I wasn’t too sure about Red Dead Redemption when I first started to play it. I knew I didn’t like Westerns; however I did very much like the Grand Theft Auto series. After playing the game for a few hours, there wasn’t really much that held my attention so I gave up on it for a little bit. Then I went round to see a friend and ended up playing the gambling games around the towns until the wee hours of the morning. It’s safe to say that I’m pretty much hooked now.
When RDR was first announced I was a mixture of excited and sceptical. I was excited because it looked to be something a little bit different, but how on earth would they put GTA into a Western setting? Surely the game play would suffer? A horse is much slower than a car or motorbike, and using a rusty pistol is nowhere near as satisfying as ploughing through enemies with a super powered assault rifle. How wrong I was to simply compare the two, because they really are nothing alike.
Placed in the shoes of retired outlaw John Marston, you start this slightly tragic story by being sent away from your wife and child by the government to track down and kill your previous fellow gang members. Nothing is ever that simple though, and you will soon start to make friends and accomplices via many means to help you along the way.
There are some very disturbing characters that you will cross paths with along your travels, most of whom you will have to help out in order to gain something in return. Whether they are grave robbers gone mad with greed, or grieving lunatics who just can’t let go of that rotting corpse sat in their shed, there will always be something they need done in order for them to help you. It’s only fair I suppose. From looting corpses for maps, to picking flowers for a sweet old man out in the woods, there is no limit to the big or small quests you can pick up and complete.
The mini games are probably the most addictive I’ve ever played, and the most fun too. Many hours, and many dollars, can be wasted in the saloons dotted around the deserts playing the likes of Blackjack, Texas Hold ‘Em, Liars Dice and Five Finger Fillet. There will be some occasions where you have to win certain mini games in order to progress through a quest, so get practicing as and when you can.
RDR is by no means easy. It was never going to be an easy game. Without the benefit of super protective body armour and a speedy getaway vehicle, you will most definitely die a thousand deaths, and that’s just within the first few hours of game play. That’s just how it is in the Wild West though. Obviously, there was no way you would be getting up after being shot dead off your horse in real life, but thankfully this is a video game where revival and checkpoints are just two of the many perks we enjoy as gamers.
If you like GTA, you will definitely like this game. Some would argue that it’s better than GTA, and I would be inclined to agree with them.