Look! Swimming horses! Magical!
I really, really hated Red Dead Redemption. Like in a “omg I am so bored I could eat someone’s hand off-not mine because I like having hands-but I am a little hungry for a hand snack” kind of way. And don’t think I am unaware of the cannibalistic nature of that sentence in relation to the RDR people-eating sub plot. BECAUSE I TOTALLY AM AWARE.
Look, I know everyone on the planet loves this game and I wanted to love it, too. There are virtually no Western themed video games, let alone any open world ones, something which always seemed weird to me because who doesn’t like Westerns? Besides your mom?
And yet here we are living in this Western-less video game world, subsisting on African zombies, fancy lad snack cakes™, and whatever little morsels of not Western themed shooters gaming developers have deigned to throw our way. So when RDR was announced, of course we all got raging nerd boners and salivated trail dust and thought dirty thoughts about The Unforgiven , High Noon , and Blazing Saddles and then the game came out and I. Was. Bored. Out. Of. My. Mind.
But-and here’s the thrust of the thing-no one else was bored. Thanks to a super scientific research project I conducted on Twitter, I would guesstimate about 900% of RDR players are very happy with the product which leads me to conclude I am either crazy or stupid or SMARTER THAN EVERYONE. I even asked game journalist Earnest Nex Cavalli for his thoughts on the game. Here’s what he had to say:
“There are few settings as innately masculine as the Old West. World War II will grow hair on your balls, life in Europe during the Dark Ages qualifies you for a tire rotation and side of beef at Firestone and training as a ninja in Japan circa 1470 will totes score you some mad geisha tail. Yet, for some reason, game developers just don’t use the Old West as a setting. That’s why it’s so refreshing to see Red Dead Redemption treat the era with such affection. By transplanting Grand Theft Auto’s game play basics to the unfamiliar landscape, RDR‘s creators leave players free to enjoy the more entertaining aspects of life in the dusty frontier: namely, shooting cattle rustlers, tying women to train tracks and failing, repeatedly in all of my efforts to use a rattlesnake as the single most awesome lasso known to man.”
AHA! MASCULINITY! Is my vagina to blame? Is that why I was so turned off by the game? Because my vagina doesn’t care? Let’s think about that for a second, pee on it, and then light it on fire. While I greatly respect Nex’s opinion and way with words, I must vehemently disagree with the idea of “Boys Only Fun” being the major draw of this game. I love Westerns. My vagina definitely loves westerns especially that one with Russell Crowe and Sharon Stone and Gene Hackman. I am meh about GTA but not enough for it to greatly influence my feelings here. I’m not immune to the naughty excitement of hogtying a lady in order to gain valuable information leading to more fun in-game play. What I don’t like is riding, riding, riding my horse all over the place for hours on end without encountering a single fun thing to shoot at or advancing the plot in any way. ALSO WHY CAN’T MY HORSE SWIM? Horses swim in real life. They ford things. Like rivers. WHY CAN’T MY HORSE FORD? Ugh.
To sum up: I did not enjoy Red Dead Redemption. That game owes me fifty bucks and a fording horse.
Image: Russian Horse Guard, 1914