Fistful of Gun: a 3 player co-op showdown in the Wild West

Phil Savage

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Ah, the romantic danger of the Wild West. There were bandits to be killed, weapons to be shot and a selection of end of level upgrades to be chosen. That is, at least, according to Fistful of Gun ; a free asymmetric co-op arena shooter set in a pixellated land of heroic gunslingers.

The game's three characters each use a different control scheme to operate their movement and weapons. Noah uses the keyboard for the wide-spread fire of his shotgun, rifleman Zeke is controlled entirely with the mouse and the pistol-toting Abel makes use of a control pad's analogue sticks. Each character also has a reloading quirk unique to their weapon and control scheme. Abel's player, for example, has to rapidly flick the right analogue stick to stuff bullets into his six shooter.

It's fantastically quick-fire arcade fun. The graphics are teeming with character and the Western-styled chiptune soundtrack brilliantly evokes early console cartridge titles. While it's local co-op only for now - making it a bit of a faff if you want to get three players huddled round your monitor - it's perfectly playable solo, and online co-op is planned for a future update.

You can download the first public build of Fistful of Gun from developer Paul Greasley's website , although future versions are being released solely through the site's mailing list.

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