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    Necromunda: Hired Gun review

    Need to know

    What is it? Singleplayer FPS set in the depths of a Warhammer: 40:000 Hive City
    Expect to pay $40/£35
    Developer Streum On Studio
    Publisher Focus Home Interactive
    Reviewed on AMD Ryzen 5 3600, Nvidia GeForce 2080 Super, 32 GB RAM
    Multiplayer? Rust-damn, no!
    Out Now
    Link Official site  (opens in new tab)

    Check Amazon (opens in new tab)

    Necromunda: Hired Gun is a shooter suffering from a mid-life crisis. A linear, singleplayer FPS releasing in 2021, it has looked in the mirror, seen its greying temples and crow’s feet, then panicked before rushing out to buy a bunch of hip new mechanics guaranteed to appeal to those cool Zoomer streamers: bolted-on side-quests, a trendy new loot system, a range of gory melee kills it doesn’t know how to pull off. It’s an FPS desperately afraid of its distinctly late ’90s identity. 

    Which is a shame because Hired Gun would make for a pretty badass grandad if only it could stop embarrassing itself at the skate park. 

    (Image credit: Focus Home Interactive)

    Other features I hardly ever used include wall-running, which sounds cool but is basically useless, an entire sub-menu of special powers that include bullet-time and perfect aim, weapon-crafting and modding, which I don’t think I touched once, and side-missions, which are basically walled-off chunks of campaign levels that mostly exist so you can earn extra credits to buy new weapons and abilities. The one gadget I did use a lot was the grappling hook. It adds fantastic manoeuvrability to Hired Gun, and would work great if your enemies were in any way interesting or challenging to fight. But they aren’t, so it doesn’t.

    It’s fairly obvious that Hired Gun has been released too soon, not least because the version number on the menu screen currently reads “Ver 0.58333”. It’s riddled with bugs, from annoying glitches like texture flickering to hard screen locks and ctds, while the general balancing of the game simply feels off. It’s a real shame. Despite everything wrong with it, I find the core premise appealing. The art and level design are fantastic, the weapons have promise if paired with interesting enemies, and the grappling-hook movement could be incredible with more time dedicated to it. 

    I hope Streum On Studio now gets that time to polish and refine and maybe strip out some of the more egregious concessions to modernity (loot systems in FPSes can get in the bin). Sort all that out and Hired Gun could be one of those games the industry looks back in five years and calls “underrated.” Right now though, it isn’t underrated. It’s just a bit shit.

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