We may earn a commission when you buy through links in our articles. Learn more.

Red Dead Online is worth Rockstar’s time, and the sales prove it

Rockstar Games is dedicated to GTA 6 and GTA Online now, but Red Dead Redemption 2's new sales report proves RDO needs more attention.

Red Dead Online: An image of a posse in Red Dead Online in Red Dead Redemption 2.

Red Dead Online didn’t deserve to be abandoned like an unmarked grave in the western frontier. Rockstar Games’ Red Dead Redemption 2 multiplayer counterpart isn’t perfect, but it is frequently more fun than GTA Online, that’s for sure. I’m still hoping for the arrival of new major updates, and now the recent Take-Two Interactive earnings call confirms that RDO isn’t sunsetting anytime soon.

The appetite for the cowboy magnum opus is still strong, as Take-Two Interactive’s recent earnings call reveals Red Dead Redemption 2 has sold 64 million copies to date – up from its previous total of 61 million. Overall, the open world game franchise has shifted a staggering 89 million copies across PlayStation, Xbox, and PC platforms. While the report doesn’t specify the sales for Red Dead Online as a standalone title, it is evident that the game’s popularity hasn’t faded six years later.

Despite that clear interest in the Red Dead Redemption 2’s rousing storytelling or superb multiplayer game spin-off, and that glowing sales increase, Rockstar Games’ workforce is dedicated to the mammoth task of finishing GTA 6‘s development. I’m right there with everyone else when it comes to the hype machine for the GTA 5 successor, as the thought of stepping foot on Vice City’s current-gen shores is tantalizing. Yet, I’m left longing for more meaningful expansions for Red Dead Online.

YouTube Thumbnail

The last major update, Blood Money, was released in July 2021. In the three years since then, Red Dead Online’s update cadence isn’t exactly inspired. Rockstar continues to introduce monthly shakes up for certain mission types and roles like the Bounty Hunter, but at this point, it all just feels like a rinse-and-repeat exercise for the studio. Comparatively, GTA Online gets similar updates, yet these are often furnished with new vehicles, weapons, and additions to the game’s economy. The last update went live just a few days ago on Thursday, May 16.

GTA Online players were treated to an all-new Salvage Yard robbery, triple GTA cash earns and XP, desirable vehicle discounts, and more. The GTA 5 spin-off has received 13 major updates like San Andreas Mercenaries and Los Santos Drug Wars in the last six years. Red Dead Online has only seen eight updates, with a seven-month gap between the Moonshiners and Naturalist expansions (ooft). Now, Red Dead Online’s future wanders on aimlessly along the plains – and that sucks.

Some of my favorite online experiences stem from RDO, with its potent blend of gunfights, co-op game mechanics, and deep progression system all set against the backdrop of one of the most immersive gaming worlds ever. It never fails to stun me when I think about how this rendition of the Old West is packed with rich details other studios can only dream of. Roaming around with my posse and pretending to be an efficient ragtag band of cowboys fills me with laughter or screams as we undoubtedly mess up the mission we’re on. I wouldn’t have it any other way.

It’s the ultimate form of fulfilling your spaghetti western fantasy. Don’t get me wrong, though, the good gives way to the bad and the ugly just like in GTA Online. Both games make pretty questionable choices when it comes to the in-game economy. Earning three separate forms of currency that serve different functions is just as obtuse as it sounds.

I’ll be the first to say I’m not the game’s greatest marksman, but RDO’s featured playlists of traditional modes like Team Deathmatch are inadequately balanced. You’ll often be placed in a lobby with Level 200+ players who can gun you down before the clock strikes high noon.

Red Dead Online: An image of three cowboys in Red Dead Online.

Yet, despite those shortfalls, Red Dead Online is still one of the best PS5 games sitting on my dashboard. From afar, I’ve seen the game’s RP culture thrive too. Legions of players are getting involved in highly dedicated groups designed to push Rockstar’s penchant for fine details, whether you’re a noble lawman or a humble convenience store worker. I’m still in awe every time I watch YouTuber ‘Whitelight’ descend deeper into a bizarre rabbit hole with the Reaper Lords, one of the game’s most-known clans.

YouTube Thumbnail

When GTA 6 does arrive, it seems to me that it will be the final nail in the coffin for Red Dead Online. The optimist in me hopes that isn’t the case. There’s no sign of GTA Online slowing down as it simply makes too much for Rockstar to abandon. Whether Rockstar wants to acknowledge it or not, there’s still life in Red Dead Online. It’s just a case of whether it wants to spend a few multi-million dollars more on another ride across the plains.

For more features like this, don’t forget to follow us on Google News.

In other gaming news, Helldivers 2’s “second galactic war” is now underway, and GTA 6’s Fall 2025 release window will see it face off against Call of Duty down the line.