Do you have what it takes to get a review published right here on Kotaku? Zachary does, as he hunts down every last skunk in the Wild West.
Yes, that’s right, we’re now publishing reader reviews here on Kotaku. This is your chance to deliver sensible game purchasing advice to the rest of the Kotaku community.
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This review was submitted by Zachary Hull. If you’ve played Red Dead Redemption, or just want to ask Zac more about it, leave your thoughts in the comments below.
Red Dead Redemption (360, PS3)
The year is 1911, you are John Marston a relic of a dying age and you are searching for some old friends. The Wild West is a dangerous place, from marshalls and thieves, to cougars and packs of wolves. You are not here to tame it, or even try to fix it, just make it home alive. But change is just around the corner, and that could pose more danger than a group of banditos.
John Marston: Coming into this game, I thought Marston would be like a lot of male leads in games. Quiet and with not much depth to his character. I couldn't be more wrong. As the game progresses, you bond with Marston and feel for not only what he does, but why he does them. Regardless of whether you are a Hero of the West or a vicious Outlaw, he still retains a lot of emotional depth that you come to respect by the end of the game.
Mastering The Wild West: Outside of the main story, there are a lot of things to do. Hours at a time can be spent searching the vast expanses searching for animals to hunt, hidden boxes of treasure to plunder or even just helping (or hindering) those who happen to cross your path. You truly feel like you are experiencing all the West has to offer you.
The Supporting Cast: Along your journey, you will meet people who will give you assistance during missions. From Miss MacFarlane to the never sober Irish, they all give you some enjoyment when they join you on your (and sometimes their) escapades. They all have distinct personalities, and the voice acting is not only excellent, but also mostly realistic.
Lighting: I don't know if this was a problem with my TV or it was to show the lack of technology at the time, but visibility goes from being fine during the day, to almost impossible during the night, and even worse when it rains at night, or you are in a room with very little ambient lighting. During one mission I could only kill enemies with auto-aim, dead eye, or if I positioned myself directly in front of a light source, so enemies became visible, and changing the brightness settings did little to fix this issue.
Platforming: There are very few points in the game where platforming comes into play, but at those times, the jumping and climbing are very clumsy and after playing games like Uncharted, you would think those features, regardless of how often they are needed, would be better implemented.
Red Dead Redemption allows all your fantasies about the west to come true, you are able to take all those iconic moments from the old western films and make them your own. From the vast environments to the small and distant settlements, you know that when you first step off the train and walk into Armadillo, that you will have a long and very enjoyable western adventure.
Reviewed by: Zachary Hull
You can have your Reader Review published on Kotaku. Send your review to us at the usual address. Make sure it’s written in the same format as above and in under 500 words - yes, we’ve upped the word limit. We’ll publish the best ones we get and the best of the month will win a Madman DVD prize pack.