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Red Dead Redemption 2, released on the 26th of October, 2018, is the prequel to 2010's Red Dead Redemption and third game in the Red Dead franchise, developed and published by Rockstar Games. An open-world action-adventure title set in a freely explored representation of 1899, the game's single player component is a Western epic, while the multiplayer mode called Red Dead Online follows in the footsteps of the company's previous persistent multiplayer game project, GTA Online.
The game was announced on October 18 2016, with a trailer being released two days later. Rockstar Games and parent company Take-Two interactive did not follow traditional game marketing strategies and promotional material was only released in large quantities nearing launch. Rockstar has entered a partnership with Sony granting timed exclusivity to post-launch content on the PlayStation 4 platform. Red Dead Redemption 2 received a number of special editions that included in-game and physical bonuses.
Several studios worked on the project, including Rockstar San Diego, developers of the previous game in the series, and Rockstar North, the company's main studio that usually works on games in the GTA IP. Red Dead Redemption 2 follows the story of Arthur Morgan and the Van Der Linde Gang as they flee law enforcement following a botched robbery. Rockstar has repeatedly expressed that one of their main goals with the game is creating the most advanced and detailed open world in gaming.
Red Dead Redemption 2 is an open-world game, allowing players to freely explore the map and engage in activities in a non-linear manner. Save for limited scripted events, player freedom is almost absolute throughout the game. Players are able to partake in activities not directly related to the main storyline. Such side activities will range from the narratively-driven side quests with their own stories and characters to mundane pastimes and for-profit activities like fishing, hunting and gambling.
The game features an in-depth reputation system, and player actions will affect encounters with other characters. NPCs you interact with will remember your interactions and react accordingly in future meetings. Certain actions will cause otherwise neutral NPCs to become hostile, while other actions will earn you additional rewards.
Combat is primarily comprised of gunfights, shootouts and duels. While shooting-heavy, the game also features melee weapons. Aiming at different vital areas of enemies will deal varying amounts of damage. The Dead Eye targeting mode will allow players to perform better in combat - as they upgrade the ability, they can slow time, auto-aim at enemies and later auto-aim at specific weak-points. Different weapons will have different attributes including damage, range, reload speed and more. Weapons will be customizable, purchasable and sellable.
Mounts have their own set of gameplay mechanics, making horses more than a faster method of transport. All 19 horse breeds will feature their own stats regarding health, stamina and more. As players spend time with their mount, the connection between Arthur and horse will deepen, making the mount less likely to throw you off during combat. This connection can futher be deepened by grooming your horse and feeding it, both systems that have been recreated in major detail. The horse is also a mobile inventory, and it allows you to take large game back to camp or a nearby town.
Rockstar Games paid significant attention to realism in the game, so much so that some mechanics arguably sacrifice fun factor in favor of realism. Outfits can be mixed and matched, however if you are not dressed according to the weather, your stamina rating will be decreased. Eating, bathing and shaving are all dynamically integrated into gameplay.
Red Dead Redemption 2 can be played entirely in third or first person. Players can freely switch between the two, as well as a third cinematic camera mode.
Red Dead Redemption 2 features a large main cast that includes several characters returning from Red Dead Redemption, due to the overlap between the gangs featured in the two games. The player character is Arthur Morgan, a new character. Rockstar Games has confirmed that Arthur is the only playable protagonist. John Marston and Jack Marston, the two playable characters from Red Dead Redemption, return as NPCs. Whether Red Dead Online will feature any characters from the story, or any original characters, is unknown. The Red Dead Online protagonist is a custom character, and thus not part of the canon.
View all the characters here.
Red Dead Redemption 2 features over 50 weapons, which can all be customized to various degrees. Different ammo types are also in, influencing the weapon's performance, making it deal more damage, be more accurate or have better range. All guns improve the more they are used, but it will be of extreme importance to keep an eye on its current status, as all weapons in the game degrade and require maintenance. As a weapon degrades, its stats will be affected - the damage output will be lesser, reloading time will increase, the accuracy will be reduced. These stats are also impacted by environment interactions. Soaking your weapons underwater when you swim into the river for example will develop rust on your weapons thus degrading them.
View our growing weapons Wiki pages here.
Unlike the original Red Dead Redemption, Arthur's outfit in Red Dead Redemption can be customized, meaning he can wear every piece of clothing as individual pieces. There are preset outfits in the game but clothing can be mixed and matched like in Grand Theft Auto 5, another successful game from Rockstar Games. You can also customize the way Arthur wears his clothes like rolling his sleeves up and down or tucking trousers into his boots.
NPC's opinion and treatment on Arthur can be affected with his clothing. They might compliment him if he's wearing clean, good-looking clothes. On the other hand, shopkeepers will refuse to serve you if Arthur is wearing clothes that are covered in mud or blood. Taking a bath will remove filth from Arthur's body and clothes.
Arthur reacts to environment's climate and temperature. For example, he unbuttons his jacket in places with warm temperature like in the desert. It is recommended to wear clothing that fits the environment's climate or temperature as it will have direct effects on Arthur's stamina. Wearing thin clothing while traversing the snowy mountains of Grizzlies for example will cause stamina penalties on Arthur.
You can also wear an animal carcass as a hat and if Arthur loses his hat or gets shot from his head or swaps his hat for one he finds on the ground or shoots off from an enemy's head, his original hat will reappear in his horse's inventory. Your horse's inventory can carry up to 3 hats at any given time, 1 of them is Arthur's hat, the other 2 are whatever you bring from your wardrobe.