I remember reading about the revolutionary Mad Dog McCree in computer magazines in the early 90s. It was the first game to bring real video to games, and what started as a successful arcade game soon moved over to almost all other systems of the time. My first experience playing the game on a pc was more of a disappointment than a revolution. I still found the video clips to be somewhat funny, and remembered how camp the actors acted out dying. Now almost twenty years later my standards have been raised, and I find most of the clips to be embarrassing to watch. The acting is poor, and so is the script. Inspired by the western television series of the 70s with proper villains, weak sheriffs and skanky hoes Mad Dog McCree more or less ticks every box for convoluted storyline.
Mad Dog McCree is the bad guy, and you play the stranger who has to stop his evil gang. To your help you have your trusty six-shooter, and infinite ammo. When an enemy appears you have to wait until a weapon is drawn to fire, and you fire by tapping the enemy. If I do as the game tells me, I die. If I wait for an enemy to draw the animation for fire starts, and hence the game is more or less busted. I end up tapping an enemy, and the gun to reload repeatedly until he is dead. There is no punishment for doing so in the classic arcade mode. All I have to do is to learn the patterns the enemies emerge in. There is no variation, and no AI.
The new iPhone mode gives the player a meter showing danger levels, and also punishes extensive waste of ammo. This mode is much harder in the end, as you can’t really score big and make sure to kill the enemies. The fact that you have to watch the FMVs again if you die means that I prefer the classic mode over the new iPhone mode.
The game was bad back in the 90s, but then there was at least the excitement of using a light gun or a mouse to fire. Now my hand, and fingers cover more or less half of the screen. The glitches between enemies appearing are also so much more evident on the small screen. The sound also tends to be slightly off, and especially the gunfire seems out of sync when a new scene is about to load. This is even more annoying when an enemy just shows up without any indication, and kills you right away.
There are of course some occasions for a giggle or a a laugh, but that is only the first time something happens. Replaying the same sequenses only dulls the experience. For example the doctor/mortician was hilarious the first couple of times with his lines that I just managed to survive.
Mad Dog McCree is only for those with fond memories of the original. It is priced way too high to warrant a purchase for anyone not familiar with the game. At $0.99 it could have been a glimpse back in nostalgia. Mad Dog McCree brought something new twenty years ago, and that is exactly how tired and old it feels.
Mad Dog McCree $4.99
Seller: Digital Leisure Inc.