If you played the original, you will know that this is a wild-west themed release where you play an outlaw. It’s been eight years since the initial RDR, but when you compare the games, it seems like decades. Not that the original is bad, but the sequel is just that good. The main storyline takes about 60-70 hours, but Red Dead Redemption 2 also has exceptional replay value and can easily engage you for months.
This sequel is actually a prequel, which means the storyline is set before the original – more precisely, in 1899. You will be playing as an outlaw named Arthur Morgan who is a member of the Dutchman’s Gang (might be familiar from the first instalment). The wild west is faithfully portrayed and it is not just about escaping the law – it is a deep, compelling storyline about problems on that time and critique of the society overall.
An Open World of Your Wildest Imagination
The in-game world is huge and incredibly detailed. There are no loading times or areas you have to unlock later. It is a huge map and you can go anywhere you want. The graphics are fantastic and everything is of realistic geographic proportions. There are plenty of NPC characters, but they all fit in naturally with the in-game world.
The weather effects are dynamic and there are plenty of things to do aside from the main storyline. If you feel like fishing, feel free to do that. However, keep in mind that the location and other factors may determine whether you are successful or not. The flora and fauna are comprehensive and so detailed that even the insects are faithfully represented. Red Dead Redemption 2 can easily be the best open-world simulation you have ever seen.
Your Camp Is Your Haven
Everything starts with the gang’s camp. These are your headquarters, but they may move around the map depending on the necessity to run from the sheriffs. In the camp, you will meet other gang members, make deals and go on missions, exchanging information, etc. You can also help in doing chores (you don’t have to, but it’s the right thing to do occasionally).
Why is this important? Well, because RDR 2 makes you feel like that you are a real part of a true in-game world. How many times have you had the chance of playing open-world games where you can only access specific areas or cannot interact with most of the environment? This is not the case with the Rockstar’s release – the simulated world has never gotten closer to the real things.
The Perfect Balance of Game Pace
As for the main storyline, there is no primary quest in its basic sense. Remember, we are talking about a gang who simply wants enough money to retire peacefully. The plot is still extremely complex, but it is also perfectly built around the open world puzzle.
The game’s pace is just right – there will never be too many or too little events around you. The moments when you meet NPCs are precious as they are all created in detail. Gambling, bounty hunting, heists, horse riding, or simply exploring the environment are all exceptionally enjoyable. And even if it is not crucial for the storyline, it was added because the developers had game depth as the primary concern.
Have You Ever Befriended a Horse?
Red Dead Redemption 2 will be addictive even if you stick to the plotline of chasing, firing, and heisting. Yes, the controls are a bit complex, but it shouldn’t take you too long to get used to them. There are plenty of fighting options, manoeuvres you can use while riding your horse or doing other activities. However, once you are accustomed to the system, you will immensely enjoy playing.
Arthur Morgan, the main protagonist of the story, can develop his skills and abilities based on your actions. So, if you use a weapon all the time, you will perfect controlling it. Even the connectedness to the horse is portrayed in terms that the animal will accept your complicated manoeuvres (but still, expect no miracles).
The Advantage of 4K
We mentioned visuals, but let’s pinpoint that you can (and should) play RDR 2 in 4K resolution in front of a large TV. The graphics are phenomenal and it a shame not to experience the spectacle to the fullest. Oh, and make sure to take advantage of the cinematic view and enjoy a wild west movie you participate in and shape its outcome.
Needless to say, the music is perfect and fits into the atmosphere just right. More than 200 songs of various lengths were made specifically for this game. The soundtrack perfectly recognizes the situation and plays the ideal music whether you are riding into the sunset or walking through a town. The voiceover is done by professionals and equally good – all the accents, tone and pace changes are faithfully represented.
It’s Not Only the First Impression
We are reaching the end of the review, but the truth of the matter is that Red Dead Redemption 2 doesn’t need a conclusion. It already has everything a player might need – a vast open-world that is incredibly faithfully simulated, as well as millions of things to do and an incredible array of choice to make.
Whether as a player or reviewer, I have been a part of the gaming industry for almost three decades. During that time, no game has ever left such a positive impression on me. And we are not talking about the first impression since I played for over 100 hours now. RDR 2 will knock you off your feet with its addictiveness, depth, complexity and simplicity at the same time, and replay value. This is a must-have release for every gamer out there!