Outlaws To The End: Rockstar’s Multi-Player Redemption

I don’t get it.  Really, I don’t.  Why are so many people pissing and moaning about the free Outlaws To The End DLC for Red Dead Redemption?  Even more so, why is everyone still getting their panties in a bunch over the “bugs” and “glitches” in the game?

In my opinion, Rockstar knocked the single player experience in this game clear out of the park.  I’m not saying that because I’ve played it for a few hours, I’m saying that because I’ve put in over 140 hours and have experienced very few problems.  Certainly not enough “glitches” to taint my gaming experience.  Admittedly, much of the time I am playing in single player, but lately, after hitting 100% in single player, I have been playing online much more.  What I find is that the original multi-player experience is lacking.  It’s difficult to get any of the achievements in public free roam due to everyone’s need to shoot others in the head for no reason other than they can.

On June 22, 2010, Rockstar redeemed themselves by releasing the multi-player co-op mission pack, Outlaws To The End.  If this is any representation of the future DLC, sign me up now.  They got it right.  Completely right.

Sequestered Missions – Each of the missions take place in an isolated game, meaning the only people sharing the game are the players on the mission.  No other players to interfere with the fun.

Friendly Fire – Bullets are bullets.  They hit what ever you fire them at.  I like this because if forces all the players to be aware of the location of each of the other players.  this actually adds to the co-operative nature of the missions.  If you are in front, squat down so those behind can fire over you.

Familiar Environments – These missions take place in existing areas on the map.  No new territory to explore, but this, I believe, was an answer to gamers who were not happy with the multi-player side of the game.  Putting the mechanics of the co-op play in place using existing locations sounds like a very economical way to see if this is what players are looking for in multi-player.  They can test the waters and show gamers that there is more to come on the multi-player side.

It’s Free – Nothing is free nowadays.  Even the free lunch is around $5.99.  This was a fantastic move of good faith on Rockstar’s part.  It’s like they heard the fan base and said “Well, ok.  Here, have this DLC and see if you like this instead.  No charge.”  Wow.

"We shoot whiners in these here parts."

So why all the whining?  I think there is a very vocal minority that IS still having issues with the game (even after the patch was released), but it’s not necessarily a problem with the game.  My background includes being a programmer and a network engineer for over twenty years.  Rockstar has sold, as of June 8, 2010, over 5 million units (  Don’t take that number lightly.  First of all, if the game was as bug ridden as some claim, they would never have sold this many copies in just one month.  Secondly, there would be five million people screaming about the game not working.  This is not the case.  In fact, in most places I find comments from gamers negating the claims of bugs and glitches.  Bottom line – if the problems were only the fault of the software (the game) then everyone would have the same problems.

What could be wrong?  Here are a few things you should checkout before dragging Rockstar out to Hanging Tree.  Start with the simple things.

Stay Cool – Make sure your console is properly ventelated.  Heat is your enemy; keep that console cool and you may see your lockups and slow-downs go away.

Clean the Game Disc – Make sure the disc is finger print and jelly free.  Wipe clean with a damp soft cloth or paper towel.

Clean the Game Drive – Run a lens cleaner in your system.  Having a buildup of dust on the lens can slow down disc access and even corrupt the data being read from the disc.

Check Your Connection –  Connect a PC or Mac to your internet connection using the same method as your gaming console.  If you are using a network cable, use the same cable for the test as it may be the problem.  Is you are connecting using wireless, place the PC or Mac you are testing with as close to the location of console as possible.  There could be other devices nearby that are interfering with the connection.  Next visit and PingTest.Net and run each test by choosing the location on the map that is nearest to you.  The results may explain why you are having problems.  If you are running other services through your internet connection at the same time (NetFlix, YouTube, BitTorrent, etc.) shut it all down.  Gaming relies on consistent network communication and other services like these can really suck up your much needed gaming bandwidth.  If you don’t have any of these services running but still see speeds much lower than expected, but only when your PC or Mac is connected to you network at the same time as your console, then it’s time to scan for viruses, adware and malware.

Beyond the Obvious – If none of the above look like they are causing a problem then more drastic action may be required.  Consoles keep a cache of patches and updates that pile up over time.  Clearing this cache will force the console back to a patch-free state and it will only download patches it needs as it needs them.  For Xbox 360 users this fairly simple.  Microsoft provides directions HERE for clearing your cache.  For the PS3 the solution is less elegant and may require the drive to be reformatted.  Before going to that extreme, try reinstalling the game and making sure you have the latest firmware.  If the problems persists, contact Sony support to walk you through a reformat of your hard drive.

You owe it to yourself to get your console issues resolved so you can experience Red Dead Redemption: Outlaws To The End in all of its glory.  It’s a truly enjoyable extension of the single player experience into a multi-player world without the irritation of other interfering with your mission.

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  • Taaffe

    I agree with u. I have experienced barely any bugs. Only major bug I experienced was at launch when in certain areas u turned invisible but that was quickly fixed by rockstar. The only problem I had was the clear lack of content in free roam compared to the singleplayer experience but even then the game is still great. As for people moaning about the dlc, what is with people these moaning about FREE dlc!?!? IMO rockstar have done amazing with this game the fact they are listening to the game’s community to make the game better is just outstanding

  • well

    Well be glad. You’re lucky. Meanwhile I’ve had to stop playing MP as the loading times often go on and on forever even as I can hear match announcements and other players talking, forcing me to go back to the Dashboard. Rockstar support tells me to keep waiting, there will be another patch coming, but I’ve seen no news or updates about it.

    I appreciate the list of trouble shooting tips, and went through them throughout the problems. but the problem is not on my end. The game was working fine until the co-op pack was released, first of all, nothing else changed. All other games/Netflix/etc. are still fine, fast. I downloaded the game to the HD… not sure what more I can do, so just waiting on Rockstar’s 2nd (or 3rd? I’ve lost count) patch for the co-op.

    Don’t get me wrong, I like the game.

    Do have a few other gripes about multiplayer.

    -I have done a few co-op missions and the cut scene always cuts away as some other player skips it. Make everyone agree to skip it. I’d like to watch the cutscenes at least once to know what the story is, even if it’s a stupid story.

    -Something that really frustrates me, and I’m hoping that this will be changed, is the lack of ability to select the type of gang match you want to play, and the map you want to play. As for the game play, I really hate grab the bag… so why should I ever have to play it.? People who want to play grab the bag should just play it. If people like the random matches that option could always be left in place. Again, choice over maps is not much to ask for either.

    -Having a list of all the current games going would be cool to, in any given category/map. And having easy access to that list during matches would be useful in part because…

    -Currently if you want to switch sets of players/maps/gamemode, it usually puts you with the same group of people 2 or 3 times before it gives you a new group. This is also, something fairly easy to fix, and makes perfect logical sense. Obviously if I want to play the same type of game I’m currently playing, I’m making the switch because I don’t want to play with these people anymore.

    Just some thoughts. I’m sure none of which will ever be addresses. I realize my tech-probs are in the minority, and yeah this is my favorite game in a long time. Thanks for the post.

  • I SERIOUSLY need to get this game. It’s on my ‘MUST-BUY-WHEN-I-HAVE-DISPOSABLE-INCOME’ list.

  • talaal

    i downloaded da OTTE pack but wen i go into da multiplayer and press select, there is no option of coop mission…
    plz guyz i need ur help