June 24, 2015 5:30 AM | Joel Couture
Good luck is a pretty sweet power. At a job interview you're not qualified for? Bam, landed the position. Need a couple of bucks? Buy a lottery ticket to become an instant millionaire. Controllable good luck is an amazing idea, one that gets even better once you have people shooting at you and your best duck pal, Duckbridge. Just skew luck so those bullets whiz right past. Still, being able to do that all the time would suck all of the fun out of a gunfight, so Luckslinger, a hip-hop western from developer Duckbridge (of no relation to your mallard ally), makes managing your luck an important gameplay mechanic. Sure, you can dodge bullets when your luck is good, but what happens when it goes bad?
Luckslinger contains all of the fun you'd imagine in a western sidescroller: shooting bandits, playing poker with the sheriff, friendly rounds of Russian roulette, drinking contests, and six shot revolvers. Being able to give yourself good luck on a whim is what makes doing those things so special in this game, though. You have a bracelet that shows your available luck, which you can use to mess with the game to your advantage. You can create a bubble around yourself to make enemy shots miss, or use it to create platforms when you goof up a jump. Sounds game-breakingly handy, but if you blow through all your luck, things will start to sour for you. Maybe a bridge collapses under you. Maybe bad guys get the jump on you. While you can collect more luck from defeated enemies, you'll still want to carefully managing your luck since it can affect the game in surprising ways, both good and bad.
The unusual addition of luck to the western-style gameplay is matched with an equally interesting musical choice. The game uses a hip-hop soundtrack to give it a different feel from most games in the genre, and from what I've seen so far, it works. How well will it fit in with the full game, though? The game's releasing on July 16, so if you're willing to try your luck while drifting away on some beats, keep your eyes on Luckslinger. Also, DUCK FRIEND. If you don't want a duck as a buddy, then I just don't know what to say.