How to get perfect hides in Red Dead Redemption 2

Learn the animals to hunt and the weapons to use to get a perfect hide.


Hunting in Red Dead Redemption 2 is a deep and complex mechanic that can be especially rewarding for players who take the time to get a perfect hide. These pristine animal skins are used in crafting some of the best gear in the game, so it’s essential the skill is mastered.

How to get perfect hides

Getting perfect hides in Red Dead Redemption 2 is simple to understand but difficult to master, as are most things in the game. There are only a few things to take into account when attempting to get a perfect hide to use in crafting one of the items available from the Trapper:

  • The right animal type
  • A perfect, 3-star animal
  • The right weapon
  • A clean kill
The star-rating of an animal is displayed in the bottom-right corner.

Finding a perfect, 3-star animal is down to blind luck. Before approaching an animal or even killing it, use the binoculars to study it, doing so will reveal its star-rating. This is a lengthy process and could require players to study several animals before a 3-star one is found.

Once the animal is found, the right weapon will need to be used to take it down. Taking down a massive creature with a shotgun is obviously going to result in a tattered hide, so using a sniper rifle makes sense. Similarly, hunting a small animal with a revolver, while likely to kill it instantly, is equally poor, so a small game arrow used with the bow is the best option. This is why studying the animal is important, once an animal is studied, it can be viewed in the Compendium to see what weapon and ammo should be used to kill it. A clean kill is absolutely essential, so aim for the critical parts of the animal (typically the heart) and take the creature down with a single shot.

Patience is key when attempting to get a perfect hide in Red Dead Redemption 2. A good idea is to own one of each type of weapon in the event a specific type of perfect hide is required in crafting an item.

Be sure to check out the Red Dead Redemption 2 guide and walkthrough for more helpful guides on how to be the best outlaw in the west.

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Hailing from the land down under, Sam Chandler brings a bit of the southern hemisphere flair to his work. After bouncing round a few universities, securing a bachelor degree, and entering the video game industry, he's found his new family here at Shacknews as a Guides Editor. There's nothing he loves more than crafting a guide that will help someone. If you need help with a guide, or notice something not quite right, you can Tweet him: @SamuelChandler 

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