Category Archives: 1973

Showdown In the Arcade

I was refining my article on the beginnings of Nintendo and the development of their smash hit Donkey Kong, and came across this, an image of Wild Gunman. Made in 1974 by famed Nintendo hardware guru Gunpei Yokoi, I actually remember playing this game in my distant youth. I can remember being enthralled, and slightly terrified of it.

It required that you strap a holster around your waist containing a toy pistol. As you watch the screen, various outlaws ( I assume) stroll into view. Suddenly, a bright flash lights up their eyes, and you must draw and shoot your pistol before they do. Beat them to the draw, and you see them drop dead. Miss, and it’s Boot Hill for you.

It was one of several games of the sort from Nintendo in the mid-70’s, and helped pave their way into the arcade realm and eventually to the birth of Mario.

Wild Gunman, a coin-operated game designed by Gunpei Yokoi for Nintendo, 1974

Better draw quick with Wild Gunman

You can read the whole, early history of Nintendo and the development of Donkey Kong here at The Dot Eaters.