The internet is filled with user reports of RDR2 not launching and, even when it does, having sub-par performance. Addressing these complaints, Rockstar has created a ‘PC General Troubleshooting’ document for the game, which it claims can help resolve the launching and crashing issues.
The first suggestion is for Nvidia and AMD card owners to update their graphics drivers to the latest versions. Both companies released their new drivers optimized for RDR2 on Monday, so it stands to reason that many people won't haven’t updated yet -- Download: GeForce Drivers 441.12 and Radeon Adrenalin 19.11.1.
Other potential solutions include disabling any antivirus software running on a PC, updating the Rockstar Games Launcher (a new update is available), and clearing local Rockstar Games Launcher profile details.
Even if these actions allow the game to launch, many players are still experiencing stuttering and frame rate issues. RDR2 demands a monstrous rig to play at the highest settings; a RTX 2080 Ti can’t run it at 60 fps@4K with the graphics pushed up to Ultra.
If you haven’t bought Red Dead Redemption 2’s PC version yet, it might be sensible to wait until Rockstar issues a patch that addresses its problems.