Red Dead Redemption 2 weapons: Customize more than 50 to your outlaw heart's content

The latest Red Dead Redemption 2 revelation from Rockstar is all revolvers, repeaters, and other rude recipes for rending or rupturing. We've seen plenty of guns in screenshots and trailers, but this is the first time the studio has shared a deep explanation of how the weaponry of the old west will work - from raw numbers to in-depth customization to practical storage concerns.

Red Dead Redemption 2 weapons number more than 50

According to Rockstar Games, there are more than 50 unique weapons to find and use in Red Dead Redemption 2. It's a big number, but equally impressive is just how different each weapon is meant to feel. For instance, you might keep a Cattleman Revolver most of the time as an all-rounder, but then switch to a Double-Action Revolver for its improved rate of fire when you plan on fighting from horseback. Or you could pack a Sawed-Off Shotgun for close-range stopping power while leaving your other hand free to carry a lantern at night. You can even dual wield handguns, but you'll need an Off-Hand Holster to keep them both accessible.

The variety extends to long guns, too. Sling a Carbine Repeater over your back for hectic mid-range gunfights or opt for a Springfield Rifle for long range, one-and-done deadliness. Just don't take your Springfield out hunting game since the meat and hide are no good with huge holes in them. That's what the small-caliber Varmint Rifle is for. Though you may wish you had your Pump-Action Shotgun handy if a bear finds you first...

Red Dead Redemption 2 weapon customization is both aesthetic and practical

Red Dead Redemption 2 will let you make a gun yours in a dizzying number of ways. If you want to be a stylish cowboy you can choose from different metals, woods, and even specific varnishes for the wood, not to mention an assortment of engraving options with their own metal inlays. The options go beyond cosmetics, too: you're free to kit out your guns with new grips, barrels, sights, and scopes, all of which will influence their stats and how they perform in a gunfight.

You can also customize what kind of rounds you fire: Rockstar listed a few ammo types like Split Point (which will likely do more damage to unprotected targets), High Velocity, and even Explosive ammo. You can purchase ammo from stores, but if you have the right tools and materials on hand, you can also craft it yourself.

Red Dead Redemption 2's weapon selection makes your horse indispensable

You won't be a walking arsenal in Red Dead Redemption 2. Arthur Morgan can only carry as many weapons as a cowpoke could reasonably strap to his body: say, a handgun or two and a long gun strapped around back. Thankfully, his horse can carry all the guns. In its saddlebags I mean, it isn't gonna ride up and start shooting if you need backup (though we can dream). Your limited weapon inventory isn't a huge constraint since you can always whistle for your horse if it's nearby, but it does mean no swapping from sniper rifle to repeater to shotgun in the middle of a gunfight.

Red Dead Redemption 2's Dead Eye gets better as you play

You can't talk about shooting in a Red Dead game without discussing Dead Eye. Arthur Morgan too will possess the uncanny power that let Red Harlow and John Marston slow time to pepper their enemies with bursts of bullets. Your Dead Eye ability will improve over time (as it did in Red Dead Redemption) but the differences will be more pronounced from the slow-motion beginnings to the vital-organ-tracking, target-painting end. Your Dead Eye meter will deplete as you use it, and you replenish it more quickly by consuming certain items like tonics or tobacco.

See what you'll be hunting - or may end up hunting you - with this look at Red Dead Redemption 2's animals. 

Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.