Of the big titles this generation that I had on my to-do list, Red Dead Redemption has stuck out like a sore thumb. Having won over 160 game of the year awards (according to the cover art of my game of the year edition), it’s one of those must-play titles that I just never made time for. Why? Well, partly because of my general aversion to long games, and partly because of my general aversion to anything western-themed. If it weren’t so critically acclaimed, I probably wouldn’t have made any time for it at all. Better late than never, right?
Red Dead Redemption is not the straight-up western I was expecting; at least in terms of setting. Taking place in the early 1900s, where the first cars are driving though some of the first real cities, what was the wild west is virtually non-existent. The main character, John Marsten, is also not your a-typical cowboy. Though he’s one of the most gentlemanly video game characters I’ve ever played as, his outlaw past is a messy one. These two things right off the bat make the proceedings a lot easier for me to swallow.
At its core, this is essentially western Grand Theft Auto, which isn’t a bad thing at all. However, from the little bit I’ve played so far, they’ve made enough meaningful changes to make it feel unique. In particular, the vast wilderness you play in enough of a departure to make things fresh. I enjoy simply roaming around the world to see what’s out there.
I’m probably writing this post pre-maturely, as I’m only at the part where (spoilers) the barn burns down. Not very far at all. I do like what I’m playing, but it’s not hooking me right now as something I just need to play. I’m certain that I’ll get back to it eventually, but for now, I’ll take on some shorter games I can complete within a reasonable timeframe. Look out for a full review in the future!