For the first hour or so of Red Dead Online players will find themselves smack dab in the middle of several key story points, explaining how they came to find themselves out in the west. While these story missions are interesting and provide some depth to your character, many players are probably already wondering how they can unlock free roam and start exploring the world themselves. The good news? We’ve got all the answers you need, right here.
How to Unlock Free Roam
Unlocking free roam in Red Dead Online is just a matter of progressing through the main storyline just far enough. Once you complete a series of activities, you’ll gain access to your own horse—outside of the Shaggy Nag you were granted at the start—and be given full access to Red Dead Redemption 2’s massive, open world.
To unlock free roam and start making a name for yourself in the wild you’re going to need to first create your character. Once you’ve created your character, follow the Horley after the cutscenes play out.
Once you reach Horley’s camp you’ll get to set up your wardrobe for the first time. The clothing options here are pretty limited, but you’ll be able to change your clothes later on down the line, so just choose an outfit you like and then it’s time to continue moving.
Next up you’re going to need to set up your camp by choosing a location for it. With that out of the way, you’ll be told about the local post office or railroad clerk. Visit the clerk and you’ll be told about a group of bandits nearby that you need to take care of.
Kill the outlaws in the camp and then, once they are dead, another bandit will emerge from one of the tents. He’ll offer up a map in exchange for his life. You can let him live, or kill him, depending on whether you want to be an honorable person or not. With the treasure map in hand—you get it either way—it’s time to find your first treasure chest in Red Dead Online. This time around all you have to do is follow the marker, so head out and follow the markers to the chest and loot it.
The next thing you will need to do is head to the next mission that’s marked on your map, Honor Among Horse Thieves. Complete this mission and then speak with Cripps at your camp location. Once you’ve completed all the tasks we’ve just outlined, you’ll unlock the option to roam freely through the world.
Now that you’ve unlocked free roam, it’s time to really kick your new life off. Head back over to our Red Dead Redemption 2 guide for more helpful pointers, and make sure you know how to make money in Red Dead Online to start padding your wallet early on.