Rockstar just made Red Dead Online official, and will launch in November of this year, starting off as a public beta. Red Dead Online will serve as the online multiplayer component of the single-player Red Dead Redemption 2. Red Dead Online was inevitable and welcome, of course, as multiplayer was part and parcel of the original Red Dead Redemption. I didn't personally care much for it; the lobby was a nightmare of player killing. Folks that fondly remember Red Dead Redemption don't tend to mention the multiplayer aspect. But considering the monstrous and years-long success of Grand Theft Auto Online—GTA 5's multiplayer—it only makes perfect sense that Rockstar would now attempt to ride Red Dead Online into the sunset. A little older, a little wiser, and a little more savvy about how to get consumers to buy steady streams of in-game currency, there's little doubt in my mind that Red Dead Online will print reasonably vast sums of money for the house that John Marston built.
Red Dead Online is an evolution of the classic multiplayer experience in the original Red Dead Redemption, blending narrative with competitive and cooperative gameplay in fun new ways. Using the gameplay of the upcoming Red Dead Redemption 2 as a foundation, Red Dead Online will be ready to be explored alone or with friends, and will also feature constant updates and adjustments to grow and evolve this experience for all players.
Red Dead Online is planned for launch in November 2018, initially as a public beta, with more news to come soon. As with most online experiences of this size and scale, there will inevitably be some turbulence at launch. We look forward to working with our amazing and dedicated community to share ideas, help us fix teething problems and work with us to develop Red Dead Online into something really fun and innovative.
As reported in IGN, Rockstar feels that GTA Online only found its footing when it introduced heists. Knowing this, they want to get to the heists quicker with Red Dead Online. They're introducing competitive and cooperative elements, and figuring out ways to incorporate meaningful storytelling into multiplayer. The map as well as the gameplay mechanics from the single-player will translate one-to-one in the multiplayer. So, playing the enormous single-player campaign will be one of the best ways to prepare for the inevitable wasting I'll receive online.
Access to Red Dead Online is free to anybody with a copy of Red Dead Redemption 2. Red Dead Redemption 2 is out on October 26 for PS4 and Xbox One, while Red Dead Online arrives shortly afterward sometime in November.