What we don’t want from the next Red Dead

After two teases in two days, it’s clear Rockstar Games is about to unveil a third romp through the world of Red Dead.

Yesterday, Rockstar Games updated their official Twitter icon and header image to the style of their Red Dead series. Then, earlier today, the gaming icon published the image above depicting seven silhouettes with a western background. While the internet jokes about silly sequel names like “Red Dead Garlic Bread,”it’s easy to think of what we want in from the next Red Dead installment like a bigger map, the ability to swim and dynamic weather.

So what don’t we want from Rockstar’s new Red Dead?

A prequel. While prequels have done some franchises wonders (Star Wars, Deus Ex: Human Revolution and Halo: Reach), there’s also something lost in stepping back in time: character investment. If a Red Dead prequel featured John Marston and his days with Dutch’s gang, players would never have to worry about the vast majority of the gang’s safety. If we know half the cast is in Redemption, we wouldn’t have to wonder if they’ll be in mortal peril in a prequel. Of course, a prequel wouldn’t damn a new Red Dead because Rockstar knows how to tell a great story, but it sure would reduce character agency.

A modern take. Thankfully, based on the image Rockstar published today, we should be returning to the time when horses were the primary source of transportation and the rails were only beginning to transform the western landscape. A few years back, Call of Jaurez tried a leap for the modern era and landed face-first in mediocrity. The suggestion that Red Dead try something similar from GamesRadar yesterday is nothing short of puzzling.

An emphasis on Online. Like most gamers, I’ve dabbled in Grand Theft Auto Online on and off over the years. While I found it to be fun, it’s not something I ever feel enhanced the narrative in any meaningful way – and it’s not supposed to. Still, with Online being a monumental success and an undeniable cash cow for Rockstar, I’m not the only one hoping the success of Grand Theft Auto Online will reduce the developer’s interest in a narrative-first Red Dead title.

Any Jack Marston. Sure, this one is a little contradictory with the first point, but the return of Jack “Work you damn nag” Marston is sure to annoy more than a few. While he was mostly crafted to give the Redemption post-story replayability, Jack lacked the gruff charisma of his father and only served to irritate.

These are just a few things I’m hoping Rockstar avoids when they fully unveil the Red Dead in near future. What things are you hoping make a return in the new installment? Disagree with my list or want to share your own hopes? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter!

For more Rockstar Games news, keep an eye first and foremost on their Twitter channel.

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