Red Dead Redemption 2 Honor Guide - What Activities Increase and Decrease Honor

Red Dead Redemption 2 Honor Guide - What Activities Increase and Decrease Honor

Posted in rdr2

The Honor system in Red Dead Redemption 2 is more important than you might think. Certain story elements, outfits and perks are locked behind moral behaviour that is driven by your entire playthrough. In this guide I'm going to explain exactly how Honor works in RDR2 and what impact it has on other characters and ultimately the story.

As a general rule of thumb, actions that you perceive as moral, such as rescuing characters in danger or turning in wanted criminals, will boost your Honor rating. Conversely, actions that are dishonorable such as murdering innocent people will lead to reductions. Your Honor rating is a dynamic value that will fluctuate is you play through the game.

Keeping a positive rating will not only open late game story missions but will also provide perks such as a massive 50% discount at all shops and unlock brand new outfits, such as the Bulldogger, at shops.

Honor levels and points

The Honor scale ranges from a very bad -8 level (-320 points) to the highest positive level of 8 (320 points). Each level is separated by 40 points. The table below gives you some idea of the perks/benefits you'll earn at each level:

Rank Points Effects
8 320  
7 280 50% discount in all shops.
6 240 New outfits unlocked: Scrapper, Farrier, Gambler, Deauville, Faulkon, Drifter, Dewberry Creek, Dover.
5 200 25% discount in all shops.
4 160  
3 120 New outfits unlocked: Bulldogger, McLaughlin, Chevalier, Corson, Cumberland, Cowpuncher, Valentine, Roscue.
2 80 10% discount in all shops.
1 40 Drop rate on looting bodies increased for: potent tonics, restorative items, jewelry and food items.
0 0 Drop rate on looting bodies is standard e.g. cheap jewelry, basic horse consumables
-1 -40 Drop rate on looting bodies is increased for: Dead Eye tonics, thrown weapons, alcohol, tobacco. Also more money and jewelry from lawmen.
-2 -80  
-3 -120  
-4 -160  
-5 -200  
-6 -240  
-7 -280  
-8 -320  

Story mission choices (no spoilers)

I don't want to go through the story missions here because it would spoil too much, but throughout all of the story chapters there will be choices that affect your Honor. Positive Honor choices are saving gang members, returning escaped horses, rescuing people and sparing witnesses.

Bad Honor choices will include killing train staff, refusing to rescue story characters and choosing the money route instead of helping others.

Most of these should seem obvious once taken in the context of a particular chapter. Generally speaking each of the choices will impact your Honor points by roughly +/- 10 points, and the most choices appear in Chapter 2 and Chapter 6.

General activities that affect honor

Duel example

As you go about free roaming (outside of missions) there are many ways to influence your honor.

Two of the best ways to increase Honor are to donate to the gang via the tithing box and also disarming a dueling opponent. These will increase your Honor by +10 points each. Completing camp chores also earns you a steady +5 points. The worst offending activities are holding up a shopkeeper and stealing from the register or safe (-5 points) and of course murdering people (applies a growing decrease in honor the more you do it).

Funnily enough you also lose Honor for killing animals and forgetting to skin them or stowing them on your horse!

The following activities will all affect your Honor points, good and bad:

Activity Honor Points
Donate to gang via tithing box +10
Disarm a dueling opponent +10
Peacefully surrender to lawman and serve time in jail +5
Kill rats in town or complete camp chores +5
Pay off your debts for the crimes you have committed +5
Watch animal bleed to death -1
Scare a civilian by shooting near them -1
Steal a horse hitched to a post -1
Knock out civilians and loot them -1
Trample innocent person whilst on horseback -1
Intimidate or fight someone during a robbery -5
Kill farm animals or dogs -5
Desecrate the dead -10
Hold up a shop and steal from register or safe -20
Randomly antagonise or intimidate someone Exponential decrease
Watch your horse in pain and offer no help Exponential decrease
Kill an animal and leave the carcass or skin Exponential decrease
Kill civilian or lawman (does not apply during missions) Exponential decrease

Story missions affected by your honor rating

The following missions will not be available unless you have a high Honor rating.

  • Chapter 6 - Do No Seek Absolution I
  • Chapter 6 - Do No Seek Absolution II