2022 has seen its fair share of “weird west” games, but the latest is certainly one of the better ones. Evil West from developer Flying Wild Hog takes place in a Wild West ravaged by vampires and other deadly supernatural creatures. The Rentier Institute has dedicated itself to hunting down these monstrosities in an effort to protect the citizens of the American Frontier, but its vampire hunters soon find themselves at odds with especially powerful foes.
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While it may sound entertaining on paper, Evil West’s story is B-movie grade, with paper-thin characters that speak in one-liners and are all of various degrees of obnoxiousness. The plot is predictable and the villains are generic, but ultimately the story is incidental. Evil West’s weak narrative doesn’t hold it back because the core gameplay is such a good time. Players can safely ignore it, and it won’t have any bearing one way or the other on their enjoyment of the overall product.
Basically, Evil West gameplay is what happens if Doomfist from Overwatch spent his time killing vampires in the Wild West. Protagonist Jesse Rentier is a seasoned vampire hunter armed with an electrified gauntlet that he can use to deal devastating melee combos. Players are able to launch vampires, monsters, and other enemies into the air with an uppercut, then send them flying into a stack of explosives or hurtling to the ground at breakneck speed. The gauntlet also lets players close the distance between themselves and enemies by zipping across the room to unleash a barrage of jabs, culminating with a flashy finishing move that eviscerates any monsters unlucky enough to get in the way.
Combat in Evil West primarily revolves around Jesse’s gauntlet, but he has plenty of other helpful tools at his disposal as well. Jesse’s arsenal of vampire-killing weaponry grows as the game goes on, which in turn adds more depth to combat encounters and gives players endless options when it comes to…