The honor system is an intriguing approach to demonstrate to players the social acceptability of their heroes’ acts by totaling up their good deeds against their more bad ones throughout the course of the game.
Future games may strengthen the honor system introduced in the Red Dead Redemption series so that decisions have real consequences.
An honor system makes a lot of sense to depict this shift in viewpoint and personality in real-time as both Red Dead Redemption and the sequel tend to be more narrative and character driven with tales of redemption at their center.
NPCs react differently to the protagonist, and players may get special deals at various accommodations and retail establishments or higher compensation for jobs as a result.
Even though Red Dead Redemption 2’s honor has some story consequences, they are not as significant as they may be for the broader plot.
The important plot beats, including the fatal fate of protagonist Arthur Morgan, will occur regardless of how the game is played because players are still put in crucial story scenarios.
Arthur’s story does have a somewhat different ending based on his honor, a high honor ending shows him passing away while enjoying the sunset and a low honor ending shows him dying at the hands of Micah Bell but in the end he still passes away no matter what.
In Red Dead Redemption, John Marston was tasked with finding some of his old Van der Linde Gang associates.
However, Red Dead Redemption 3 could take place later in the Red Dead chronology, after the events of the first two games, giving players a chance to fully define their character’s destiny.
High or low honor might then become a crucial character feature that radically alters the story of the protagonist, possibly even saving them from certain death.
Gathering bounties is a regular side activity in the Red Dead series that players can engage in regardless of their character’s honor level.
Given that John Marston and Arthur Morgan may casually enter sheriff’s offices to collect these rewards, regardless of the number of crimes or bounties on their heads in the region at the time, is what seems at least a little strange.
The honor system in Red Dead Redemption 3 could also be used to help players build alliances.
If players have been causing trouble and have a low honor level, they may be prevented from engaging in certain activities, such as bounty hunting.
Instead of working with law enforcement to get exclusive heists, player characters with low honor might instead join up with criminals.
By doing so, they could utilize their reputation to construct a criminal legacy that other gangs could trust more than somebody who’s perceived to have high honor, has cooperated with the authorities, and may end up turning on them.
Rockstar might employ honor to encourage player allegiance to several legal factions, with each receiving unique benefits.
To find the bank robbers, high-honor gamers might cooperate with the police and use aspects from L.A. Noire combined with RDR2’s hunting gameplay.
In the meantime, low-honor players could gain access to features for larger scale criminal actions that are more akin to GTA 5’s heist preparation and GTA 6’s leaked hostage scenarios.
The Red Dead series has grown known for its dramatic betrayals and confrontations, and when players’ honor slips, their allies may start to lose faith in them.
This might potentially lead to reduced rewards and other honor-related aspects.
All in all, this would increase Red Dead Redemption 3’s replayability since players may come back and play it again to achieve entirely different results with various objectives, side characters, allies, and outcomes based on how they behave at certain points in the game’s narrative.
Red Dead Redemption 2 has already begun to expand beyond the simple reward system that initially consisted of greater pay and unlocking particular outfits and weapons, despite the fact that it started off that way.
It’s evident that Rockstar could do more with the honor system in the future, especially with the technical advancements since that game’s release in 2018.