In the beginning it was Capcom. That's right, because the whole story that many of you have been able to experience on your pads on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, and which will be able to see again in October, with the release of Red Dead Redemption 2 on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, stems from a title that initially didn't even have the Rockstar Games branding on it. In reality everything comes from Angel Studios, a software house that he chose as the producer of his game, Red Dead Revolver, none other than the home of Resident Evil and Monster Hunter. During development, the software house was acquired by Take-Two Interactive, the company that owns Rockstar Games: this is how, from the remains of Angel Studios, what is now known as Rockstar San Diego was born, composed of the guys who worked on titles like the previous Red Dead, Max Payne 3 and the Midnight Club saga.
Of course after the purchase, the Red Dead Revolver IP was still in the hands of Capcom: a series of events, made up of the desire to Rockstar Games to release the game, its state of unplayability and the jump occurred with the Tokyo Games Show 2002 and E3 2003, he managed to withdraw the game from development, allowing the house of GTA to buy the brand, so to be released 1 year later, in 2004.
So it was born Red Dead Revolver, a title that made the revenge of Red Harlow (and some of his companions) the narrative fulcrum: this was of little consequence (although it was quite interesting for the time), in favor of a gameplay that was already innovative, fast and fun. The title stands as a third person shooter, consisting of a sketchy cover mechanic (which we will see again in GTA IV), a rudimentary weapons management system (but with a meticulous attention to detail) and aTarantinian atmosphere even before the maestro got his hands on the Western genre.
Red watches helplessly as his family dies: still a boy, he can do nothing but grab that refined father's gun, with a scorpion symbol on the butt, to shoot and amputate the left arm of his family's executioner. . However, the gun, which has become red-hot in the fire where it fell, will injure Red's hand, leaving a scar in the shape of a scorpion on him.
The rest of the game (and the story) will take you on a journey to an America of the 1880, chasing General Diego and Colonel Daren in order to kill them. Red will not be alone on this journey: he will meet several characters, from Jack Swift, an English trick-shot master with his revolvers, Annie Stoakes, a girl who works at his ranch and Buffalo Soldier, an American soldier and former slave. There will also be other characters, including Red's cousin, Shadow Wolf, and some members of the enemy gangs. Many of these characters, in the course of the game, will be usable in story tracts, transforming the gameplay: if Red will aim everything on his revolver, Jack Swift will use two pistols to kill faster, while Annie will use her rifle to hit and kill enemies with one shot.
The various characters will also have a unique ability: Red will be able to use the Deadeye, similar to the one seen in Red Dead Redemption, but a little less aesthetically pleasing, while Jack will be able to unload two volleys of shots at the nearest enemies.
Red Dead Revolver it was not Open-World; indeed, it was heavily linear. Few things allowed you to digress from the main quest, few weapons were available throughout the game and there was little difference between the various levels. Yet the title was played and enjoyed in an absolute way, focusing everything on an atmosphere and gameplay capable of making you savor a tasty plate of spaghetti western like in the best films released long ago. Just the lack of the open world made Red Dead Revolver a title usable by many: no secondary missions long to bore the player's soul, nothing collectible to take. Just a plethora of badly dressed minions made up of undefined polygons.
At the time, also thanks to the lightness with which copyright weighed on various multimedia works, Red Dead Revolver boasted an exceptional soundtrack. ... and for the roof a sky of stars was positioned on the main screen (of the master Morricone), while Micallizi and Pregadio with Lo Chiamavano Trinità populated some game missions. Pieces by Nicolai, DeMasi and Rota also appear, thus populating the game with dozens of mainly Spanish music tracks, masterfully positioned in the game phases and, above all, perfect for the occasion. On the other hand, let's also remember that Rockstar Games is known for having a wide sleeve with regard to music licenses: every GTA to date has had a lot of high-level sound tracks, famous pieces licensed in game radios.
Even if we are talking about 2004, the secondary missions were absent in favor of something not too strange for modern video games: the Bounty Hunter mode, which allowed you to replay certain missions at a greater difficulty, lengthened the title almost as it does now the accustomed mode New Game +. This mode Bounty Hunter in addition, it presented challenges to overcome (such as shooting only in the head or finishing the mission in 2 minutes), and once they were overcome they would unlock a character ... in multiplayer mode!
Well yes: Red Dead Revolver it had a multiplayer mode. Nothing online, of course, all locally, yet it was perfectly fun and frustrating in the same way. The mode was called Showdown and allowed 2 to 4 players to clash with each other. The way they could clash varied according to three game types:
- Bounty Hunter: only goal, to reach the score limit of the bounty to win the game.
- Setting of the Sun: a sort of time trial, always with points.
- High Noon: the classic shooting at the OK Corral
Of course, upgrades such as ice effect o fire, skill or life improvements, and most fun of all, the drunk mode, where all controls are reversed to the player who takes it.
To be of the 2004, this mode featured more than a dozen maps and more than 45 characters, each with a different weapon and skill.
What could be said about it Red Dead Revolver, now it has been said: unfortunately, however, it is not enough, as the game lends itself to an experience that is really difficult to tell, but which still pushes me to want to start it again on PlayStation 4 (it is available for € 14.99).
You need to know the past to understand the present and orient the future.
Many of you will have stripped Red Dead Redemption, but even this change of name has led its genesis to get lost in the maze of a console so full of games to create confusion. It is right to wait for the new Rockstar Games chapter thanks to the experience gained from the adventure of John Marston: yet it would be even more legitimate to talk about it after visiting the place where it all started. That sandy place, stained with blood and gunpowder, where Red Harlow tramples on the carcasses of his enemies in search of revenge against the executioners of his family. Red Dead Revolver is the beginning of everything, and it has never been more right to try its experience, in view of what will arrive on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in October.
We will be streaming on Thursday 10 May, on our Twitch channel, and for the occasion we will start the game from scratch. We are waiting for you!