Bowling Western, rolling strikes and spares Cowboy style

Bowling Western is a relatively new Windows Phone 8 game that puts an old west twist to the sport of bowling. From the cactus in the background to the wooden bowling pins, one can only imagine that your bowling shoes are fitted with spurs.

Bowling Western has nice graphics, decent animations and has single and multiplayer gaming options. The Windows Phone 8 game could use a little fine-tuning but as is, Bowling Western makes a decent first impression.

The main menu for Bowling Western offers up options to jump into game play, view the online leaderboards, and view other games from the developer. You won't find any settings for Bowling Western to mute the sound/music or set the screen sensitivity. It would be nice if you could mute the sound/music but you always have your main Windows Phone volume to keep things quiet.

Game play supports single play or multiplayer games for up to four players in pass-n-play style. Prior to the game, you will need to enter your player initials and pick out your bowling ball. Bowling Western has fifteen ball styles that range from your traditional black bowling ball to a beach ball styled ball.

The game screen for Bowling Western has your score sheet running across the bottom of the screen and an ad-banner running across the top. You are positioned behind your bowling ball and can align your shot up by tapping/sliding the ball from side to side. To roll your ball, just slide up at the ball. It's not so much about the speed of the swipe but the smoothness. You can swipe at a slight curve to put a little action on your throw or simply rely on more straight approach.

Bowling Western's game play follows suit with your typical game of bowling. Camera angles will shift to show your ball's impact on the pins and a replay of your roll. You can skip all this by tapping the "skip" button at the bottom of the screen. I could not help but think it would have been better to just tap the screen to skip the animations.

Bowling Western is a decent Windows Phone bowling game but seemed a little lacking and could use a little fine-tuning. I liked the choices of bowling balls but the same bowling alley does get a little old after a few games. I wouldn't mind a similar set-up to Shuffle Party where you earn cash with your scores that can be used to unlock additional lane styles.

The fine-tuning mainly deals with getting rid of the "skip" button to advance through the animations and just tap the screen to do so and adjust the swipe sensitivity. While a slow and steady swipe is the best, I still had issues where the swipe wasn't registered or the ball went way left or right when the swipe was straight.

Overall, Bowling Western has potential but I wouldn't look to score a perfect 300 with the game. Bowling Western is a free, ad-supported game that is available for Windows Phone 8. You can find Bowling Western here in the Windows Phone Store. 

George Ponder

George is the Reviews Editor at Windows Central, concentrating on Windows 10 PC and Mobile apps. He's been a supporter of the platform since the days of Windows CE and uses his current Windows 10 Mobile phone daily to keep up with life and enjoy a game during down time.