The effects are amazing. Everything is very detailed even on medium settings, the only thing keeping me from giving it a full 10 is the emotionless character faces.
The sound is quite nice. It really adds to the drama, especially in the first and last levels.
Though there are western-games aplenty, this game still had some innovating points. It features "showdown" sections in the game which occur as your go through the story. This "showdown" can really take a lot of effort because you need perfect timing on both grabbing the gun and shooting it. Ive always hit people in their special place, but that still counts as a valid and honourable kill, lol.
As with many games nowadays, the story means it all. A good example of it is a review of Mount&Blade done by some site, which claimed it had no story whatsoever, whilst you can pretty much make up the story. Fortunately, this game has an great storyline. Im not gonna spoil it, you are gonna have to play it. But this game really takes you in. The right music at the right times, the right pieces of the puzzle coming together at the final moments, its all awesome. What i CAN spoil however is that this is a prequel.
As ive said, the "showdown" feature is just amazing. It added that little piece of 'wild wild west' the western genre in gaming needed. You have the choice of 2 characters, Thomas and Ray. Thomas is more like the main protagonist in the first game, being agile and using a whip to get across certain obstacles. His firearm-capabilities are o.k i guess; he can only use 1 weapon at a time and has throwing knives. Ray on the other hand can use 2 pistols at one time and has dynamite instead of those puny throwing knives . Hes is slower than Thomas however, and cant climb up ledges and the like. Ray is the most awesome of the whole game however, for the sheer fact that hes in the first game as well and kicked a$$ there.
You can also buy weapons and ammo at certain points in the game with money you collect from people you kill, and the replayability is enhanced by 'secrets' in the form of old photo's, even though you pick em up as scrolls.
Out of all the shooters that have come out the last year, this one takes the cake. Yes, its better than all the Fallout 3 DLC COMBINED. Its story, its sound, its gameplay, even its graphics are all perfectly blended in a box of awesomeness.
Oh yeah, you can play multiplayer too