Red Dead Online vs. Fallout 76: Which Game Should You Play?

Red Dead Online VS Fallout 76 Which Game Should You Play

One of the biggest games of recent years is Red Dead Redemption 2. Rockstar games procured a worthy descendant of the successful original console exclusive from 2007, Red Dead Redemption. Of course, with every successful single-player, multiplayer mode is expected to be developed, and Rockstar games followed the same niche they did for Grand Theft Auto. On the other side, we have Fallout 76, a multiplayer game developed by Bethesda that received all-around bad reviews – the lack of NPCs, design, and the overall purpose of the player in the game. However, Bethesda realized its mistakes and added updates and additions to Fallout 76, making it playable again. This article will put these two against each other and determine which game you should play – Read Dead Online or Fallout 76.

  • Article Breakdown:
  • Fallout 76 is currently a much more enjoyable online experience than Red Dead Online.
  • Despite having better graphics and design, Red Dead Online is “left behind” by Rockstar Games, who moved on to develop GTA 6.
  • Bethesda consistently released Fallout 76 updates and add-ons that made the game enjoyable for the players, and those facts are why Fallout 76 is a better online game than Red Dead Online.

Game environment and graphics

red dead online 1

We start this “battle” with the games’ graphics. Let’s start Red Dead Online. Of course, being the spin-off game from 2018, Red Dead Online shares almost the same graphics as Red Dead Redemption 2. We all know how beautiful the graphics and environment of Red Dead Redemption 2 are and the way it showcases the calm feeling of 19th century United States of America. The natural elements of the game are astonishing and probably the best part of the Red Dead Online game. 

The animals and other ads in the surrounding area are immersive and realistic, which adds more positive points to Red Dead Online. On the other hand, Fallout 76 was a buggy and absolutely unplayable game. Still, over the years, Bethesda added updates and fixes that upgraded the game’s performance and graphics, prompting fans to revisit Fallout 76. 

However, despite the great upgrades of Fallout 76 and immersive post-apocalyptic West Virginia and Wasteland, Red Dead Online is just better looking than Bethesda’s game. The first point goes to Rockstar’s Red Dead Online.

Red Dead Online (1) : 0 Fallout 76


red dead online 3

This section is really hard to determine since both games have their own signature combat gameplay that made them so popular among players. Red Dead Online is a Wild West-inspired game set in the 19th century, and it uses the same combat mechanics as the real-life people of the 19th century.

Such weapons like Colt, Winchesters, shotguns and cold weapons like knives have a special combat style. The game has gun showdowns, bar fights, and fist fights that remind us of spaghetti Westerns of the Golden Age of Hollywood. This is why Red Dead Online gameplay and combat are so immersive, and that particular part of the game never gets old. The third-person perspective was always great in Rockstar Games, and that shows in Red Dead Online.


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On the other hand, we have Fallout 76, which has kept mostly the same combat mechanics since the Fallout 3 game. The first-person shooting is a signature aspect of Fallout games and works well with Fallout 76. Post-apocalyptic West Virginia and the expanse of Appalachia are filled with enemies and mutated creatures that you can battle with anything from energy weapons and plasma guns to .44 pistols and revolvers. The V.A.T.S. system is present again, giving the combat one more aspect of the Fallout 76 gaming experience.

This is why this section is hard to grade, so we decided to give both games points – it would be disingenuous to give one point to the game over the other since the combat is one of the game mechanics that made games so likable.

Red Dead Online (2) : (1) Fallout 76

Story and lore

red dead online 2

Of course, despite being online games, both Red Dead Online and Fallout 76 had to add a storyline to players’ characters for better and more organic progression. The story makes the grind and background of player characters more sense, which is why the story and lore are important in the grand scheme.

Red Dead Online is set a year before the Red Dead Redemption 2 game, and it follows the silent protagonist who is arrested for murder and imprisoned in the Sisika Penitentiary. The story starts from there, and the player character gains the much-needed context and story behind the lore of the character, which helps the continuation of the story even more. Red Dead Online is connected closely to the RDR2, which makes it even more immersive and “attractive” to the players.

On the other hand, we have Fallout 76, which follows the residents of Vault 76 twenty-five years after the nuclear war that devastated the Earth. According to Bethesda, this storyline is set in an alternate history, which doesn’t erase the fact that the Wasteland looks much better than in Fallout 3, which was set almost 200 years after the Nuclear War.

As someone who rates consistency and story in most games, Fallout 76 misses the main setting of the Fallout games. This seems harsh, but most Fallout fans will agree with this criticism.

The added NPCs and dialogues improved the immersive and story aspects of Fallout 76, but it still doesn’t feel like it’s part of the Fallout game franchise. This is why most players suggest forgetting the previous games when playing Fallout 76 because the lore disadvantages will “ruin” the gaming experience for some players. Despite those cons, Bethesda added great immersive storylines in Fallout 76, but we still need to give the point to Red Dead Online.

Red Dead Online (3): 1 Fallout 76


The important part of each game is its gameplay. Red Dead Online consistently showcased its charm through its beautiful graphics, cool combat mechanics, and just the immersive part of the game; however, recently, it stumbled across a major problem – lack of content. This section is closely connected to the next section of this article, but the gameplay depends on the additional content and quests game studios add to each game.

Rockstar games put Red Dead Online on stand-by in recent months for other projects, even though you can have fun in Red Dead Online and explore the regions; the lack of quests and something to do makes every game too repetitive. Most gamers will tell you that Red Dead Online is cozy and relaxing, but even that coziness doesn’t erase the fact that there is a lack of progression in the game.

Fallout 76 has disadvantages, and not all players will like it, but the content is consistently there. Bethesda made sure to add something new every month or every major real-life holiday – for example, the Halloween event occurred in Fallout 76, and people had fun.


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Another advantage of Fallout 76 over Red Dead Online is the fact that you can “chill” on your own if you want to and grind your progress, and if you feel like playing with your friends, you can easily make a party and go to the private server with your buddies. This is a great addition since some players don’t like constantly playing PvPs against other people or attacking other players’ parties – the servers for small circles of friends is a great alternative.

Fallout 76 gets back in the game in this section.

Red Dead Online 3 : (2) Fallout 76

Updates and DLCs


As the section title suggests, we will discuss the updates and DLCs for each game. Let’s start with Red Dead Online. Since its release in 2019, Rockstar Games has had three major updates – Frontier Pursuits Moonshiners, The Naturalist, The Bounty Hunters, and Blood Money. Each update brought many great additional content and story chapters that the fans could use for better progression of their player characters. 

Besides the new story chapters, Rockstar added horse races, great weapons for PvP, new roles for each character, which players choose and earn money through completing quests, and many more. However, there haven’t been any significant updates in 2024, which we will explain further in another section. Only a few small expansions and smaller missions are added to the Red Dead Online; unfortunately for the players, nothing else major.

On the other hand, we have Fallout 76 and Bethesda, who clearly learned from their mistakes – they committed to the game wholeheartedly and have consistently developed new updates and add-ons since 2019. The game is very immersive and interesting, and players can dedicate themselves to some things without being bothered about other players or just a lack of quests; since its release and rough beginnings in 2018, Fallout 76 added these next major updates to their game: 

  • Wild Appalachia
  • Nuclear Winter
  • Wastelanders
  • Steel Dawn
  • Locked & Loaded
  • Steel Reign
  • Fallout Worlds
  • Night of the Moth
  • Invaders from Beyond
  • Test Your Metal
  • Expeditions: The Pitt

There are many announced upcoming content for Fallout 76, which players welcomed with open arms. We have yet to mention small updates, events, and fixes that are monthly added to Fallout 76, which means that the game is cared for, and the fans have something to look forward to.

Fallout 76 overwhelmingly deserves this point because Red Dead Online is much less “taken care of” than its counterpart.

Red Dead Online 3 : (3) Fallout 76


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fallout 76

We will determine “the winner” with the final question of the article – do both games have a future ahead of them? Unfortunately, Red Dead Online doesn’t. Rockstar Games announced the development of the highly expected Grand Theft Auto 6 game, which will be released in the next few years. The news of slowly but surely shelving a game for another project deeply disappointed the fans. 

Rockstar did say they will continue adding more content to the Red Dead Online, but in smaller updates, and that the fans shouldn’t expect any new major updates. After 2019, Red Dead Online is already in deep trouble and for such a great franchise to get this kind of treatment is disappointing, to say the least.

On the other hand, Fallout 76 has a lot to offer in the coming months and years. Bethesda has already announced great content and updates, which they will use for adding new events, items, quests, and storylines for players to wander through the American Wasteland, and for that, we need to give the final point to Fallout 76.

Red Dead Online 3 : (4) Fallout 76

Which game should you play – Red Dead Online or Fallout 76?

After an “exhausting” analysis, we determined that Fallout 76 is more worthwhile playing in 2024 than Red Dead Online. Despite still being one of the best open-world online games, Red Dead Online is losing support from its game studio.

Rockstar Games already announced the discontinuation of developing major updates for their online game. On the other hand, Bethesda is adding new content to Fallout 76 every month and is receiving positive feedback from its players.

Both games deserve playing time, but Fallout 76 has more content and something to look forward to in the future.

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