For those of us who prefer PC to console gaming, our agonizing year-long wait has finally come to an end with Red Dead Redemption 2 released to PC earlier this month. Red Dead 2 has rightfully enjoyed a great deal of attention during the past year, and it’s no doubt led the majority of PC gamers to already have some idea of the main aspects of the game – even if they’ve not had the first-hand experience with Rockstar’s Wild West phenomena. That being said, a game made for console doesn’t necessarily translate to a strong PC counterpart, so if you’re wondering if RD2 on PC really compare to the hugely successful PS4 variant then read on for a full overview and review.
To start with the strongest and most notable qualities of the game (which fortunately remain unchanged in its migration to PC) the open world, narrative and plot of RD2 are among the very best in the history of video games. It is no exaggeration to call Red Dead 2 a masterpiece with regards to these elements. This review won’t spoil the story of Arthur Morgan, but it should suffice to say that few have games have succeeded in forging such a personal and emotional connection between player and player character. No one will work their way through the twists and turns of the exhilarating adventure of the Van der Linde gang without ultimately leaving the game deeply affected by its conclusion.
Part of the reason Red Dead 2 succeeds so well in connecting the player to their gunslinging avatar is the pure size and scope of both the game’s sprawling open world and the hugely ambitious plot richly populated by scores of excellent characters. In fact, in total the game is voiced by over 700 voice actors, testifying to the rich tapestry of NPCs strewn across its locations. Properly exploring the vastness of Red Dead 2’s depiction of the Wild West takes hundreds, not dozens, of hours. Just the story content on its own is said to be 60 hours of gameplay, and with everything else in which the player can engage, it is easy to see how players will be spending a considerable amount of time with their character. With such an investment of time and consideration, it would be difficult to play the game through without developing some kind of connection with Arthur Morgan and the world of Red Dead Redemption.
So what can players expect from Red Dead 2 beyond its campaign? Well, tons of side content, for one. Apart from following the adventures of your gang of outlaws and bandits, players will be able to grow their friendships and relationships (and develop their animosities) with superbly-written characters, upgrade their camp, amass a wardrobe of customizable clothing, hunt over 200 species of animals, fish in a wide range of environments, explore the varied and gorgeous terrain of the world, treasure hunt for rare items and gold bars, gamble and play cards, race horses, and a whole host of other pursuits. In short, you’ll never be bored in the world of Red Dead Redemption 2.
Not only is the world enormous and stuffed full of content – it is also very responsive and the alert player will notice how the map is transformed over the course of their gameplay. As the story progresses the countryside changes shape as industrialization brings expanding railroads across the plains and prairies. Mission givers and side quest characters will visit and revisit the player in new settings as their own stories progress, often in a direction dictated by the player’s choices. There is simply so much to see and do in Red Dead 2 that the game can keep you occupied for hundreds of house.
And once you have satisfied your single-player hunger, Red Dead Online is ready and waiting. Although Red Dead Online was not as well-received as the game’s campaign, it has benefited from a year of development, expansion and tuning during its year on consoles. Just in time for Red Dead 2 arriving on the PC, it is looking in better shape than ever. Despite increasing criticism of the live service video game model, Rockstar seems to have made full use of their experience managing GTA Online and put a lot of love and effort into getting it right with Red Dead Online.
Apart from instanced deathmatches with varied rulesets, including the capture-the-flag-esque Grab the Bag and more straightforward Shootouts, Red Dead Online now also has co-op missions available to players. Currently there are six such missions, with more surely to come in the near future. On top of this, there are also a huge number of open-world free roam activities like taking down NPC gangs in their hideouts, hunting solo or collaboratively, a whole host of challenges and more. One of the latest additions is the ability for players to specialize their characters into one of three distinct roles: Bounty Hunter, Trader and Collector, each focusing on one aspect of the multiplayer game.
Given all this mass of content in multiplayer combined with the sprawling single-player content, Red Dead Redemption 2 combines to form one of the most ambitious, as well as one of the most successful, open-world RPGs of all time. Its PC launch does not disappoint, and PC players will be left as impressed with Red Dead Redemption 2 as the console gamers who have been enjoying it thus far. The game is a must-buy for its single-player story and content alone – but coupled with Red Dead Online, it is likely to be one of the most popular games for years to come.
Developer Rockstar Games bring Red Dead Redemption 2 to PC Xbox One and PlayStation 4
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