Although Red Dead Redemption 2 protagonist Arthur Morgan receives most of the attention, plenty of other RDR2 characters have tragic stories.
Red Dead Redemption 2 players are no strangers to sad stories. The game’s protagonist, Arthur Morgan, is forced to watch his father figure fall victim to his own ego and abandon his gang, and Arthur is dealing with a terminal illness all the while. His story is one of the strongest in gaming, and it comes alongside the tragic tale of that father figure, Dutch van der Linde, and the story of the franchise’s original protagonist, John Marston. These major characters’ tragedies are not the only ones told in RDR2, however, and players come to understand a lot about its under-the-radar characters as the game goes on.
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Kieran Duffy, for one, gets dealt a pretty rough hand in RDR2, as the former O’Driscoll doesn’t enjoy much time as a member of the Van der Linde gang before his death. After being captured by Arthur, Kieran is treated horribly at camp by everyone other than Mary-Beth. He eventually proves his loyalty to Arthur and Dutch and is allowed to begin contributing to the group. But before he’s able to make real friendships and be treated like a family member, his life is unceremoniously cut short, as he is decapitated by the O’Driscolls in order to intimidate the Van der Lindes.
RDR2‘s Thomas Downes is known best as the person who passed tuberculosis to Arthur, but like Kieran, his story is tragic in its own right. Thomas is a poor rancher who does his best to raise money for charity while also support his own family. His financial situation forces him to take a loan from Leopold Strauss that he can’t repay, which results in Arthur coming to his ranch to beat him and collect the debt. Thomas’ eventual death is tragic for a number of reasons, but what stands out is how genuinely good of a person he seems to be. In a world that tends to focus on people willing to rob and steal to get what they want, it’s meaningful to watch how cruel life can be for someone who makes so many sacrifices for others.
Sadie Adler’s Story Is One Of RDR2’s Saddest
Although she earns more screen time than Kieran or Thomas, Sadie Adler’s story remains underrated in Red Dead Redemption 2. When the player first meets her, she is terrified, her husband having been killed by O’Driscolls who invaded their home. Although she is immediately taken in by the Van der Linde gang, she is understandably slow to warm up to them, and it’s not until she finds her role as one of the group’s gunslingers that she becomes comfortable. When Sadie finally starts to feel like she has a place in the gang, it starts losing members, and Dutch’s downwards spiral results in the group falling apart entirely. Sadie’s story ends in a much more hopeful way than many RDR2 characters, but watching her loss-filled path to finding that hope is heartbreaking.
RDR2 tells many different stories, and, naturally, major characters like Arthur take up most of the spotlight. Still, Red Dead Redemption 2 is fantastic at doing a lot with a little, and this is especially true when it comes to telling the stories of its side characters.
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