|Platform(s)||Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, SteamOS|
|Mode(s)||Online single- and multi-player|
Bang! Howdy is an online free-to-play strategy game created by American company Three_Rings_Design and the original was released on December 1, 2006 after public beta testing by Grey Havens. Three Rings Design's website tallies the total number of players, at 500,000.
The setting mixes elements from a variety of related genres, such as steampunk or Native American myth. Several of the players' available units are entirely mechanical, including artillery and a "steam gunman", a robot boasting large wagon wheels for movement while wearing a cowboy hat. Other, more conventional units include cavalry and gunslingers. At the 2006 Game Developer's Conference, Three Rings described the formula as "Chess + Mario Kart + Real Time/ Turn-Based + Steampunk Westerns + Secret Sauce".
Initially conceived as an insect-themed game, the primary mechanic of Bang! Howdy is designed to get around the problems of both real-time and turn-based strategy. Michael Bayne, project leader of Bang! Howdy, described RTS as "overly complex and too fast-paced", and described turn-based strategy as "no fun when it's not your turn."
Bayne described the development approach as episodic, with the plan of getting the core game released quickly and working on new towns in turn.
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Bang! Howdy won the Technical Excellence award from the 2007 Independent Games Festival, and was a finalist for the Seumas McNally Grand Prize. The editors of Computer Games Magazine presented Bang! Howdy with their 2006 "Best MMO Debut" award.
- "Three Rings Design website". Archived from the original on 2008-02-08. Retrieved 2008-02-08.
- Slashdot coverage of Bang! Howdy at the 2006 Game Developers Conference
- "How The West Will Be Won: Michael Bayne on Bang! Howdy". Gamasutra. Archived from the original on 18 October 2006. Retrieved October 2, 2006.
- GDC: Independent Games Festival Awards Topped By Aquaria, Gamasutra
- 2007 Independent Games Festival Finalists Announced, Gamasutra
- Staff (March 2007). "The Best (and Worst) of 2006; The 16th Annual Computer Games Awards". Computer Games Magazine (195): 46–51.
- bang-howdy-review on gameradar