After Rockstar’s release disaster of the PC version of Red Dead Redemption 2, I can finally play the game now after they pushed an update that stops the game from burning my CPU to the ground every time I try to run it.
After waiting for a year to play it, I was really happy when Red Dead Redemption 2 was finally released on PC on November 5. The predecessor is one of my favourite games of all time, which is little surprising as I also love the GTA series and also western movies very much. This happiness went away very quickly, though, as I realised that the game was very much unplayable on my system. Freezes during cutscenes and gameplay made it impossible to even get through the very first prologue bits of the game.
It turns out that my Core i5-4440 and my GTX 980 weren’t playing ball with Rockstar’s code at all. They’ve recently admitted this in a support document and created a workaround.
We have identified an issue with certain NVIDIA graphics card drivers that cause significant stalls of several seconds on systems with 4-core and 6-core CPUs.
To fix these problems, Rockstar recommended starting the game via their launcher with the launch argument
-cpuLoadRebalancing, which indeed fixed my problems and enabled me to finally enjoy RDR2 as well.
With a new update to the game (version 1.14), which Rockstar has released yesterday, they’ve changed the fix recommended in their support document, though. Players are now requested to disable the launch argument again and install Nvidia’s GeForce Hotfix Driver 441.34. I can confirm that this also fixes the issues and the game remains playable – at least on my system.
Major Fuckup on Rockstar’s Part
It baffles me how Rockstar could fuck up the PC launch of Red Dead Redemption 2 this badly. They are a huge, well-funded studio that had an entire year to optimise and test this game for the PC. Their stupid exclusivity deal with the console manufacturers meant that they artifically pushed back the PC launch date from October 2018, when the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions of the game came out, to November 2019.
What the hell was Rockstar doing all this time? How could they have possibly missed the fact that the game uses 100% of CPU resources constantly when you’re using very common Nvidia cards and 4-core and 6-core Intel chips? Did they only test their game on 8-core CPUs or on the newest GPU hardware? What the fuck, Rockstar!? Take-Two Interactive reported a net revenue of $2.7 billion in their last fiscal year and they can’t even pay a few QA people that know what they are doing? It’s not like the issue took long to find, or to fix for that matter, once the whole world started shouting at them.
Nobody who enjoys PC gaming should forget what a shitshow this launch was. The fuckers kept us waiting for a whole year to rake in some more cash and then they can’t even deliver a game that reliably works? Fuck ‘em’. They can stick their apology where the sun don’t shine.