Join the Pony Express in today’s playable Google Doodle

Thanks to its ubiquity in pop culture, the Pony Express looms large over the landscape of the American West. And yet, the mail delivery service was only in operation for a scant 18 months.

Never one to let a meaningful anniversary pass by, today’s Google Doodle celebrates the company’s first successful delivery, which occurred 155 years ago today. Best of all, the Pony Express Doodle is a playable side-scrolling game that tasks riders with delivering 100 pieces of mail along a three-town route. But be on the lookout for cacti, avalanches, and bandits as you complete your rounds:

The notion of triumph through adversity is so inspirational. So when William H.Russell, Alexander Majors & William B Waddell founded the Pony Express on April 3rd, 1860, they set in motion a wonderful yet daunting method of communication. What a concept–riders with letters on horseback racing from California to Missouri and vice versa to deliver mail on time! True to their word, the first mail arrived on April 14th. The Pony Express felt like a great game concept to us at Google. We’ve made time-based games in the past so our new idea was simple. Collect letters, avoid obstacles and aim for the ultimate 100 letter delivery! We know everyone is busy these days but the Pony Express needs YOU. And ultimately, whatever happens in life, what’s more important than earning trust and respect from a horse?

It’s a pretty great timewaster and I know I’m going to spend all day trying to top my high score of 59.

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John Scalzo is Warp Zoned's Editor-In-Chief and resident retro gaming expert. You can follow him on Twitter or email him at john AT warpzoned DOT com.

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