The town of Black Rock was a nice peaceful town. Then, one day, a telegram arrives. "Whole loda baddies a whoopin' and a wailin' heading straight for town. Lock up yer houses, bar up yer shops and wait for the Sheriff to clear out the mobs. Ends."
As Sheriff Quickdraw, now is the time to start earning your salary and, who knows, you might even make yourself a bit of around.
There are two types of baddy for you to fight. The ordinary bandit can be shot on sight but wanted criminals insist on a quickdraw shoot out. Here the action shifts to a head to head situation with things moving so quickly that you are usually blasted out of one of your lives before you even have time to think about pulling the trigger.
Some baddies will be on horseback and you have to give chase providing you can find your own horse first.
Scoring in the game revolves around money. You get the chance to build your initial bank balance at the start of the game by shooting falling bags of gold. This can go up by collecting your salary and reward money but can also go down very quickly as well. Not only do you have to pay for your bullets and horses at the going rate, but you also get fined if innocent bystanders get shot either by you or a bandit.
In practice, your money tends to disappear quite quickly. Your score disappears at the end of the game and, as you tend to be looking at what just killed you, you have no idea of how well you did.
You can lose a life either by colliding with one of the townsfolk, bandits or cactus bush or by being shot in a head-to-head.
I did not find Gunfright particularly playable. Encounters with wanted criminals were very few and far between and when they did occur, you tended to get killed straight away. It's a pity because it could easily have been a very good game... if only the balance was a bit better.