Snag or Gag: Sunset Riders


This side-scrolling shoot ’em was originally released by Konami as a coin-operated video game. Upon seeing the success of this run and gun they decided to drop the 4 player co-op that was the most popular variant of the arcade cabinets to a 2 player co-op for console release a year later. A fairly fast paced shoot ’em up with a colorful sense of humor, we see pretty accurate controls that test your skills at shooting and dodging and was a solid testament to the arcade/retro console history.

Name- Sunset Riders7snes

Developer- Konami

Genre- Shoot ’em up

Release Date- Sega  Master System/Genesis- 1992 & Super Nintendo1993

Platform(s)- Sega Master System/Genesis & Super Nintendo

Price (Cart only)-   Sega Master System/Genesis $30 |  Super Nintendo- $70


You in heap big trouble!


The Story

Taking place in the American Old West we see our bounty hunting protagonists Steve, Billy, Bob and Cormano shoot it out for rewards and women by stopping the criminals revealed on the wanted posters at the beginning of each stage as you progress through the game. Taking place across various locations (depending on what console you’re playing) from the ranch to a gunfight in a forest we chase after 8 wanted criminals in hopes of making the West safe one again.

The Game play

Following a very colorful palette set in a Western theme we are  driven against endless barrages of bullets and various thrown explosives and weapons. A pretty fast paced side scrolling, it’s safe to say it’s unforgiving to let your sights of stage2the screen for long. Special power ups can be found by going into salons or by defeating certain enemies.The golden sheriff badges (grants the player auto-fire) and the sliver badge (grants the player a additional gun) can be equipped together to cause utter shooting chaos. As soon as the shooting stops and the screen begins to tremble be ready, stampedes of wild bulls to jump across without falling in between, sometimes while dodging a bandit or two.

The boss battles can be rather daunting, with random bandits appearing to defend their boss and other various puzzles we are left dodging and shooting continuous until we are able to take him out. But honestly what more could you want from a full on shoot em’ game? From shooting on horseback to sliding and jumping over arrow shooting Indians this game screams classic Western and that just adds a distinct charisma that any fan of this genre will love.


Snag or Gag? Snag for the Super Nintendo, Gag for the Sega Genesis.

My final judgement should be observed with this simple statement, the Sega Genesis lacks a lot of content that the Super Nintendo port didn’t. The Snes version stayed pretty true to the arcade version, with the simple adaptions and relatively few changes to the cut scenes and enemy characters. Basically anything more politically correct and aimed towards more of a censored dialogue while Sega none the less unfortunately didn’t follow suit.

Beginning the start of the console port of Sunset riders, The Mega Drive/Genesis version only feature 2 of the 4 playable characters and surprisingly only 4 of the 8 levels. The voices are cut from this port and instead are presented in bubbled text, and the bonus stages also differ. One thing that was a solid addition was the 2 player shootout versus mode, where you would shoot each other until you ran out of health.

I felt the difficulty of the Genesis version compared to the Snes was slightly harder but that didn’t affect my final grade. The main reason being that the Genesis version lacked a whole lot of content. Yes the Snes version is almost double the price but if i’m gong to collect what some may consider as a “gem” of a game’s library then I want something that is going to be a very close adaptation from the original game. If it’s a game i’m collecting then I definitely want my moneys worth and a game that isn’t lacking content.


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