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Outlaw (Atari 2600)

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100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
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Written by  :  TheoryOfChaos (55)
Written on  :  Mar 02, 2006
Platform  :  Atari 2600
Rating  :  2.75 Stars2.75 Stars2.75 Stars2.75 Stars2.75 Stars

8 out of 8 people found this review helpful

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Why can't the block people get along?

The Good

That goofy "BeoooOOO!" sound that happens when a cowboy's hit has been permanently imprinted on my brain. That's how many hours my brother and I spent as kids, bouncing bullets around stagecoaches and cacti at each other.

I can't tell you all the immature joys we got out of its eccentric abstractions - okay, I'll tell you one. Working very carefully together, we could shoot out parts of the stagecoach until what was left looked kind of like a toilet, then we'd maneuver a cowboy over, shoot him, and he looked like he was SITTING ON THE TOILET!

HAW HAW HAW! Seriously, who needs Mario Kart when you've got that?

Since there was really no room for sophistication outside of the minor quirks of each different game mode, OUTLAW was one of those games anyone could understand the moment they picked it up. No one was going to drop $20+ extra on any "Official Strategy Guide", that's for sure. This sort of intuitive instant-pleasure gaming has become a relic, a trifle when compared to the high-def epics with their obtuse control mechanics and badly-acted twenty-minute cutscenes. But there's a feeling people are missing out on if they don't ever give it a try.

The Bad

These may well have been bleeding edge graphics circa 1977, but the two-color display won't be winning any beauty contests. The one player mode doesn't have a lot of staying power, this game is meant to be enjoyed with two. And to top it off, your cowboy is on the pokey side, and that's putting it mildly. Maybe he needs to make a pit stop - HAW HAW HAW!

The Bottom Line

If you crave a truly level battlefield: no maps with hidden passages, no cheat codes, just the old-fashioned symmetry of my-gun-versus-your'n, OUTLAW's your game.