Player icons in Free Roam should not appear on the map or mini-map. Instead, when a player fires a weapon their location should ping briefly for other players to see. If the player uses a bow, melee or throwing weapon there should be no ping. Free roam mission objectives (carts, bags, hostages, etc) should always appear on the map no matter how far players are from the objective. Lastly, free roam events should actually take place on the free roam map, be more frequent and their objectives should always appear on the map.
These few changes would radically change Free Roam game play. They would create more interesting gunfights while allowing for stealth tactics and ambushes. It would also act as a light anti griefing measure for players who don't want to be attacked, while allowing them to hide or flee if they were.
Players looking for a fight could check the map for the location of gunshot pings and head to those locations to fight. Pings from a hunter versus a multi posse shootout in Valentine would be unmistakable from one another. If a griefer went after the hunter, the hunter would likely be long gone by the time the griefer arrived at the ping location. If no fights were happening on the map, PVP players could look for ongoing free roam mission or events. Focus would shift from randomly killing strangers, who don't want to fight, to battles over free roam missions/events with cash, gold and experience rewards. In addition, free roam activities would become more interesting and varied because players would need to have a keen eye and watch the horizon carefully for approaching hostiles or a potential ambush. This would lesson the reliance on the map/mini-map which would instead function mostly as a navigational tool, providing some situational awareness during a gunfight.
Red Dead Redemption 1 multiplayer had hardcore lobbies that functioned this way and they were a blast. I don't think splitting the player base into separate lobbies based on preference is a good idea however, this will only lead to empty lobbies in the future. I feel if these changes were implemented correctly they could please most of the player base and create a very unique experience, unlike any other game out there.
I've submitted these ideas to Rockstar, as well as a link to this post. These are my opinions and everyone has their own, so if you disagree, I'd like to know what you think could improve this idea?
© Post "Hiding player icons from the MAP/MINI-MAP would be a massive change to Free Roam." for game Red Dead Redemption 2.
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