With series such as Grand Theft Auto and Saints Row, the concept of a modern day criminal felt tired, and overused. Arguably, Red Dead Redemption, wasn’t that much different, as gamers spent most of their time gunning down armies of opponents. However, the desolate lands featured in the game allowed it to simulate a completely different reality.
Every location within the game, made the setting that much more believable. Expansive forests full of interactive fauna and flora, broad deserts riddled with bones and vultures, and sparsely populated settlements, have all contributed towards title’s quality. Even the most insignificant made the game what it is today. From grave robbers and traveling swindlers, all the way to the frontier cowboys and agents of Bureau of Investigation. They all had their own distinctive personas and added something unique to the overall experience.
Now, looking forward at a possible sequel for Red Dead Redemption, a continuation of the Wild West experience would be fitting. However, there are different routes that Rockstar Games could follow in order to deliver another, extraordinary title.
Red Dead Redemption finished in 1914, and if the sequel was to continue from that point, it would have to cover World War I, in one way or another. If approached appropriately, such a setting could still provide many with countless hours of high quality entertainment. Alternatively, the setting of the American Wild West, could be dropped entirely and the possible sequel could be moved to the much more industrialized East. Placing the sequel in the city of New York (Liberty City), during the 1920’s or the 1930’s would allow Rockstar to expand their horizons in terms of story telling.
Luck Luciano, one of the most significant men in history of American organised crime. A character of his stature could single-handedly carry the plot of the game as an antagonist.
During the late 20s and early 30s, the city of New York was a witness to the rise of the American Cosa Nostra, or Mafia. Setting the game in such period, would allow the developer to place the protagonist in the middle of Castellammarese War, which at the time was in a full swing. Game wouldn’t necessarily have to follow historical events, but with right execution, it could give players an insight into the organized crime of Liberty City. As the use of fictional characters and crime families would be much more likely.
Keeping the game within a confinement of a single, highly populated city, would make the experience much more concise. However, broad expanses of forest and empty lands outside of it, would allow the game to expand on the Cosa Nostra theme. Ultimately, narrow urban alleyways and despondent forests would add realism to the vicious reality of American criminal underground. With such setting, Rockstar could finally create a game that would portray the Cosa Nostra in its complete splendor. Unlike Mafia, and other games that came before, it wouldn’t concentrate on just the lifeless henchmen and enforcers. But would entail the story of brutality, lies, and deceit around everyone involved; from accountants like the infamous Meyer Lansky to the behind the scene masterminds like Lucky Luciano.
Meyer Lansky, unlike other members of the New York Outfit, who were Italian, was a Polish-Jew. Under any other circumstances, he could never become a man of any significance. But, his persistence and Machiavellian nature, made him one of the top men, and earned him the name, ‘Mob’s Accountant’
Every story, even the most profound, has to follow a certain schematic in order to maintain consistency. It has to have two opposite sides, a struggle that allows the recipient to favor one over the other. But unlike most mainstream stories, it doesn’t have to portray a fight between the good, and the bad.
In order to blur the lines, good story or in this case a video game, needs to have a cast of compelling characters. While it is possible to craft such from the scratch, sometimes, especially when referring to the turbulent 1930’s, it is better to source the inspiration from real life. And this is just what Rockstar could do when creating the sequel to the Red Dead Redemption.
Thomas Edmund Dewey, was the true American Hero. Standing strongly on the opposite side of the barricade, fought to decimate the criminal underworld of New York.
While Lucky Luciano and his men were running the streets, they could never catch a break, as specially assigned task force led by Thomas E. Dewy was constantly on their back. To some, a district attorney, a man of law, is nothing more than a representation of good. However, if his character within the game was to follow the actions of the real life counter part, his perception by the players wouldn’t be as clear.
Thomas E. Dewey when on his quest to take down New York Outfit, and especially Lucky Luciano, have not always played by the rules one would expect him to. In fact, his title was the only difference between him and the men he was after. Some say that you need to think like a criminal in order to catch one, however Dewey went a step beyond, and acted just like one. So if Rockstar Games were to implement a character of his stature within the sequel to Red Dead Redemption, scenes of strong-arming, intimidation, corruption, fraud, and physical violence would be more prominent with the law enforcement than the gangsters themselves. And this would create an atmosphere which would portray real life better than any other game.