Does ‘The Flame’ Set Up Spider-Man 2 DLC?

Warning: spoilers for The Flame side mission in Marvel’s Spider-Man 2!

In Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, a mission titled “The Flame” has Spider-Man investigate a series of fires linked to a cult led by a mysterious character, one who may wind up being one of Marvel’s most iconic and deadly villains. We’re going to run through what we learned over the course of the four-part quest, identify the evil leader of the Flame, and speculate whether we think this will lead to DLC for Spider-Man 2.

Who Is The Leader of The Flame?

By the end of The Flame side mission, it’s all but confirmed that the leader of the Flame is none other than Cletus Kasady, the human host who, in the comics, becomes the red symbiote-wearing super villain known as Carnage. Though he only goes by “The Flame,” there are more than a few super-obvious indicators that he’s the familiar Spidey bad guy. (Note that the cult is seemingly called The Flame and the leader is also known as The Flame. Totally not confusing!)

In the comics, Cletus Kasady was never the leader of a fire-obsessed cult called The Flame, but after he became Carnage he did become the head of the Cult of Knull, who worshiped the symbiote god known as Knull. So being an insane leader of deranged minds is well within his skillset.

What Happens at the End of The Flame Mission?

The Flame is a four-part mission which sees Spider-Man stumbling upon the Flame’s cultists, crossing paths with a vengeful Wraith bent on tracking them down, and eventually uncovering the cult’s master plan. The cult follows a self-styled prophet who calls himself the Flame, and their goal is to bring about the “Crimson Hour” to burn away those they deem unworthy.

In the fourth and final chapter, Spider-Man and Wraith must work together to stop the cultists’ plan to burn down some buildings full of innocent people. The cult piled up explovies on a train track near the buildings, intending for the oncoming train to detonate them in an explosive crash. Spidey and Yuri are able to derail the Oscorp-branded train just in time, but unfortunately for Peter, stopping the train left him pinned under it.

That’s when the Flame makes his grand entrance. He’s a red-headed man with horrible, bright-red burn scars down his arms and hands. He’s not yet Carnage but his scarred red flesh certainly gives him a similar look.

The Flame taunts Spider-Man as he covers him in gasoline. Then he reveals his true plan: he wanted the Oscorp train to be derailed so he could steal the sample of the black symbiote that was on board and take it for himself. He quotes his cult prophecy, saying, “And when the Crimson Hour rolls over this earth, it shall bring truth, judgment, and carnage.”

The Flame sets Spider-Man on fire with a lighter and escapes in a helicopter. Yuri has a chance to stop him but decides to save Spidey instead, showing that despite her newfound thirst for vengeance and violence as Wraith, she is ultimately still a force for good dedicated to saving lives.

After the mission wraps up, Yuri contacts Spider-Man to say she’s investigating the Flame’s old aliases: Archie Abel, Walter Wachtman, and Cletus Kasady. While the first two names are meaningless and have no connection to Marvel lore, the third one is, of course, Carnage’s real name in the comics.

Will Spider-Man 2 Have Carnage DLC?

While there has been no official announcement that Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 will have DLC, this side mission certainly seems to tee up a new story featuring Carnage. The main story introduced Venom, so it’s only natural that his red spawn isn’t far behind.

Carnage is such a popular villain that it wouldn’t be a surprise if he were to be the main villain of Marvel’s Spider-Man 3, not unlike he was the big baddie in the movie Venom: Let There Be Carnage, but this side mission seems to hint that he will be the star of Spider-Man 2 DLC instead. After all, the first Spider-Man game had DLC, titled “The City That Never Sleeps,” that starred the Black Cat, Hammerhead, and Silver Sable in three separate chapters, The Heist, Turf Wars, and Silver Lining, respectively. That storyline was set up by an in-game side quest, so Insomniac may be using the same formula to tee up a Carnage expansion. After all, the Flame is somewhere out there with a symbiote and an insane agenda, so it’s only a matter of time before we see the inevitable outcome.

For more on Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, check out these pieces:

  • Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 Review
  • How Spider-Man 2 Sets Up a Bigger Spider-Verse
  • Spider-Man 2: The Origins of Every Unlockable Costume

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Author: Joshua Yehl