Let me preface this article with one quick statement: I am normally not a fan of Rockstar or their games. I do not support the lifestyles they promote, I usually find their characters tripe, their plots tiring and bland, and feel that they are highly overrated. Then why am I writing this article, you ask? Simple, I played a Rockstar game. A great Rockstar game, an amazing Rockstar game, a game I would never have ever expected myself to be even talking about. If you couldn't tell by those descriptions, I am talking about Red Dead Redemption (or maybe the images gave it away, I don't know).
Red Dead Redemption was a game I was told by the general pubic... err public* I just "HAD TO PLAY." So grudgingly I did. And by the end of it I discovered something amazing, the main character John Marston and myself were one in the same (outside of the whole I'm real and he's not... OR AM I?). But do not fret my dear reader I wont leave you questioning how that happened (time travel? A biographical? Rockstar stole your likeness?), that's right par'dner/amigo/creepy guy with the lube hoping for pictures of boobies or muff shots (that's right, I see you there... Go ahead, apply it. It will be one of those articles) saddle up, you're about to find out how.
TURN BACK NOW
THAR BE SPOILERS IN THESE HERE WOODS..
THESE BITCHES IN FRONT OF ME, THESE HOES BEHIND ME WONT SHUT THE FUCK UP ON THIS GODDAMN TRAIN.
As stated prior I was told I *had* to play this game. "amazing," "awesome," "a western," "if you want to see the light of day again: GET TO PLAYING," are just a few examples of what people were saying about this damn game. Every time I would simply respond with /emote_rolleyes and go back to sucking at Super Ken and Ryu Online IV, maybe giving a slight, "Perhaps" in between my daily masochistic beat down sessions. Then finally it became unbearable so I, utilizing my astounding level of persuasion, convinced a website to send me a copy (GameFLY is SO my bitch.) so I could finally shut everyone up by shitting on their apparently new favorite game. Before I did however, I did do a little research. Spoiler-free research of course! Well turns out if you didn't already know (I AIN'T GOING TO TELL YOU AGAIN, SPOILARS!
) RDR is a free roaming mission based title with all sorts of extras such as outfits, side quests, and time wasting derpy things like horseshoes.
So, being the grouchy gamer forced to play something I had no interest in, I said to myself "ONLY THE MAIN QUESTS" and that's what I did. Focused completely on the main story, little to no side quest completion, no outfits gained, no horseshoes thrown, and maybe one bounty. John had to kill his friends, I had to get back to my life. We were in this together, and we wanted to get out of this fast. Think of the movie Twins.. no wait, don't. Think of Tomorrow Never Dies.. No, okay go ahead and think about Twins, that is a great movie. Anyways, we were stuck together whether we liked it or not, I was helping him, he was helping me. But just like another great movie, Marmaduke, we learn all too late that it's hard to let go after the adventure... Thus begun the adventure into New Austin for the both of us.
THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE GODFUCKINGDAMMIT.
Seriously? I had to go to Mexico now too? Mexico, home of the real wild west (south?) apparently, I was pissed off beyond belief that I was lead to believe I was done; WE were done! We had bundled a ragtag gang of weirdos, ala Mass Effect 2, and completed an amazing end-of-game-worthy battle against Bill Williamson and his gang at Fort Mercer. And the one surviving member of the Williamson gang has the gall to let me know "YOUR WILLIAMSON IS IN ANOTHER CASTLE." I should have filled his eye sockets with lead just like every Toad that said the same thing to Mario, the trigger happy bastard. I was so shocked by this, I swear John and I both thought the same thing, 'This goddamn shit isn't over yet!?' Truth be told, I was unhappy with what had happened up till that point, nothing was standing out to me. I cared nothing for the characters, cared nothing about racing across the beautifully rendered 'land of opportunity' (see:wasteland) that is New Austin. And now I had to go to Mexico too?! Fuck this. John and I both felt betrayed, in different ways, Rockstar betrayed me as the intelligence gathered betrayed John.
Anyways, as I grinded my teeth quietly raging to myself I got on that raft with Irish and fought the bandidos on the rio praying that there would be something different in Mexico, instead of helping able bodied people do things they more than likely would have done themselves. But maybe a quick mission and get the fuck back to John's family and my family of games waiting for me. I was dead wrong, Red Dead Wrong... (ehehe..)
I SWEAR IF I HAVE TO HELP ONE MORE LAZY MOTHERFUCKER WHO CAN'T SOLVE THEIR PROBLEMS WITHOUT THE AID OF A RETIRED BANDIT......FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUU
So fast forward a bit, now we're on top of a mountain fighting alongside the US army and it's snowing like crazy. John and I had ended the Mexican Revolution, hung out with Sam Elliot, killed both Bill Williamson and Javier Escuella (Bonus kill!), seized a train/protected the same train/stole the train again, watched an innocent die, and watched the vicious and telegraphed tyrant cycle start again. Now we are north of New Austin chasing after John's previous leader Edward Blake
, I mean Dutch Van Der Linde, and his new gang of Native Americans, (badasses pretty much) because the government is doing what the government does - fucking their own promises! Once again the end was in sight and it was yanked out right from under us. But now, now we're here on this mountain top with Dutch cornered, both John and I once again thinking again, "Kill this douche then we depart ways. You get your life back and I get mine." Dutch reenacts the beginning of the Watchmen solo-style and throws himself off of the cliff. The government goons show up, slap John on the back and send him home where his family is waiting.
We start riding home listening to some tired sounding guy sing a song expecting both the embrace of John's family for him and the credits for me. "Not so fast friend." John says to me, "lets ride for one more chapter, then... then its over." Its then I realize, small and faint, that perhaps we are the same person? I shake the feeling, grunt, and move on. We had worked for this, for John it was days but for me it was mere hours. But together we had accomplished great things, helped many people, killed many people, and now it was all over. Now instead of John and I helping people, its my turn to help John.
THE FINAL ACT: GODZILLA AIN'T GOT SHIT ON JOHN MARSTON. SERIOUSLY.
As John spends quality time with his family and his deadbeat "uncle," who is in seriously need of a napkin, doing things that we've done now for what it feels countless times I realize something is amiss. This is too perfect, too normal. RDR is built on tragedy and conflict, yet the only tragedy that has happened so far is old chunk beard let the livestock go while John was gone. Then it happens. Jack goes up the mountain to fight a bear and unlike his papa he isn't blessed with the ability to beat the odds and gets his ass kicked. John saves the day like he has so many times before, using his hero on his waist he kills the grisly and everyone goes home happy (minus one godless killing machine). But then it happens.
John is having a sensitive moment with his son talking about flying machines and books or some shit and gets interrupted by vomit man and his (vomit covered, I'm sure) binoculars, letting us know that some bad mother fuckers be on the horizon. "Oh shit, the rest of Dutch's gang?! Banditos?! Friends of that bear we just killed?! Worse: Its the fucking US Army here for John. John then quietly tells Jack to get in the house with his mother while both he and I and uncle too apparently prepare for the final battle. Everyone's luck runs out sometime, John's has finally too.
BEFORE YOU START PELTING ME WITH SHOES, THIS IS THE LAST PARAGRAPH I SWEAR
John Marsden died that day fighting the US army, but saved his family in the process leading his son Jack to become a man in his father's own image. I didn't play the post-John game. I shut it off quietly, returned the game to the mailbox, and reflected. I did so for about 3 days, then went to my local money taker, GameStop, and bought myself a copy. Why so? Because, well just like a corny after school special I learned something about myself. John Marston and I were one in the same and I didn't realize it, we both wanted to get out of our situation fast, I just wanted it faster. Together we were put together not by our choice but by persuasion from others we were steered the same. We both helped a whole shitload of people, both of us grunting and moving right along. We killed a fuck-ton together too. John completed his goal before I completed mine, yet I was the one left with feelings of regret as if I had lost a piece of myself, a friend. Longing to return to John Marston and New Austin, I happily bought RDR and added it to my collection, my first Rockstar title ever and am enjoying my 2nd and full completion playthrough.
and that's how the Terminator went back in time to save Christmas. The end. read