Can Arthur Morgan Be Cured In Red Dead Redemption 2?


This post contains major spoilers for RDR2Arthur’s death in Red Dead Redemption 2 shouldn’t have come as much of a surprise, even before players learn he contracted active tuberculosis. The character isn’t mentioned at all in the first Red Dead Redemption, so it makes sense the prequel-sequel would follow in the footsteps of its predecessor and finish the story with the protagonist’s tragic, untimely death. However, the nature of the game’s branching endings and binary honor system begs the question: Can Arthur be cured of tuberculosis in RDR2?


The short answer is no, there isn’t a cure for tuberculosis in RDR2. Both in RDR2 and in the nonfictional 1890s, the chances of Arthur Morgan overcoming such a severe case of TB would be slim to none. There’s a reason why the scene in which Arthur receives his diagnosis (along with a healthy shot of what one can only assume is either cocaine or an amphetamine) is so awkward and somber. The doctor can’t even bear to say the word “die,” but even Arthur probably knew before he walked in that whatever he had would kill him – and for good reason.

Related: We Don’t Deserve Red Dead Redemption 3

Even in the real world, tuberculosis has long remained near the top of humanity’s most common deadly diseases. In 2018, the year Red Dead Redemption 2 was released, it’s estimated that over a million people died from TB, according to a World Health Organization report. Even with the benefits of modern medicine like antibiotics and vaccines, if someone’s inactive, “latent” TB develops into the active kind, it’s still a serious issue. Red Dead Redemption 2 takes place in 1899, well before treatments like those available today were commonplace. No matter which way it’s cut, the second Arthur Morgan extorts the Downes family in Red Dead Redemption 2‘s second chapter, he is as good as dead, and there’s no way for players to cure his tuberculosis in RDR2.

No Hidden Content in RDR2 Will Save Arthur

But Red Dead Redemption 2 is a video game. Maybe Arthur can beat the odds and overcome the disease with his inexhaustible reservoir of grit and rough-cut masculinity? Or maybe the player can find some hidden, long-forgotten, natural treatment in the wilds of the open world? Again, this is impossible. There’s nothing in RDR2 that even hints at the idea that Arthur can muscle through his condition, or that some hermit is hanging out in the trees, ready to cure Arthur’s tuberculosis with a mystical mixture of natural herbs. The player has no option but to progress RDR2‘s story until Arthur’s tuberculosis gets so severe that he can barely walk.

The One Way to Keep Arthur Morgan Alive

There is, however, a loophole involved with avoiding Arthur’s succumbing to tuberculosis, even if it’s not exactly a cure. Currently, the only known way for a player to even come close to saving Arthur from TB in RDR2 is by not progressing in the game at all. If players stop participating in story missions before Arthur dies, he’ll technically keep on yee-hawing for as long as the player desires. If the game’s story progresses to a certain point, however, the effects of Arthur’s TB will still start to set in. He’ll lose weight, become pale, and cough much more often. Outside of simply stopping game progress, though, there’s no RDR2 tuberculosis cure.

When Arthur Gets Sick With TB (& Why)

Arthur Morgan contracts TB during “Money Lending and Other Sins,” a string of missions he performs for Leopold Strauss. It’s easy to miss on the first playthrough, but most (if not all) players will likely notice the exact moment Arthur comes into contact with the disease the second time through. Check out the video below for a replay of when Arthur gets sick from GrandTheftDiamonds on YouTube:

From a narrative perspective, Arthur’s illness is extremely interesting. The fall of the Van Der Linde Gang in Red Dead Redemption 2 comes as a result of their core leadership either dying or decaying in some way. The most prominent example of this is the gang’s leader, Dutch, whose moral and mental decay over time causes him to lead the gang toward danger and even betray some of his closest supporters. In the same way, Arthur’s physical decay can be seen as the degradation of the gang’s strength. Arthur is characterized as the gang’s muscle. He’s not dumb, but he’s much more of a doer than a thinker. Because of a lack of a tuberculosis cure in RDR2, Arthur becomes weaker, and so too does the gang lose its sense of strength. More of its ranks die, its enemies come closer to finding it, and it’s forced to live in increasingly desolate conditions. Without Arthur Morgan acting as the glue, Red Dead Redemption 2’s Van Der Linde gang can’t hold itself together.

Next: Red Dead Revolver’s Main Character Is Hiding In Red Dead Redemption 2

  • Red Dead Redemption 2 Fan Poster

    Red Dead Redemption 2

    Original Release Date:

    Rockstar Studios

    red dead

    Action, Open-World, Western, Adventure

    Xbox One, PlayStation 4

    Rockstar Games



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