For PC gamers disappointed by the abiding console focus of Red Dead Redemption games, Wild West Online offers a potential alternative.
The multiplayer online game was announced in May by new outfit 612 Games. Today, we saw the first gameplay footage, as well as the launch of an alpha participation offer.
So far, the game looks like standard MMO fare, with players taking on kill missions, which can be undertaken alone or in groups. There's also a reputation system, in which would-be desperadoes who steal or murder are marked out as bad guys for other players to kill.
Towns serve as mission hubs where players can change into new duds, buy weapons and socialize in the saloon. The video alludes to upstairs entertainments in these saloons. We asked the developers for more information on this aspect of the game. A spokesperson replied via email: “We have several ideas on how to bring the adult theme into the game, but we haven't made any final decisions yet. It's a complex feature because while we want to have a ‘historically realistic’ game, we first and foremost don't want to offend any players.”
Asked how this might effect the game’s plans to allow for men and women player characters, the spokesperson added: “We’re not quite ready to reveal all the details. So far we've decided that we’re giving players the freedom to choose who they want to talk to, whether it be a woman or a man. A player’s character's gender doesn’t affect this in any way and a player will be able to choose the entertainer’s gender.”
Various wilderness environments are also available, studded with cabins that can be used to rest and recharge health, as well as for fast travel. The final game, which is due to be launched later in the year, also promises opportunities to raise a farmstead and make a living trading, if you prefer the quiet life to tracking down renegades.
Wild West Online is available for pre-order with prices ranging from $19.99 for basic access to $59.99 for a collector's edition including in-game currency and skins.