One of my all-time favorite video games is Red Dead Redemption by Rockstar Games.What first sparked my interest in this game before it was released in 2010 was a screencap of the game’s main character, John Marston, sitting stop the back of a horse and gazing out across the vast landscape of the then-undeveloped American west.
In truth, it was the horse in the image that caught my eye. I am a huge fan of animals and other creatures, real and imagined, in video games and film, and it was clear to me immediately from that screencap that a great deal of care and attention had been given to the horses in Red Dead Redemption. (I should mention that the image I’ve posted above is not the screencap described, but one that I set as my desktop wallpaper in the months leading up to the game’s release.)
Of course, there is so much more to the game than the accurate appearance and locomotion of the horses (and other animals abundant throughout the game). In playing Red Dead I truly felt as if I had become a part of that world. I came to care very much about the fate of the character I played and the plethora of quirky characters I crossed paths with in my virtual travels. I also thoroughly enjoyed the ability to interact with the environment in ways I had never expected, such as shooting any bird within range out of the sky, and locating its fallen carcass to collect feathers which I could then sell at a general store in town. Also, roping deer on horseback… and much, much more. But I’ll leave it at that for now.
In short, great game!