Zombies are appearing in Red Dead Online and could be teasing Undead Nightmare 2

Image via Reddit user xXVoluntaryeyeXx (Image credit: Reddit)

This week's Red Dead Online patch notes detailed the first Legendary Bounty and a new mark for Collector's to pursue, but they made no mention of the undead, yet that's exactly what players are finding in the West. Gruesome, wrinkly, glowy-eyed zombies have appeared in Red Dead Online, and players aren't entirely sure what to make of them. However, the most optimistic fans suspect this could be a tease for Undead Nightmare 2, a spiritual sequel to the zombie DLC for the original Red Dead Redemption. 

Nearest I can tell, this all started a week ago when Reddit user xXVoluntaryeyeXx shared the above image of a blue-tinged zombie woman with neon green eyes found near Armadillo. Two days later, another user shared an image of a zombie which reportedly blinked and moved its mouth. Another two days later, a different user found a zombified man standing upright - again, near Armadillo. Other users have since found more zombies - both standing and sprawled on the ground - near Armadillo, specifically behind its sheriff's office. 

There are a few plausible explanations for all this. We're coming up on October, so these zombie sightings could be the bread crumbs leading to an October or Halloween-themed event for Red Dead Online. Considering where these zombies were generally found, it's likely that this event would be localized to Armadillo - perhaps it would feature some supernatural dealings with the sheriff. 

The more exciting theory is that this is all just red carpet for the announcement of Undead Nightmare-style content for Red Dead Online or, potentially, Red Dead Redemption 2 itself. The original Undead Nightmare was also released in October, and it used the same glowy-eyed zombies that players are seeing now, so it's not an unrealistic theory. That said, it is totally unconfirmed, and it's impossible to say how Red Dead Online and Red Dead Redemption 2 could fit into it, especially because the original Undead Nightmare was technically a standalone expansion. 

The third theory is the least exciting but arguably the safest of the bunch: this is some sort of glitch causing unused character models to spawn in Red Dead Online. This wouldn't be the first time dead things have fallen out of the freaking sky in Red Dead Online. But if that were the case, you'd think they'd be popping up all over the place, but these zombies have all appeared near Armadillo, which is certainly curious. We've reached out to Rockstar for more information, and we'll update this story if we hear anything. 

Check out our Red Dead Online tips to learn some new tricks before you get yourself killed in the apparent zombie apocalypse. 

Austin Wood

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature.