The hollow ghostly voice of a young woman begins to speak about the possibilities in Weird West while a dark comic book style depiction portrays the cults, monsters and other dangers. It sets the tone perfectly for the strangeness that’s coming.

A mysterious group stands about gawking at me as I sit hooded and disorientated in a chair. I’m branded and then set on my way with the message that this group is counting on me. Before I have time to ponder that mystery, a gravely man’s voice explains how I used to be the most feared bounty hunter in the west, before moving on to a normal life. He foreshadows that tonight is the night destiny has come callin’ and it ain’t takin’ no for an answer.

Destiny comes in the form of a gang that murders my son and takes my husband hostage. The Sheriff, Flora Albright, shows up to inform me that the Stillwater gang is to blame. She explains that the gang is now led by Shelby, a siren who eats people. The branding and weird encounter are forgotten for now as the Sheriff tells me she has one of the gang members in her lock up in town. She gives me a portable relayograph, a device that can receive messages while on the road, and tells me to head to town when I’m done. I leave her behind to go dig up my guns, but not before looting everything that isn’t nailed down. I buried my son and the family dog (both optional) and then headed out.

Venturing near the edge of the landscape gave me the option of travelling and brought up the world map. Cackle, the local town, was clearly marked, and I selected that as my destination. An icon, representing myself, begins to make its way across the map, but a random encounter halts my progress. I was informed of a coyote attack. Once it loaded, I played the encounter out on a small version of the larger map. Coyotes swarmed from all sides, but I managed to down them after a few well-aimed shots. The final kill gave a satisfying glorified slow-motion death, reminiscent of what you’d find in fallout. I did have a few chunks bitten out of my green health bar and I could put this down to ageing reflexes, probably a factor, but the aiming mechanic does feel a bit fiddly. As I went about looting the coyote carcasses for meat, a vulture swooped down for a meal so I decided to practice my aim, and I shot it. I collected the meat from the vulture and the remaining coyotes. Handily, an abandoned camp fire had spawned inside the encounter map and I cooked the meat and ate it, which restore more health than if I’d consumed it raw. Health restored, I carried on my journey.

The town of Cackle was awash with bloody corpses akin to a bit of a massacre, which wasn’t explained to me at the time or afterwards, so I can only assume it was a part of the attack by the Stillwater gang. I made my way to the local Sheriff’s station where Flora voices her surprise at seeing me sporting my irons again. She then allows me full reign to interrogate and torture, if I feel like it, the Stillwater gang member for information. I restrained from breaking his pinky and instead threatened to give him to the townspeople to exact their justice, reinforcing the view that the gang was the reason for the dead bodies in the streets. He quickly gave up the location of the gang’s headquarters. The Sheriff was reluctant to leave the town undefended, so I went on alone. As I left the town, I saw a woman trying to get my attention. She asked me to look for her missing husband, which seems to be a bit of an epidemic within Weird West. The reward of a new weapon was enough to persuade me to take on her request.

Another random encounter, involving a coyote attack, was navigated a little easier this time, and then I was on my way to hunt for my missing husband through a winding canyon filled with Stillwater gang members. A nice little highlight of the encounters involved shooting a lantern to set ablaze a patch of grass that cooked two enemies alive and saved me some precious ammo. There were plenty of crates, barrels and even buried loot to search through, but I find myself counting bullets and having to be more selective with what I looted as my inventory quickly filled up. I took full advantage of being able to scrap duplicate guns for extra ammo. I also came across my first Nimp Relic that allowed me to purchase a weapon ability. I took the Sentry Silencer ability, a rifle ability that allowed me a silent long-ranged shot with extra damage when it hit undetected. Abilities have a cool-down period and are also limited by the amount of Action Points (AP) that they cost, but I didn’t find this too restrictive with this particular ability. It came in very handy as I pushed on picking off enemies at long range, which was far easier than getting into a frantic shoot out.

After a cryptic meeting with a young girl, who subsequently disappeared, I found the Stillwater gang’s hideout, which was a large area surrounded by a wooden fence with dozens of gang members on patrol. I was able to use a combination of the choke mechanic and the Sentry Silencer ability to pick off enemies and make my way into the hideout. As I fumbled around blindly looking for my husband, I came across a well that lead down to an underground section of the base. When I got down there, I followed a narrow passage. Halfway along, there was a sealed door. I needed a key or dynamite to open it. I decided a key would be the safer option, so I headed further along the passage and found a bleeding man who asked me to give up some bandages. Being the kind soul that I am, I obliged.

The friend for life pop up informed me that helping people might mean that they become my friend for life and could intervene in lifethreatening combat situations. I haven’t seen the perk in action yet, but I thought it was a nice little bonus for doing good deeds. A ladder sat invitingly in the corner. It took me into a building crawling with gang members. A smarter man than myself would probably have gone back down the ladder and found a different way, but I decided there was a reason for this ladder, so I pushed on. That proved to be a big mistake as I was spotted and forced into a frantic fire fight as dozens of enemies descended on the building. Thankfully, they came in waves, not all at once, so I was able to fend them off in small groups before killing the last stragglers. I burnt through all my ammo and most of my bandages, the best way to replenish health quickly in a fight. Luckily, there was now an abundance of bodies to loot fresh ammo from. I strolled freely about the camp, picking up bullets and searching through barrels and crates. That’s when I stumbled across a caged up man who was the husband of the town’s woman who had asked me to find him. I set him free and got another friends for life notification pop up. I also got a reputation boost. I vaguely remember seeing reputation boost pop up in the melee of the shootout but I had more pressing concerns on my plate. I went in search of information and found that reputation was gained by doing good deeds. When witnessed by people that lead to better prices at shops, and a low reputation could trigger bounty hunters coming to take me out.

While I’d been in the inventory menu, I noticed I’d looted a key for the locked door and headed back down the well. Once opened, I made my way cautiously inside and another pop up gave me the instructions to kick a chemical barrel at two idle gang members who died horribly as the chemicals ignited and exploded. I moved past them to get informed of greater foes and the insignia that would show up to indicate stronger enemies, usually gang leaders. I was then on high alert and crept around the corner to find two enemies. I picked them off with rifle without too much fuss and was almost a little disappointed. Not exactly the ‘stronger enemies’ encounter I was expecting. It was in that last room I found another prisoner who informed me that information on my husband’s whereabouts was in the safe in the corner and he could open it if I found the key to his prison. I freed him, and he gave me a code to the safe. I opened the safe to find an encrypted message and a quest update that said to take that message back to the town to get it decrypted. When I emerged back to the surface, Stillwater gang reinforcements were roaming about and I was told to flee by robbing a horse. I did so and fled back to the town.

The town had seemingly recovered from the massacre. With shops now open, and I took my chance to unload most of my inventory for money. I purchased an abundance of ammo and a better vest for protection. I took the encrypted message to a relay office and was told it would take time and $300. I had less than half after my ammo and vest upgrade purchases. I decided I’d head back to the hideout for another round with the Stillwater gang and to pick up the large amount of loot I had to ignore the first time after my inventory filled up. I then found a towns person offering me his services for free and so decided to bring him along. An extra target for enemies sounded nice. The companion’s message informed me of that I could recruit a posse, and that would increase my own damage output. I could talk to my companions to check inventory, equip weapons and dismiss them if I wanted to. I gave my new companion a spare vest and made him carry some of the inventory I wanted to hang onto. The extra 32 spaces he had would come in very useful as inventory space had already seemed like it would be a problem. A bounty board gave me some targets to hunt for money but I ignored it for now as they had a short time limit on completing them. I got my reward for saving the townswoman’s husband, a better pistol. Once I swapped that in, I went back to the gang hideout, cleared out the reinforcements with the help of my new companion and then picked up everything I could. Back to town with mine and my companion’s pockets full. I unloaded all the loot and purchased a big upgrade on my vest, plus more ammo. I didn’t feel the need to push onto encrypting the message for my husband’s whereabouts just yet as I had a couple of open side quests I’d picked up along the way and three bounties sat waiting on the bounty board. It felt like the game had begun to really open up with more freedom on my next destination, so I took that opportunity to put down my irons for the time being.

I enjoyed my first few hours with Weird West and I’m looking forward to playing more. My full verdict on the game to come…


A Bit About The Author

Hey, thanks for stopping by. I’m Michael, a content writer at Random Compass. Gaming is my big passion, and that’s usually what you’ll find me writing about. If I can inform and entertain, then I consider that a job well done.  

A Bit About Random Compass:

Welcome to Random Compass! Although the website went live on the 1st of February 2021, we (Liberty and Nikki) actually had been planning this since 2011 , and now 10 years down the line, we have managed to create it. Our passions are all things media related, film to music to gaming, and we love to create varied content – we are fans of so many things, and so we wanted our website to reflect all our different areas of interest, from Animal Crossing to Elvis Costello! We hope you find your area of interest here, (there is so much to come!), but if you don’t, let us know what you want to see, and we will do our best to deliver.

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