Gaming red-dead-redemption-xbox-one

Published on March 14th, 2016 | by Ian Goodwillie


Stop Teasing, Take-Two Interactive

Ian wonders what announcement Take-Two has for E3 in June. More Grand Theft Auto? Or more interestingly, the always hotly anticipated Red Dead Redemption 2?

Take-Two Interactive is one of the biggest video game publishers, developers, and distributors in the world. They own companies like Rockstar Games and 2K Games, and publish huge franchises like BioShock, Borderlands, Grand Theft Auto, and a host of 2K sports franchises.

So when the say they’re hitting E3 in a big way in 2016, you know that big rumours are going to start rolling.

E3, aka the Electronic Entertainment Expo, is the annual video game industry trade show. Consoles, gear, and games get shown off alongside press conferences by the biggest companies in the industry. Well in advance of E3 2016, Take-Two set the part of the internet that cares about such things ablaze with its announcement that it would be in attendance. No specifics were given but announcements relating to both new and existing games were mentioned.

It doesn’t take much to get online speculation started. Several of their existing franchises have new games in the works. But there is one game that a lot of people have been looking for.

Red Dead Redemption 2.

Or whatever it ends up being called.

When E3 happens in June, it will have been just over six years since Red Dead Redemption dropped. Many dismissed it early on as GTA on horseback since it was developed by Rockstar and had more than a few déjà vu inducing mechanics. But people soon realized that it was more than that. Red Dead Redemption is every spaghetti western trope realized in one beautiful game. And its protagonist, John Marston, is one of the best video game characters of all time. Red Dead Redemption is truly a joy to play, which is probably why I play through it at least once a year. And since it came out, rumours of the next instalment of the Red Dead franchise pop up every time someone from Rockstar or Take-Two opens their mouths. But let’s not count our chickens before Marston shoots them, shall we?

They reality is that there are a variety of announcements Take-Two could be making at E3 this year. We have yet to receive any story DLC for GTA V. It’s been awhile since the last BioShock game. It could be something related to Borderlands, Civilization, or an entirely new property. Hell, they could even announce GTA VI.

It could be all of the above. Wouldn’t that be nice?

GTA VI is an interesting one because it’s one of those franchises that always has a “what’s next” vibe to it. They’ve done homages to Miami, New York, and Los Angeles. Why not a GTA version of New Orleans or Las Vegas? Both cities are interesting and unique enough that they offer diverse game play options. And when they’re talking about the main character, they should seriously consider a female protagonist. That’s a perspective this franchise has not been explored from.

As much fun as it is to speculate, it’s unlikely that they’ll be announcing GTA VI already. The gap between IV and V is five years, and there’s seven years between III and IV. But you have to keep in mind that Vice City, San Andreas, and the two Stories games dropped between III and IV. And IV had some of the greatest story DLC any game has ever had as well as the PSP/Nintendo DS spin off Chinatown Wars.

What was my point? Right. My point is that it’s way too soon for a new GTA, though it’s about damn time we got some story DLC. You know what else it’s not too soon for?

Red Dead Redemption 2.

Or, again, whatever it ends up being called. If it is Red Dead Redemption 2, how do they top the last game?

There are a few ways to go with this one. You could set the story after the first game using John Marston’s son. You could go prequel and play through his adventures with the gang members he’s hunting down in Red Dead Redemption. You could even do a game that follows him after the point he broke with Dutch’s gang and before the government coerces him into helping them. Or even just after he finishes with the government and before he…well, before the last time we see John. But that’s not the Take-Two/Rockstar way.

While there are connections between the games, each edition of the GTA franchise since III features a completely different lead character. That includes story DLC like The Lost and Damned and The Ballad of Gay Tony. And in V, you get to play as three protagonists. Given the history of the GTA franchise, as well as the fact that the first game in the Red Dead franchise features different characters, it seems unlikely that we’ll play as John Marston again.

Whatever form the next iteration of Red Dead takes, fans want this game. It’s time. A new generation of consoles has arrived since Red Dead Redemption appeared. The difference between GTA V on PS3 and PS4 was staggering. Imagine what Red Dead Redemption 2 could look like today? It was an amazing game on PS3 and Xbox 360. We want to see what Take-Two and Rockstar can do with this franchise on PS4 and Xbox One. Bring on E3 2016. Bring on Red Dead Redemption 2.

And if they don’t announce Red Dead Redemption 2 they had better at least announce some GTA V story DLC for Trevor’s sake.

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About the Author

Ian Goodwillie

is an established freelance writer, a regular contributor to both Prairie books NOW and The Winnipeg Review. He also writes two blogs that very few people pay attention to, a Twitter feed no one follows, and film scripts that will never see the light of day. He is very fulfilled by his career choice.

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