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Cowboy Ker-Bop: Showdown Effect Gets Free DLC

[a tumbleweed rolls by, explodes]


[Cars explode or something]

Arnold Schwarzenegger parody: “Wow, this sure is great! I can slice and shoot people, and it’s all so fast-pace– [gets sliced and shot to pieces, emits comical death yodel].”

[More explosions, no one looks at them]

Elderly monk man: “Hah, that was too easy. Which is basically what this game becomes after you figure out the rhythm and realize there are only a few weapons, items, and character abilities. There’s just not much long-term value. Er, I mean, hiyah! Tongue-in-cheek reference to a well-known action film!”

[Further explosions with no apparent cause]

Explosions: “Hey, I know: you guys should go to the Wild West for some reason. Westerns were kind of action movies, right? They had guns and stuff. Also, fantastic soundtracks. Er, I mean, ka-boom.”

Right then, the DLC is – as you may have guessed – largely Western-themed, but with a twist. By which I of course mean more of the same thing Showdown Effect’s been doing since the very beginning:

“In today’s update players receive two new levels, South Eastwood and Fort Fiesta, inspired by classic ‘spaghetti Western’ films – with an unhealthy dose of 1980s monster movies mashed into the mix. The levels are available for free and will be immediately available to pick in both ranked and custom matches.”

More monster movie stuff. Hurrah I guess! You also get two new characters: British super spy Thelma Vaine and a cyborg named Dr. Johnny Bionic who “must fight every day to keep his drill-saw-arm from murdering all humans.” I think we can all identify with that. All of the above is unlockable for free, and other Western costumes will spice up your wardrobe iffin’ yer willin’ to pay. Money, that is.

It’s a nice gesture, too, but I can’t help but feel like it still doesn’t get to the root of Showdown Effect’s rather pressing content issue. It’s a fun, over-the-top competitive hack ‘n’ slasher that feels great, but it dries up faster than a shallow rain puddle in parched soil on a hot summer’s day and also the sun. Don’t get me wrong: there’s huge potential. I just worry that its creators won’t really capitalize on it until it’s too late.

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Nathan Grayson


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