Red-Dead-Redemption-2-Review Red Dead Redemption 2 Review

   07/11/2018 at 16:31       Chris OToole       0 COMMENTS. - Score 5/5
 - PS4, Xbox One, Action, Adventure, Cowboy

Red Dead Redemption 2 is a cowboy simulator from Rockstar Games, the same publisher who birthed Grand Theft Auto on to an unsuspecting world. Of course Red Dead Redemption 2 isn't just a cowboy sim, it's something a whole lot more. Come with me dear reader, let me explain the ways.

Taking place in 1899 Red Dead Redemption 2 is a prequel to the previous game and you find yourself in the cowboy boots of one Arthur Morgan, the backbone of Dutch van der Linde's gang of thieves, gamblers and money lenders. You find yourselves on the run after a botched job, hiding from the law whilst also trying to make enough money to disappear off the radar for a while. Easier said than done. I won't go into any depth about the story here, for there be spoilers, but I will say it's by far my favourite narrative in any Rockstar game yet. It's a slow burner, things don't seem to be moving very fast as you play through, but it's very nuanced, you can spend several missions mostly just getting to know the large cast of characters and it works brilliantly. When events start to snowball, you really feel it and care about your friend's fates.

The missions are just a small part of what makes Red Dead Redemption 2 great however. Rockstar have created what I feel is truly the best open world ever committed to videogame, This looks and sounds like nothing you have ever seen. It's absolutely peerless, from morning mists, light filtered through tree branches and sudden storms all taking place within a night to day engine which is jaw droppingly gorgeous. In this environment you can take yourself off whenever the fancy takes you. Maybe do some hunting, tracking targets with your hunter senses, making sure you stay downwind and using arrows so as not to destroy your targets precious pelts. You could try your hand at fishing, carefully selecting your bait for the type of water and fish you are after, if you are lucky you could even be in with a shout of catching a legendary fabled trout! Most towns even have places where you can play dominos, five finger fillet or poker, and they are all very good versions of said games and fun to play.

You'll also stumble over strangers on your merry way over the west, sometimes they may just need a ride back into town after a horse accident, some will ask you to keep and eye out for collectable cards or dinosaur bones and some will lead into more missions and mysteries as you follow a tangled web. I can't stress to you how good these feel, there is very little repetition and everything just has an air of authenticity about it I've not experienced before.

Of course you don't have to wait to stumble over things, you can be pro active, see that train in the distance? You can ride up alongside it, don your bandana disguise, jump over and rob the passenger cars. You can take a poster from the wall and hunt a bounty, or maybe hunt a few perfect examples of wildlife to send to a zoo. To say this game is packed with content would be an understatement of epic proportions. Most of the time I just love trotting about the landscape though, it's supremely relaxing.

I must admit, I was looking forward to Red Dead Redemption 2, I enjoyed the first game and I do like the GTA series. What I wasn't prepared for was for this to become my favourite game of all time. A bold statement I know, but it's true. There is something here for everyone, exploration, action, brilliantly told tales, not just the main storyline, but environmentally told ones too, (there are signs of a serial killer I stumbled across at one point, and I hope to pick up the threads when I find more clues) and super distractions for if you get antsy and just want a break. 

Of course no game can be truly perfect, so for the sake of balance I'll list some of my nitpicks. Controls can take some getting used to, there is a weight to Arthur and getting ahold of him can be a learning curve. The button prompts are displayed in white on the screen, the buttons have colours on them for a reason Rockstar! And picking things up can sometimes be a faff as the game can be fussy about where you are standing and what you are looking at.

Fortunately these small grumbles don't take the shine off what is, I believe, the next genearation game we've all been waiting for. This is high art, superbly made, brilliantly acted, top notch entertainment. If you have a console capable of playing it you owe it to yourself to purchase it immediately. Then take the week off work. You're going to need it.

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Better late than never, eh Ror?
 
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Enjoyed this, cheers!
 
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Looks who's back. Shady's back.
 
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Micro Machines was my favourite!
 
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i agree chris, the Aliens table makes the others look bad.. because its so goood!! but they arent that bad.. haha! ...
 
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