Red Dead Redemption: The Best Western in over Twenty Years

There are some things that established thinking in politics will never understand, because their culture is relative to their emotional states established before their 15th birthdays. It is well known that many people don’t evolve much emotionally beyond their middle to late teen years. That means that the values established in those years become the final touches of a psyche that will travel with that person all their lives.

And that is where a major gap exists between those adults that grew up prior to the computer revolution, and the adults that grew up after. And the teens that are now spending much of their development participating in online games, such as Medal of Honor, World of WarCraft, Gears of War, Halo, and Madden Football are having a different emotional experience than those that currently sit in the halls of power. And that is why those who analyze the Tea Party movement are completely lost, because there are elements emerging that defy the old powers that have controlled the human mind for thousands of years.

Well, I’m a man that grew up after this computer revolution. But what I’ve done personally is that I did not stop my development at age 15. I have continued a youthful mindset well into my adulthood. So as the computer age has emerged, I have enjoyed the benefit of the interactive gaming industry, and how they have now moved into a marketplace that rivals Hollywood movies. And I enjoy playing them and with each new game I find the experience beneficial.

With that said, my top game experience of 2010 was Red Dead Redemption.

Red Dead is a spaghetti western style game that allows you to do anything anytime, and anywhere in a vast western era style environment. It is the best western produced since Clint Eastwood’s Pale Rider back in the 80’s, but what this western has going for it is that you get to play the part of the lead character. And that is a dramatic new element that I find infinitely fascinating.

The music is the best western style soundtrack since Ennio Morricone’s soundtracks for The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, A Fistful of Dollars, and For a Few Dollars More. The style of direction is undeniably Sergio Leone, which again is a very welcome site.

The story of the game is about the evils of politics, which has particular appeal to me. Younger players may not get so much out of that story line, but I found it particularly potent. It’s about the encroachment of civilized, European style government over the rugged individualism of the western settler. But the story also deals with the deception of those same individuals that resort to the pack mentality of cattle rustlers, and Mexican revolutionaries.

One of the greatest thrills in the game are the one on one duals that you get to be in, where you have to quick drawl another gunman like we’ve all seen in hundreds of westerns. It is quite an experience to do it through the character of the game.

The game for me was a great relief from the reality of modern life where people have evolved into very soft and fragile versions of European ideology. I found the characters surviving the Wild West to be refreshing versions of the overly padded people we all have to deal with on a daily basis. In Red Dead, people get shot, they die, they fight with boldness and honor, and they don’t do a whole lot of complaining.

And that was the best part of the game.

The established portion of society hasn’t picked up on it yet, but the story to games like Red Dead Redemption is very sophisticated and politically significant if not entirely successful of recreating history both accurately and mythically. And it was a great pleasure to play.

And for Halloween, they released this! What great fun!

Rich Hoffman

19 thoughts on “Red Dead Redemption: The Best Western in over Twenty Years

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