Rockstar doesn’t want you to forget about Red Dead Online or think that it’s malingering in an eternal beta: The company has another preview of upcoming content on its blog today, along with the promise that the pseudo-MMO version will continue evolving “in its own unique direction” with “greater freedom to customize” over time. The star of the planned spring update will be broad-scale additions to the hostility system.
“The Hostility system builds upon the anti-griefing measures added in February with smarter and responsive features that keep players immersed in the world through confrontations and PvP action,” explains Rockstar. “For example, players who have damage inflicted on them by attackers will be able to defend themselves without incurring Bounties or Hostility increases. Previously, the attacker and target would be marked as an enemy – now the attacker who inflicts damage will be immediately marked as an enemy to the attacked player; players will not accumulate Hostility increases for killing other players who are marked as an enemy. Hostility increases will not apply within structured events such as Free Roam Events, Free Roam Missions, Showdowns and Races. Engaging in player vs player behaviors related to Free Roam missions will not incur Hostility increases, however attacking other players not engaged in the activity will cause your Hostility level to rise.”
Building on that, the studio’s fleshing out its formal playing style options with the addition of Offensive style and Defensive style; those of you looking to avoid ganks but not wanting to shut down your PvP potential altogether will prefer the latter, as it’ll allow you to avoid being lassoed and critted in exchange for giving up those abilities yourself. (Incidentally, this system is a surprisingly thoughtful elaboration on historical combat flag models – PvP MMO studios, take note!)
Finally, Rockstar promises more missions, mission types, dynamic events, better dailies, and character creation tweaks.