If you’re thinking about buying Red Dead Redemption 2 for the Xbox One or PlayStation 4 there are some things you need to do before the release date arrives in October.
After several delays, Rockstar is finally ready to release a game people have been waiting for since they completed the original Red Dead Redemption back in 2010.
The Red Dead Redemption 2 release date is confirmed for October 26th and Take-Two, Rockstar’s parent company, says there won’t be another delay.
We still don’t know if the highly anticipated game will come to Windows PC or Nintendo Switch, but it will definitely arrive for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Xbox One X, and Sony’s PS4 Pro this fall.
Red Dead Redemption 2 pre-orders are live through various retailers giving fans of the series the ability to buy the game ahead of its release date. Deciding on a pre-order is just one thing prospective buyers need to do before the game arrives this fall.
In this guide we’ll take you through a few other things we think you should do before Red Dead Redemption 2’s arrival.
Play Red Dead Redemption
You probably won’t need to play the first game to enjoy Red Dead Redemption 2, but with several months to go before the sequel/prequel arrives, it’s a perfect opportunity to jump into the original either to refresh yourself or experience the world of Red Dead Redemption for the first time.
We don’t know everything about Red Dead Redemption 2 yet, but we do know that it’s set in the same world as the original. Players will control a character named Arthur Morgan who is a member of the Van der Linde gang.
If the name Van der Linde rings a bell, it’s probably because you played the first game. Dutch Van der Linde was a central character in the original and one of the main protagonists.
The original’s main protagonist, John Marston, will make an appearance in the game. So will Bill Williamson. We expect several other cameos as well.
Playing the original will introduce you to these characters and their backgrounds and it could help make Red Dead Redemption 2 a little more enjoyable.
The good news is that Red Dead Redemption is widely available (it’s available for Xbox, PlayStation, and Windows PC). It’s also much cheaper than it once was.
Rockstar’s also released an update that enhances the original game for Microsoft’s Xbox One X. If you own an Xbox One X, you’ll get 4K visuals. The game looks stunning in 2018 and it’s a great excuse to jump into a game that’s nearly a decade old.
Play GTA 5
If you’ve got Grand Theft Auto 5 sitting around, think about firing it up to acquire items for Red Dead Redemption 2.
Last year, Rockstar unveiled a Red Dead Redemption 2 bonus earned through playing GTA 5 Online. Once you load up the game, check your iFruit device for a clue and follow the trail to unlock the Double-Action Revolver in GTA Online.
Once you unlock the revolver, you’ll want to complete the Headshot Challenge in Freemode for a $250,000 reward. It’ll also unlock the item for use in Red Dead Redemption 2.
You’ll also want to snag another bonus for Red Dead Redemption 2: the Stone Hatchet.
In order to get the hatchet, you’ll want to keep an eye out for a text message from Maude Eccles for bounties. You’ll then need to collect these new bounty targets, dead or alive, to complete a challenge.
Once you complete the challenge you’ll unlock the location of the Stone Hatchet in GTA Online. Once you get the weapon, you’ll need to complete the Kills Challenge for a $250,000 bonus for use in GTA Online.
You’ll also unlock it for use in Red Dead Redemption 2.
Find Red Dead Redemption 2 Deals
As we push toward the Red Dead Redemption 2 release date make sure you keep your eyes out for deals that drop the game below its $60 starting price point.
Most retailers are taking Red Dead Redemption 2 pre-orders and you might be able to score a deal ahead of the game’s release.
Those with a Best Buy Gamers Club Unlocked account can take advantage of an early Red Dead Redemption 2 deal. Best Buy’s closed the GCU program, but who are currently members can take advantage of the 20% off deal.
NewEgg was at one point offering the game straight-up for $50 and we could see it, or another retailer, offer a similar deal down the road.
If you can’t find what you’re looking for before the game’s launch, you should be able to grab the game for less than $60 during Black Friday and the holiday shopping season.
Decide If You Want to Pre-Order
While you might be tempted to pre-order Red Dead Redemption 2 through your favorite retailer, there are some reasons why you might want to hold off.
We’ve put together a guide that will take you through the best reasons to and not to pre-order a copy ahead of its release date. Go through it and make a smart decision with your money. Remember, at most retailers, you can always cancel a pre-order, free-of-charge, before it ships.
We’ve also put together a guide that’ll help you pick the right edition for you and your budget. Red Dead Redemption 2 comes in three different editions: Standard, Special, and Ultimate. Each comes with a different price point and a different set of bonuses.
Make sure you pre-order before August 15th to receive a bonus Treasure Map. You must order a digital version of the game to receive this bonus.
Check Your Order
As we approach the release date make sure you keep an eye on your pre-order so you can avoid release day headaches.
Make sure your delivery information is up-to-date. If you recently moved, you may have forgotten to change your address. You’ll also want to make sure your payment information is correct.
Companies like Amazon will charge once the game ships and that typically happens a couple of days before the release date.
Think About Buying a Strategy Guide
If you’re new to the Red Dead Redemption series, or you think that you might need some help finding items/quests/characters/locations, you might want to pickup a strategy guide.
If you don’t want to pay for a strategy guide, you won’t have to. There will be a ton of free guides out there though it’ll likely be a few days or in some cases a few weeks before they go live.
Dig Into Early Feedback
You’ll have to wait until October for full Red Dead Redemption 2 reviews, but you can count on select outlets providing early feedback about the game’s single player and multiplayer modes. In fact, they already have.
The first previews of Red Dead Redemption 2 are live as several publications were able to experience a rather lengthy demo of the game and relay their thoughts.
This is just the first batch of early impressions and we expect Rockstar and video game critics to elaborate on the game in the weeks ahead.
This feedback will help you set proper expectations and help you determine if this a game to pre-order or one you’ll buy during Black Friday and the holidays.
Rockstar is known for making sporadic announcements so make sure you’re on your toes looking for new information as we push toward the release date.
The company typically makes announcements via its social media channels so if you’re interested in Red Dead Redemption 2, you’ll want to follow Rockstar on sites like Twitter.
The developer recently released the game’s first gameplay video and it says it’ll release another one in the future outlining missions, activities, and more.
These videos will help you set proper expectations so be on the look out as we push through the summer.
Think About Buying an Xbox One X or PS4 Pro
Lastly, if you’re holding onto a original Xbox One or PlayStation 4, and you own a 4K television, it might be a good idea to investigate the Xbox One X and PlayStation 4 Pro.
If Red Dead Redemption 2 rumors pan out, it sounds like the game will come with upgrades for current-generation consoles. So if you want the smoothest, best-looking version of Red Dead Redemption 2, you’ll want to think about upgrading to a new console. To assist you we’ve put together guides to buying the Xbox One X and PlayStation 4 Pro.
If you aren’t thrilled with their current price points, make sure you lookout for deals as we close in on the game’s October 26th release date.
One other note: The gameplay trailer above? It was filmed using a PS4 Pro.
Pre-Order If You Want to Play ASAP
If you loved the first Red Dead Redemption and you know you'll want to jump into new one as soon as humanly possible, you might want to just get it over with and put in a pre-order right now.
Many of you have been waiting seven plus years for a new Red Dead Redemption to arrive. While Red Dead Redemption 2 won't feature the exact same locations and characters as the first game, it will be set in the same world with tons of missions to complete, places to see, animals to hunt, and so on. It'll also include some familiar faces.
Rockstar's long development cycles are hard to sit through, but the payoff is almost always worth it and there's a very good chance Red Dead Redemption 2 will be worth the long wait.
The game will feature an extensive single-player campaign and it'll also feature a massive online component that will likely mirror Grand Theft Auto 5 Online.
The developer says the game's "vast and atmospheric world" will provide "the foundation for a brand new online multiplayer experience."
If you think you might want to start ranking up your character and banking cash the second Red Dead Redemption 2 Online goes live, think about putting in a pre-order.
If you pre-order a digital copy you should be able to pre-load the game and start playing right at Midnight Eastern on release day.