'Red Dead Redemption 2' Trailer Makes the Old West New Again

Well, as new as the Old West gets, anyway. Games

It’s been a long six years since players explored the Old West in Rockstar Games’s Red Dead Redemption. A sequel, Red Dead Redemption 2 is on the way to be released next year in 2017. The first official trailer reveals nothing except more gorgeous scenery and a return to the dirt and grime that made up the American frontier.

Released Thursday morning on Twitch before it hit YouTube, the trailer for Red Dead Redemption 2 is a minute-long montage of gorgeous landscapes and wildlife until it hits the muddy streets of early settlements. There’s a lot of visual and aesthetic inspiration from Western period films like There Will Be Blood, 3:10 to Yuma, and even the contemporary No Country for Old Men.

There’s only one accompanying spoken line, heard through voiceover: “Listen to me. When the time comes, you gotta run and don’t look back. This is over.” The trailer then cuts to the final shot, which is an exciting pan featuring multiple riders on horseback ripped right out of The Magnificent Seven.

There appears to be a reinvigorated interest in the West in modern pop culture. The influential genre never really left the American imagination — especially given that it’s so uniquely of the cultural identity — but between this, Marvel and Fox’s Logan, HBO’s Westworld, and Quentin Tarantino’s recent movies like Django Unchained and The Hateful Eight, it’s not far-fetched to say that pop culture seeks to return to a more adventurous era.

Here’s the opening scene of the new Red Dead Redemption 2 trailer, which is about as epically Western as you can get:

Technically, the game will take full advantage of today’s hardware. The dynamic lighting seems stronger than it did in the first game:

Nothing of the game’s story has been revealed, meaning this fella here may or may not be John Marston, but he’s definitely somebody important:

In what looks like a tribute to There Will Be Blood, there’s a scene at an oil rig on fire:

A shot from 'There Will Be Blood' from director Paul Thomas Anderson. Remixer

Finally, the last shot in the trailer, which is a clear homage to movies like Stagecoach and The Magnificent Seven.

See the whole trailer below.

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