Red Dead Redemption 2 is just over a month away. There’s a lot of information out there about Rockstar’s upcoming Western epic. With the recent hands-on that many outlets have had, there’s now more information than you ever thought possible about the game. We’re going to try our best to consolidate as much of this information into one place for you.

Let’s start with a major part of any cowboy story: the horses.

Horses

  • First off, the most important detail. Your horse will poop. Flies will be attracted to it.
  • Your horse’s testicles will change size depending on the weather (details like this make you wonder if they might’ve been developing the game a little too long).
  • Horse riding has been overhauled from the last game. It feels more natural and refined this time.
  • You can scold or praise your horse.
  • Your horse can be walked around, as if on a leash.
  • Store multiple horses in a stable so you can have backup horses.
  • You can heavily customize your horse.
    • Cut its mane, braid its hair, teach it tricks, and more.
    • You can name your horse.
    • Feeding and grooming your horse will build your bond with it.
    • Your bond will influence the distance at which it will respond to your whistle, whether or not it’ll buck you off during combat, as well as its speed, stamina, and more.
    • You can feed your horse with hunted animals that you’ve cooked.
    • Horse have their own health and stamina stats, which can both be upgraded.
    • Your horse will have its own inventory. This can be upgraded and increased
  • You cannot kill your horse if you shoot it, but if it dies then it’s permanent and you’ll have to get a new horse and start a new bond.
  • Your horse can be healed if fatally wounded, but it will require a special kit.
  • You can tell your horse to flee and save its life.
  • Your horse can drift and swim.
  • You can jump off your horse onto moving trains.
  • Horses have unique personalities.
  • Horses can move sideways.
  • They can kick behind them. One preview saw it kill a man.
  • You can take selfies on horseback (don’t ask how).
  • If you lose your weapon, it will reappear in your horse’s saddle.

red dead redemption 2 horse

Arthur

  • You can have a bit input in how Arthur looks and plays.
    • There are no full outfits in the game, but you get full customization of Arthur.
    • You can tuck your pants into your boots, wear belts over clothing, roll up your sleeves, etc.
    • You can wear dead animals as hats.
    • Arthur’s facial hair will grow over-time. You’ll have to visit a barber if you want to trim it.
    • He wears layered clothing.
    • He must wear the right clothing for the weather or suffer stamina penalties
    • Snow on Arthur’s clothing will eventually melt. Mud will harden and wipe away. Blood will dry.
    • He can bathe to clean off the blood and mud that will stick to him.
    • Arthur will gain and lose weight depending on how much he eats.
    • Arthur has a variety of stats, including strength, dexterity, instinct, and grit. Although it’s not clear how these will be leveled up, he will also have ‘Cores’ – your health, stamina, and Dead Eye meters – which are improved in various ways. Your stamina, for example, is increased by having a good ol’ run.
  • Arthur can swim, but not very well. Type of clothing and stamina might affect this.
  • Removing bandanna after committing a crime makes the wanted level go away faster.
  • Mirrors reflect and Arthur will make comments: “You are getting old Arthur.”
  • If your hat falls off it will appear on the minimap. If you lose it, it will appear on your horse.
  • Arthur can get dirt under his fingernails
  • Arthur can carry a maximum of two one-handed weapons and two long weapons (two rifles, or a rifle and his bow). He also packs his hunting knife, a lasso, and throwable weapons.
  • The Honor system plays a big role in Red Dead Redemption 2
    • Arthur is a proud outlaw, but he still has a moral code.
    • You can choose to continue down Arthur’s dark path or become an honorable man.
    • Your actions will affect Arthur’s honor rating.
    • His honor rating will affect how people interact with him and what opportunities become available to him.
    • Everything Arthur does in the game affects your surroundings. At some point in the game, you will meet someone or hear an NPC talk about an event you witnessed, read about, or were a part of.
  • Arthur can get struck by lightning if he’s unlucky enough.
red dead redemption 2 arthur

Arthur Morgan, the protagonist of Red Dead Redemption 2

Weapons

  • Weapons are highly customizable.
    • You can switch out barrels, grips, hammers, and more to enhance/alter performance. You’ll need to take your weapons to a gunsmith
    • Weapon maintenance is very important. Not taking care of your weapon can cause it to jam, misfire, and more. You can break your enemies weapons if you shoot them accurately enough.
    • Guns have their own stats. Damage, Range, Fire rate, Reload, Accuracy, and Condition. These are on a scale of 0 to 4.
    • Guns will rust over time.
    • There are different types of ammo and all ammo is craftable.
  • Guns sound powerful and make booming sounds. Sounds can carry far in wide, open areas.
  • You can get gear upgrades that will affect your weapons. The 3 seen in previews are as follows:
    • Bandolier: Ammo capacity for longarm weapons is increased by 50%
    • Gunbolt: Base ammo for sidearms is increased by 50%
    • Holster: Slow degradation of all weapons by 20%
  • Bullets load one by one.
  • Your bow counts as a rifle but is a stealthy alternative.
  • You can dual-wield.
  • Shotguns can blow off arms and legs at close range.
  • Guns have noticeably more recoil.
  • You can spin guns when putting them away (!!!)
  • You can throw TNT, knives, and other throwables.
  • The Gatling Gun makes a return.
  • Aim assist is on by default but can be disabled.
  • Max Payne 3 style killcam will dynamically take effect in firefights.

Gameplay

  • You can pet animals. Petted dogs won’t bark at you again.
  • The combat has seen some overhauls compared to Red Dead Redemption 1
    • Gunfights are slower and more methodical.
    • Cover is very important.
    • Deadeye now has 5 levels. Level 1 allows for slowdown, level 2 allows you to paint targets and unleash a barrage of shots, level 3 allows you to manually pick your shooting points, etc.
    • You can roll and dive while shooting in deadeye.
    • Full facial deformation during fist fights.
    • Shooting horses can cause them to throw off their rider.
    • If you shoot accurately enough, you can shoot weapons out of enemies’ hands.
    • You can shoot hats off people and steal them.
    • People can potentially absorb multiple shots if you don’t hit them in key areas.
  • Hunting with a bow will get you more valuable pelts.
  • Bodies can be picked up, moved and potentially hidden.
  • You can make camp at any time and cook up your spoils.
  • Holding up on the D-pad while aiming will fire a warning shot in the air, which can be used to attract the attention of other characters or startle an animal you’re hunting. There are a handful of other NPC interactions tied to the D-pad, see the NPC section for more info.
  • Prisoners can be tied to trees.
  • Play honorable and gain more bounty cash.
  • Animals can be tracked.
  • There are legendary animals to hunt.
  • Crafting weapons, foods, drinks, etc.
  • There are train heists outside of story missions.
  • All buildings in the game are enterable.

red dead redemption 2

World

  • There are five states in the game: Amberino, Lemoyne, New Hanover, New Austin, and West Elizabeth.
  • The game’s seven major towns have been revealed.
    • Valentine. Rockstar refers to as, “A raucous, rough-and-tumble town in the Heartlands” with livestock auctions that “attract traders, ranchers, cowboys, gamblers, outlaws, and prostitutes from far and wide, all looking to make some money, raise some hell, and have a good time.”
    • Annesburg. A coal mining town where “life isn’t easy.” The working conditions are “terrible for little pay, and many men have lost their lives down the pit.”
    • Saint Denis. This appears to be Red Dead Redemption 2’s analog for New Orleans. Rockstar calls it “a melting pot of cultures and people where businessmen, socialites, sailors, laborers, beggars, and thieves all live side by side.”
    • Mount Hagen. A major peak in the Grizzlies mountain range, towering above a lake. Here, players will find the main path through the range.
    • Rhodes. Players will find a Southern town that may appear “proper” but has “been caught in the crossfire between the Braithwaites and the Grays” for years. The backstory here appears as though it could be a Rockstar spin on the classic Hatfield-McCoys feud but relocated farther south and reimagined as a plantation dispute.
    • Strawberry. “A small logging town,” but that all changed when an “eccentric” mayor became “obsessed with transforming it into a cultural beacon for wealthy tourists.” The locals are “bemused” by that plan.
    • Lagras. A remote swampland settlement. Its citizens are mostly self-sufficient, making some coin from fishing or guiding travelers.
  • The map is said to be the biggest Rockstar has ever created.

Camp and Your Gang

  • Much of the game revolves around Arthur’s roles in the Van der Linde gang.
  • Dutch Van der Linde, Javier Escuella, Bill Williamson, and John Marston are some of the major gang members.
  • Then there’s Sean McGuire who is described as a “cheery Irish joker” who tells good stories, Uncle is an older male character who appears to be a drunk, and Pearson is the cook.
  • You can interact with your gang members in a number of ways.
    • You can talk to your gang members during horse rides.
    • You can sing songs with them.
    • Morale is important and alcohol raises morale.
    • Keeping the camp happy can provide hidden benefits.
    • Camps are described as ‘homely’.
  • Gang members will also loot bodies after a fight.
  • Your allies flank and give covering fire during combat.
  • You have to share a portion of your loot with the camp via ‘donations’
  • The tents in the camp are upgradable, which can unlock new features. For example, Dutch tent unlocks a fast travel map.
  • The camp is optional. You aren’t forced to engage with it if you don’t want to.

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Story

  • The game takes place in 1899, 12 years prior to Red Dead Redemption.
  • Red Dead Redemption 2 will explore an expansive region of the American wilderness, with Dutch Van der Linde’s gang on the run from lawmen during the last years of the wild west.
  • The gang is still in the height of its criminal activities when the game starts.
  • Red Dead Redemption 2 starts with the Blackwater robbery, where the gang will then flee to the Grizzly’s.
  • The gang leaves their money in Blackwater.
  • In a mission played in hands-on, Arthur is given the option to take prisoners, leave them to die in the snowy mountain or kill them on the spot. All of which will have consequences.
  • Much of the game deals with Arthur and his role in the gang.
  • How and when you complete story missions is not important. There are no time constraints on story missions. You could do it all back-to-back or wait 10 hours between each mission and it won’t affect the outcome.

AI/NPC’s

  • NPC’s remember behavior and they some unique behaviors of their own.
    • A character will remember that Arthur helped them after a snake attack.
    • Whilst a farmer will behave differently than a sheriff.
    • All NPC’s have schedules.
    • Enemy AI will maneuver around you, seek cover, and even climb buildings to gain higher ground.
    • People groan when crouching or picking stuff up.
    • When you join a group in conversation they will talk about you, too.
    • NPCs will react to their immediate environment by, for example, leaning on a post.
    • NPCs comment if you are dirty/bloody.
    • Townspeople remember your crimes even after you paid your bounty.
  • You can talk with every NPC and they will remember your conversations.
  • If a characters put a bounty on your head then bounty hunters will come after you.
  • There are interactions tied to the D-pad. With your weapons holstered, you can interact with NPCs in a number of ways. Threaten, Surrender, Beat, and many other contextual actions.
  • Most characters have terrible dental hygiene.
  • NPC’s might fall to the ground but get back up to surprise you.
  • Hand to hand combat is more dynamic and brutal. Faces deform after getting hit. Black eyes, bruises, broken lips.
  • Animal cruelty is a crime. Shoot a dog and someone will tell the sheriff.
  • If you kill a civilian, it’s possible their family members will hunt you down throughout the game.

red dead redemption 2 a

 

Miscellaneous

  • John Marston and Bill Williamson reprise their roles from the last game.
  • 192 tracks from the original Red Dead composer.
  • Dynamic weather conditions that can dramatically shift over the course of a day.
  • Opossums play dead like in real life.
  • You can drive trains.
  • Dead bodies won’t despawn but decompose and attract scavengers.
  • Newspapers make a return.
  • You are given a camera and you can take selfies with it. This won’t be an arms-length selfie, of course. Arthur certainly doesn’t have an iPhone. You can take a “Self Portrait” that will frame Arthur’s body as if the camera was set up on a tripod. You’ll be able to adjust poses and expressions during this mode.
  • You can turn the minimap and HUD off.
  • Condensation and glowing heat from bullets.
  • People and animals create trails in the snow.
  • Mountains rise above the clouds.
  • Hunted animals make horrifying dying sounds.
  • Dollars are as much worth as in 1899.
  • Animals have a different marker than dead bodies.
  • You are able to pick up most items in the game.
  • You can switch camera angles, including the recently announced first-person mode.
  • Gunfight legendary shooters.
  • You might find notes in drawers and learn useful information.
  • Minigames include Poker, Five Finger Fillet, Fishing, and Domino.
  • Red Dead Redemption 2′s story mode is offline and completely separate from Red Dead Online.

A tweet was circulating from a Rockstar Games developer claimed that the game was “absolutely not” coming to PC. This was a translation error and the tweet has since been deleted. There is currently no word on when/if a PC version of Red Dead Redemption 2 will happen.

Unfortunately, TechRaptor weren’t able to get hands-on with Red Dead Redemption 2. This information has been sourced from various the hands-on experiences of various outlets.

The sources used to put this together are as follows:

Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments below!

More About This Game

Dan Hodges

Staff Writer

Dan is a lover of games and music from the UK. He loves RPGs, shooters, roguelikes, and World of Warcraft, but he'll play anything he can get his hands on really.