| || For the location in Fallout 2, see Mercenaries' cave.|
For the raiders that appear in the in Fallout 3, see Raiders (Fallout 3).
For the raiders that appear in Fallout 4, see Raiders (Fallout 4).
Raiders take whatever they want, whenever they want, and their favorite pastimes are torture and murder.”— Fallout 3 loading screen
Raiders, sometimes referred to as bandits, are any group of wastelanders who pillage, plunder, murder, or otherwise ruin the day of anyone unfortunate enough to not be one of them. Raiders tend to organize into loose confederations of gangs in the post-apocalyptic wasteland and are a constant problem. Raiders typically prey upon travelers and very small towns, leaving more populous or larger areas alone.
Numerous raider groups can be found across the wasteland. Most are composed of only a few people scraping out a living by preying on other inhabitants of the wastes, typically without any real driving purpose (besides for the thrills). Others, however, such as the Khans and the 80s, form their own tribal customs through raiding for survival rather than for thrills.
Beside a great number of raider gangs encountered throughout New California, there are three distinct raider groups referenced by the first Fallout: Jackals, Vipers, and Khans, although only the last one appears in the actual game. All three groups originated from Vault 15.
- The Jackals: The first clan, the Jackals, are a typical group of crazies. They have no morals, and only one goal: survival. They use group tactics to overpower their enemies. They are craven cowards, though, and will not attack unless they know they can win. They band together in their hideaway and fight over the spoils.
- The Vipers: The second clan, the Vipers, are mysterious followers of an ancient religion (or so they claim). They usually only come out at night to hunt for food or to conduct raids. They are ruthless in combat and prefer stealth to strength. They usually carry bone knives dipped in Pit Viper venom, which, when in the blood stream, paralyzes the victim. Most victims captured in this way are taken back to their hideout.
- The Khans: The last clan, the Khans, are probably the most dangerous and resourceful of the three Raider clans. They live the lifestyles of Mongol warriors, raiding towns, burning what they cannot take and capturing the survivors for use as slaves. They usually travel in small scouting bands, but sometimes they roam as full war parties. The Khans above all else respect strength. They are eager in combat to prove their worthiness to the clan by engaging in hand to hand combat with fists or clubs. The Khans carry very few firearms. Anyone showing superior strength is worthy of their respect.
There are numerous different groups of raiders in Fallout 2, which are still a common sight in the wasteland, but only a few groups played quite a major role.
- Bishop's mercenaries: Operating out of a cave north of Broken Hills, protected by raised plates, falling traps and barbed wire-walls with locked and trapped doors. They were not true raiders, but mercenaries hired by the Bishop family of New Reno with arms supplied by the New California Republic. They merely posed as raiders to pressure Vault City to accept annexation by the NCR. They reside in the Mercenaries' cave
- The New Khans: Reappearing in the second game, they are led by the only survivor of the original group. They are hiding out inside the secretive corridors of the ruined Vault 15, protected by squatters. Their leader Darion is paranoid and ridden with survivors guilt about being the sole survivor of the original Khans who were wiped out by the Vault Dweller. As a result they carry out many attacks on caravans and towns and, under Darion's orders, are extra fierce against the NCR.
- Yakuza - Japanese-style raider gangs could be encountered during travels, armed with traditional swords.
By the events of Fallout: New Vegas there is little information on raider life in New California. It is mentioned by many characters, such as Rose of Sharon Cassidy and Dale Barton that it is much more dangerous when traveling in California than territories controlled by Caesar, indicating that raiders may still have a presence on the west coast.
|The following is based on Fallout Tactics and some details might contradict canon.|
There are many raider gangs throughout the territory of Chicago. The majority of these raiders are well organized, because of a need to become one faction: the presence of Brotherhood of Steel, super mutants and Calculator's robots. They are cruel, sadistic people who are usually found near the eastern part of the region, far from super mutants and robots. There are several notable groups present.
- The Main Faction: The faction was formed after four major raider leaders of the region (Luke Daniels, Bo Duffy, Daisy-May Gomer, and Jesse Gomer) forged an alliance to become stronger in order to fight their overpowering enemies. Their main base where the leaders hold their meetings is Rock Falls.
- Gang of Devil's Graveyard: Powerful gang of raiders led by a man known as Gargantua. Their base is a place called Devil's Graveyard.
- Gang of Macomb: A gang which was formed to assault strangers around Macomb, a town suffering because of famine. These raiders are looking for food and use roofs as cover.
- Ghoul-haters: This group is actually an extremist party, dedicated to extermination of ghouls. They took over Springfield because the mayor claimed that ghouls are equal to normal, smoothskin people.
|End of information based on Fallout Tactics.|
|The following is based on Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel and has not been confirmed by canon sources.|
In Texas, only one known gang of raiders exists, but it is very large and powerful, being de facto rulers of the land. However, they have become but puppets to Attis, who use them to capture slaves for him. Their base is an old mill located in the town of Carbon, which is completely under their control aided by the Mayor who keeps them happy. The gang is unique because of its matriarchal rule, with female lieutenants and the main leader known as Jane, Raider Matron. The gang wears a yellow emblem on their clothes to differentiate themselves from outsiders. Aside from normal weapons, the Carbon Raiders are well known for using killer dogs and special flamethrower weaponry. They have the ability to brew alcohol on radioactive subsistences.
|End of information based on Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel.|
The raiders of Capital Wasteland are mostly hostile, lawless, chem-addled ruffians who roam the wastes of the Washington, D.C. area. They have little in common with the raider clans of the West Coast, except for the Fiends of the Mojave Wasteland. They are encountered in smaller groups and are armed with a fairly wide range of weaponry. They can occasionally be found hunting with guard dogs as well. All raiders wear some form of raider armor (though not at raider brothels in places like Evergreen Mills) and have dirty skin. The raiders of the Capital Wasteland have no central leader, leaders being at the level of individual gangs. However, in The Pitt, Ashur has a whole league of raiders under his rule.
Raiders have no alliances with other factions and will attack everyone but other raiders or slavers. They appear to be quite cruel, as places they inhabit are usually filled with the mutilated bodies of other raiders and wastelanders, implying that they torture captured enemies and occasionally their own.
The largest known band of raiders has set up a crude city in Evergreen Mills. This well-defended canyon gives them a base of operations. Rumor has it that they trade with slavers, selling their captives for cash.
The Joshua Tree-speckled mountains provide a surprising amount of cover, especially the rock-strewn washes that run east-west just south of Nelson. This is the perfect location for packs of anarchic hunters, grifters, and psychotics to wait for an opportunity to steal, kidnap, or kill. These loosely-knit Raider gangs revel in chaos and anarchy. The Jackals are no more than a handful of scarred and tattooed reprobates, scraping out a living by preying on anything weaker than them. The (slightly) more organized Viper Gang consist of a slightly more skilled collection of ne'er-do-wells, dug in close to major roads to rob and plunder travellers and Merchant Caravans. Further north, are two much more pitiful gangs, who have lost their brethren (both in violence, or by recruitment) to the Fiends; the stinking Greaser Gang who terrorize the North Vegas sewers, and the Scorpion Gang, who fight intermittent skirmishes with Westside residents. There are also two other major raider groups: the Fiends and the drug-making and trafficking Great Khans. All these raiders have little driving purpose or goal, other than to live to see tomorrow and raise as much hell as possible today.
- Viper Gang
- Great Khans
- Greaser gang in the North Vegas sewers
- The Scorpion Gang fight intermittent skirmishes with Westside residents.
In the Commonwealth raiders are more organized than before. Raiders are now more technologically advanced and can utilize machine gun turrets and automatic spotlights - some raider leaders have even re-purposed power armor for themselves. However, raiders in the Commonwealth do not have a centralized organization, and are split into several groups. According to terminals and dialogue, some of these groups antagonizes each other, while some stay out of each other's way. For example, Red Tourette's group have constant skirmishes against Tower Tom's crew.
These raiding groups rarely have set names and are mostly referred to by their leaders, with some exceptions like the Forged (the Forged themselves aren't originally from the Commonwealth, thus why they might be different) and the L&L Gang, a loose alliance of raider gangs. Raiders seem to follow an unspoken chain of command, though not as structured as the Gunners.
In Fallout 4, raiders can be heard conversing with each other, sometimes telling stories or joking with each other. The members also seem to have close bonds with one another as they often get enraged when some of their comrades are killed. Notes and terminals also shows that raiders care more about each other (e.g. Intervention note) though they still possess the same bloodthirstiness that raiders have in Fallout 3.
Raiders, like many factions, do not treat synths and the Railroad favorably. Most notable is the L&L gang, who have reputation to be violent towards synths. This is evidenced by the mass-graves of Railroad Operatives in Kendall Hospital, an ex-Railroad safehouse now controlled by raiders.
Raiders are less aggressive according to the lore - they prefer to extort and negotiate with settlers than killing them outright (though this is not shown in-game). Raiders earn protection money from Bunker Hill caravans and spends money in places like Combat Zone, a raider-only bar, showhouse and wrestling ring.
Raiders appear in all Fallout games and are mentioned in the Fallout Bible.