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Return of the masterpieces: Red Dead Redemption 2 PC, and Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition

Close out the decade in glorious 4K

Rockstar Games’ western masterpiece, Red Dead Redemption 2 (RDR2) is not only one of the best games of this decade, it also redefined an open-world game. Now, after a year of its release on consoles, it is finally out on the PC, in all its gorgeous glory. Complete with its online Westworld-like component that is always evolving.

RDR2 is set before the first game, which focuses on the origins of the Van Der Linde gang, from the perspective of Arthur Morgan. Its deep storyline tells the poignant tale of a band of outlaws who perform daring heists, while the jaws of modern law-abiding society close around them. Truly a masterpiece in both its filmmaking and its storytelling.

Red Dead Redemption 2 PC
  • Developer: Rockstar Studios
  • Publisher: Rockstar Games
  • Price: ₹3,499 on PC

The open-world is wide and detailed as well as harsh, making survival all the more important. Yet, you can whittle away hours in cantering around on your horse hunting, fishing and making coffee. You can virtually stick up anyone for cash as a no-good thug or you could play as a straight gun outlaw and gentleman. In a way, RDR2 embodies its role-playing to its very core.

In the PC version of the game, the environments are more challenging, with all the bugs and lofty system requirements.

From stuttering, to crashes, and performance issues, the game at launch was nigh unplayable. Which is why we delayed the review, until we saw Rockstar was committed to fixing everything. You will need a beefy PC though, to actually experience the game in its full glory, which is a sight to behold. Especially at true 4K, with all effects turned on, it is a sight that will melt your eyeballs.

RDR2 Online lets you feel like you are living in the wild west, with Rockstar always keeping things exciting with bounties and seasonal events. Making replayability excellent, if you want to keep coming back. It is hard not to recommend RDR2, which is a game you have to experience to believe. Just wait until it is all patched before you jump in.

Real-time strategy

It has been 20 years since the classic Age of Empires II (AOEII) was unleashed. I still remember being hunched over my Windows 98 PC, basking in the radiation glow of the CRT monitor, playing until the wee hours of the morning, while my friends were spending their college days partying. Now, it has re-released in glorious 4K Ultra and that cycle starts all over again.

Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition
  • Developer: Forgotten Empires, Tantalus Media, Wicked Witch
  • Publisher: Xbox Game Studios
  • Price: ₹1,000 on PC

There is a reason why AOEII is one of the most popular real-time strategy games out there. In this definitive edition, you get to play as one of the 35 civilisations, as you set out to grow your villages into towns. Amass resources and create powerful armies and advance across the ages, from the dark to the imperial age across a 1000-year timespan. If you choose not to play as a random map, you can choose a campaign that focused on Genghis Khan, Joan of Arc, William Wallace, Barbarossa or Saladin’s historic storylines.

Undoubtedly, what AOEII will be most remembered for is the multi-player. Where you jump into death-matches with opponents, playing as certain civilisations, to amass resources and create an army before they do. Which is surprisingly still nail-bitingly good.

Being able to play the game in 4k is fantastic, if you have the monitor for it, or if you are hooked up to a 4k TV. The visuals are crisp, and the screen now packs in more detail. Though with the slightly older sprites sort of coloured in, sometimes it looks as though you are seeing double, which is disconcerting.

If you reminisce on those good old days of Age of Empires II, the Definitive Edition is the perfect way to rustle up the old gang and get back into the game in 4k.

The writer is a tech and gaming enthusiast who hopes to one day finish his sci-fi novel

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Printable version | Jun 2, 2020 3:18:40 PM |

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