Timeless Cowboy Games

If you were to look at any app store for games released in the past five or so years, you would struggle to pick out many games that you could truly call timeless in the classic sense of the word. That's mainly because apps aren't timeless: the entire concept of apps on mobile devices is a relatively new one, whereas hardware such as personal computers and things like the Nintendo, Gameboy, Sega, Xbox, and Playstation have mostly been around long enough to have games released for them that went on to be seen as timeless by many fans and critics. That's what this short article is all about: timeless games, and more specifically, timeless cowboy games that are particularly memorable.

Al Emmo and the Lost Dutchman's Mine

For many, reading about El Ammo and the Lost Dutchman's mine will take them way back. The year this game should take people back to is 2006, which isn't by any means ancient by any means but is still around 8 years ago to this day. This game is a point-and-click adventure that was the first truly original game to be released by its developer, Himalaya Studios.

The game generally involves exploring various areas and watching a mystery unfold in front of your eyes. The game had hand-painted backgrounds and some fairly impressive graphics considering the time of release and the limitations of the genre. Those with keen eyes will notice that the animation style and approach of the game is reminiscent of Sierra's earlier games of the same genre but from decades before. Controlling everything with the mouse makes things easy in this cowboy/western-themed game that has you in charge of making the adventure unfold. Its timelessness is further affirmed by the 2012 enhanced version on Steam, reviving the game with new features and a visual overhaul.

 Awesomenauts

screenshot of awesomenauts

It would be difficult, if not impossible to release a game like Awesomenauts on modern mobile-phone or tablet devices. This game belongs to a genre that feels as if it's slowly fading out of existence: the 2D Battle Arena - this is because at one time it was a genre that could only be executed on the PC platform, but Awesomenauts' original version was for the PS3 and Xbox 360 platforms. It's a relatively modern game in the grand scheme of things - released in 2012 and followed by a crowd-funded expansion in 2013 called Awesomenauts: Starstorm - but it is as fun today as it ever was.

The game is entirely multiplayer, making it extremely fun and also very challenging. It involves some pretty wild battles in a massive online arena and its format incorporates the style and execution of other genres such as platform games and full-on fighting games as well. The battles include a massive variety of characters, each with their own skills and the ability to level up. The game is so successful it has its own website, and it also

Red Dead Redemption

Perhaps a game that will go down in the "greatest western games of all time" of many gamers, Red Dead Redemption is gripping from beginning to end. Having received widespread critical acclaim and equally positive reception from those who played it, Red Dead Redemption has gone from strength to strength with multiple follow-ups coming in the form of downloadable content; a Red Dead Redemption 2 is also rumoured heavily and has become a point of discussion on many forums around the internet.

This game is essentially Grand Theft Auto but set in the wild-west. It is a massively ambitious game that delivers on almost all fronts. Developed by Rockstar San Diego, one only goes into the experience expecting quality, but Red Dead Redemption truly delivers on all fronts. The open world is simply incredible, the storyline exciting, and the gameplay a spectacle that will continue in the gaming world for years to come in the same manner as Grand Theft Auto. 

Call of Juarez

screenshot of call of juarez

You'll have to go back to the throes of 2006 if you want to truly remember Call of Juarez in its original form, released for the PC in this year having been developed by Techland. The game is a classic first-person shooter when you look at its framework and execution, but there are features that also add a bit of unusual flavour to the action. The most notable of these features is the frequent switching between multiple protagonists, a feature that Grand Theft Auto V was to truly execute with perfection upon its (relatively) recent release.

Call of Juarez has been ported to a variety of consoles and has resulted in a number of sequels being made (such as Call of Juarez: Gunslinger) as well as a prequel.

Alone in the Dark 3

Now we're really going back to classic gaming platforms: Alone in the Dark the is of course the third game in a series that was released for the DOS platform way back in 1994. This is a classic western game that is as timeless in this genre as Quake and Doom are in their own particular sub-genres of shooter. The graphics are obviously quite basic but the adventure is as gripping as you will find in any of today's modern point-and-click games. Expect pixelated adventures from this game, as well as some incredibly nostalgic midi instruments that make up the game's soundtrack, though none of this is a bad thing: it's gaming as it used to be before graphics began to matter more than gameplay or storyline.

Darkwatch

Hopping forward yet again with Darkwatch, a western-themed first-person shooter that was released in 2005 for the Playstation 2 and Xbox platforms. This game is fairly unique in the sense that it stands out in its genre because of its amalgamation of different genres/styles of game: these include steampunk, horror, and of course western, the main theme that holds the others together.

You play as an outlaw that's been transformed into a vampire and resurrected by Darkwatch. You possess powers that can develop throughout the game based on a nifty reputation system, and you can also level up in the usual manner and regenerate in a system that is similar to that from fellow timeless gaming franchise Halo. Giving the gameplay a further twist is the mechanic that strips you of your powers during daylight, transforming you into a human and having you fight with the weaknesses that a human would possess. This game is truly a classic when it comes to westerns, and is probably one of the most enjoyable games on this list.