• Publisher: Atari
  • Release Date: Mar 3, 2004
  • Also On: PC

Mixed or average reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 31
  2. Negative: 4 out of 31
Buy On
  1. The graphics and sounds will only keep the spirit of the Old West alive as you take out hundreds of outlaws with a few pulls of a trigger. Add addictive multiplayer modes and a low price tag of $29.99, Dead Man’s Hand is easily the best buy so far of 2004.
  2. Playboy
    A unique scoring system lets you unlock killer trick shots - if ya ain't a coward that is. [Dec 2003, p.44]
  3. 80
    What we really like about the game is that the unrelenting, merciless killing just feels right.
  4. GamePro
    Despite its failings, Dead Man's Hand has enough character, style, and atmosphere to make it an enjoyable time killer. [June 2004, p.70]
  5. The Wild West theme lends itself well to the FPS treatment, and the primitive weaponry brings an almost liberating freedom to the gameplay.
  6. There are way too many technical problems to list, but it makes up for them with a cool theme, fun environmental interactions, a decent story, and gameplay that's, well, fun. [Apr 2004, p.106]
  7. Xbox Nation Magazine
    If you thought shooters needed more Stetson hats and Winchester rifles, you can't go wrong with this one. [May 2004, p.96]
  8. Cheat Code Central
    High camp, and I'm not so sure it's supposed to be...While you won't find anything above and beyond than what you've already experienced in countless first person shooters, DMH is definitely playable and enjoyable without being remotely innovative.
  9. What Dead Man’s Hand lacks are the basics which are integral to stellar game. Things such as a steady framerate, next-gen level graphics, and semi-intelligent enemy AI are items which must be present for a game to even have a chance at being anything but mediocre.
  10. Weekly Famitsu
    7 / 7 / 6 / 7 - 27 [Vol 821]
  11. Not to say that this game doesn’t have a few good qualities, but they’re dampened by barren level design and poor enemy AI.
  12. The shooting gallery-style gunplay and cool-looking physics, along with the cheesy voices and music, really nail the Wild West.
  13. As an FPS it can't manage to come close to the likes of "Halo," "Castle Wolfenstein" or "Rainbow Six 3." But as a playful twist on the genre that tries to offer a bare arcade experience, and allows us to feel like Clint supping whisky at the OK Coral, it's pretty good fun.
  14. Official Xbox Magazine
    It feels less like a lost Sergio Leone classic than a simple coin-op shooting gallery. [June 2004, p.82]
  15. 65
    As an FPS, Dead Man's Hand is nothing special at all. As an experience, though, DMH is a blast.
  16. Out of the box Dead Man’s Hand is a huge disappointment and a classic example of a great idea marred by poor or just sloppy game design.
  17. 60
    Although Dead Man's Hand has a number of glaring problems It has a ton of potential. A cleaned up and enhanced version of the game could be.
  18. In spite of a few noteworthy twists and the ability to play online, the game's execution leaves a lot to be desired.
  19. The concept and play consistently deal a royal flush, just ignore the choppy visuals, which can irritate like a pesky infection picked up at Miss Kitty’s Cat House.
  20. Thanks to its lacking multiplayer features, it really just seems to be short-term entertainment, although that short-term can be a blast for one player.
  21. Not good, not bad and not ugly, Dead Man's Hand might give Western junkies a weekend's worth of hootin' and shootin', but I wouldn't choose it over a night in a feather bed with Miss Kitty.
  22. 55
    While the game certainly has its own distinct feel and charm, the overall experience is quite forgettable. It represents mediocrity at its finest.
  23. Once you strip away the western theme of the game you are left with pretty much a standard shooter that offers no frills entertainment.
  24. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    None of this stuff is actually much fun - I just had such a good laugh watching the awkward character animations that I figure this sucker's a must-rent for comedy value alone. [May 2004, p.98]
  25. 50
    It fails in most areas due to its ordinary graphics, stupid A.I, and boring level design.
  26. If you’re as attracted to the prospect of a Western shooter as I was, don’t let the ho-hum score detract you. Just don’t come crying to me when you’ve beaten it in a weekend, can’t stand the multiplayer, and have since found other uses for that $40.
  27. Play Magazine
    There's a cartoon approach to the combat and presentation that kind of works at first, but again, it all comes to a halt once the old-school charm wears thin. [Dec 2003, p.83]
  28. GMR Magazine
    Fails at almost every level. The framerate shudders like a dying horse. [June 2004, p.86]
  29. If you can tolerate the predictable levels, bad AI, targeting nonsense and the general sea of mediocrity that persists throughout then you might discover a flicker of entertainment.
  30. 40
    Amusing enough for an Old West-themed shooter, but the so-called new features are either gimmicks, or, as in the case of the auto-aiming, outright annoying. The game is decent for the most part, but doesn't do the great subject matter justice.
  31. Edge Magazine
    Technically, ... Dead Man's Hand is a mess - which is a shame because this could have been a whole barrel of fun. [May 2004, p.107]
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 9 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 9
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 9
  3. Negative: 1 out of 9
  1. Gamegriller
    Jun 16, 2004
    I don't think this game is always being treated fairly. Yes, it does lag in framerate, and it does look somewhat dated, but it is very I don't think this game is always being treated fairly. Yes, it does lag in framerate, and it does look somewhat dated, but it is very enjoyable as a western first person shooter with many campy qualities and decent fps action. Full Review »
  2. AnthonyC.
    Mar 23, 2004
    This game has the realism i like and the multiplayer to boot so it is better than most but not the best.
  3. JR
    Mar 3, 2004