So lets be honest here – Rockstar’s Red Dead Redemption is quite simply one of the greatest games ever created. And for a game that’s just shy of being a decade old now, it still looks beautiful. Last year I played through the game when it became backward compatible on the Xbox One, I was genuinely surprised at just how well it held up and not just in the graphics department either as it still holds up in terms of gameplay and I think puts some more modern games of today to shame too.
I was planning on playing through the game again closer to the release of the up-coming sequel/prequel this October. But recently, Red Dead Redemption has been given a wonderful 4K upgrade for the Xbox One X. I own Red Dead Redemption and I own a Xbox One X…it’ll be rude not too wouldn’t it? So I thought I’d have a little play around in New Austin and Nuevo Paraiso to soak up some of the already beautiful graphics now enhanced with a 4K upgrade and see for myself just how impressive the game now looks and give some first impressions.
Well I’m starting a new game (on a different save slot) just so I can see the intro again in full 4K goodness and it does look amazing. I’m noticing a lot less jagged edges, much more vibrant colours and overall smoother images as the train tears it way though New Austin, the scenery looks stunning for an eight year old game. Even the wrinkles on the old bag’s face sitting behind John look defined. Well that looked great, but I need to load up an old save much further into the game so I can really get a good look around the map.
So now I’m in Nuevo Paraiso at Chuparosa and its a very cloudy day as I stand in the centre of the town just taking in the scenery. Those clouds are looking rather ominous and I think a storm is brewing, I love the weather effects of Red Dead Redemption – still some of the most visually impressive weather I’ve ever seen in a game. Just had a bounty pop up so may as well call my faithful horse and go get me some bandits. One thing I’ve definitely noticed is a huge reduction is that distance blurring, you know the thing they do to keep the frame-rate up at the cost of making far off graphics look worse. I can very easily make out signposts and store signs from a good distance. The horse models have always looked great in the game but now in 4K? Stunning, you can really see the muscles of your steed move as it walks and runs. I can’t wait for Red Dead Redemption II with its horse balls physics.
Just had to stop my horse on the way to the bounty and perch myself at the top of a hill to check out the vistas. I can not believe I’m looking at an eight year old game here. I’ve seen games released in the last few months that don’t look as good as Red Dead Redemption does right now. Obviously the game engine itself is a little dated today – but just in terms of graphical fidelity and detail, this is beautiful. I’m seriously in awe just like I was when I first played the game. Bounty has been captured alive, time to unwind with some poker but if that annoying Ira Shelton is there, I’m going to put a bullet in his head…sure as shootin’.
Think I should check out the snowy Tall Trees area and take in some of that wonderful, wintery imagery and I’m treating myself going by stagecoach to take in the scenery along the way. I have no way of checking the frame-rate, but its running buttery smooth anyway, no slowdown, no jittering or anything. Is it full 60 FPS? I’m not sure but its silky anyway. I have noticed the load times are much quicker though over the original 360 version.
Well that’ll do for now, I only wanted to get a quick look at the visual improvements and Yeah it looks incredible. I’ll save the full experience for a few months when I play through the game fully from start to end before Red Dead Redemption II is released. But overall, I’m very impressed. The game always looked great anyway, it did eight years ago, it still did when it was made backward compatible last year and now it looks even better with the 4K upgrade. I have nothing else to say about the game but John does.
John Marston: “You little beauty!”
I have managed to find a comparison video from ElAnalistaDeBits on You Tube you can check out, obviously watching it in 4K helps a lot…