So after having the game since the first week of launch, I finally hopped onto an online session of Red Dead Redemption with my best friend/best man. Now I find myself with a new gaming addiction. It’s amazing how close RDR’s online component comes to being an MMO version of their hit game. If it was more persistent than just giving the player some levels to achieve, and threw in a true form of consistent player gangs, maybe some wild west housing, and a barter-system economy, and more than a mere 8 (16?) people per server, and you’d basically have a fully-featured wild west MMO.
You can hop into a free roam game solo, band up with or against the other players, and go on a mass crime spree. Or if you’re the more responsible type you can rove the map taking out gangs, and hunting down players who begin doing too much “wrong”. There’s even still loot to acquire, levels to gain and gear to unlock. GTAIV was pretty incredible as an online experience, but Read Dead Redemption ups the ante even more putting the RAGE engine through the paces and making the online experience nearly as compelling (if not more so) than the single-player experience.
And it really makes me wonder, are they doing as much to test the waters for a fully online experience? Will Rockstar do what Realtime Worlds couldn’t? Will there be a GTA or a Red Dead MMO in the near future? Will Batman and Robin ever escape the clutches of the evil Penguin? Sorry, I started to feel like an announcer at the end of the old West/Ward Batman show. But you see my point don’t you? It seems as though with their last two open world games, Rockstar is trying their hand at a persistent online experience. 2K and the Scotland-based developer are probably well aware of the potential, but do they have the guts?