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“Red Dead Redemption 2” is Rockstar Games biggest release to date, and the game definitely speaks for itself. Over the past eight years, Rockstar employees and developers poured their heart and souls into the development of this game, working upwards of 100 plus hours per week.
The level of graphic detail is absolutely insane. Snow trails are created when hiking in the snowy mountains of the open world. Lighting features so accurate that individual flakes of snow can be seen glistening in the sun and moonlight. Animals with realistic features such as anatomically accurate body parts that allow players to distinguish the sex of the animal. In-game characters are immersive and interactive, carrying the storyline seamlessly and grippingly from one chapter to the next. With that being said, the game is visually pleasing. On the other hand, the physical gameplay is terrible.
Rockstar Games has always had the central theme and tendency to create games using the foundation of hyper-realism ideology. Because of this hyper-focus on realism, Rockstar often neglects the manner in which the game operates. The control scheme for combat and cover is completely broken and inaccurate. Interacting with items and in-game characters is made overly complicated for absolutely no reason, forcing players to hold buttons instead of simply tapping buttons to interact. On-screen control hints are ambiguous and hard to see as they are transparent and pushed down into the corner of the screen.
The amount of interaction and playability the game allows for is ridiculously massive but works against the game, taking away from what video games should be: Simple substitutes for reality. Instead, you have to ensure your character eats for survival, keep your horse well-fed and groomed, sit through long trailing openers to missions that lead to short lived shootouts and end with yet another trailing closer.
The game’s playability is paradoxical as it renders the game ultimately unplayable.
There is no denying how much care and consideration Rockstar put into this game, and for that reason the game looks phenomenal. Unfortunately, the mechanics are far too distracting and complicated to enjoy the game in its entirety. Rockstar has always made enjoyable games, and players are finding their pleasure in the immersiveness of the game. Sadly, players who are not familiar with Rockstar’s games will be quick to lose interest.