It’s taken 15 days but I’m delighted to let you know I can now run Red Dead Redemption 2! What a journey it has been. Having been struck with the deadly Red Dead Redemption 2 exited unexpectedly error, I found myself unable to launch the game at all. I tried rolling back drivers, grabbing fresh redistributables, redownloading all 109GB, switching graphics cards, and more, all to no avail. Thankfully though, the problem has now been fixed. Sadly, I can’t quite confirm what exactly fixed my issue but it was certainly one of two changes, so just perform both of the following updates and you should be able to run RDR2 on PC.

Firstly, Rockstar issued a new patch. RDR2 Title Update 1.14 is available to download now (it’s a couple of GBs, from memory), and tackles a fairly big list of performance and technical related issues users are having. In particular, players with Nvidia GeForce graphics cards paired with quad-core and hexa-core processors are highly recommended to download this update and remove and launch arguments.

Other fixes included in the latest Red Dead Redemption 2 patch encompass wide-ranging problems such as the player’s stamina core drain rate infamously being tied to frame rate, DRM errors, crashing while using Vulkan, and graphics settings reverting to Low after updates. Ironically, this exact update reverts the graphics settings to, erm, Low. 

Red Dead Redemption 2 best PC graphics settings for optimised performance

Secondly, Nvidia pushed out a totally optional GeForce Hotfix Driver version 441.34 which tackled two specific issues. Namely, Red Dead Redemption 2 on Vulkan stalling on certain systems with 4-core and 6-core CPUs, as well as Shadow of the Tomb Raider crashing when launching in DX12 mode. If you’re still having trouble getting Red Dead Redemption 2 to boot on PC then you can grab this driver for yourself from here.

Between these two updates, it’s finally solved my “Red Dead Redemption 2 exited unexpectedly” after more than two weeks of troubleshooting. All’s well that ends well, I suppose, and it’s mainly just a relief to be able to get in there and get playing.

Here are the full update notes for Red Dead Redemption 2’s latest PC patch. As you can see, there are plenty of performance related tweaks which could help iron any consistences on certain configurations.

RDR2 Title Update 1.14 Full Patch Notes

  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in stalls on 4-core and 6-core CPUs
  • Players with NVIDIA graphics cards and 4-core or 6-core CPUs should install the GeForce Hotfix Driver Version 441.34 from NVIDIA and remove any launch arguments to resolve this issue: For more information, please see this support page: https://support.rockstargames.com/articles/360038940333
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in a permanent mouse cursor being displayed at all times when launching the game via the Epic Games Store
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in the player’s cores draining at a faster rate than intended in Story Mode when running at high frame rates
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in player weight decreasing at a faster rate than intended in Red Dead Online when running at high frame rates
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in players not being able to place Waypoints on the Pause Menu Map in the correct location
  • Improvements to address an issue with matchmaking in Red Dead Online that resulted in players with incompatible control settings joining the same session. We recommend that players using mouse and keyboard controls should switch to ‘Free Aim’ targeting mode before entering Red Dead Online.
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in all custom graphical settings reverting to a low preset when the game was updated
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in an ‘Activation Required’ error when loading the game after system hardware or device changes were made
  • Improvements to address issues that resulted in a crash and displayed the ‘Failed to initialize graphics device’ or ‘Unable to initialize graphics driver ’errors when launching the game. If this issue still occurs, please make sure you have the latest graphics card drivers installed for your system.
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in a crash when launching the game in Fullscreen display mode while using Vulkan
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in a crash when launching the game with some graphics-related launch arguments active
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in a crash during loading screens when entering Story Mode or Red Dead Online
  • Improvements to address an issue that resulted in a crash while modifying weapons at the Gunsmith in Red Dead Online
  • Improvements to address issues that resulted in random crashes and the error “Red Dead Redemption 2 exited unexpectedly” during gameplay

Red Dead Redemption 2 Most Important Graphics Options - Every Setting Benchmarked