A stylish and original Spaghetti Western mulitplayer combat game. Secret Ponchos ambitiously delivers a new style of combat – isometric quick-twitch fighting. It’s fast-paced, tactical and addictively competitive. Watch the bounty on your head increase as you gun down others in both solo and gang fights. What's your Head Worth?
User reviews: Mostly Positive (183 reviews)
Release Date: Jun 2014

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Since previewing Secret Ponchos on the show floor at PAX East, we've received an overwhelming amount of requests to bring Secret Ponchos to the PC in addition to the PS4. We promised we would do our best and find a way to take on the additional platform and to make a long story short - here it is! Early Access makes it all possible, and has 2 major benefits:

1) It helps us fund development of a PC version so we can bring it to PC gamers

2) Early Access gives us access to a strong Beta community of actual gamers – ideal for finding that extra bit of quality in a multi-player combat game. It will help us observe how player strategy can evolve beyond our internal testing, allowing us to refine and polish. It's truly great that the resulting quality will benefit all platforms, making a stronger experience for everyone, PC and PS4 gamers alike.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“Secret Ponchos will be in Early Access until the full PC version is ready. As Early Access progresses the content will resemble it's final version more and more. We are aiming to release on PC within the range of FALL 2014, or Q1 2015.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“We aim to test and polish as many of our characters, levels and modes as possible during Early Access - no holding back! Some content will be released at different stages of the Early Access program (i.e. the Matador character, Ranch Map, and a few game modes) but the plan is that during the course of Early Access, most content will be available.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“Secret Ponchos is currently in a solid Alpha state. We've completed a content pass on the majority of the outlaws abilities, animations, and maps to a point where people can play the game against each other the way its intended.

One area we want to be upfront with our community that may be challenging during Early Access, is Matchmaking. The population will start out small, and ramp up. During this time the developers will support the community, and host suggested play sessions at 12pm and 8pm PST everyday. Players can play Secret Ponchos whenever they like, but if they ever have trouble with matchmaking, they can rely on those times for more community saturation.

We are very interested in using Early Access to see how players form strategies to compete and cooperate online, and then continuing to balance based on what we learn.

A few things to take note of :
  • The game is still in development, there will be bugs, and content like animations/FX will be changing as they are being polished as we push to finalization

  • Please be aware that Match History and created outlaws will be wiped at certain points during early access, as we make changes to the underlying sysetms

  • Matchmaking the first little while may be a bit bumpy until the population starts growing and building momentum. Along with the Devs, Our Early access Community are going to be the first players on Secret Ponchos! Just a heads-up and that we might have to ask for your patience as we go through the initial growing pains!

So taking those notes into consideration that the game is still in development, we hope its going to be a great experience to get your hands on it early, and it will help us identify the quirks of the game!”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“If you get on Secret Ponchos soon on Early Access, you'll end up getting it at a lower price then those who wait for the full version. Even if you miss one of our Early Access discounts, for a limited time we are offering our Early Stage Early access supporters a free gift key for a friend, as a thank you from our team! Early Access offers savings on Secret Ponchos, because we appreciate that you will be putting up with our growing pains as we test and learn. This will not only give you a chance to get your hands on the game a little early but also give you a gift for a friend.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“We believe Early Access should be about direct interaction with the Dev Team, so we've created an environment with no barriers between you and the Devs.

-Everyday any player on Secret Ponchos can enter our "Secret Ponchos Group Chat" and have access to chat with members of the Dev team there, to discuss the game, or just chill. We always enter during the 8 pm PST Playsession, but also pop in randomly throughout the day to checkin with the community.

- Every day our devs play Secret Ponchos with the community at the designated play times, our player names have _SBM at the end!

This has been so much fun for us, and we've learned a ton interacting with the community. Please join us! If you're not sure about the game, try joining the Secret Ponchos chat Group at 8 pm PST any day and see for your self!”
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Recommended By Curators

"Showed at PAX East 2014 - Beautiful looking and great to play, Secret Ponchos appealed to all of us."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (28)

January 30

Saturday Morn' Grab Yer Pistols and Join Us!

Hi Everyone,

Chris and I are ready for our weekly beating on the PC build. Hope you guys come out! You wouldn't want to actually let us rank up and start to feel good about ourselves.

As usual we're going to be giving out some stuff and talking all things Ponchos - including some changes we are making to PS4 - that will be coming to the PC version too.

Hope everyone can make it.

10:30am PST.


1 comments Read more

January 23

Playing Some PC Ponchos During Tomorrows Stream!

Hi Everyone,

We're going to split tomorrows stream - Chris and I are going to be taking on the PC community tomorrow while Tony (Casper) takes on PS4.

We're going to be giving out some Soundtracks, answering questions and having a rootin' tootin' good ol' time.

Hope everyone can make it.

10:30am PST.


1 comments Read more
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About This Game

Early Access + Full Release on Launch + 1 Free Copy as a Thank-You

As a special Early Access offer, purchase the Early Access edition of Secret Ponchos and receive a bonus copy as a thank-you to our early adopters.

- Early Access code for Secret Ponchos
- 1 free copy for a friend
- Secret Ponchos PC version on launch

SUGGESTED PLAYTIMES : 3pm & 8pm PST: Secret Ponchos is a newly released Early Access multi-player title, with a small population that is currently ramping up. To provide everyone opportunities for solid play sessions, we have created suggested play-times to saturate the community population. You are welcome to play Secret Ponchos whenever you like, but these times are there for you if you encounter any troubles as we ramp up our population. The Dev team will also join in at these hours, and we've been having a great time playing with the community :)


Secret Ponchos creates a new compelling format of combat. It's quick-twitch action gaming, that is fast paced, fun and competitively addictive. Presenting combat from an overhead isometric view dramatically changes the feel of the Fighting Game and Team Shooter genres. You have a 360 degree view of the action unfolding around you, and gameplay is driven by both what you choose to do, and how well you can control timing and spacing for quick-twitch battles. Compete to survive in 1 vs 1 duels, free-for-all mode, or get your friends together for gang combat against rivals (up to 8 players).

Create your outlaw from a dynamic set of western characters, each with its own weapon types and different combat styles. As you gun down other players you will define your legacy as you increase your notoriety with each kill. But watch out – as the price on your head increases, it becomes a more valuable target, and others will be gunning for you in this Wild West setting.

In a nutshell Secret Ponchos is an isometric action-based PvP fighting game, taking place in a stylish Spaghetti Western universe.

Key Features

5 Unique Outlaws: Each outlaw with its own sense of depth and combat strengths. They play as different as they look from one another.

Line of Sight: Take cover behind the environment to break line-of-sight between you and enemies. When breaking line-of-sight you will disappear from your enemies view, allowing you to ambush, flank, or take a moment to reload and regroup.

Combat Modes : Team based, and individual combat modes. 2-8 Players supported. Play 1v1 intense duels, or team shootouts supporting 2v2 , 4v4 and even 8 Player FFA matches. Modes available in early access can be seen in the Early Access Schedule (above).

Local PvP Coop/SplitScreen : Have a friend over, and use split screen to either play against each other or cooperatively against other teams online.
*Splitscreen PC is disabled in the current version of Early Access, but it will be supported as an upcoming feature

Persistent Characters & Upgrades: As you gun down opponents the game tracks your characters match history and bounties you have collected. Unlock perks, skins, and reputation classes as you earn notoriety and the bounty on your own head rises.

Controller & Keyboard/Mouse Now Supported

Secret Ponchos is fundamentally a fighting game at its’ heart, so we recommend a controller for the best experience (PS4 DS4, Xbox 360 windows / XbONE windows controller or equivalent). However, due to popular requests from the Early Access community we have added Keyboard/Mouse support!

Early Access the Way it Should be - Devs Fully Accessible for the Community

To us the real magic and benefit behind purchasing a game on Early Access, is being able to communicate with the development team while things have an opportunity to be shaped. The Secret Ponchos dev team is proud to have eliminated the barriers between the community and themselves - anyone in the Steam community can reach out to the Devs directly. This communication is unique, and it is a big reason to get the game on Early Access instead of the final release.
- The Switchblade Monkeys team plays the game every day at 8 pm PST with the community
- You can chat with the Devs everyday on the steam group chat during daily play sessions, to communicate feedback/experiences, or just hang out
- Dev team responds to discussion and community posts daily, there is no Public Relations barrier

Features Available in Current Version of Early Access Secret Ponchos

(Throughout Early Access we will be rotating testing on game modes)
  • 5 Unique Outlaws : Killer, Kid Red, The Deserter, Phantom Poncho, and the newly added Matador
  • 8 Player Free-For-All Shootout Mode
  • Team Domination Mode : 2 vs 2 / 4 vs 4
  • Friend Invites / team play support
  • persistent Character, Reputation system, bounty Points, Level ups, and perk assignment
  • Match history & stat tracking
  • 4 Maps : Saloon, TrainWreck, Graveyard, and the newly added Ranch

Moving forward in Early Access, Features & Content to come

  • Custom Game Mode – create a custom game with friends, or use unique configurations of players such as 3 vs 1
  • In-game voice chat
  • Leaderboards
  • Steam Achievements
  • Localization for other languages
  • There are other game modes we are experimenting with that we hope to give the Early Access community a glimpse of so as to help us by providing feedback

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows 7 SP1, Windows 8
    • Processor: Intel Dual-Core 2.4 GHz or AMD Dual-Core Athlon 2.5 GHz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 460GTX or AMD Radeon HD 6800 1GB
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
    • Sound Card: Direct X 11 sound device
    • Additional Notes: Controller / Gamepad Recomended : Sony PS4 Dual shock, Microsoft Xbox 360® Controller for Windows®. Keyboard/Mouse is supported. Please note: these specifications are deliberately high as we are in the early stages of optimization. They will be gradually reduced.
Helpful customer reviews
14 of 18 people (78%) found this review helpful
362.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 28, 2014
Early Access Review
I have spent more than 200 hours playing this game.

The art and music are all excellent. There are 5 characters who are pretty well balanced for early access. The gameplay itself is simple to learn and has a lot of depth. I can easily spend hours playing this game without getting bored. Whether you win or lose is entirely dependant upon how you play (or if there's a glitch or bug; this is Early Access after all).

This game has a multiplayer aspect that rivals putting quarters in Street Fighter 2. This is a game where you and your friends will murder each other repeatedly and they will have a good time doing it. Unfortunately, there is no single player, and very few people are willing to spend time setting up a game. The low population count is actually partially my fault. I spent almost an entire week playing constantly and fighting whoever the automatic queue system would put me against. The low population is no fault of the game itself, though, which is absolutely incredible.

If you enjoy competitive games, this is an absolutely amazing game that you must own. If you have the patience to wait in the chat or set up a game with other people, I would recommend this game to you. If you don't have friends, you probably should wait until the full release. If you don't have any patience, you should pick a different game entirely because this one will mercilessly crush you.
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9 of 11 people (82%) found this review helpful
61.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 27, 2014
Early Access Review
I'll start off with my grievance of this game:

There aren't enough players in it at the moment. Every night I have to find players I know that play the game and gather them at 8pm pst to see if we can round up 4 to play. I just wish there was enough to just hop on and join at any time of day, but unfortunately these are the problems of an alpha or beta or whatever.

BUT, that is the only major downside to it. There are so many positives to this game, I would still give it 5/5 if I could. The characters, the artwork, the sound, the animations, the controls....all have such depth and you can feel a backstory to them that the developers have bled into the game.

As for my grievance, the developers hold a twitch stream where you can play them and also partake in dialog with them about questions you have or suggestions you bring to the table. From these meetings, I have gained an in depth understanding of their direction of where they want to take the game, the reasoning behind their decisions, and the motivation behind their work. Some games on steam that are still in develop like Secret Ponchos just take your money and pooping a game on your hard drive, but unlike those games, Secret Ponchos has such a solid foundation and it's easy to see the developers have the passion to make this one of the best games of 2015.

Feel free to add me if you wish to get the game and want to join up with the regular players of the game during devlopment.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 23, 2014
Early Access Review
Secret Ponchos is an amazingly fresh take on the twitch fighting genre. The developers have put together a very tight package where the artwork, style, learning curve, controls, score, environments, etc. are all extremely well thought out, put together and complimentary.

When you start out, the characters feel relatively easy to play, but much like a street-fighter style game, you immediately notice that there is much more depth to the control of the character. After many hours of playing I feel I haven't even come close to perfecting the gameplay of my favorite character, but I'm still able to control him in a very competitive way, and believe me: this makes this game addictive and a constant ongoing thrill to play.

I would strongly recommend trying this title out (and trying to play at the early release set times of day so you can find the most people to play against) as it's a wonderfully styled and scored adrenalin rush to play!
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
35.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 19, 2014
Early Access Review
Even in early Access Secret Ponchos is an incredibly satisfying and addictive game. It looks like a traditional MOBA at first glance, but relies heavily on reflex and twitch actions. The game has a lot of character; music, design, and art direction are all executed well, adding a certain level of polish one does not expect. Gameplay rewards a player who can read situations well and coordinate actions with teammates. The classes are all fairly balanced as well, maybe not the case in a 1v1 scenario, but most definitely in a 2v2 scenario.

Currently the game modes are narrow, and finding a game can sometimes take awhile due to the low population. These issues have not cut into my own enjoyment of the game. The game does have a number of glitches that can become annoying and affect one's performance. I will note that after one day of owning the game patches have corrected several glitches I had been experiencing. The game is not optimized to run on the PC, also. These are all problems that are currently being adressed by the creators of the game.

Buying an early access game is always somewhat terrifying when perusing through Steam's catalog. However, Switchblade Monkeys have delivered a quality product.
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6 of 7 people (86%) found this review helpful
84.8 hrs on record
Posted: September 2, 2014
Early Access Review
For game in it's early stages, this one delivers.
Fast paced combat and a killer soundtrack.
Fans of westerns and PVP...Your game has arrived.

Just wish more people played it!
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7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
283.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 8, 2014
Early Access Review
Really Great Arena Fighter Love it :) The Combat is Fluent and its really Polished for a Early Acess Game would Recommend 10/10
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 15, 2014
Early Access Review
My first impression of this game is very good. It looks real nice, and has gameplay to match. This would be a blast to play with some friends! I think this one is going to evolve into something real nice.

Finally, it's looking like this is going to be a Western-themed game, that's designed for some multiplayer mayhem.
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
11.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 21, 2014
Early Access Review
Ironically only one character has a poncho.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
49.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 29, 2014
Early Access Review
Get this game. Get it for your friends. Get it for your parents. Get it for everyone you know and have a blast in this twin-stick romp.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
4.6 hrs on record
Posted: August 17, 2014
Early Access Review
Multiplayer is a hard section to get into in gaming now a days, between COD, battlefield, and CS. Its even harder to get be successful in the Moba business, with games LOL and Dota, its even harder when you're not free to play. Well Secret Ponchos not be considered a normal Moba, but it does have an online store where you can buy skins, and takes place from an overhead view. It also has a difficulty curve like a brick wall that is common to mobas, it also has the twitchy gameplay. Unlike a moba every hit you make is a press of a button, there is no animation that plays, no auto attacks, no creeps, no item shop. So when it comes to genre the game falls in a weird spot. Its also a western which most mobas either are fantasy or Sci-fi. But the western setting backs up the twitch gameplay with the draw of a gun and only a few shots fired before looking for cover.
The art style is comic booky and the characters are weirdly rigid and it implies a sense of humor, but the game is so intense that it undermines its artistic integrity and…..

This game contradicts itself a lot.

Secret ponchos is a stylish and original spaghetti western multiplayer combat game. That ones straight from the steam page. Its also says its a quick-twitch fighter, all of these things are true.
The gameplay of the game is fast as a quick draw, wow great joke right? Its a dual stick shooter that uses every button on the controller except for right and left on the d pad. Each button has a different function except for a and left bumper both share the cover button. Each Character in the game has 2 weapons and each weapon has 2 fire modes and there are 5 characters which adds to a total of 20 attacks across 5 characters and leads to all sorts of tactics.

and I really feel like i'm getting ahead of myself. Ok lets start at the beginning
when you start you are asked to make a character and name them. There are 5 characters with different stats that after you select them you can upgrade through a point system like in tony hawk. The Only game mode as of now is a 2v2 domination mode in which the opposing teams fight to kill each other. If your team gets a kill the counter adds a point if the enemy team gets after that kill you lose that point and the first team to get 5 points wins. After each round you are given a bounty, if you win your bounty will go up, if you lose your bounty will decrease. The bounty acts a a leveling system if you get 1000 bounty you will level up and become a higher level criminal, and also get more points to upgrade your stats, but since you can lose bounty if you go under that 1000 you will go down and lose the stat boosts that go with it.

Now to talk about the combat. The combat in this game is surprisingly deep, allowing you to employ many tactics against your foes. The game also does have a difficulty curve like a brick wall as i mentioned earlier and takes a good 4 to 5 hours of gameplay to adjust to the game. The games many weapons each have different effects, some have blast damage, some stun your opponent, some allow you to dodge and its how deploy these to your advantage is what makes the combat deep. Another layer to combat is Team Comp since it is 2 v 2 you have another player with you. Unfortunately you can't switch characters on the fly so you may end up with someone that compliments your play style or some that hinder it. But the game allows duplicates to play in the same match so you may end up with 4 grim reapers all duking it out. Friendly fire is also on so you have to be careful around your teammate. You also have a dodge mechanic that lets you dodge roll 3 times but then has to regen. You also have a cover mechanic that you have to throw in there as well. So with all this stacked on top of each other what combat usually looks like is a slow approach to the enemy team taking cover along the way. Then a short but violent skirmish and if you're still alive dashing away to find cover again. But in that moment of skirmish every second counts depending on who is using which of their 4 attacks, weather or not you miss, how many dodges they have all of it determines the outcome of the battle. You may win and walk away without a scratch or your team mate might die and you get left to have to run from 2 armd killers.

Now i know i've talked really good about the game so far so im gonna rattle off the things that irk me about the game.

Even though there is a ranking system it doesn't matter even if you are lowest level you can still get have to go against someone with the max bounty on their head.
The hit boxes sometimes really screw up
If you accidentally disconnect from a match you can't reconnect.
Alot of general glitches
The game has no tutorial (witch would really help the difficulty curve problem.)
The fact that it wants you to purchase skins in a paid moba, an early access one at that.
Playing with friends is a pain. Every time you start the game you have to invite them to the lobby witch is normal. But after the match is over it kicks them and you have to re invite your friends to the lobby to play another match. At one point we all had to restart our clients to even to connect to each other.
Now I know its early access but this really need to be addressed since this is a multiplayer game and playing with friends is a big draw to the game. Unfortunately the hassle to get with friends almost isnt worth it.

Despite all that the game is rewarding and addictive enough to encourage you to climb that brick wall of difficulty curve, and the fights are so fast and fun that the game will keep you playing all the way to High Noon.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
24.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 19, 2014
Early Access Review
So far this game has proved to be a very fun game even though I'm still fairly new to it. While the mouse + keyboard controls are a little wonky (they haven't yet added the ability to set your own keybindings) and the balance has some work to do, I believe this game has a great future ahead of it. Very cool setting, very fun gameplay, looking forward to seeing what else they do!
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
2.8 hrs on record
Posted: December 21, 2014
Early Access Review
Interesting mechanics that focuses on the parts of western movies I always thought was cool. Not the duel at the end, but the drag-out shootouts that often occurred.


A bigger player base


Possibly more progression and unlocks mixed with more characters
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
11.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 9, 2014
Early Access Review
Very interesting and fun game. definately something to look forward to. I could write a Thesis on why this game is great but, I'll just say this game is the best thing since marmite on toast.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 14, 2014
Early Access Review
Secret-Ponchos is truly an amazing game , from the combat to the art and character design. The maps are great for different playstyles , like boneyard for shorter range and something like train wreck for long range. My only problems are it's a bit laggy (it IS in Alpha/Beta mode and my computer isn't that great) and it is fairly hard to find people for matches... I do have very little play time but I just bought the game and are loving it already. 10/10 would play again.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 18, 2014
Early Access Review
You shoot dem yellah belly rascals

Drunken ranting aside, I got a great amount of amusement. A friend and I started together from the beginning and had a wonderful time.

Most of the fun came from exploring the current cast of five characters. I was surprised by the amount of depth the game had to offer from the variety plus how each one works in conjunction with each other.

Action is fast paced and the music just fits the mood perfectly.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
39.6 hrs on record
Posted: August 21, 2014
Early Access Review
This game has the potential to replace Bloodline Champions and Forge as the next best competitive game that will be too hard for casual idiots and inevitably die a slow, harrowing death.

My only complaint is the deserter, who has so many bugs I don't even know what's intended anymore.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 28, 2014
Early Access Review
awesome but needs more people

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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
100.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 5, 2014
Early Access Review
Secret ponchos is a very unique game and I love it. It's one of the very few early access games that I have actually played longer then getting the just of it and waiting for release. It's fast paced action and never a dull moment. The dev team is small and actually listens and talks to the players. Things come along slowly but this will be a must have game upon release. If you are scared or tired of early access games the deal right now is to good to pass up. There will be bugs and glitches but it's to be expected just report them on the games forums and the devs will reply very quickly. The only major downfall right now is that there is only a small community and it will grow and grow with such great and caring people making it. I see a great future for secret ponchos and will support it on any console it comes out on. I Fully recommend buying this game and is pretty much the only EAG's that I would in their early access state. Their twitch saturdays are a blast too.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
36.3 hrs on record
Posted: August 6, 2014
Early Access Review
Very nice gameplay style, fun and quick, it's a pleasing nervous experience !

Even if the possibilities are limited for now (alpa, one multi mode, ect...), you can still have fun for hours with what the game already offer !
On 30+ games, I must have had like 2 buggy games, not more.

By the way, if you have a controller for PC, there are no more reason for you to considere not buying this game !
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: August 15, 2014
Early Access Review
It's hard to find good western games and this blew me away.
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