Red Dead Redemption 2

Red Dead Redemption 2 was (FINALLY!) released last Friday, and we hurried home from our holiday that evening to get our hands on it!

In the last few weeks leading up to it’s release, social media has been full of people excited about the release of Rockstar Games Red Dead Redemption 2.
The prequel to 2010’s Red Dead Redemption has been the centre of a lot of hype since it was announced in October 2016, and Friday 26th October 2018 saw this game finally released, after 2 major delays, first pushing it back from a late 2017 release to an early 2018 release, and then back again to October 2018.
It’s safe to say, having made a record-breaking $725million in just 3 days after release, the game has been well received.

The game has a 97/100 score on Metacritic, and is the highest rated PlayStation and Xbox game, alongside another Rockstar hit – GTA V. It has been widely praised by critics, with some minor criticisms about the “clunky and outdated” controls.

One of the most standout things about this game, for me, is how utterly beautiful it is. The attention to detail that has gone into the scenery, and the wildlife, is absolutely incredible. I mean, just look at it.

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As well as being very pretty, the world is also huge, and full of awesome things to discover, from legendary wildlife, to dinosaur bones, and the skeleton of what we’re pretty sure is Bigfoot.

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The hunting of legendary wildlife is especially rewarding, with the ability to take pelts to a trapper and have them made into clothes. We currently have Arthur running around wearing a bears head as a hat, and the townsfolk, and other members of our gang, have been relentlessly mocking us for it, which, I have to be honest, I think is utterly brilliant. I love the fact that something that simple has been written into this game. It could have been left unacknowledged like a normal cowboy hat, but no, we get random people saying “you’d look better naked than wearing that” and other such insults. This may also happen when you wear other animal heads, we don’t know yet, and at the minute, I’m enjoying it with the bear!

Arthur Morgan as a protagonist is brilliant. His sarcasm and wit is a shining light in what is a dark and dusty world. He’s a gruff outlaw, sure he does a little robbing and killing here and there, but there’s in heart in there somewhere. There was a lot of talk before the games release that playing as Arthur allowed you to play as the “bad guy”, the opposite to the first installments John Marston – outlaw turned good family man, but I’m not sure this is the case. Depending on the way you play, Arthur could be a “good” guy. Or a more honourable guy at the very least. So far we’ve stopped a guy from killing himself, and saved other people from bandits and wolves. We tried to help a lady get home after her horse died, but our horse crashed and we were thrown from the saddle and she ran away crying. We’ve killed people, sure, but they were really only government folks, bounty hunters, O’Driscoll’s and people that owed us money, so y’know, our Arthur isn’t really a bad guy. I enjoy the moral ambiguity of the choices, and the anti-hero status of Arthur. I like the way the choices that you make effect how other people in the game view and interact with you. Arthur is a different kind of outlaw to some of the others in the gang (Micah is especially horrid), and I’m curious to see the dynamic of the group change, and to see how it leads into John Marston’s story from Red Dead Redemption.

We are pretty sure we’re going to be spending many, many more hours in this wonderfully crafted world. We would be inclined to slightly agree that the controls could be a bit more precise – our poor horse has crashed into many poles and trees while sprinting because cornering isn’t great, but it’s something that you can get used to and move past very quickly.

It’s a world where you could easily get lost just running around on horseback, enjoying the wonderful scenery. The crunchy sound of the snow underfoot, the way branches and trees actually move when you run through them, the stunning water graphics, and a compelling story with a great protagonist all make for an experience that is worth every penny spent on the game. And what a fantastic game it is.

Overall this game, for us, scores a 9/10. (We deducted a point for the insults, they are funny, but they hurt our feelings too, we worked hard for that hat.)

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Just chilling out, at camp, in my bear hat.

 

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