Red dead redemption 2
Rockstar’s sandbox sequel looks West in class
Who’s the hero? When’s it set? Is it a prequel, or a sequel? All these questions and more answered within.
The most astonishing chunk of Wild West real estate you’ve ever seen. A devilish new outlaw who comes across as part Jesse James, part Boba Fett. A final (fingers crossed!) release date of Spring 2018. Rockstar’s epic old-timey sandbox is almost upon us, and our trigger fingers are itchy for frontier fun. The cowboy CliffNotes from Red Dead Redemption 2’s latest footage? It looks increasingly certain it’s a prequel to 2010’s melancholy adventure. Train robberies appear to play a big role. The open world is the most visually varied and spectacular sandbox Rockstar’s ever designed. Oh, and you won’t be playing as a young John Marston, despite months of excited internet speculation.
Outlaw and order
Instead, you’ll step into the sociopathic spurs of one Arthur Morgan: a mean, driven outlaw who uses a ledger to track down unlucky souls who owe him and his associates money. Morgan’s most noteworthy ally? That’d be Dutch van der Linde. Yup, the psycho who Marston helped bump off in the last game.
This confirms at least some of RDR2 will be set before its predecessor, though the presence of an early telephone in a scene where Arthur holds up a bank suggests there may only be a few years between the two games. After all, those wacky speaking contraptions didn’t pop up in wide circulation until the 1890s, while the last game takes place in 1911. Also, there’s nary a sight of the last game’s automobiles; just horse-drawn carriages and the odd steam train.
Though the latest footage reveals little in gameplay terms, several tantalising
“You step into the spurs of Arthur Morgan, a mean, driven outlaw who’s chasing debts”
scenes mean we can make some (semi) informed speculation. Several shots of Morgan and other gang members holding up a locomotive suggest train robberies could rival the complexity of GTA V’s cracking heists. A few later shots also confirm hunting returns, seemingly deeper than ever. Not only is Morgan the proud owner of a bow – Marston could only kill critters with guns – but you better hope he’s a cowboy Robin Hood with it, because that rampaging grizzly looks both beautifully detailed and mightily miffed.
As for updated glimpses at the game’s world, it looks so vividly detailed and startlingly pretty, even Clint Eastwood would be drooling over his poncho. Rockstar has reaffirmed the game takes place in America’s heartland, and a few scenes give us clues to the sort of real-life American states its map could ape. Shots of a moody bayou give off a Louisiana vibe, while several figures are seen dashing through a mountain pass, knee-high snow crunching under their horses’ hooves. Such a location could easily have been pulled from the frosty peaks of Wyoming.
Other points of interest? Money seems to be the motivating factor for Morgan as he chases down debts. The last game’s wicked cowboy Bill Williamson is back. Duelling pistols make the cut. With its evocative outlaw action, we’ll be amazed if Red Dead Redemption 2 isn’t one of 2018’s finest titles.
Morgan may have a moose locked in his sights here, but alligators should prove tougher prey.
The world already looks more visually varied than the last game. Hot damn is that ever a sunrise.
The gunsmith store on the left of this street says they buy all weapons. It seems like times are tough – unless you’re a purveyor of pistols, when you’ll be raking it in.
This Native American has already featured in the game’s artwork. We’re betting he’s an important ally.