“Draw, Pilgrim!” It’s the old Wild West. There is a price on Sir Richard Rose’s head. It’s time for you to collect. There are ten stages of gun-slinging action. Whether you’re walking, riding horses, or riding trains, your goal is to defeat the boss of the stage and step closer to Richard.
Sunset Riders is a great shoot ’em up western side-scroller. It’s even better when played with a friend. There are four cowboys to choose from: Steve and Billy have the quick pistols; Bob and Cormano have the shotguns. One of each is the perfect team.
The levels have many obstacles to overcome. Stampedes, fires, and boulders are just a few. Each level brings a new adventure. There are cities, taverns, mountains, and more. Everything about the game is fun. Even the bonus stages are enjoyable. It’s exciting to see if you can shoot all 50 targets, luck or skill.
Music is very important in any game. It helps set the mood. Sunset Riders is a perfect example. It is laced with original desert tunes that help you kill more bandits. The voices are muffled, but that is almost average of games from 1993. The boss quotes are memorable. They are fun to quote at school, work, or anywhere else. Firing bullets makes a cool, twang noise. Explosions are muffled as well, but it isn’t too bad.
The cowboys control very well. They are tight with the controller. Certain areas cannot be shot from other areas. A gun position lock with the R-button would have been helpful, but the game is fine without it.
Flipping from the foreground to the background can get confusing sometimes, but the characters can’t be hurt while changing positions. The horses are the main problem. At the beginning of Level 2, you are only able to shoot from the horse. You cannot move. The only way to dodge bullets is to jump in place. One could get killed a lot if the jumps are not timed right.
The graphics are average. Nothing spectacular, but it’s still good. There are nice backgrounds of the country. Each character is dressed in his own colorful wardrobe, so no one will get confused. The stages are alive with color, too. This is nice, because backgrounds don’t get boring. The deadly explosions appear pixelated. Overall, the graphics are fine.
Sunset Riders is a game with a lot of replay value. The ten levels are very exciting. Launching bullets across the screen at enemies doesn’t get boring. The game provides plenty of entertainment. With a friend, the fun might never stop. Besides the three difficulty levels, the lives and continues can be altered. I challenge anyone to hard mode, zero lives, zero continues.
If you can only play one western game, make it Sunset Riders. It is a must-play for all aspiring cowboys, bandits, and train robbers. “¡Adios Amigos!”