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Ruthless. Selfish. Bloodthirsty. Since the day the bombs dropped, Raiders have been the scourge of the wasteland. In Appalachia, Rose is their enigmatic leader. But who is she? And what does she hope to gain, as she watches the carnage from her roost on the Top of the World?— @Fallout[1]

The raiders of Appalachia were an alliance of ruthless marauders and bandits from across the region. They consisted of five gangs; the Cutthroats, the Diehards, the Blackwater Bandits, the Gourmands and the Trappers. By 2102, the alliance had been dissolved and its members wiped out, but by 2103 raiders from outside Appalachia arrived in pursuit of treasure.

BackgroundEdit

The raider groups of Appalachia were bloodthirsty psychopaths who terrorized the other survivors, taking whatever they wanted from them. They turned out to be expert scavengers, surprisingly ingenuous when it came to salvaging old world technology. their brutality and ruthlessness is a function of their background. The earliest raiders formed in the Savage Divide by the wealthy tourists who were trapped there by the Great War. At first, the rich and the staff tried to rationally respond, awaiting rescue by government forces, however, within a week the supplies at the resort started to run dry - they were reliant on regular deliveries, after all. In response, the tourists started to form salvage parties, to gather supplies while awaiting rescue, placing their belongings under the care of the resort staff.[2]

The survivors tried to connect with the Responders at Charleston in November, to ask for help and supplies. Overwhelmed with the influx of refugees from all the areas west of the Rockies, the city's leaders had to turn them away. The failure to gather meaningful supplies weakened Harland McClintock, the leader of the survivors elected by popular vote. However, what really twisted the arrogant rich into atrocious raiders was the winter of 2078. Blocked by snowfall and radiation, the food supplies dwindled until they almost completely disappeared and the survivors turned on each other. When the Responders finally sent up an expedition up into the mountains in August 2078, they discovered what was left of the survivors, which terrified even those who witnessed the immediate aftermath of the Great War.[3] David Thorpe offered a way forward that Harland didn't, even if it meant stepping on necks to get what they wanted. When the McClintocks tried to hold a trial and exile him for killing two survivors who came to help, they were already in a losing position.[4] After ensuring Harland was out of the way, Thorpe shaped those people into something terrible. They took what they wanted by force and killed anyone that stood in their way.[5]

Under his leadership, the raiders slowly organized into one of the largest organized factions in Appalachia. They split into five gangs: Cutthroats, Trappers, Diehards, Blackwater Bandits, and the Gourmands.[6] The raiders preyed primarily on unaffiliated traders and travelers, traveling through the Savage Divide, and cautiously stealing items they could not obtain by force, for example, from the Appalachian Brotherhood of Steel. By 2082, their sporadic clashes and tepid expansion into The Forest brought them into conflict with Responders in Charleston. The rising star of the Responders was almost extinguished when Rosalynn Jeffries, second in command of the Cutthroats and lover of their leader, David Thorpe, was captured in a brutal clash south of the city. Placed in custody and interrogated, Jeffries could not contact Thorpe and was believed dead.[7] Furious, Thorpe ordered an attack on the Summersville Dam, where he used mini nukes stolen by the Blackwater Bandits from the Brotherhood to blow up the dam and flood Charleston on Christmas Eve. In so doing, he also killed Rosalynn, trapped in the jail cells of the Capitol Building.[8]

War with the OrderEdit

Although he gained a temporary advantage over the Responders, in so doing he alienated numerous raiders who still had traces of conscience lingering,[9] and drew the attention of the Order of Mysteries under Shannon Rivers. She spent the winter of 2082/2083 reconnoitering raider positions in the mountains and having her pupils intercept Responder radio communications. The challenge was daunting: Raiders had multiple bases, dozens of checkpoints and sniper posts fortifying the region, and their numbers kept steadily growing.[10] The campaign continued and the Order had a flawless performance record for nearly three years, until the first death. Clarissa, a Mistress, was found dead on February 7, 2086.[11] Her death had a profound impact on the organization, leading some of the members to question the total secrecy and isolation that the Headmistress mandated. Although an alliance seemed wise, Rivers ruled any such action out to keep the Order invisible to the raiders.[12]

Soon the Headmistress made a fatal mistake. In May, she appointed a new Mistress of Novices, and rather than choose her own daughter, Olivia Rivers, she selected Eve Devoir. Dependable and organized, she was the perfect fit for the position to handle training and mission assignments. Olivia did not take the decision well, treating it as a slight - an insult - by her very own mother.[13] She buried herself in work and Olivia's missions combined, with the success of the Battle of Huntersville by the Responders and the Appalachian Brotherhood of Steel suppressed raiders in the mountains. All seemed to be going well.[14]

That was merely the calm before the storm. Slighted by her mother, Olivia grew bitter and withdrawn, eventually arriving at the conclusion that her mother created a delusional, waking dream and drew all the members of the Order into it. The breaking moment came on June 9, when she wiped out a raider checkpoint, sparing the life of a single raider: Brody Torrance. She let him go, even fooling Olivia into thinking that he was her friend. Brody instead hatched a plan that would put him in David Thorpe's good graces.[15] Eventually, he managed to convince Olivia to join the raiders. It became clear to her that the world outside was one where only one quality mattered: Strength. After all, years passed, the bodies piled up, and the Order was no closer to wiping out the raiders than when it started, no matter how many hundreds of missions they ran. To prove her newfound loyalty, she provided Torrance with intel on the location of Allison Long. This coincided with Thorpe's ultimatum to Brody on July 19, that he better bring the Mistress' head or be relieved of his own.[15]

Sure enough, on July 24 Allison was killed at Summersville. Brody and the team brought back her head to Thorpe, while Olivia brought Allison's headless body all the way back to the Manor.[16] Torrance was immediately promoted to lieutenant, assigned quarters at the Black Diamond lodge, and assigned seven men, all to focus on destroying the Order.[15] To secure the inroads she made, Olivia traded intel on Order operations to the raiders. The Siphon holotape she recovered from Sugar Grove during one of her runs allowed her to put the entire Cryptos mainframe on a single holotape, which she handed over to the raiders at a meet on September 20, 2086.[17] The tape was the jackpot and Thorpe immediately handed it over to his tech specialist for analysis, using the data both to wage a campaign of attrition against the Order and to gain other leads. The final raid against the manor would wait until the raiders had a decisive advantage.[15]

The casualties suddenly started mounting. In three years between March 2083 and July 2086, the Order lost three Mistresses. Olivia's intel caused the Order to lose seven in just three months, between July and October. Raiders were waiting for the Mistresses at every mission site, killing them with ease. Shannon ordered Eve to accelerate the training program and automate the promotions, but it was too late.[18] The raiders had the upper hand. With Cryptos and the experience gained in the previous three months, they could ambush the Order in any location they wished. The Headmistress locked down the manor as a last resort, limiting excursions to only the four most senior mistresses: Herself, Eve, Amy, and Olivia.[19]

It didn't help, but the death blow came from the least expected direction. In early November, the Mistress of Novices and Seeker Rachel West caught up with her plan. Backed into a corner, Olivia fought back. As the greatest of the Order's assassins, she slaughtered her way through the ranks of the Order - killing even her father, Frederick Rivers - before finally leaving her mother a parting message, inviting her to one last meeting in the Savage Divide, in their special place.[20] After leaving a last message to any survivors, Shannon Rivers buried the bodies and departed for the last meeting with her fallen daughter.[21]

Confronting her atop the Appalachians, the two assassins squared off, fighting each other in an epic battle on November 16. In the end, all of Shannon's training and equipment put her a single step behind her daughter, decades her junior. Although the Headmistress received a mortal wound, she, too, managed to wound her daughter. Her mother passed from her wounds, but Olivia did not enjoy the victory for long. Her raider ally turned on her the moment he realized her state, gunning her down in the Divide, ending the Order and gaining a position of power at Thorpe's side. It seemed the raiders didn't have anywhere to go but up by the end of 2086.[22]

Rise and fallEdit

It seemed that Thorpe's position was unassailable for a time, however, the Enclave's machinations set him up for the fall. By 2087, with Harpers Ferry fallen to the scorchbeasts and the scorched and the Appalachian Brotherhood of Steel shielding the southern reaches of the Appalachians, the monsters started pushing into the Savage Divide through The Mire. The Palace of the Winding Path was the first to disappear, however, Thorpe made a fatal mistake when he failed to recognize the threat, continuing his parasitic operations. His last mistake was when he decided to imprison Hank Madigan and try to extort the Responders and the Free States for the SDS uplink in late 2096. He would pay the ultimate price for his mistake, becoming one of the scorched when they finally purged the Divide of the raiders, scattering them to the winds.[23] In the spring of 2097, the demoralized, fractured remnants were fleeing in every direction, looking for shelter. None was available.[24]

OrganizationEdit

The raiders were organized into a loose hierarchy based primarily on their power and influence with David Thorpe, whose leadership, charisma, and ruthless cunning allowed him to divide and conquer any challengers, while advancing the raider agenda.

CutthroatsEdit

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Cutthroats gang colors

The largest of the gangs, camped out in Pleasant Valley and ran by David Thorpe together with his girlfriend, Rosalynn Jeffries. Thorpe, a ruthless and cunning man, deposed Harland McClintock after the survivors at the chalet selected him as the leader, and reorganized them into a potent fighting force. The Cutthroats lasted longer than the other gangs, but they, too, fell when the scorched started pushing into the Savage Divide and Thorpe himself was turned into one of them.

TrappersEdit

A raider gang operating out of a camp near the Devil's Backbone, the Trappers focused on traps and indirect combat. One of their patented tricks was the use of fresh meat combined with explosives to take out any hounds used by the Responders to try an track them down.[25] The Trappers were led by Walter Griswold and had a pretty good run, until the Huntersville mutants started appearing again, courtesy of the Enclave. They practically fell apart after Walter was dragged by the monsters off to the town and the remainder was either captured or killed by the super mutants.

DiehardsEdit

The least aggressive of the raider gangs, the Diehards moved north and occupied the Sunnytop Ski Lanes complex. While other raiders used violence to get their way, the Diehards tried to get by through a combination of theft and intimidation. Their head, Margie McClintock, stipulated that they only attack in self-defense and avoid killing if possible. This led to a rather high attrition rate among her raiders and a lot of doubt in her leadership.[26] However, the Diehards were left alone by the other gangs thanks to their close relations with the cultists at the Palace of the Winding Path and the drugs they could supply that way.[27] However, the Diehards couldn't outrun karma and eventually unraveled to the same force that wiped out the Palace, with Margie committing suicide by drug overdose shortly before their disappearance.[28]

Blackwater BanditsEdit

The most talented thieves in Appalachia organized into one outfit by Freddie Lang, the Bandits took their name from the Blackwater mine that they made their lair. Perhaps their most notable achievement was sneaking into a Brotherhood of Steel outpost and making off with weapons, ammunition, even mini-nukes, forcing the Brotherhood contingent to move on and indirectly providing Thorpe with the means to blow up the Summersville Dam.[29]

They disappeared from Appalachia, not because of moving on, but because of the Mine itself. One of the raiders ignored orders from his boss and turned on the automated uranium extractors, which promptly filled the mine with radiation. Although RadAway kept it at bay for a little while, eventually the raiders succumbed to it, becoming ghouls... But not before they traded the mini nukes for a crate of RadAway to Thorpe in mid-2082.[30]

GourmandsEdit

Operating out of Bolton Greens, the Gourmands were the most... Practical of the raiders, at least insofar food supply was concerned. They supplemented their diet with human flesh, eventually going strict cannibal as they occupied the Greens, using the automated chefs to prepare their meals out of freshly slain humans. It didn't matter to the Handies whether the meat was animal or not, it all went on into the pan. The Gourmands effectively unraveled when they realized their bosses, Morris Stevens and Edie Bachmann, were preying on other Gourmands (finding half of Gregory in their quarters was as unambiguous as it got). They banished them out into the wasteland and took out a contract on their heads. Morris and Edie took shelter in the legendary Wendigo Cave, where they eventually turned on each other... Mutating into literal wendigos.[31][32]

LocationsEdit

Notable membersEdit

Wastelanders
  • Unknown raider leader
  • Meg

Interactions with the player characterEdit

VendorsEdit

Raider vendor bots offer the following plans:

Weapons

Raider marksEdit

Before being wiped out, the Appalachian raiders developed a language of symbols to communicate with fellow raiders and mark places based on their loot or on the threat they might pose.

AppearancesEdit

Raiders appear in Fallout 76 and its add-on Wastelanders.

ReferencesEdit

  1. https://www.instagram.com/p/BpFL7VnhF6c/
  2. ?: "It's been barely a week since the bombs fell, and supplies have become scarce. The former guests at the resort are exploring the feasibility of sending out scavenging groups to hunt down whatever they can find. What's starting to dawn on us is that there will be people outside the resort sending groups of their own. Who knows if they'll be friendly, or simply take what they want? Instead of waiting to find out, we've concluded that our goods should be locked up for safe keeping. It's a smart move and one that will keep our belongings protected until the government rescue teams arrive. It's good to know that there's still some rationality left amidst all this chaos."
  3. Charleston Capitol Building terminal entries: "It was a massacre."
  4. Harland's Up To No Good
  5. The Christmas Flood
  6. Rose
  7. Interrogation: Doe, Jane
  8. See Charleston for details.
  9. Scattered journal page 1
  10. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 3/5/83 "
  11. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 2/8/86 "
  12. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 2/14/86 "
  13. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 5/22/86 "
  14. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 6/1/86 "
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 Pleasant Valley Ski Resort terminal entries
  16. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 7/24/86 "
  17. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "From Olivia"
  18. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 10/7/86"
  19. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 10/7/86"
  20. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "From Olivia"
  21. Riverside Manor terminal entries: "Personal Journal, 11/18/86"
  22. Holotape of the fight acquired at the end of the quest
  23. Key to the Past
  24. Scattered journal page 6
  25. Rose: "This one time, Chuck-he was the guy who came up with this crazy idea-laid out explosive bait along the trail after a raid. When the Responders came looking for us with their tracking dogs, well...Let's just say the hounds lost their scent. You know, because their heads were blown off. Ah whatever, you get what I'm saying."
  26. Concerns With Margie
  27. Blackwater mine
  28. Margie McClintock's Holotape
  29. Rose: "Moving on! The Blackwater Bandits were known for being sneaky thieves. Let me tell you, they once hit a Brotherhood of Steel camp. Insane, right? They snuck right past the guards, and stole guns, ammo, mini nukes-you name it-right out from under the poor bastards while the rest of 'em slept. Next thing you know, the knights moved on out with their tails between their legs, and we had a new arsenal!"
  30. Blackwater mine terminal entries#Low on chems
  31. Bolton Greens terminal entries
  32. Gourmands Note
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