Blendo Games’ Quadrilateral Cowboy isn’t pretty. But then, it’s not supposed to be. This is cyberpunk as viewed through the lens of the 1980s, where hackers carry around bulky laptop suitcases, insert blocky cassettes into tape decks, and the hacker interface is a white text on black background DOS.
The game mixes traditional objective-based game play with puzzles to be solved, similar to titles like Portal and Quantum Conundrum. In the tutorial level available to PAX East attendees, players are tasked with infiltrating a secure compound and snapping incriminating photos before extraction. There are plenty of obstacles in the way, but thankfully, our cowboy has their handy deck, a portable laptop-like device that can hack nearby objects with the correct command prompts.
“[Quadrilateral Cowboy] is a 1980s Cyberpunk hacking game where basically corporations hire you out to break into their rival buildings and sabotage their rivals,” explains creator Brendon Chung. “Hacking is done through a typing interface. So basically, in order to hack into these buildings, you have to learn this new programming language.”