Video Game of the Day is a daily show available on Amazon Alexa devices and here on this website. Each day, we briefly discuss the history of a single game, randomly chosen. If you would like to listen on your daily flash briefing, you can enable Video Game of the Day here: https://amzn.to/2CNx2NJ.

Transcript:

Hello and welcome! My name is Katosepe and I’ll be your host for today’s Video Game of the Day.

The 8 and 16 bit eras have been pretty thoroughly tapped for hidden gems. Anyone can find lists of games on the internet that are worth their time and many know some of the preferred titles off-hand. Still, it seems there are a couple of games that, while well known in certain online circles, have eluded mainstream attention for some time. Today, let’s talk about a game that is often overlooked to this day. Today’s game is Wild Guns, developed by Natsume and released on the Super NES in 1994.

Wild Guns is perhaps best described today as a third-person shooter, despite the genre not existing on consoles in 1994. It doesn’t play quite like you’d imagine, either. Players can move side to side on a 2D plane and must shoot enemies in the background using a targeting reticle that can be moved independently across the screen. If you’ve played the original Contra on the NES, it plays similarly to the alternate levels in that game.

This results in a game that feels like a mix of light-gun shooting gallery and a side-scrolling action game. The movement can be hard to get used to but you’d be rewarded for trying. Wild Guns lets one or two players control the main characters Clint and Annie as they fight through a steampunk western town to defeat the Kid gang who killed Annie’s family. While the game portrays a strong western vibe, Wild Guns also contains robots, electricity, and even space travel. The game has six levels with players able to play some of the levels in whichever order they choose.

Wild Guns was well regarded at the time but was noted for being extremely difficult, even on easier difficulties. Despite only having six levels, reviewers stated that few players would see the game through to the end. Still, the game was a lot of fun in short single-player bursts and even better with two player co-op. Wild Guns didn’t sell well in west, since by the time it came it released outside of Japan, it was 1995 and both the Sega Saturn and Sony Playstation consoles were on the market. It has since become a cult classic and has received attention from Natsume in the years since. Wild Guns Reloaded was an enhanced remake with new levels, graphics, and four-player co-op released in 2016 for modern consoles other than the Xbox One. Wild Guns has also seen re-release on the Wii and Wii U virtual consoles. Finally, Wild Guns has been added to the Switch’s collection of SNES games available to play with a Nintendo Online Subscription, allowing the game to be played with online multiplayer.

Thank you so much for listening! If you want to hear about more games, our full archives are available on videogameoftheday.com. You can follow me on Twitter @vg_oftheday. Don’t forget to check back here tomorrow for another Video Game of the Day!

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