Like in the original Red Dead Redemption, RDR2 features several different challenges divided into nine categories: Bandit, Explorer, Gambler, Herbalist, Horseman, Master Hunter, Sharpshooter, Survivalist, and Weapons Expert.
The Challenges allow players to become much better at the related activities while earning some nice rewards – things like equipment, items and experience for any of your three main stats – Health, Stamina and Dead Eye.
Master Hunter Challenges Overview
Like the name suggests, the Master Hunter Challenges aim to make players better at Hunting, an extremely important activity. Through Hunting, players can obtain a variety of different items that can be used for cooking, crafting Satchel upgrades and many other items.
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Items harvested from animal carcasses can also be sold for a good price, and the better the quality of the obtained pelt, the more you will receive by selling it.
While there’s a good chance that you will be doing a lot of hunting during the course of the game, it’s unlikely that you will be able to complete all of the Master Hunter Challenges, as progress for any challenge is not counted until the first challenge is unlocked, and they must then be completed sequentially in order.
For example, you can get three perfect rabbit pelts (challenge #2 below), but they will not count toward the completion of the second challenge until the first challenge has been completed.
Skin Three Deer
The first Master Hunter challenge is meant to ease players into hunting, as they only have to skin three deer to complete it. Deer are among the most common animals in Red Dead Redemption 2, so you won’t have any trouble locating them.
There are a couple ways to make completing this challenge more profitable. The first is to obtain good or perfect quality pelts. To know if you can get them, you have to study the animal and check its rating: if the animal has a two-star rating, you can obtain a good quality pelt with a perfect kill; if it has a three-star rating, however, you can get a perfect quality pelt.
Animals with a single star rating aren’t really worth your time if you’re thinking about making a profit, as you can only get poor quality pelts from them. To make a perfect kill, you need to take down deer with the bow and a single headshot.
To complete the challenge, you will have to skin the deer and not just kill them. Get close to the carcass and select the skin option when prompted. You will obtain the animal’s pelt, meat, and other items. If you want to earn some money, you can stow the skinned carcass on your horse and sell it to butchers.
Completing this challenge will reward you with the Master Hunter Off-Hand Holster. The set will grant you a Stamina bonus once all items in the set have been obtained.
Get Three Perfect-Quality Rabbit Pelts
Things get more complicated for the second Master Hunter challenge, as you need to get three perfect quality Rabbit pelts.
As mentioned above, only animals with a three-star rating have the chance of dropping perfect quality pelts with a perfect kill. Rabbits are quite common in the world of Red Dead Redemption 2, but finding three-star rabbits may take some time if you’re searching around randomly. To make this task a little less tedious, you can head over to Bolger Glade to the east of the Braithwaite Manor in Lemoyne, as this is one of the best areas to hunt rabbits.
Before even getting there, you need to have the right weapon for the job. The Bow is a too powerful weapon to get a perfect kill on any rabbit, so you will need something appropriate. The only weapon that will make you get perfect quality pelts from small animals is the Varmint Rifle, which can be purchased by any Gunsmith from Chapter 2 onward.
Once you have the Varmint Rifle, head to Bolger Glade and start tracking rabbits. As you need to kill rabbits with a headshot, make sure to follow them downwind to not alert them with your scent, and use Dead Eye to get a headshot without too many troubles. Once you have perfectly killed the three-star rated rabbits, skin them to get their pelts. Repeat this three times to complete the challenge.
The reward for completing the second Master Hunter challenge is $5. You will also obtain additional Health XP.
Track 10 Different Animal Species Using Your Binoculars
Tracking is an extremely important part of Hunting, and you will learn to do so right at the beginning of the game during The Aftermath of Genesis Story Mission in Chapter 1.
What you will have to do to complete this challenge, however, is slightly different, as you will have to track animals with your binoculars.
To track an animal with your binoculars, you need to find any animal, access the items wheel and select the binoculars on the right. Look at the animal with them and the track option should appear on screen if you are close enough. Do this for ten different species to complete the challenge.
You will receive the Master Hunter Bandolier as a reward for completing this challenge. The item is part of the Master Hunter set that grants a Health bonus once completed.
Get a Clean Kill After Calling to an Animal Five Times
To complete this challenge, you will have to clean kill any animal after calling them five times. Clean kill is another term for perfect kill.
Completing this challenge is extremely simple. To call animals, you need to track them without being seen, get close enough to them and use the call option when it becomes available. If you really don’t want to track animals down, you can use baits to make them come any chosen location.
After the animal is called, it will raise its head for a few seconds before running away, so your opening to get a perfect kill is extremely short. But that is what Dead Eye is for, right?
Any animal will do for this challenge, but we suggest you complete it using deer, as they are extremely common and big enough to get a clean headshot. To make the challenge more profitable, skin the dead animals and sell their carcasses to any butcher.
The reward for completing this challenge is $10. You will also get additional experience for your Health bar.
Skin Three Bears
For this Master Hunter challenge, you will definitely be playing with fire, as you need to kill and skin three bears. These animals are particularly strong and aggressive, so you need to be extra careful.
Any type of bear is good for this challenge, but grizzlies are harder to come by, so you may want to go after Black Bears. They can be easily found in the forest to the south of Big Valley in West Elizabeth. The forest is located a little to the south of the « B » in Big Valley on the map.
As Black Bears are extremely aggressive, it’s better to kill them from a distance. Sniper Rifles are your best choice here, as a single headshot is enough to kill them. If you want to make completing this challenge more profitable, only go after two and three-star rated bears, as they will drop good and perfect quality pelts.
In case you cannot find any bear at the suggested location, you can draw them out with Predator Bait. Just make sure to get as far as possible from the bait after you placed it, as you don’t want to fight bears at close range.
Completing this challenge will make you earn $10 as well as additional Health XP.
Kill and Skin Five Cougars With Your Bow
While straightforward, completing this Master Hunter challenge is anything but simple. Cougars are not only hard to find, but they are also strong and fast, and a single headshot with the Bow is not enough to kill one.
Cougars can be found in select areas of the map, but they are more common in the southern part of the map. To travel through New Austin safely, you need to complete Chapter 6. The best place to hunt them is in the plains to the south of Benedict Point, which is directly to the south of Tumbleweed.
As already mentioned, cougars are strong and resilient, and Dead Eye will not be of much help here due to the fact that you need to use the Bow. The best way to kill them with the weapon is by using Poison Arrows: just shoot the animal once and stay away for as long as possible to let the poison kill it. You will not be able to get meat from the carcass, obviously, but killing cougars with regular arrows is not worth the effort.
Like other similar challenges, you may want to kill only two and three-star rated cougars to make a decent profit. Cougar skins aren’t big, so you can stow multiple ones on your horse.
The rewards for completing this challenge are $15 and additional Health XP.
Use Bait to Lure and Kill Both a Herbivore and a Predator
This Master Hunter challenge is much easier compared to some previous ones, as you need to use bait to lure a herbivore and a predator and kill them.
Bait for both types of animals can be either purchased from the Bait Shop in Lagras, to the north of Saint Denis, or crafted at camp. To craft Predator Bait you need Stringy Meat x1 and Raspberry x1; to craft Herbivore Bait you need Vanilla Flower x1, Violet Snowdrop x1, and Bay Bolete x1.
Once you have the needed bait, it’s time to get hunting. You can place the Herbivore Bait in pretty much any plains to attract deer. You can use Carnivore Bait in forests to attract wolves and other carnivores, any will do. Go for perfect kills if you want to make a little profit as well.
Completing this challenge will reward you with the Master Hunter Gun Belt, part of the Master Hunter equipment set which grants a Health bonus once completed.
Catch Three Fish Without Using a Fishing Rod
This challenge sounds difficult on paper, but it’s actually much easier than it sounds. It will also teach you a faster way to get fish if you have any need for them.
Any body of water in Red Dead Redemption 2 includes fish, so any river and lake will have fishes that can be caught.
You can catch fishes without a rod in two different ways. The first is to shoot at them with any weapon. Using Dead Eye helps quite a bit as they will be highlighted.
The second method is actually quite brutal, but very effective. Just throw dynamite into the water. Once it explodes, you will see dead fish coming up on the surface. Enter the water to collect them. Once you picked up three, the challenge will be complete.
The reward for completing this challenge is $15. You will also be getting additional Health XP.
Kill an Opossum Playing Possum
This Master Hunter Challenge is actually quite fun. The main goal is to kill an opossum when it tries to play dead to fool the hunter.
Opossums are mostly night creatures, so you will have to complete this challenge at night. They can also only be found in forests, and the one where they appear most frequently is a forest to the northwest of Strawberry, close to the western edges of the map.
To make an opossum play dead, you first need to track one and get close enough to make it run away. After running away for a while, you will find the little best dead on the ground. Or rather, that’s what it wants to make you believe. Use any weapon to kill it and complete the mission.
In case you want to get a good or perfect quality pelt, you need to use the Varmint Rifle. Any other weapon will damage the pelt, even with headshots.
Completing this challenge will give you $20 as well as additional Health XP.
Find and Kill the Legendary Panther, « Giaguaro »
To complete the final Master Hunter challenge, you will have to track down and kill the Legendary Panther Giaguaro. The beast is one of the game’s Legendary Animals, and, as such, it will drop items that can be used to craft special clothing items and a Trinket by Fences.
The Legendary Panther can be found to the south of Bolger Glade. Just get close to the southern shore and you will be notified of having entered a Legendary Animal territory. Once in the area, use Eagle Eye to search for clues that lead to the animal’s tracks. Follow the clues a couple time to reach an area with multiple carcasses.
At this point, you need to be ready, as the Giaguaro will come at you. Activate Dead Eye and unload your weapon on the beast: if you fail to kill it at once, it will kill you. Don’t worry about not getting a perfect quality pelt, Legendary Animals can be killed with any weapon and still give the same items once dead.
Completing the final Master Hunter challenge will reward you with the Master Hunter Holster, completing the Master Hunter set. You will also get the Legendary Panther Pelt and Legendary Panther Eye items by skinning the beast. They can be used to craft the Legendary Panther Cloak and Range Gloves and the Panther’s Eye Trinket at Fences.