Red Dead Redemption II: Game of the Year Candidate

Will Jones, Writer

Editor’s Note: Article contains spoilers.

Rockstar Games released the second installment of the Red Dead Redemption Series on Oct. 26. In a rarity, the second installment of video game series does not surpass the first.

The second installment exceeded my expectations. The story takes place around a decade before the beginning of the first game. Rockstar set up the story structure this way to show the events leading up to Dutch Van Der Linde’s gang falling apart.

The main character of this story is Arthur Morgan. Arthur is Dutch’s right hand and he greatly portrays a cowboy in the dying Wild West. Rockstar had to have spent a large amount of time with the attention to detail of this game. The main character from the first game, John Marston, plays a dominant role in the prequel. Marston’s wife and son, who are revealed towards the end of the story in the first game, have a big role too.

Marston’s son, Jack, is absolutely adorable in the prequel. There’s one mission where you teach him how to fish.

For the length of the game, Dutch and his gang are on the run from the law. They committed a robbery in the main town of Blackwater and it went horribly wrong. There are a total of six chapters with two epilogue chapters. In total, this game has over 100 missions to partake in.

Bill Williamson and Javier Escuella are the two men that Marston is enlisted in to hunt down by the government. Seeing them in the prequel is an amazing experience because they serve as great comrades in Dutch’s gang.

There is also a heap of side missions. They range from intimidating people that owe the gang money to finding lost exotic animals for a man’s circus. I had a wonderful time breaking up a KKK rally!

A warning to new beginners, you must take care of yourself and your horse. Arthur’s vision can become heavily blurred and shaky if your health and stamina cores are low.

Rockstar took a page out of the customization book from “Grand Theft Auto 5” with the horses. You can name your horse and you can customize it. You have to spend an extensive amount of time unlocking different perks for your horse. I accidently killed my first horse, Genesis, and I felt extremely bad about it because I lost the time and perks.

Growing a close bond with your mount is key because it can become angry enough to throw you off. If you don’t feed it or brush it, it will become agitated. Beware of the different predators throughout the different areas of the map. A gigantic bear almost ripped Arthur in half and the fight scene was intense!

“Red Dead Redemption’s” new Eagle Eye mode helps you track down your prey and it highlights items of interest. Hunting is a lot harder on this game which is why Eagle Eye is super essential to use.

There’s a fictional Louisiana located in the eastern region of the map that is crawling with gators. There’s a mission where you have to help a man that has this legendary albino gator trying to eat him.

I am currently on the last chapter, and I am sad to say that Arthur has tuberculosis. It is slowly killing him and his abilities are hindered. I am eager to see the game’s conclusion and Dutch is turning into the crazed man we see in the first game.

This description is only the tip of the iceberg of what this game has to offer. Beware of the rival gangs because they will come out of nowhere to try and kill you. I don’t mind paying sixty dollars for this game because I know what I’m paying for. This game should easily win game of the year, and I highly advise picking up a copy of this sensational game. Be prepared for a long download. This game is at least 90 gigabytes.