The recent delay of Red Dead Redemption 2 from Spring 2018 to October 26th was a hard pill to swallow, but new details have emerged that might explain why Rockstar is taking more time to release its highly anticipated blockbuster Western.
Trusted Reviews has published a ton of new details about Red Dead Redemption 2 based on “alleged development notes” it received back in August 2017, details of which were only recently corroborated by the latest screenshots that Rockstar published.
Saddle up, because this is a ton of information.
Unsurprisingly—given the financial success of Grand Theft Auto Online—online multiplayer will be a major focus for Red Dead Redemption 2, and the leak provides some interesting information about what modes we can expect. Players will again have the ability to freely explore Red Dead Redemption 2‘s open world, with upgradable tents serving the same function as GTA Online‘s apartments. Players can shop in stores and take on missions given out by NPCs spread across the map. Besides mission rewards, players can complete what seem like passive, random tasks like traveling distances and killing enemies in specific ways. Trusted Reviews gives the example of “murdering an enemy using a bow from 100 meters away.” There will also be random events similar to GTA Online‘s that will include treasure hunts (in which, we’re assuming, players fight over treasure) and random deathmatches, as well as activities related to fishing, gold-mining, and herding cattle, reminiscent of GTA Online‘s tennis and golf offerings.
Competitive multiplayer modes will also return to Red Dead Redemption 2, and the development notes detailed three modes: Battle Royale, Revive and Survive, and Money Grab. Revive and Survive is a team deathmatch that has the same rules as Rainbow Six Siege or Gears of War’s Execution mode, in which the round ends when all members of a team are eliminated with the chance to revive downed teammates. Money Grab sounds similar to Gold Rush from the first Red Dead Redemption, in which two teams fight over bags of money in a central location and must return the money to their respective bases. Details were more scarce about Battle Royale, but it’s likely we can expect something similar to PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds.
As far as general gameplay goes, Red Dead Redemption 2 will allow players to play in either third- or first-person modes from the outset, following the jump to first-person in Grand Theft Auto V‘s port to current-gen consoles, with both perspectives including animations specific to their modes. Larger towns will function as marketplaces where players can purchase weapons and supplies, with an undertaker specifically and ominously noted as an NPC shopowner. There will also be a Slums Market that will offer discounts on certain items, and an extensive day/night cycle will determine when all of these shops are open, including places to gamble.
Perhaps most surprisingly, it sounds like Red Dead Redemption 2 will feature branching storylines depending on the morality of player actions taken during the main story missions, which can affect mission objectives and dialogue options. Likewise, injuring enemies or pulling them off their horses will sometimes trigger player options, during which they can either spare or kill the enemy while prying them for information.
The Dead Eye bullet-time mechanic will return, but its uses aren’t just relegated to gunfights. This time, Dead Eye will help players track bounties and detect nearby wildlife. The wanted system will return from the first Red Dead Redemption, with more severe crimes drawing more attention from law enforcement. Hunting and plant gathering will return in Red Dead Redemption 2, and will be joined by a rather in-depth fishing minigame as well, which includes different types of bait and tackle. Red Dead Redemption 2 will also introduce horse-riding challenges that will let players level-up their horse-riding abilities.
As far as transportation is concerned, railroads will play a major role in Red Dead Redemption 2. Not only will trains take players across the map, but players can explore the actual train cars and find NPCs that will provide players with unique dialogue options. Besides trains, players will have access to horse-drawn carriages and minecarts. Different variants of carriages will be available, including armored carriages, which sound like they be integrated in the online component as a way for Rockstar to cash-in.
Rockstar hasn’t confirmed any of these details, but many of them fall in line with previous Rockstar outings, combining Grand Theft Auto V and GTA Online mechanics with Red Dead Redemption‘s western-themed activities. Other details, such as exactly how Rockstar plans on making billions of dollars from Red Dead Redemption 2‘s online microtransactions, are still unknown, but we’re sure they’re in the works, since Take-Two said as much.
Red Dead Redemption 2 will launch for Xbox One and PlayStation 4 on October 26th.