Red Dead Redemption 2 begins in 1899 and, after a time jump, ends in 1907. Funnily enough, the game itself, released in mid-2018, is a prequel, even though it was released about 8 and a half years after Red Dead Redemption (2010). To be more precise, the in-game timeline happens a few years before the plot of the first game, which happens in 1911 and 1914. It also features its protagonist, John Marston, again. By exploring the offline open world mostly from a third-person shooter perspective, you’ll see a lot of familiar elements. That’s because the answer to the question is a bit complex.
Anyways, there’s your answer to which year Red Dead Redemption 2 takes place. You might recognize certain sights, landmarks, dialogue, and weapons when you replay the game or play the multiplayer version, Red Dead Online.
How much is Red Dead Redemption 2 based on the real world?
The short answer – a lot. Here are things we observed in one of the Rockstar Games video game masterpieces. First of all, there’s no specific year in the real world the game is based on. It can be narrowed down to the second half of the American frontier/Wild West era in United States history. Those were the years in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, roughly between 1880 and 1920. The same range of years inspired Western movies, TV shows, novels, comic books, costumes, toys, etc.
That’s why in-game activities and resources feel familiar – they directly correlate to the real-world equivalents. We’re talking town saloons, carriages, weapons, law marshals, train robbing, riding horses, and hunting, avoiding, or taming around 200 types of animals from that period. And perhaps most important, a gang of outlaws you’re a part of, inspired by the gangs that terrorized the real world at that time.
Do states in Red Dead Redemption 2 have real-life counterparts?
In the game, you’ll get to explore five fictitious states in the United States. Two of them were featured in the Red Dead Redemption, New Austin and West Elizabeth. The three new ones are set to the north and the east and called New Hanover, Ambarino, and Lemoyne. The following information is just what we and others have observed. Obviously, the game developers got their inspiration from a plethora of places and used their own imagination. These are the states in Red Dead Redemption 2.
Lemoyne is based on the state of Louisiana in the early 20th century, especially the in-game settlement named Rhodes. Similarly, the largest town in the game, Saint-Denis, was heavily inspired by New Orleans, Louisiana, the United States.
Ambarino doesn’t have a particular place or state. The developers were inspired by a variety of real-life Native American reservations in the United States.
3. New Hanover
New Hanover’s terrain, NPCs, and storyline are largely based on the landmarks of two states, Oklahoma and Arkansas.
4. West Elizabeth
West Elizabeth is geographically and historically based on the states of Oklahoma, Colorado, Texas, and Kansas. However, the beautiful in-game graphics are very reminiscent of the Great Plains region in California.
5. New Austin
New Austin is based on real-life locations from western Arizona, New Mexico, Southern California, Nevada, Texas, the western part of Kansas, central Colorado, and Oklahoma.