Shotgun Farmers: A Cluckin’ Good Time

Life on the ranch isn’t an easy task, which is why you have to gear up to protect yourself from other farmers. In Shotgun Farmers, you bring the fight to the farmhouse.

Released on Steam Early Access on June 1, 2017, online multiplayer shooter Shotgun Farmers puts you in the boots of a farmer with an arsenal of crop-based weapons. This is the second game made by developer Wase Qazi. Shotgun Farmers currently has a “Very Positive” rating on Steam, with 87 percent of 309 reviews giving positive feedback. His previous work includes Skyhook.

A unique mechanic employed by Shotgun Farmers is that, technically, there is no reloading your weapons. Instead,  you have to grow and harvest weapons that spawn by bullets that hit the ground.

“Yeah, it was kind of a complete accident,” said Qazi. “The original premise had nothing to do with plants. It was just farmers, with shotguns . . . one team was rabbits and the other team was farmers. The rabbits were trying to steal the farmer’s carrots and [the farmers] are trying to shoot them with the shotgun and blow them out of the ground. I went to a friend of mine with this game idea I had called “Shotgun Farmers,” and before I even said the idea he was like ‘Aw really, I thought you were talking about farmers that grew shotguns.’ and I was like ‘Oh, crap.’”

Qazi became interested in video games in junior high, making games on RPG Maker. His interest increased further after completing a playthrough of Kingdom Hearts II and seeing the end credits, he aspired to see his name in the end credits of his own game.

In college, Qazi realized that programming was an important part of making games when his into class made their own game.

While Qazi spent a good chunk of time working solo on Shotgun Farmers, he always had company with his fans on Twitch. His streaming dates back to when he hosted his own game jams, known as “Qazi Jams.”

“After Skyhook we came up with an idea called ‘Qazi Jams.’ We jammed together and made a bunch of games. I would make my own game and the viewers would make their own game and at the end, I would play everybody’s games,” he said.

Though popular among his viewers, Shotgun Farmers has had a bit of a difficult time keeping a solid player base.

“In the beginning, there were a lot of players and then slowly the player base kind of died off . . . Once I introduced bots that helped a lot to keep players in and then I introduced daily challenges which helped,” Qazi said.

To retain players, Qazi has considered ideas like a horde mode and single player content to keep players engaged.

Qazi’s community helps him shape his game by providing feedback and taking suggestions. He credits a majority of the weapon puns to his fans but claims the idea of the “Carrocket Launcher” as his own. One of the best contributions, according to Qazi, is a mode called Chicken Run. The objective of Chicken Run is to claim the chicken and keep it away from the enemy team. It is compared to the “Oddball” mode of the Halo games. 

So much so that the chicken itself is named “oddball” in the game’s code.

Currently, there is a competition for the next weapon to be implemented in Shotgun Farmers: the M6Bean rifle, or the Chillithrower flamethrower. Let us know what gun you want to see!

Shotgun Farmers is available on Steam for $9.99.

Qazi is frequently on Twitch working to improve Shotgun Farmers and his channel can be found here.