The image above first appeared on, and then disappeared from, NeoGAF. It’s said to be the map for the next Red Dead Redemption. While we’re taking that with the biggest grain of salt we can find, there are some bits worth latching onto.
Techradar claims that “a source close to the development of the new Red Dead game has confirmed to us that the map is indeed the real deal.” The map, they say, is “a very recent art direction map.”
The map’s a bit hard to read, but a bit of squinting reveals the lower left-hand corner of the map to be made up of areas called Tall Trees and Great Plains, two of the areas from the upper northeastern corner of the original Red Dead’s map. The most interesting aspect, perhaps, is the presence of an area called New Bordeaux. That’s the name of the city featured in the upcoming Mafia III. While Mafia III isn’t in development by Rockstar, both are published by 2K Games, meaning that a referential crossover like that isn’t out of the question.
The game, according to Techradar‘s source, is a prequel. Red Dead Redemption took place in the early 1900s and was about the final days of the wild west, so a prequel would make sense regardless of the fate of Red Dead Redemption‘s protagonist John Marston, whether or not he’d be in this sequel.
If Techradar‘s source is indeed close to development and knows what they’re talking about, this would be the first confirmation of the otherwise unannounced but hotly anticipated sequel to the 2010 western.