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5 video games like Red Dead Redemption that'll make you feel like a true Western gunslinger

The two protagonists from the Red Dead Redemption series (Image via Rockstar Games)
The two protagonists from the Red Dead Redemption series (Image via Rockstar Games)
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Sidhartha Deka

The Red Dead Redemption video games have set the bar for a great Wild West experience of being the gunslinging cowboy that players have always wished for. With RDR's engaging combat mechanics, gun fights, atmospheric settings, and overall great narrative design, the two games from Rockstar have left a considerable impression on a lot of players.

Once finished with those games, players may be itching to play something similar, just to scratch that need for a good Wild West experience. The good news for such players is that there are many other video games available that can help them with that.

While these games might not live up to the legendary high bar set by Red Dead Redemption 2, they will manage to fill some of the emptiness left after the Red Dead games. So here are 5 video games like the Red Dead Redemption series, with a great Wild West experience.

Note: This article reflects the writer's opinion.


5 video games like Red Dead Redemption

1) Outlaws

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One of the first video games that let players embody a gunslinger, Outlaws, was released in 1997 by developer Lucasarts. It was a first-person shooter set in the American Wild West. Protagonist James Anderson is an ex-US Marshal trying to find the people who have kidnapped his daughter and murdered his wife. For a 90’s game, the premise was par for the course.

The gameplay lets players use typical Old West weapons such as a Revolver, Rifle, Shotgun, and Dynamite as they shoot down enemies through the levels. Players can also access additional items such as a lantern to use in dark areas and a shovel to dig holes in certain places.

While lacking slightly in the graphics department, the video game more than made up for it with its gameplay. It was one of the first games to incorporate a usable sniper scope, as well as the ability to manually reload a gun. The game was also praised for its music and orchestral score.


2) Desperados III

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Desperados III is a top-down, real-time tactical video game developed by Mimimi games and released on June 16, 2020, across all platforms. Set in the Wild West of 1870s, the game serves as a prequel to the very first installment of the series. This game’s story sees the origin of the series protagonist John Cooper.

The game lets players navigate various large maps, using one or more playable characters, completing objectives, and taking out targets. While stealth plays a major part in this video game, players can also assassinate targets silently or loudly as per their wants and needs.

With a total of 5 playable characters, which can be included in the squad, players have access to an ability called showdown mode, which lets them freeze gameplay and assign moves to each squad member. Upon executing the commands, the game will unfreeze, and the squad will perform their assigned actions simultaneously.


3) Call of Juarez: Gunslinger

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While Gunslinger is the fourth game in the Call of Juarez series, in terms of its story, it is unrelated to the previous video games. Released in 2013 by developer Techland, this is an FPS game set during the latter half of the 19th century, with the story unfolding as protagonist Silas Greaves narrates the events to a crowd in a saloon.

The gameplay is simple and arcade-like, with a host of different weapons available for use by the protagonist. Concentration mode makes a return to the series, this time having many different forms. In general, when the meter is full, it can be triggered upon which the gameplay goes into slow motion, with all nearby enemies highlighted in red. Somewhat similar to Deadeye in Red Dead Redemption.

The plot focuses on Silas’s tall tales and unreliable narration, which the audience often questions and cross-examines. This leads to hilarious changes mid-gameplay with certain elements being removed or added or a section being completely rewinded.

The game was highly praised for its storytelling and humor and was considered a return to form after the failure of the previous entry.


4) Gun

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This game set a precedent for the Red Dead Redemption series, and there is little doubt about it. Gun, developed by Neversoft, was released in 2005 for most platforms of the time, with a PSP release happening a year later. The game was a third-person shooter action-adventure game set in 1880 in the American Wild West.

The game follows protagonist Colton White in the wide open world seeking to avenge the death of his adoptive father, Ned. The story involves Colton meeting many different characters across the game world, learning the truth about Ned, and is finally able to achieve his goals.

The open-world and side activities available are comparable to GTA games of the time, with many features showing up in Red Dead Redemption. Such as hunting and killing animals, bandit attacks in the wild, and locals reacting to Colton’s actions. It was the cowboy simulator before Rockstar made its mark.


5) Fallout: New Vegas

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While Fallout: New Vegas might not seem like a Wild West game at first glance, a bit of insight goes to show that it does have all the tools a player needs to roleplay as a gunslinger. Set in the post-apocalyptic setting of the Mojave desert in the state of Nevada in the United States, the players play as a lone stranger, wandering through various settlements, looking for a purpose in life.

Players are open to finding and acquiring classic Western weaponry types, such as revolvers, handguns, rifles, shotguns, and dynamite explosives. Furthermore, there is an actual perk in the game known as Gunslinger, which increases the chances of dealing more damage when using one-handed pistols or revolvers.

Finally, this video game also has a similar targeting mechanic like Red Dead’s Deadeye, known as V.A.T.S. This mode takes the game into slow motion, allowing players to target highlighted parts of the target that will take high damage. Once executed, the game even shows a killcam if the target dies, letting players revel in their precision aiming.


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Q. Do you enjoy Wild West Gunslinger games?

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49 votes so far

Edited by R. Elahi
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