrace the role-playing or strategy side that Weird West’s particular isometric view proposes a little more, a small pause typical of games could also be implemented tacticsamong other optional mechanics to improve the overall experience.
Despite these minor tweaks and possible improvements, Weird West delivered on its promises and provided gamers with an adventure unlike any other in the Wild West. With a lot of action, many supernatural elements, mysteries to solve and a very interesting cast of characters, the WolfEye Studios title is a video game suitable for both fans of the theme and for role-playing lovers looking for a different aesthetic in a sea of medieval fantasy.