Top 10 Incredible Red Dead Redemption 2 Story Moments
VOICE OVER: Dave Thibault
WRITTEN BY: Dave Thibault
Let's saddle up and ride to Tahiti, or whatever we find on the way. Welcome to WatchMojo and today we're reminiscing on the Top 10 Red Dead Redemption 2 Story Moments. Now that the PC version has been out for a while now, it seems like a good moment to talk about the biggest moments of Rockstar's grandiose Open World title. For this list we're only focusing on events that happened during the main missions. So no side quests like the revelation of Jeremiah Compson. Be advised that there are major spoilers so if you haven't played the game yet … well what the hell are you doing here?
Written by Dave Thibault
Top 10 Red Dead Redemption 2 Story Moments
Let’s saddle up and ride to Tahiti, or whatever we find on the way. Welcome to WatchMojo and today we’re reminiscing on the Top 10 Red Dead Redemption 2 Story Moments.
Now that the PC version has been out for a while now, it seems like a good moment to talk about the biggest moments of Rockstar’s grandiose Open World title. For this list we’re only focusing on events that happened during the main missions. So no side quests like the revelation of Jeremiah Compson. Be advised that there are major spoilers so if you haven’t played the game yet … well what the hell are you doing here?
#10: Drinking with Lenny
Let’s start off with something a bit more lighthearted, especially for what’s in store later on the list. So basically, Lenny almost got lynched in Strawberry after getting caught with the murderous Micah, who was arrested and now awaiting execution. So what’s the best way to get someone's mind off of a near-death experience? A night out drinking of course. This whole sequence is a riot, with leadups to bar fights turning into dancing lines, Arthur losing Lenny a few times, even starting to think that everyone in the bar is Lenny once he’s had too much to drink. Of course it wouldn’t be a wild night out without waking up in jail the next morning. Now what was the problem again? Nah that can wait.
#9: Rescuing Jack Marston
In the leadup to the game’s 4th chapter, little Jack Marston is kidnapped. Eventually the trail to his whereabouts lead’s Dutch’s gang to Angelo Bronte, A crime lord who owns a business Dutch’s gang ruined (more on that later). After John and Arthur run a quick errand for him in dispatching graverobbers, Jack is returned to them much to the celebration of the rest of the camp. What follows is perhaps one of the best family bonding moments throughout the whole game; as everyone gathers around the campfire while Javier plays and sings “Cielito Lindo”. Although if you stay around long enough, you’ll also get early indications that things aren’t sitting well between Dutch and Molly. Which will have repercussions later.
#8: The Saint Denis Bank Heist
Here we have the ultimate turning point in Dutch’s character, and the very moment that showed how vulnerable the entire gang is. Earlier after being set up by Angelo Bronte, Dutch is determined to get the bank robbing job done so that he and the rest of the gang can retire in Tahiti. But as soon as the gang is within the bank vault, things start to go terribly wrong. The Pinkertons have the bank surrounded, Hosea and Lenny are both killed and John is arrested. Thus Dutch proposes a crazy plan to sneak onto a boat in the harbour to make their escape, completely unaware of where that boat is going. Let’s just say, that too was a bad idea.
#7: Sadie’s Vengeance
Out of all the character arcs within Red Dead 2, Sadie is the who goes through the most development. At the start of the game, we first meet her after her husband was murdered in front of her by the O'Driscoll gang. However it’s not until the 6th chapter where she finally gets her revenge, and this comes in two main parts. First she, Dutch, Arthur foil Colm O’Driscoll’s execution escape plan, forcing his men to watch him hang, after which Sadie finishes off the rest. Later she and Arthur head to where the last of the gang is hold up, where she tracks down and kills the man who killed her husband. Thus she finally has the opportunity to grieve for her lost love, and good lord does actress Alex McKenna really drive the performance home.
#6: John Marston Is Back
In the game’s epilogue, John is finally attempting to settle down in life with Abigail and Jack, by taking up the name Jim Milton and working as a ranch hand. Things all seem well and good for him. Albeit at the frustration of some players, given how attached they had grown to John in the first game, and have him play a supporting character throughout Arthur’s journey. However when the ranch is attacked by a local gang and the cows are stolen, John is forced to once again become the man we all grew to love from Red Dead Redemption 1, complete with callbacks to the first game’s boxart. Welcome Back Old Friend.
#5: Dutch Abandons Arthur
Chapter 6’s story revolved around Dutch trying to start a war between the Native Americans and the US Government. On the surface he seems like he’s doing this for a noble cause of trying to return the lands to the indigious people. In reality, he was merely using the tribesman to get into Cornwall’s factory and steal the state bonds for himself. While the sequence is action packed and filled with some standout setpieces, it’s what happens to Arthur in their escape that finally shows Dutch’s true colors. (Dutch I need help) Yet what really aggravates this betrayal even more is that Dutch outright lies in front of the rest of the gang, and Arthur in his weakened state is left with no choice but to let this slide … For now.
#4: Arthur’s Diagnosis
Now to be fair, we knew Arthur Morgan wasn’t going to make it to the end of this game, since he doesn’t appear in Red Dead Redemption 1. But rather than having his demise come from a bullet like many of his fallen comrades, Rockstar instead made sure he (and thus the player) was fully aware of his fate. Perhaps what really makes the scene so shocking is that it comes right out of nowhere, it doesn’t take place during a mission and yet his condition has a lasting effect on the rest of the game. (“You got tuberculosis”). At this point Arthur will start to see visions of an animal that’s reflective on his past behaviour up until that point. An existential metaphor of what he is upon the world.
#3: Riding with Rains Fall
Following up from the last entry, Arthur’s condition has worsened to the point where he’s now visibly sick to others around him. Thus he is invited by the native’s chief Rains Fall on a ride up the mountainside to gather herbs to ease his suffering. The ride is quite the reprieve from the bombastic missions that have preceded this one, allowing the game to appreciate the beauty of the world Rockstar has created, while also allowing Arthur to reflect on what he has done, and what will happen after he has left this world. Of course it’s back to the same old Red Dead gameplay soon after, but it was refreshing to have this moment of peace.
#2: Assault on Braithwaite Manor
If there was a mission that truly shows off Rockstar’s cinematic vision for Red Dead Redemption 2, it’s best on display during this sequence. The mission that starts off the search for young Jack Marston may sound like your regular go-to shootout, but it’s the cinematography that is the star of this show. Starting out with a magnificent seven lineup in walking up to the manor, to the impressive interior, all leading up to the finale of the manor being burned to the ground, all the while the only surviving member of the Braithwaite family: Catherine is left to look upon the ruins of her family’s legacy.
Before we get to our top pick here are a few honorable mentions
The New World
The Balloon Ride
John Builds a House for Abigail
Dutch Shoots Micah
#1: Arthur’s Final Choice
The gang now has enough money to retire easily, but the revelation that Micah has been spying on the group for the Pinkertons, and the return of John who reveals that Dutch abandoned him; fractures the gang. With the rest of his allies gone from the camp, Arthur only has John left, and soon they find themselves getting hunted by both the Pinkertons and Dutch’s gang. Still Arthur has to make one final choice to make; Help John get to safety, or go back for the money. If you’ve been paying attention; Arthur is a dead man walking so the should be obvious, still what we see is a symbolic moment, as Arthur buys John enough time so that he can flee to safety, something that John would eventually have to do in the future. They don’t call this series “Red Dead Redemption” for nothing.