Moonshining is Red Dead Online’s best update yet, but the cost of content is starting to hurt

December 16, 2019
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Since we last spoke, Red Dead Online has made the move to PC, and with the Moonshiners update has finally caught up to its console counterpart, wrangling it into submission with its 4K 60FPS lasso. This fancy new patch grafts in the second season of the much-loved Outlaw Pass, a new wardrobe worth of cosmetics and a brand new Frontier Pursuit to pursue in Moonshining, which introduces property ownership and a separate five-mission narrative.

A lot to dig into then! The boozehound business model is the main focus, and as you kickstart the new role you’re introduced to the baroness of shine, Maggie Fike, a woman scorned and left to fry in a burning shack by federal tax agents. You’re tasked with reclaiming her extremely illegal operation and seeking revenge against a trio of bad blokes. It might sound familiar if you’ve played through Online’s main story: a long-winded redemption song spearheaded by Jessica McClerk, the woman who broke your green behind out of Sisika penitentiary in the opening so you could avenge her dead husband.

Even so, this side story comfortably overshadows that arc across five meaty missions that ply the player with a refreshing approach to Red Dead mission design. Most importantly, the objectives in Fike’s campaign don’t so quickly dissolve into dissatisfying combat arenas.

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