Red Dead Redemption Review: The West at its Best

Recently, my brother started wanting to play Red Dead Redemption again. Having played it myself, I thought it would be a good idea to do a review for the game. Red Dead: Redemption was marketed as an action-adventure game set in the famous Old West, with cowboys and the like. Does it manage to replicate the Western experience or does it fall short? Well, let’s take a look.

The story takes place in the American Old West in the year 1911, and follows a former outlaw called John Marston. John is face with a dilemma when his wife Abigail and his son Jack are taken away by the government. All though Mr. Marston’s days of crime are over, his former gang members are still at large. In order to see his wife and son again, John must bring his old friends to justice. Having no choice, John agrees to help the government in order to save his family.

Red Dead Redemption features a big, open world which captures the “West” feeling very well. You’ll feel like you’re in one of those old Western movies, if you know what I mean. Players can move around in the world on foot, but there are many other means of transportation available as well. You can buy a horse (or tame wild ones, if that’s your style) to ride around, or you can ride the train or a stage coach. Swimming is not an option, however, because John cannot swim; and he will drown if you try to make him. I was a little disappointed by this, but it doesn’t really

Like many action-adventure games, combat plays a heavy role in Red Dead Redemption. John’s has many types of guns at his disposal and he can even use his knife if things get up close and personal. If in danger, John can take cover behind objects, where he can blind fire or target his enemies. There is even a special ability called Dead Eye, which slows down time and allows John to shoot specific parts of the body. It’s similar to bullet time in other games, such as Max Payne. Gun fights also takes place on horseback and stage coach; adding a bit of variety to the game. Overall the combat is fun, but it also captures the feel of Western shootouts.

While his main focus is to rescue his family, John can participate in other activities as well. There are challenges that can be completed, strangers to help out, and even a cinema where John can watch some funny films. He can also hunt animals, collect bounties, gamble, compete in duels, race horses, arm wrestling, and even cause mischief if you so desire. By participating in these events, John can earn money to spend on helpful items; such as powerful weapons and curatives. With the wide variety of activities, players will experience John’s adventure for days.

Of course, players can’t go around doing whatever they want without consequence. There’s a morality and wanted system which will encourage players to think about the things they do. Depending on his actions, John can either gain or lose honor, which will effect how people will react to him. Committing crimes can put a bounty on John’s head and send the law after him. Even if he escapes, there is still a chance that bounty hunters will come after him. The crime and reputation system defiantly adds to the Western atmosphere of Red Dead Redemption.

Red Dead Redemption is an excellent game, and I am quite impressed with it. Rockstar Games did a very good job at recreating the Wild West; putting some incredible detail into the world. The game has an amazing story with a terrific cast of characters; many of which never fail to amuse me. There are so many things to do in John’s world that you’ll find your self left with plenty to even after you’ve beaten the game! The music fit’s the Western atmosphere perfectly and the graphics are appealing as well. Red Dead Redemption is certainly worth playing and definitely deserves to be apart of your collection.


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