When most people think of LucasArts they think of adventure games and flight simulators but they were also pretty successful in the first person shooter market. This fact is usually overlooked because as good as Dark Forces and Jedi Knight were they are completely overshadowed by other classics like Sam and Max and TIE Fighter. While they might not a good as the rest of the LucasArts library these titles still deserve some recognition. So today Iím going to spotlight one of these LucasArts FPSs that goes mostly unnoticed, Outlaws for the PC.
In Outlaws you play as retired U.S. marshal James Anderson who sets out to avenge the death of his wife and rescue his kidnapped daughter. To carry out his quest for vengeance Anderson must find the man who was responsible: railroad tycoon, land developer, and typical western villain Bob Graham. So James saddles up and blasts his way through Grahamís numerous thugs and goons using the various Wild West era weapons at his disposal. Itís a fairly standard FPS set apart by its unique art style, excellent music and gorgeous cutscenes.
Bang! Bang! Your dead.
The single-player mode is split into two parts, the main game that follows Jamesís search for Graham and the Historical Missions which show Jamesís exploits as a U.S. Marshal. As opposed to the linear story of the main game the Historical Missions are more like a collection of sub-missions accessed though a central hub. Choose an outlaw to apprehend and fight your way through his gang until you can track him down and bring him in dead or alive. The completion of these missions are not necessary to beat the game, in fact there is no real reward for completing them at all. They're there to add a little replayability, finishing missions with more finesse and using non-lethal methods to bring your target in to improve your rank.
Heís not a desperado, heís a Lagomorph.
The cutscenes are really well done and help set this game apart. They are all presented in a faux hand drawn style that really jumps out at you. Actually, the art style used for the cutscenes kind of remind me of Full Throttle with it's gritty yet cartoon like look. The voice work is also pretty solid with most of the actors adding quite a bit to the atmosphere. It all does a great job of portraying the games stereotypical western story of revenge. Trade you these marbles for that comic book.
The gameís soundtrack is phenomenal. It consists of an original score done in the style of the old Spaghetti Westerns of the 60ís. The songs did a great job setting the mood and really fitting the feel of the levels. The soundtrack earned Outlaws several awards and prompted LucasArts to release a separate soundtrack CD. While I'm not sure I'd go as far as to buy the soundtrack, I can definitely see why it won so many awards
The gameís cutscenes are very nicely done:
Gameplay footage set to RoyksoppÖ for some reason:
Iím not usually one to get enthralled in the cowboy mythos. In fact growing up in Montana I actually got a little sick of whole western vibe. I canít stand movies and books based in the period but for some reason games like Outlaws fascinate me. Maybe itís the fact that Iím not a passive observer in games. I get to take the role of the mysterious gunslinger with a dark past. Perhaps I just really like shooting people. All I know is do I want to watch a shoot out? No thanks. Do I want to participate in a shootout? Hell yeah, toss me another revolver, Iíll fire it with my tongue.
If you are interested in stepping to the boots of a man with a heart full of vengeance and a revolver full of lead you can download the demo here
Hall of Fame/Shame