Currently most of the gaming world’s focus is on the massively popular and successful GTA V, and while I personally have not yet bought or played the game, I know what brilliance Rockstar are capable of thanks to 2010′s Red Dead Redemption.
The Wild West game took a huge step forward in the storytelling of video games, crafting characters who were expertly written and who add significantly to the story. The brilliant writing ensured important characters in RDR were never entirely perfect or dull, meaning that the characters feel more human and relatable.
Ultimately of course, it is the protagonist John Marston who is RDR’s strongest character. By travelling with him, understanding his difficult position and empathising with his frustration at the government, the player grows to adore him.
But as much as John is the reason for the player’s connection to the game, it is important to acknowledge the other characters John encounters on his travels, and how important they too are. These characters help to bring to life the world of RDR and provoke a wide array of different responses from the player, sometimes on an emotional level.
This article will focus on five characters who stand out on their own in RDR for their magnificent dialogue, uniqueness and unforgettable characteristics.
SPOILERS will be present throughout.
Honourable Mention – Abigail Marston
Some players may have found John’s wife a boring character, possibly because she appears in the less exciting and memorable missions, but with Abigail it is her history and will to change that define her character.
She is referred to as having once been a whore before the player meets her; Dutch even claims the whole gang used to ‘have her’ when she rode with them. Although we get no actual vision of what Abigail was like in her youth, the player gathers that she has tried, like John, to become a new person. When the two are reunited she says “we tried to change”, highlighting that her redemption has been equally as difficult as John’s. Whilst she remains faithful to John her real challenge lies in bringing up Jack. She wants to give Jack a proper upbringing but with John being forced back into his shooting boots she is weighed down with all the problems that single mothers face.
Of all the characters in RDR, Abigail shares the deepest connection with John. She has known him the longest, both as the outlaw he was and the man he has tried to become; she is not afraid to stand up to John and reminds him of his duty to his family. When John is gunned down she is left distraught, all that she has tried to build with John for years is shattered. She follows him into the grave and while no specific cause of death is given, there’s no doubt she was overcome with grief.
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This article was first posted on November 16, 2013