Dead Man's Hand

Moby ID: 12748
Xbox Specs
Note: We may earn an affiliate commission on purchases made via eBay or Amazon links (prices updated 6/13 11:34 PM )

Description official descriptions

The Mexican gunslinger El Tejon once joined the dreaded Nine gang, hoping to become rich and famous. However, as he became disillusioned with the gang's murderous ways and distanced himself from it, he turned into a liability to the criminals. The gang's leader shot him and left him for dead; barely surviving, El Tejon was imprisoned by the authorities. In the prison, he meets a member of a revolutionary movement, and becomes determined to regain his freedom and exact revenge upon those who betrayed him.

Dead Man's Hand is a first-person 3D shooter set in the Wild West. The protagonist is armed with a fairly standard arsenal, which includes pistols, rifles, shotguns, TNT, bombs, etc. The game rewards the player for precise shooting and creative ways of killing enemies (e.g. by shooting a rock that drops on them): as the player practices these activities, the protagonist's "trick meter" is being gradually refilled. A full trick meter allows secondary shooting mode, unique for each weapon. Between levels the player can compete in poker to increase the protagonist's health and ammunition.


  • Дикий Запад: Игра со смертью - Russian spelling
  • 荒野大镖客 - Simplified Chinese spelling

Groups +


Credits (Xbox version)

103 People (80 developers, 23 thanks) · View all

Project Lead
Art Lead
Business Director and Project Management
Level Design Lead
Programming Lead
Animation Lead
Audio Director and Production
Design Assistant
Level Design
Modeling and Texturing
Menu and Interface Art
[ full credits ]



Average score: 64% (based on 26 ratings)


Average score: 3.0 out of 5 (based on 23 ratings with 2 reviews)

I Really Tried To Like This Game.

The Good
Westerns have a special place in my heart so I was stoked to play Dead Man's Hand. Unfortunately, it's really difficult to like this game.

Game play is about as linear as you can get. The level designer did a semi-admirable job hiding this fact, but after an hour of pure step-shoot-step-shoot, even the best level designer wouldnt' be able to hide the linearity of this game.

The protagonist is an ex-villain who did some really evil stuff, but then backed out of a gang when the gang expected him to shoot women and children. Of course the gang had other ideas. They shot him and left him for dead. Now he must go after the gang to reap his revenge.

For the most part, I really enjoyed the music and sound effects, however, you can tell that Michael Land (of LucasArts fame) did not score the music here. There are tracks that are pseudo-hip-hop with a country theme which, while a very cool tune to listen to, left me wondering if it was appropriate (thereby snapping me out of immersive gameplay).

One thing that scores this game some coolness factors is the nod, whether intentional or unintentional, to the other western FPS, "Outlaws" by LucasArts. The bad buys periodically taunt your character, and some of the taunts come straight from Outlaws.

The AI for this game, while not brilliant, was still very good.

The Bad
While leaving the gang was a good sentiment, the protagonist is still scum and I can't shake the feeling that he deserves whatever he gets. That thought gets in the way of the game play.

Not being able to save in the middle of a level is ... annoying. It's always annoying. I hated it in Hitman, and I hate it here. Mercifully, the levels are short and you start a new "mini-level" when you're about to battle a boss. However, the levels are sufficiently repetitive that not being able to save in the middle is a drag.

However, the worst part of the game was the engine. Every step I took, I kept thinking to myself that the developers picked the wrong engine. Movement is too clunky for a game like this. You can forgive a game like Outlaws which started out trying for a cartoony kitsch, and a LOVE kitsch (not to mention the age of the game!). But a game which attempts to use a pseudo-photo realistic environment really suffers from this kind of engine. I keep thinking that the Quake III engine would've been a better choice.

The Bottom Line
Repetitive. Pretty much a classic step-shoot-step-shoot-battle the boss kind of FPS. That formula worked for Serious Sam, but doesn't work here.

It's a shame. The game's concept had a lot of potential, the story was interesting, the weapons are neat, but the level designers and producers really dropped the ball. This game is simply not that fun to play. One reviewer said it best when he said this game was more appropriate as a console game than as a PC game.

Windows · by null-geodesic (106) · 2005

Brief entertainment for the restless.

The Good
This game is very easy to get into. It starts out with a very short tutorial where you escape from a prison and you get some background information about what the game is all about (which is practically nothing except shooting a lot of bad guys). You play a classic anti-hero out to get revenge on his former partners in crime who have betrayed him. Simple, but ok for a game like this. Then the game starts out and you go from point A to point B and shoot a lot of people on the way until you arrive at you destination and you will have to kill a tougher bad guy. Simple but functional, although it is definitely more of a console game than a pc-game. The game is actually quite entertaining the first half hour or so. The silly comments the enemy and yourself make throughout the game is slightly humorous at first, and the few weapons you gain access to feel right.

The Bad
As I've already hinted, this game is only fun for about a half hour or so. It is very repetitive. The level design is awful, it is actually one long shooting range where the enemies pop out at the exact same location every time and they act real stupid too. The level of difficulty varies a lot. Personally I have no patience when these kind of repetitive, mediocre games are too hard. Dead Man's Hand is at times frustratingly hard at the higher difficulty-levels, and sometimes it is extremely easy even on the hardest level. This unbalanced gameplay is very annoying. Also, the levels are very short. Instead of making a lot of short, repetitive levels, the developers could have made fewer but longer and more well made levels. As it is now you walk around aimlessly a little while, shooting at everything that moves (or basically anything that looks like it can be shot into little pieces) and then a little movie-clip tells you that you've found yet another boss that you have to punish. Personally I think the main character has it coming to him and after a while I rather wanted to take revenge on that jackass instead for making me endure his endless cliches on the seemingly endless number of identical levels. On some levels you travel by horse, but guess what, you can't control the damn oat-head, you only sit back and shoot the bad guys that ride by. Way too simple and quite meaningless.

The Bottom Line
Far too repetitive shooter with mediocre gameplay, average graphics, worthless level-design and tiresome cliches.

Windows · by Joakim Kihlman (231) · 2004



Dead Man's Hand was one of the games not compatible with the Windows XP service pack 2 update. It took a while until a patch was released.


MobyPro Early Access

Upgrade to MobyPro to view research rankings!

Related Games

Planet Nomads
Released 2017 on Macintosh, Linux, Windows
Released 2019 on Windows, Macintosh, Nintendo Switch
Sphere Racer
Released 2004 on Windows
Tequila & Boom Boom
Released 1995 on DOS
Wild Arms
Released 1996 on PlayStation, 2007 on PSP, PlayStation 3...
Dead Man's Rest
Released 2021 on Macintosh, Windows, Linux
Dead Man's Day
Released 2018 on Windows
Dead Man's Phone
Released 2021 on iPhone, iPad, Android
Dead Man's Draw
Released 2013 on iPad, iPhone, 2014 on Windows

Related Sites +

Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 12748
  • [ Please login / register to view all identifiers ]


Are you familiar with this game? Help document and preserve this entry in video game history! If your contribution is approved, you will earn points and be credited as a contributor.

Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Atomic Punch!.

Additional contributors: ClydeFrog, Unicorn Lynx, Indra was here, Klaster_1, Patrick Bregger.

Game added April 9, 2004. Last modified June 2, 2024.