Quadrilateral Cowboy a Modern Love Note to 80s Computer Geeks

Why we adored every bit and byte of this 80s cyberpunk adventure.

11 months ago by Felicia Miranda

Hoverbikes, portable hacking decks, and a robotic canine who puts a new spin on the term “man’s best friend” are just a few things you can expect in Quadrilateral Cowboy, a charming cyberpunk adventure by Blendo Games. The game is a unique, retrofuturistic ode to movies like War Games and Hackers, and takes us back to the days of earsplitting dial-up modems and the clickety-clack of cassette decks. Upon starting the game, it immediately drops you into your first heist.

You and your gang of wily hackers on hoverbikes attempt to board and ransack a train, all the while Clair De Lune resonates profoundly in the background. It’s in this moment that you’ll begin to fall in love with Quadrilateral Cowboy’s unique way of telling a story without ever having to say a word. The rapturous setting pervades as you finish your first job and find yourself in a dimly lit room that has all the makings of an old school computer geek’s dream hideout. Hanging televisions flicker projecting test patterns, a portable record player hums classic music in the corner while your accomplices read or tinker with gadgets.

It’s safe to say that Quadrilateral Cowboy’s aesthetic is its most endearing trait. Gameplay requires patience and good old-fashioned problem-solving skills. It holds your hand but ever so gently as you go through a series of heist simulations. Each simulation is a bit more complex in nature and requires you to use your rudimentary hacking skills to get what you came for and get out without triggering any alarms.

With each heist you’ll learn a new skill that will be implemented in the future and soon enough you’ll feel like a pro with your impressive set of tools and newfangled abilities. The niftiest tool you’ll acquire is a little robot pooch that you can control with a series of simple commands. You’ll watch it on a toy-sized television as it navigates through tight spaces that you’d otherwise be unable to access.

There’s a lot of subtleties to appreciate in Quadrilateral Cowboy, particularly in how they manage to capture the nostalgic charm of early 80’s technology through the game’s romanticised hacking jobs. You’ll marvel as you control the world around you using your deck and some cleverly executed lines of code. You’ll furrow your brow in intense concentration as you enter commands that control the little robot dog to guide him into hard to reach places. You’ll challenge yourself to do it all within a reasonable amount of time, and then a few times more to achieve your best record yet.

Quadrilateral Cowboy is an action adventure puzzle game with a robust yet easy going temperament that conceals the fact it’s a puzzler by being immensely fun. It’s a game built around a charming world that doesn’t need much to keep your interests piqued because you’ll find yourself falling in love with all its delightful little details. It’s a step in a different direction for Blendo Games who’s been working on the indie title for over 4 years but we can say with confidence that Quadrilateral Cowboy was well worth the wait. Buy Quadrilateral Cowboy on Steam

For more cool, futuristic games on Indie Obscura be sure to check out the first portion of our interview with ThirtyThree Studios about their upcoming platformer RunGunJumpGun, explore the dark corners of the galaxy in our Xeodrifter review, and get your rubber gloves and prepare to filthy with our Viscera Cleanup Detail review

Pros
  • Fun 80s throwback
  • Engrossing aesthetic
  • Engaging puzzle-solving gameplay
Cons