PC, Xbox, Switch
I can’t have been more than seven years old when my dear old grandmother sat me down on her knee and said, “Boy, there’s little in life more fun than killing a man with a pan.” I don’t need to tell you, those are words I’ve chosen to live by all my life. And never better proven than in Colt Canyon.
I am a complete sucker for these micro-rogue-lites, the play-and-play-and-play challenges that have me restarting and restarting and restarting no matter quite how terrible I may be at them. Colt Canyon delivers the goods perfectly, asking me to shoot my way through a Old West-themed pixelated landscape of baddies who want me dead dead dead.
Despite not offering the same complexity, the game it reminded me of most immediately was Teleglitch, for its top-down scratchy ways, and the immediacy of its twin-stick controls. It’s very easy to just start playing, no matter how quickly you might be dying.
And most fun of all is when you find a pan. You can repeatedly lob it at enemies for one-hit kills, until, tragically, it breaks. It’s also splendidly gory, blood spattering messily across the screen as bullets fly in all directions. Just like grandma used to love.
There are different characters to play as, unlocked as you progress, and the usual things: occasional shops (where you barter with your current equipment rather than pay with money), one-time skills to unlock that can significantly effect how you play that turn, and of course boss fights that punctuate its relatively short run.
I say relatively short, because my flailing attempts have gotten me about a fifth of the way through the game. I’ll likely never see the third fifth without YouTube, but it matters none to me – I’m having lots of fun not getting there.