We'll soon get a reprieve from the late spring doldrums thanks to Rockstar: the third trailer for Red Dead Redemption 2 (opens in new tab) will debut at 8am PDT / 11am EDT/ 4pm BST on Wednesday. As usual, Rockstar gave little to no indication of what the upcoming video will highlight, teasing us only with a new piece of art for the game that prominently features our new outlaw hero, Arthur Morgan.
Red Dead Redemption 2Official Trailer #3 Coming Wednesday, May 2nd at 11AM Easternhttps://t.co/lyuQK8oTi2 pic.twitter.com/7ZuW0b1wEQApril 30, 2018
Two things jumped out at me as soon as I looked at that bit of art. First, it's easy to see a callback to the cover art for the original Red Dead Redemption; both John Marston and Arthur Morgan have a way of dismissively pointing their guns down at stuff, don't they? The art style is more vibrant and color-limited, but the similarities are clear.
The second is how Arthur Morgan looks kinda saintly with that big sun behind him. It's evocative of a halo from Christian iconography (back when they were depicted as a big, flat circle behind the head rather than a golden torus floating above it). Weird, because the Arthur Morgan we met in Red Dead Redemption 2's second trailer (opens in new tab) seemed about as far away away from canonization as you can get without burning down an orphanage and snorting the ashes.
We joined Marston long after his days as an eager young ne'er-do-well were done, but maybe we'll get to witness firsthand Morgan turning away from the cutthroat life. It wouldn't be an easy transition, I'm sure, especially since he's in deep with Dutch van der Linde's gang of scoundrels. Perhaps Morgan isn't as much of a cold-hearted bastard as I expected, or perhaps I'm reading way too much into a dang circle. I'll only say one more thing in defense of my halo theory: the word "redemption" is still in the title! Rockstar could've gone with Red Dead anything (the series started with Red Dead Revolver) but it kept "redemption."
Anyway, back to the stuff being directly teased; Rockstar hasn't said anything about the contents of the third trailer, but we can at least look at what's already been laid out. The first trailer established the world of Red Dead Redemption 2, a wide-open American west that seems to predate the early 20th century setting of the original RDR. The second introduced, or re-introduced, characters like Morgan, van der Linde, Bill Williamson, and a few who remain unknown.
Knowing that Rockstar usually keeps its big gameplay reveals separate from its cinematic trailers, that leads me to believe there's one big area left for the third trailer to explore: the story proper. The scene snippets in Trailer No. 2 mostly served to establish characters, so we still don't know much of anything about the actual narrative of Red Dead Redemption 2. I have a feeling that will change come Wednesday.
Need something to keep you busy while you wait for RDR2 to arrive? Play through our list of the best open-world games (opens in new tab)!