Rockstar Games has done it again, proving that no other game developer can match them when it comes to making an open-world game that feels alive. From gaining and losing weight based on how much you eat to tracking footsteps in the mud, Red Dead Redemption 2 (RDR2) knows that a realistic open-world is all about the details. It’s easy to lose hundreds of hours exploring every corner and interacting with every person you see in this world. But just like real life, sometimes it still feels like you haven’t seen everything there is to see. Today, we bring to you some handy tips that will serve as a guide through this vast and unforgettable open world and allow you to focus on the things that you really want to spend time on.
1. Making Money
At the start of the game, Dutch Van Der Linde and his gang will be strapped for cash as on-the-run fugitives. It is up to you as Arthur Morgan to upgrade your camp, pay off bounties and buy yourself some nice and expensive guns. Thankfully RDR2 makes it much easier to earn money than its predecessor.
Some easy ways for players to make money are:
- Selling horses
- Selling animal pelts
- Bounty hunting
- Completing missions
- Robbing a train
- Finding and looting empty houses and dead bodies
As the main story of the game itself is about getting the gang up on its feet and into the green, story missions have a nice payout for Arthur Morgan. Take advantage of the easy ways to make money listed above so that you can stay wealthy and focus on enjoying the other aspects of the game. And if you are ever strapped for cash, you can always just go back to completing the story.
With over 500 animals that can help keep your cores full, your camp fed and your coin purse heavy, hunting is an aspect of RDR2 that everyone can benefit from. To get the hunting tutorial, you need to go on an early mission with Hosea called ‘Exit Pursued by a Bruised Ego.’ This mission will teach you how to track animals, how to create bait, and all about the different types of pelts – Poor, Good, and Pristine. Getting Poor or Good pelts is fine as long as you are simply selling them off, however, you will need Pristine pelts if you are planning on crafting something.
To maximize the value of the pelt you find, you need to keep an eye on three factors:
- The quality of the animal you find
- Your choice of weapon and ammunition
- How you killed it
Quality of the animal
To find animals, simply traverse around the vast open area and use your binoculars or Eagle eye mechanic. When you find an animal, be sure to hit the ‘study’ prompt that pops up to learn more about the animal, the quality of the animal, and what weapon you should use. We recommend studying every animal you come across, regardless of whether you are hunting it currently or not. This will allow you to add the animal to your compendium and make it easier to hunt them down later.
Your choice of weapon and ammunition
The weapon you use to kill an animal affects its pelt quality. To get the perfect pelt you need to use the right weapon and shoot the animal in exactly the right spot. In the same manner, for smaller creatures such as crows, you need to craft ‘small game arrows’ that preserve the quality of the pelt while still getting the job done.
How you kill it
The final point to remember in hunting is shooting the animal in the right spot to preserve the quality of the pelt. You can do this by upgrading your Dead Eye mechanic. Different animals will have different critical spots, so upgrading your Dead Eye is the best way to ensure you kill your game the way you are supposed to.
3. Core management
The Core system is a new gameplay mechanic introduced in RDR2. There are three Cores in the game, each representing different aspects of Arthur’s abilities, namely – Health, Stamina and Dead Eye. Different consumable items refill each of these abilities in varying amounts. This means that keeping your Cores healthy is all about ensuring that Arthur is well-fed, well-rested, has smoked, and is dressed appropriately. Core management is especially important before starting a mission or participating in a gun-fight,
4. Upgrade your camp
Another new aspect of the series is that you can now upgrade your gang’s campsite. Donating money, helping out with chores, and completing mission requests will keep your companions happy, raise morale and encourage others to donate as well. But what you really need to pay attention to is the ledger next to the donation box. This ledger is what allows you to see what others are donating and to upgrade your campsite. We recommend upgrading the Medicine wagon, the Provisions wagon and the Arms and Ammunition wagon. These upgrades allow you to turn your campsite into a 24/7 convenience store, which means that you can now always be fully stocked before heading out. Upgrading your own personal lodging also unlocks the fast travel option, which becomes necessary as more of the map opens up to you.
5. Talk to Everyone
Crafting an open-world game that feels alive is a truly difficult task. However, unlike most other video games, Rockstar Games takes NPC interaction a step further and allows you to Rob, Greet and Antagonize every single person you come across. Arthur seamlessly blends greeting a person with one line and antagonizing them with the next, making it feel organic. The distinction between ‘quest giver’ and ‘random NPC’ has never been blurred to this extent, as simply chatting with people feels natural in the game. Every NPC can give you useful information or a reward for helping them out, encouraging you to take the time out to get to know these people.
Red Dead Redemption 2 is an extraordinary labor of love and effort from Rockstar Games. From its stunning visuals to its world that feels truly alive. RDR2 is a game that transports you to the American Frontier circa 1899 and encourages you to live, breathe and slowly experience the world around you.