Red Dead Online Players Dress As Clowns To Protest 7 Months Without An Update

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Screenshot: Rockstar Games/Emojipedia, Fair Use
Screenshot: Rockstar Games/Emojipedia, Fair Use

After seven months without a significant update, Red Dead Online players have decided to send in the clowns. The hope among many is that dressing up as clowns will get Rockstar’s attention and encourage the developer to bring a new update to the game a little faster. Plus, it’s something to do.

The last big Red Dead Online update was released back in December of 2019. That popular and well-received Moonshiners update added a brand new role to the game, plus new missions, activities, and even player-owned bars. I really enjoyed the update and thought at the time that it was a positive direction for RDO that got me excited to see what was coming up next.

Other players and I are still waiting for what’s next. In the same period of time, GTA Online has received updates including new contact missions and F1 races. I hate how quickly a game’s community can start to say a popular game is “dead,” but in RDO’s case, it’s hard to blame players for feeling that way. So in a move that echoes the recent alien war in GTA Online, RDO players have been dressing up as clowns to protest the lack of updates, the lack of communication from Rockstar about the game’s future, and to bring attention to the game’s current state.

Numerous outlets have been reporting on these clown protests over the last week, and since those earlier stories, the amount of players dressing up as clowns and invading RDO has only grown. Because this is an online video game with guns, these are almost always murderous clowns. Players will sometimes meet in large groups and invade servers. Other times players just play the game dressed as a clown.

A popular YouTuber, OnlyPVPCat, has posted videos encouraging and teaching players how to dress up like a clown in RDO and has also shared videos where all the players in an RDO server are clowns who meet up and play together.

Rockstar hasn’t responded to the fan protest, at least not in any official way. Considering Rockstar saw the alien war in GTA Online and quickly gave the alien suits away for free, it seems unlikely it hasn’t at this point seen the current clown fest. Kotaku has reached out to Rockstar about the situation.

Of course, the world is a very different place today than back when the last RDO update hit in December 2019. The covid-19 pandemic has forced most developers, including Rockstar, to work from home. This has no doubt made it trickier to create and release big updates. But at this point, many fans might just be happy with a message from Rockstar about its RDO plans. Instead, Rockstar has remained silent, leading to even more player frustration.

Will the clown protest force Rockstar to update the game? No. Will it make the developer release a comment or road map for RDO? Also, probably no. But it might at least show the developers that the game has a large, active community that is eager to play the game, even if they have to do so as clowns.

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Comments

  • So… they’re still playing.

    Yeah… that’s not going to work, guys. You want Rockstar to sit up and pay attention? Stop logging in. Leave the servers empty. THAT is what will make them panic and give the thing some attention.

    That said, ‘no updates in the last 7 months’ is kind of an unreasonable request when you consider that the last 5 months have been in a state of GLOBAL FUCKING PANDEMIC. That’s fucked with schedules everywhere, worldwide. ‘7 months of no content’ doesn’t mean shit in this particular context.

    • I think that’s more likely to have them abandon the game completely. If they really want Rockstar to pay attention I think they’ll need to start spending massive wads of cash on micro-transactions so it starts making them as much money as the GTA Online cash cow. Otherwise it’s doomed to forever be the red headed step child of the Rockstar family.

    • If they’re still pushing out GTA Online updates, you could infer that they get a better return on investment for that work. Reducing the playerbase further might just reinforce Rockstar’s decision.

    • I think you’re missing the point a little honestly. They’re doing a peaceful protest on this issue rather than a whining whinge-fest. As far as the pandemic issue goes, it’s well established that software companies have been able to continue to work at home moreso than say, movie industry outlets. Companies like Rockstar and CD Projekt Red have both stated openly that work has continued (albeit affected to some degree) from the homefront. In that time, not even minor tweaks have occurred.

      As far as this goes, it’s a great way for people to show their dissatisfaction, it’s a form of peaceful protest. They care about the game, they love it, they just want a little tlc shown towards it. They’re *not* making unreasonable demands. They’re not screaming and whining, they’re still in there supporting it, and microtransactions are still apparently continuing. So there’s that too. If R* is going to accept MX’s from people, they should be doing their best to supply a quality product that’s openly supported, it’s decent, quality customer service to do so after all.

      Take for example, the original Million Gnome Marches in WoW, when they occurred, one of the reasons (among more than a few) was to protest the state of the game (pre-cataclysm, we’re talking the games first year). People would log in, create a gnome and run from the starting area to Gnomeragon in giant clusters (never a million!)) The only harm came in that occasionally, the large number would crash a server temporarily. This form of peaceful protest got peoples attention and they started to patch more consistently.

      There’s nothing wrong with what they’re doing, you’re just looking at the glass half empty. Try looking at it half full sometime? You might be surprised about how innovative this sort of approach can be rather than straight up abandoning it?

      • i dont think you understand the meaning of “peaceful protest” its 2020. its not a peaceful protest unless AT LEAST 1 building is on fire.

  • “Oh no my game hasn’t had new content for an ENTIRE SEVEN MONTHS while we are in the middle of a global pandemic! I must protest!”

    Sheesh. The sense of entitlement here is childish.

    • They made the announcement at one point that they wouldn’t be pursuing single player DLC anymore, and just concentrating on online multiplayer. What caused it? People buying the goddamn shark cards 🙁 Rockstar made billions on them. Of course, this truly doesn’t stand to reason for me personally, as surely they could’ve reinvested in some single player dlc and made *more* money out of that? But whatever…

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