Read Catloafini’s responses to the questionnaire here.
No Home for the Outlaws
This is a song I helped some friends put together. This song was born out of a series of conversations we had when we were all playing Red Dead Redemption around the same time period. When you asked for supplemental material about Red Dead I recalled that this friend had made a beat inspired be the game a few months back and had never done anything with it. So I asked him about it and here we have a new song! It is called No Home for Outlaws by the chip-tune rock band, D&D Sluggers. I also provide the juice harp and bit of vocals. Part of the instrumentation is done on Little Sound DJ for the old school, original GameBoy! Their songs are usually programmed on the GameBoy or Nintendo DS.
Read Silvia’s responses to the questionnaire here.
My initial reaction to the first few hours of Red Dead Redemption? Amazingly, disappointment. Where was the interaction I was promised? Why can’t I talk to people or hire a prostitute? Why do all my actions just result in getting a bounty put on my head? Why is riding a horse so damn hard?
Read Dirty Hariet’s responses to the questionnaire here.
I’ve played many games in my lifetime with various characters but none have had such an impact as John Marston in Red Dead Redemption. There have been times in the past where I have found myself physically attracted to video game characters (Chris Redfield – RE5, Rock – Soul Calibur, Paul Phoenix – Tekken) but I haven’t noticed or paid any real attention to their personality or back story. With John Marston, as sad as it sounds, I felt like I was in love with him. Everything about his character was so wonderful and I guess that might be why so many people ship him and Bonnie because they relate to the way she feels about him. Usually when I get into a game, I play it through and then forget about it. Red Dead Redemption had me thinking it about it quite often and wanting to find out more of John’s story. Even the little things to the game such as the designs on the playing cards had a great impact on me – I even bought these cards online because I loved them so much.
My brother told me what happens to John before I played the game. Spoilers don’t bother me too much because I still like to know the how and the why of what happens to the character. When I got to the end of the game, especially when they showed John’s face as Jack and Abigail were leaving, I started to tear up. I don’t usually like soppy tv shows or movies but Red Dead Redemption had such an amazing reaction on me.
Read Anthrax Ninja’s responses to the questionnaire here.
Special thanks to TheAgentbrady101 for providing the gameplay footage.
Read BamPowSmash’s responses to the questionnaire here.
Red Dead Redemption: A Haiku
Hey! Someone needs help
Oh wait; they just killed my horse…
No one left alive
Read Icthlei’s responses to the questionnaire here.
Dear Red Dead Redemption,
I hate to have to do this to you, but I think we need to start seeing other games. When I met you I was going through a rough time in my life. I was single, stressed, graduating, and neck deep in a thesis. I walked through my days with smiles, dressed in my floral skirts and argyle sweaters. Little did everyone know that at night we had a sordid affair. I would touch your button and you would come to life before my eyes. You showed me things I’d never seen before. You taught me how to kill a bear with a knife. You taught me how funny ragdoll graphics can be when you run a stagecoach off a cliff. You even showed me how many hookers I could tie up and ride off into the sunset with before the law enforcement noticed.
And I showed you things too. I showed you that with a few well placed cheat codes we could have all the guns and ammo we needed to wipe out entire towns. I showed you that 2 am was when things got real, and chickens started to die. Most importantly I showed you that the love between a girl and her game console is real.
But now times have changed. I’m seeing a real person. I’m back at school. I know I haven’t finished the story yet on my dastardly game. I know I’ve left you hanging, but I can’t, I just can’t. We need to part ways. Do you understand?
What…what’s that? You…you brought me zombies? Oh, and you brought me some cougars to fight? Is…is that a stagecoach with no one in it? Um…well…maybe just this once. But it’s the last time I swear!
Read Caity Mae’s responses to the questionnaire here.
Dead Man’s Gun
The ending theme of RDR, ‘Dead Man’s Gun’ had a profound effect on me. When it started playing and the credits rolled, I literally cried. I thought it was so incredibly poignant and emotional. To me, that song, sums up the entire point of the game: A man fighting to get back something he loves that was wrongfully taken from him. Immediately after I heard this song, I got the entire soundtrack and memorized Dead Man’s Gun. To this day it is one of my favorite songs. I’m involved in a video game “book club” so to speak called “Gaming Gab” at the University of Minnesota, where each week we sit down and talk about different aspects of video games and video game culture. One week’s theme last year was “video game music”. We were encouraged to share what games we thought had incredible soundtracks, or songs that deeply affected us. I shared Dead Man’s Gun.
Read Saffron Solara’s responses to the questionnaire here.
Entering Mexico in Red Dead Redemption
You’ve just barely made it across the river alive, but you’ve made it to Mexico. All the “friends” you’ve made in New Austin are behind you, for now. You have a new place to explore, a clean slate. As I got on my horse and started riding to the nearest town, something extraordinary happened. All of the in-game sound effects lowered to almost mute, random encounters were shut off, and a song came on. “Far Away”, by José González.
I will now and forever recognize this song as soon as I hear it. That’s the kind of impact I love. The way it set the mood for the scene was very unexpected, but perfect. The song lasted until I was just short of reaching the town, and as that moment came to an end I started to look at this game differently. I started to actually think about the situation John Marston was in. Before I was simply enjoying the mechanics of the game and exploring my possibilities. This song really pulled on my emotions for Marston and I started to really feel his frustration for all the shit he has to deal with when all he wants to do is settle as a rancher with his family.
I began to wonder what his wife and son were doing all this time. What did they look like? Did they know where Marston was? Will they live through this? Will Marston ever get the life he dreams of? But Mexico was waiting.