The lights are on
I've never played a Grand Theft Auto game in my life. Yeah, I've messed around with them once or twice killing my share of hookers and ran down more than a few pedestrians (all with Rockstar's signature cheat codes, of course) , but I've never played a GTA game. SO when Rockstar announced that they had resurrected their Red Dead franchise, I decided to bite the bullet and try and play "Grand Theft Horse Carriage." I have to say, I was blown away. Just completely blown away.
He just wants his family. That's all John Marston wants, his family. And he'll do anything to get them back safely. Even pack his irons and track down and kill his former posse for the Bureau of Investigation (a precursor to the modern day FBI). The game starts off like any good Western should: With the protagonist getting shot. You're rescued by Bonnie McFarlane, a spunky young woman that can handle herself just fine in a time where most men had the ability to simply shoot you for looking at them funny, and begin your arduous journey to redemption.
From the moment I first got on a horse and began shooting coyote's, I was hooked. The controls are divine, using the L2 and R2 triggers to aim and shoot as opposed to the L1 and R1. This felt so natural to me, and now when I play shooters (Uncharted for example) I find myself tossing a grenade and killing myself as I daydream about Red Dead's controls.
I'm one for story over gameplay, but when a game has both gameplay and story, I don't know what to do with myself. The story is one of the best I have had the privilege of witnessing in my entire life. Very few games have characters that I genuinely care about (Mass Effect and the Uncharted series being the only ones until now), but this game, if you want to call it that, had me caring for John and his family. As I traveled from town to town, I couldn't help but try my hardest to conduct myself in the most honorable manner possible, out of respect for John. Yes, I know he's a fictional character, but I felt that I needed to. Every duel I tried to win my disarming my opponent, every random encounter I would try and play out in the least bloody way possible, and every bounty I would try and lasso instead of just gunning down the man.
This game is not a game, it's (dare I say) art. I connect with this game more that I do with mist novels or films, so that has to mean something, doesn't it? I can't say enough good things about this game, but in fears of sounding too repetitive I will end this review by simply saying: Don't pass on the opportunity to experience one of the most emotional and rewarding games of our generation.
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