Red Dead Redemption 2 (often shortened to RDR 2) for the PC, Playstation 4, and Xbox One is Rockstar’s follow-up to the modern classic Red Dead Redemption and improved on the original in many huge ways. One of the biggest features of this Wild West open-world game is the land mass itself. To say that it doubled the size from Red Dead Redemption is an understatement. Here, we will look at that very map, the sequence of accessing each section, and how to unlock the entire map.
Red Dead Redemption 2 Map Breakdown
Accessing the in-game map is done by pressing the pause button. The Red Dead Redemption 2 map is divided into different states and major territories: Ambarino, Lemoyne, New Austin, New Hanover and West Elizabeth. There is also a special island location called Guarma (accessible in Chapter 5). Cities, towns, rural areas, and landscapes such as deserts, mountain ranges, and rivers are all indicated. Key locations are given special markers.
Exploring the area will lead to pencil-style indicators, such as for harvesting plants, hunting wildlife, landmark structures, and other unique details. This is particularly useful for finding side missions, not to mention fast travel spots. You can also add your own markers and waypoints from the Red Dead 2 map screen, should you choose to do so.
Generally, you will start at the northernmost section of the map, in the Spider Gorge section in the Ambarino Territories. Chapter 1 "Outlaws from The West" in story mode opens up the Grizzlies East and Grizzlies West areas.
After progressing with these initial missions and locations you will gain access to the lower Ambarino and the New Hanover locations. This would comprise the North-Eastern half of the game map (which is essentially most of the first half of the game, as well).
Lemoyne and West Elizabeth would be opened up for the second half of the game, as well as the special Guarma island missions. By the Epilogue, you and your posse will finally head to the New Austin territory.
Although this all sounds fairly straightforward and linear, that is far from the case in reality. The gameplay of Red Dead Redemption 2 is chockfull of missions and optional quests in each major location that take many hours to explore and complete. As the Red Dead 2 map also features a fog of war for unexplored areas, it can be a time consuming.
Blood Feuds, Ancient and Modern
Part of the enjoyment of playing through this game is the exploration. But there is a way of sidestepping the hassle of checking every nook and cranny to get a 100% complete RDR 2 map.
Red Dead Redemption 2 features cheat codes. To access them, pause the game and go to Settings. Press Triangle on the PS4 or Y on an Xbox One. This will lead to the Red Dead Redemption 2 cheats list. The list entries will show as "Unknown" until the cheat codes are entered.
Press Triangle or Y again and this will pull up the typing interface where you can enter the code. There are currently 37 known cheat codes in Red Dead Redemption 2. One thing to take note about the RDR2 cheats is that not all can be used immediately, even if you already know what the code is. Some of the cheats require certain achievements during the game.
The most common requirement is unlocking and purchasing the newspapers. If the appropriate newspaper is in your inventory, then you can enter the code in the cheat screen to activate it. Another important note: activating cheat codes will prevent saving and Achievements/Trophies in RDR 2 from working. However, you can turn off any cheat and save the game and you will not need to re-enter the code later on.
Now, to specifically unlock the full RDR 2 map, you need to acquire the Saint Denis Times Newspaper, Issue No. 47. This newspaper requires finishing the "Blood Feuds, Ancient and Modern" mission that is found in Chapter 3 of the Story Mode.
Unlock the Full RDR 2 Map
Play through the game until you reach Chapter 3, "Blood Feuds, Ancient and Modern". This is the 42nd main Story Mode mission in RDR 2. You can get the mission from Dutch van der Linde. The mission takes place in Braithwaite Manor in the Scarlett Meadows, Lemoyne area. Arthur Morgan (the central protagonist of RDR2) and the rest of the gang at this point will be undertaking a rescue of Jack from Catherine Braithwaite and her family.
Once you have completed the mission, purchase the Saint Denis Times No. 47.
As with many of the cheat codes in the game, the full Red Dead 2 map code is hidden in the newspaper’s text. Zoom in to one of the headlines you will see this line of text:
YOU LONG FOR SIGHT AND SEE NOTHING
Now, go to the cheat screen as detailed earlier and enter the above code. You will know this works when an "ALERT" message flashes on the screen and the entry on the cheat list changes from "Unknown" to the name of the cheat (which is usually the effect it has while active). With the full RDR 2 map cheat, the entry in the cheat list should show as "Fog of War".
While the full Red Dead 2 map cheat is active you can view all the explorable locations in the game. You can also still use the standard options of placing markers and waypoints (however, we repeat that Achievements and Trophies will be unavailable). This feature is nonetheless convenient, particularly if you want to backtrack to past areas where you might have missed acquiring resources and secrets, such as rare breeds of mounts or unique weapons and outfits.