Hired Guns

DOS Specs [ all ]
Buy on Amiga
Buy on DOS
$24.99 used at eBay
(prices updated 9/24 3:31 AM )

Description official description

The year is 2712, and four mercenaries have been sent to the planet Graveyard on a hostage rescue mission. Upon arriving, however, they discover that the call for help was just an excuse to lure them into proving grounds, where they will have to fight genetically engineered creatures.

Hired Guns is an action RPG using square-based movements, à la Dungeon Master, in which up to four players can take part and set in a futuristic setting. The screen is split into 4 parts (or 3 in case 3 players play together), each one representing the viewpoint of the characters, these being selected from a team of 12 available mercenaries.

If one player plays alone, he will control all 4 characters, using the mouse to navigate between each character viewpoints. A follow mode is available to avoid tedious numerous amounts of clicking when moving several characters. If two players play together, then each player will use a mouse to control two characters.

In three or four-player mode, players can freely choose to control their characters via either a joystick/joypad or some of the predefined keyboard layouts or a mouse. When 4 people play together, the screen will display 4 viewpoints, like in 1 and 2-player modes. In 3-player mode, the top of the screen displays two viewpoints for player 1 and 2, but the lower part of the screen displays a single viewpoint, centered, for player 3.

Three game modes are available.

The Training mode features 5 simple maps on which the player(s) can learn how to move, use inventory items etc...

The Full Campaign mode takes the player(s) to the far reaches of the Luyten planetary system, on the planet Graveyard. Battling through more than 20 theaters of engagement, your team of mercenaries test their limits of military prowess in order to wipe out all threats on the planet surface. To this end, they have to make their way through the different missions and gather 4 fusion power core rings, before entering the final mission in the Spaceport.

Finally, in Short Action game mode, the player(s) can choose between 17 maps. On those maps, the player(s) will have to fight some enemies to reach the exit within a specified time limit. Additionally, when more than one player takes part in the mission, players will compete with each other since only the first to reach the exit will win.


  • שכירי חרב - Hebrew spelling

Groups +



Credits (DOS version)

22 People (18 developers, 4 thanks)

Original Amiga Concept by
Original Graphics by
Original Amiga Music
Manual and Screen Play
PC Music by
  • Krisalis
Map Design
Character Illustrations
Graphics Tools
Quality Assurance
The Programmers would like to thank the following
This and That
Thanks to
  • Alpha CRC Ltd.; Cambridge



Average score: 81% (based on 20 ratings)


Average score: 3.6 out of 5 (based on 32 ratings with 2 reviews)

Gunning for a great game? It's right here.

The Good
A brilliantly designed game that helped confirm Psygnosis as one of the premiere developers for the Amiga. Fantastic level design, a wide variety of weapons tailored to your role and playing style, and the very best part... the ability of four people to play in front of the computer with a quad split-screen. Winding through the levels with my buddies in tow is one of the highlights of my Amiga gaming career.

The Bad
The graphics were pretty blah; while the psuedo-3D artwork was acceptable, the play was in a stuttered flow style like Eye of the Beholder, with an FPS of like 1. No saves between levels either in multiplay. For four people you had to use two joysticks and two people at either side of the keyboard, making for cramped quarters...although it made it easy to spit in the face of your comrade after someone died and everything went into free-for-all mode before you had to reload the level, heh.

The Bottom Line
A classic shooter, not to be missed on the Amiga platform. Another winner from Psygnosis.

DOS · by Ummagumma (74) · 2004

The greatest game to have ever graced the humble Amiga

The Good
Well what was not to like about this game?, at the time it was a technical marvel 4 player death matches before the idea had really even been bandied about. The amazing amount of weaponry you could carry about with you, the beautiful graphics, the selection of characters giving replayability.. The 30 odd missions you could undertake all of them full of puzzles and monsters galore to keep you occupied. this game was a monster of a task to complete and rarely got boring. It had a brilliant soundtrack as well, the sound effects were wonderful.. the game even had its own physics which you had to get used too... great touches like weapons becoming damaged in water and again i'll mention the death match idea... it surely had to be the first game to have had it.

The Bad
Very little to dislike.. I suppose it could be a right pain having to redo levels all because you pushed a block in the wrong direction, but hey its better than real life is'nt it.

The Bottom Line
This is the greatest game on the Amiga a long running huge adventure where you control 4 characters and kill a lot of amazingly intelligent monsters, you could do this with up to 4 mates, all the while solving puzzles to find 4 reactors so you could escape the planet your stuck on. To be honest I never actually managed to complete this game, I only ever found one reactor, but the time i spent playing this game I enjoyed every moment of and if u can get hold of this game for an emulator or your lucky enough to still own an Amiga I implore you all to go out and get this.

you wont be disappointed.

Amiga · by chris nunn (5) · 2004


Cancelled successor

There was a newer PC version of Hired Guns that was going to be developed by Devil’s Thumb Entertainment, originally formed as a division of DMA Design, in Boulder, Colorado, and was built on top of the Unreal engine. Although the game was slated to be released in 2000, the game was cancelled because of Psygnosis leaving the American PC game market in 2000 for PlayStation games, and the VR1 acquisition of Devil's Thumb. However, except for Steve Hammond, who was produced the background materials of the game, nobody from original design team were involved in this remake. Prototypes of the game, however, has been leaked.

Copy protection

The Amiga version featured two-stage copy protection. Once the password protection had been removed, the game appeared to be cracked. However, the game would recognise that the copy was pirated, and refuse to save the player's progress.


The unmanned sentry guns that can be placed down are inspired by the similar ones in the Special Edition of the movie Aliens (1986) according to Scott Johnston, lead designer of Hired Guns.

Loading mechanism

Amiga version of "Hired Guns" as one of not many games (presumable the only one) contained a unique loading mechanism that was prompting the player which disk should be put next into the floppy drive. In particular it was useful for those who had two or more floppy drives and didn't want to waste time on disk swapping (they could organise the presence of the disks in drives) or stop listening to the excellent game's soundtrack (the appearance of "insert the other disk" screen disabled the music during loading time).

Level editor

A couple years after the premiere of the game Scott Johnston released a game editor. It gave the player the possibility to alter designs of the levels, enemies, textures and briefing texts. It was a nice addition to character's editor that was already delivered with the game. The character's editor gave the possibility to put your own photo as the face of selected character.


The game was first mentioned in magazines two years before its release, known as Hired Gun. At this stage it partially resembled the TV show The Crystal Maze, with the four-player and multiple-time-zone aspects emphasised.


The game contains reference to other DMA Design production - Lemmings. Lemmings' characters are not only an easter egg but they serve as regular enemies. However they are available only in single or two player missions and not in a campaign mode.

Information also contributed by ronalddvd and xxxxxxxxxxx

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Related Sites +

  • Amiga Reviews - Hired Guns
    <moby game="Worms">Worms</moby> creator <moby developer="Andy Davidson">Andy Davidson</moby> explains why he loves the game so much.

Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 6742


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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Corn Popper.

Amiga added by EboMike.

Additional contributors: skl, Martin Smith, Crawly, Patrick Bregger, mailmanppa, Intergold.

Game added June 17th, 2002. Last modified February 22nd, 2023.