At a Glance: "Yeeee-howing, Paldners! Now You Can Praying All-American Wild West Cowboy Action in Smash Hit Game flom America! What you Doing! You having fun! See you the fightening DesPerado! You shoot him in the head! Seeing the angry Marsharl! Shoot him in head too! The pretty girl like you! Showing her a good time by SHOOT HER IN THE HEAD! SHOOTING EVERYONE IN THE HEAD FURY! TEN THOUSAND POINT! YOUR MOTHER IS A PIG! Is she?"
Platform: NES (Download Emulator here - 192k)
Download: Download ROM here - 61k
This screenshot is funny until you realize it's actually what you're supposed to do.
Game Plot: There's a trade imbalance in the video game industry between the US and Japan, but not in the way you'd expect. While they sent us Super Mario, Final Fantasy 7, and Schoolgirl Mangler 12, all they got in return was two nuclear bombs and LAW OF THE WEST (caps added for emphasis). Personally, I'd rather take the nukes. Law of the West is an adventure game where the main objective is apparently to kill everyone in the world. There's some text and stuff in the game, but it's all in Japanese and doesn't really seem to have anything to do with the main objective, which is to murder every single person you come across. In case you don't believe me, here is an actual real authentic forged text log from the game: (keep in mind that the translations are only guesses)
You: Kisama! Doko wa kin des?!
Man: Naniyo? Kin wa arimasen!
You: Gomen. Matane!
Man: (turns to walk away)
You: (shoots him through the back of the head)
(Scoreboard appears. You get 100 points! Happy music plays. Next level starts.)
Woman: Ah! Nani desu ka?!
You: Kore wa ore no chinpo desu.
Woman: Sugoi! Anata no chinpo okii desu!
You: Watashi wa anata no inmoo wo mimasu!
Woman: Ah?! Kyaaa, anata no inkei wa atashi no inmon no naka desu!
You: Omae wa ore no niku desu.
Woman: Chinpo! Chinpo! Daisuke! Ah, iku, iku, iku, kyaaaaaaaa!
You: (shoots her in the face)
(Scoreboard appears. You get 1000 points! Happy music plays. Next level starts.)
Child: (emerges from doorway)
You: (shoots him through the throat)
(Scoreboard appears. You get 10000 points! Happy music plays.)
This goes on for as long as you have time remaining. The timer starts at 240 or something, which means if you shoot people the second they appear you get through the game a lot faster, or at least you would if the game actually had some kind of point or ending.The Duke and the Dauphin settle an old score.
Weapons: The main weapon in the game is your mouth. You score points by talking to people and making them talk back to you, after which they either shoot you or walk away. Fortunately, the designers must have accidentally run out of freebase cocaine at some point during production and snapped back into reality, whereupon they realized that that's a really fucking stupid way to make a game. That's presumably when they added in the secondary weapon, which is a gun. This greatly expedites gameplay, since instead of carrying on a conversation and working your way through a dialogue tree, you can just pull out your gun and shoot the other person in the head. The game doesn't penalize you for this, as it doesn't really penalize or reward you for doing anything at all. LAW OF THE WEST exists in a nihilistic moral vacuum, a place where life and death are equally meaningless, where a kind word and a .45 bullet between the eyes are both acceptable forms of greeting. Also, you get extra points for shooting special places on the screen, but you never really know which places those are, so you usually just end up spraying the whole screen with gunfire until a little "10000" pops up.
Enemies: The enemies are wide and varied, including such nefarious rapscallions as The Man With a Hat and No Gun, the Woman In a Blue Dress Who is Also Unarmed, and the Small Child Who Wanders Into the Street. They're all beautifully rendered in 4 fabulous colors, three of which are brown. Their animations are top-notch and include such dramatic acts as "walking", "standing completely still", and "crumpling to the ground after being shot 28 times." Occasionally a character will pull out a gun and take a shot at you at the end of a conversation, but they always hit you in the arm. If you get shot in the arm by two different people during the course of a game, you die. One might say, "Ah, how logical, since a person only has two arms!" Of course, it's not actually logical after all, since you get shot in the same arm both times.
Number of Levels: There are several backgrounds, and after you run through them all they start repeating. I think the game just keeps generating new levels until the time runs out. You'll be treated to a number of authentic Wild West backdrops, including, but not limited to:
Also, driving enthusiasts and historians alike will be interested to know that the entire West was at one point apparently paved over in light gray concrete.
Number of Bosses: There aren't really any bosses in this game, as there aren't really any enemies. It's like that part in the beginning of Half-Life where you're just walking around with the other scientists and you enter a cheat code to get 50,000 detpacks and stack them into a big igloo around the front desk where the security guard's sitting, then run into the other room and set them off and wait 20 minutes while the game calculates all the explosions, then crashes. Well, it's like that, but not as fun.
Defining Moment: That would probably be the first time I played the game. I was standing there playing with my gunsight, and a person walked out. He walked up and stood in front of me, waiting expectantly. I waited too, and nothing happened. I started shooting at the stagecoaches passing in the background, and nothing happened. I was completely stuck and couldn't do anything; shrill grating music blared in my ears. Finally, in desperation, I put the crosshair over the guy's face and fired. He fell down while this happy victory music started playing. Now, I'm not one to side with Sen. Joe "Put it in my ass" Lieberman, but I bet if you wanted to create an army of real-life La Femme Nikitas, you could do it by sending this game to a few dozen little girls and waiting about ten years. Somewhere, in Japan, there is an elite order of assassins who got started by playing this game back in 1985.
Each category in the rating system is based out of a possible -10 score (-10 being the worst). The overall score is based out of a possible -50 score (-50 being the worst).
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The Rom Pit is dedicated to reviewing the most bizarre and screwed up classic console games from the 1980's, the ones that made you wonder what kind of illegal substances the programmers were smoking when they worked on them. Strangely enough, the same illegal substances are often necessary to enjoy or make sense of most of these titles. No horrible Nintendo game is safe from the justice of the ROM Pit.