Matthew Hunter is a Seneca College student who lives with Asperger’s Syndrome. He loves movies, video games and television, and has agreed to review his favourites (and not-so-favourites!) for AO York. Here is Matthew’s review of Red Dead Redemption 2.

Red Dead Redemption 2

By Matthew Hunter

Before I start this review I must apologize for the frequent hiatuses, I’m just stuck in with a lot of school work, and have found it difficult to find time to make more reviews. But alas, here we are.

Rockstar Games has done it again. Another masterpiece. The game company has come a long way from it’s beginning, and has had many great and successful titles under its belt, the Grand Theft Auto franchise, Bully, Midnight Club, and this is no different. But I do have to say one thing: learning about Rockstar overworking their employees is one controversy I cannot ignore. Yes apparently some of the employees who worked on this project have come forward and said that Rockstar has been overworking them.

Let’s talk about the story, it starts in medias res, meaning a bit into the plot.  Initially we don’t know what’s going on; protagonist Arthur Morgan and the Van Der Linde gang, your allies, are escaping the law by traveling through a blizzard, and the setting being 1899 the law loses them. They come by an abandoned mining town; Dutch, a familiar face from RDR1, takes you and Micah, another of the gang, out to find supplies. Soon you find a homestead (these are locations that can be robbed for a good reward) where a robbery is underway by your primary antagonists, the O’Driscoll gang.  After a brief shootout you will escape the burning building, where you also find Sadie Adler, a survivor of the robbery.  She’s a very strong character.  After returning back to camp there will be multiple things to do around, multiple missions; for spoiler reasons I’ll skip them.

After a train robbery your gang will need to get out of the mountains; nothing big happens in this mission, but afterwards you are introduced to the camp system. It’s quite thorough, you will need to keep morale and gang savings up.  It can get tedious at times, but it can have some great fun too. After completing chapter 1 and escaping the mountains you are free to do what you want, explore the regions, hunt, fish, rob, do as you wish.

One thing the game does excellently is the visuals.  For a console exclusive (for now) it is one of the most stunning and cinematic worlds I’ve seen in gaming:  the lighting, sounds, fog, colours, it feels like a western. And that’s not even getting into the dozens of animals and their distinct behaviours, multiple entertaining random events that can factor into later game experiences…there are nearly a dozen towns, specific stores that buy stolen goods, train robberies, house robberies (which I mentioned earlier), bounties to hunt, a crafting system which you will need recipes for, horses to tame, gang hideouts to destroy, outfits to buy (you can look like woody from toy story), poker, five finger filet, blackjack, 40+ weapons to buy and customize, five regions ranging from snow capped mountains to marshy swamps – there’s enough content here to last days maybe weeks. And that’s not even getting into the online mode!

This game is one of the best we’ve gotten in a long time, and through all the controversy, all the time waited, it’s worthy to easily take game of the year.


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