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The Raiders were formed from Raynor's Rangers and scattered troops from other factions during the Great War; the Rangers left the Sons of Korhal after Arcturus Mengsk abandoned Sarah Kerrigan to the zerg at the Battle of New Gettysburg. Once the Raiders ceased being Raynor's Rangers of the Sons of Korhal, the primary color in their paint scheme changed from red to blue.
The Raiders' flagship and base of operations is the Hyperion, a Behemoth-class battlecruiser. The Sons of Korhal captured it from the Confederacy and used it as their base before the Great War. It was subsequently hijacked by the Raiders following the Fall of Tarsonis.
Upon formation the Raiders operated as an anti-Dominion rebel group. After the Brood War the Raiders were marginalized by Dominion propaganda, and enjoyed little success. They were revitalized by the Second Great War and aided the Zerg Swarm to depose Emperor Mengsk. They have since directed their efforts to reconstruction.
When the Confederacy abandoned Mar Sara at the beginning of the Great War, the Mar Sara Colonial Militia joined the Sons of Korhal to survive. The Militia formed the nucleus of the elite Raynor's Rangers. Arcturus Mengsk's ruthless and callous behavior during the fall of Tarsonis alienated Captain James Raynor and many of the Rangers. Raynor and many Rangers left the Sons of Korhal.
Rebellion against the Sons of KorhalEdit
The Raiders fought an immediate action against the Sons of Korhal over Tarsonis. The Sons of Korhal sought to punish the Raiders and used the Ion Cannon to prevent the Raiders from escaping the orbital platforms. Although heavily outnumbered, the Raiders struck and destroyed the Cannon and made good their escape.
Upon their escape the Raiders numbered some 300, more than Raynor expected. Not all were originally members of the unit; some were Confederate and Sons of Korhal soldiers evacuated from Tarsonis and at least one was from Alpha Squadron. To sustain even this small force the Raiders raided the Dylar IV shipyards for shipping. Mengsk foresaw this and sent General Edmund Duke to stop them. However, the Raiders gained the upper hand in the cramped confines of the yard and made off with Hyperion and several other ships.
Conflict with the ZergEdit
The small armada found its way to Char after its leader, Raynor, was psychically called to the burnt-out world. Alpha Squadron General Edmund Duke was also in the area, acting as a Terran Dominion enforcer. The two confronted each other but did not do battle.
Both had been lured there by psychic emissions produced by Sarah Kerrigan, who had been encased in a cocoon by a new zerg brood, where she was undergoing a metamorphosis into a special infested terran. Duke attacked the new Zerg Brood, but was defeated in a disastrous battle. He was pursued by the Tiamat Brood.
Raynor's forces landed on Char, avoiding Duke's forces. Hyperion remained in orbit under the command of Matt Horner. The Raiders ground force quickly came into conflict with the zerg. During the battle, Kerrigan emerged from the cocoon and easily defeated his forces. Kerrigan allowed Raynor to leave her presence alive.
As Kerrigan wished to remove ghost conditioning blocks on her mental powers, she personally led a force against the Dominion science vessel, the Amerigo, in order to access its ghost files. Her other forces attacked both the Dominion and Raiders fleet. Protoss forces under Executor Tassadar arrived, attacking both of their fleets and destroying many of their ships due to the presence of the zerg. The Raiders suffered some 50 casualties, but Hyperion managed to escape by jumping blindly into warp space.
Alliance with the ProtossEdit
I thought so at first, because the zerg were leaving us alone. Now we're targets, too. We're better off all together. You don't have to like it. I'm not asking you to marry 'em. Just to treat 'em as allies. Hell, I'll take protoss over Duke any day."
The Raiders were stranded on Char, at least until the Hyperion returned. While there Jim Raynor encountered both Tassadar and the Dark Templar Prelate Zeratul. He eventually befriended both of them, and comforted members of his crew, such as Lieutenant Deke Cavez, who had problems dealing with them.
The three allied forces clashed repeatedly with the zerg. The remnants of the Raiders fled to Char Aleph with the protoss. Eventually they were rescued by a protoss fleet from Aiur sent to arrest Tassadar. By this time only 40 Raiders remained. The Raiders accompanied the protoss back to Aiur.
Raynor witnessed the beginning of the rebellion by the Templar Caste against the Judicators. During the battle to rescue Tassadar from the Judicator Caste, Raynor provided assistance from the Hyperion, although the rest of his forces did not assist. This was the first time Raynor fought alongside Praetor Fenix, a respected protoss hero. The two quickly became friends.
Raynor provided major assistance in the final battle against the first zerg Overmind. His forces maintained a base on the northwest flank of the zerg, while Tassadar, Fenix and Zeratul attacked from the southeast. Together their pincer attack drove the zerg into disarray. Unfortunately, the Dark Templar could not approach the Overmind to assassinate it. Tassadar was forced to destroy the Overmind by suicidally channeling the energies of the protoss through Gantrithor.
Raynor's Raiders in the Brood WarEdit
From Aiur the group would continue to serve alongside protoss warriors under the direction of Captain Raynor, and helped defend the flank of refugee Khalai as they used a warp gate to abandon their homeworld for the Dark Templar homeworld of Shakuras. After the evacuation of the protoss, Fenix refused to leave Aiur, and Raynor remained with him. Raynor and Fenix closed the warp gate on their side to prevent the zerg from flooding Shakuras through it.
The Raiders had come to an agreement with Kerrigan. She offered assistance in combating the United Earth Directorate, which had entered the Koprulu sector and was conquering the Terran Dominion. Arcturus Mengsk, Emperor of the Dominion, had been deposed by the UED on the Throne World of Korhal IV. The Raiders, with the assistance of protoss forces and flying the Hyperion, rescued Mengsk. He was placed in stasis. The Raiders then fled to Aiur, where the protoss maintained a small outpost near the planet's warp gate.
The United Earth Directorate arrived on Aiur seeking Mengsk for execution. They discovered the warp gate, which was protected by a small protoss outpost. It appeared to be all the protoss had left on Aiur. Raynor's outpost was a short distance away – the majority of his forces weren't present there, and Hyperion was nowhere to be seen. The gate was surrounded by several dormant zerg hive clusters. When the gate was activated, these zerg started attacking the protoss and the UED. Despite these odds, the UED destroyed the protoss outposts, along with Raynor's command center.
Kerrigan provided aid to the Raiders – using her secret agent, Samir Duran, supposedly a special advisor to the United Earth Directorate, to create a hole in the UED's defenses. A wave of zerg drove the UED away from the warp gate, allowing Raynor and Mengsk to escape again. The gate was destroyed which prevented pursuit.
The Psi Disrupter and Kerrigan's WeaknessEdit
Despite Duran's best efforts, the United Earth Directorate activated the powerful anti-zerg weapon, the psi disrupter, revealing Duran as an infested terran. They also captured the second Overmind, putting themselves in control of most zerg in the Koprulu sector. Kerrigan herself could barely keep her own zerg in line on Tarsonis, where she was hiding out.
In return for destroying the psi disrupter, she promised Raynor and Fenix that she would topple the UED fleet in the Koprulu sector. To do this she needed the help of Arcturus Mengsk. Mengsk was "defrosted" and offered a choice - work with Kerrigan, or imprisonment for life.
Fenix and Raynor agreed to work with Kerrigan (and Mengsk had no real choice in the matter), but they believed Kerrigan would betray them. Nevertheless, Raynor felt the UED was a greater threat than Kerrigan – he knew something of Earth's history.
Kerrigan's first directed the allies against the psi disrupter on Braxis. The Disrupter had been relocated there by UED Vice Admiral Alexei Stukov, and used by the UED to gain control over the Swarm. During the first stage of the assault, the Raiders destroyed the Disrupter's poorly defended fusion reactors. With the Disrupter disabled, a SCV carrying one of Mengsk's psi-emitters lured uncontrolled zerg in the area. Kerrigan took control of this zerg nucleus and used it to assemble a force that destroyed the psi disrupter.
The Raiders, Terran Dominion and Kerrigan's Zerg Swarm cooperated in an attack against Korhal. The UED only had a small number of zerg forces on the planet to assist them. The coalition defeated the UED, driving them from the planet.
This was when Kerrigan turned on her former allies – while they were resting from their attack on the UED. Her forces tore into the Raiders, the Dominion, and the protoss. Fenix was killed, prompting Raynor to swear revenge. Raynor vanished for a time following the end of the war.
The War PigsEdit
Jim Raynor was targeted by the War Pigs, a band of ex-Confederate outlaws working for Dominion official Tamsen Cauley. He offered them their freedom if they would assassinate Raynor. Unknown to the other War Pigs, one of their members, Cole Hickson, an old friend of Raynor's, had been subjected to an experimental form of neural resocialization, hidden in his subconscious.
Raynor's Raiders hid on the zerg-infested world of Urona Sigma in a tunnel system accessible only by sea. The Dark Templar arrived, and warned Raynor of who was coming for them. The Raiders planned on leaving Urona Sigma, as the protoss felt the planet was a lost cause and they would begin a purification attack on it.
The War Pigs discovered the Raiders, only to fall into their trap, due to the warning they'd received from the Dark Templar. However, Raynor trusted their leader, Cole Hickson, enabling Hickson to secretly draw a weapon.
As Raynor explained part of the history between Hickson and himself – Hickson had saved his sanity years ago – Hickson pointed his pistol in Raynor's face, surprising the War Pigs. Raynor believed that Hickson was being controlled by neural resocialization. The zerg then broke into the Raiders' lair, resulting in Hickson's escape. Raynor, separated from his Raiders, was forced to team up with the War Pigs. Together they escaped to the surface, with the War Pigs sealing the way behind them. However, Hickson ambushed Raynor again. Raynor made Hickson remember his sanity-saving techniques and the resocialization procedure. Hickson, overcome with stress, fell to the ground screaming.
The purification attack began away from Raynor and the War Pigs' location (and away from the heaviest concentration of zerg). The Raiders, despite the name, considered themselves bigger than just one man and so would not rescue Raynor. However, transport arrived in the form of a dropship carrying Lars Trakken and a Cerberus squad. Trakken felt he had to see Hickson's death personally, and told the War Pigs he would let them go if only they gave him Hickson. Raynor and the War Pigs pretended to agree, but it was just a ruse to steal the dropship. Successful, they made it to the War Pigs' ship.
Prelude to WarEdit
The Raiders became the most wanted criminals in the Koprulu Sector due to Arcturus Mengsk's media control, oratory and propaganda, portraying the Raiders as a terrorist organization. The battle against the Dominion did not go well. Raynor led the Raiders to more victories than defeats, but their fighting strength was 1/100th that of the Dominion, and they were constantly outgunned and outnumbered. The group's finances deteriorated. Falling morale was exacerbated by Raynor's increasing personal doubts and turn to heavy drink.
Matt Horner, the Raiders' executive, was notable exception to the malaise; he remained wholeheartedly committed to Raynor and the goals of the movement. The continuation of the Raiders in this trying period owed much to Horner's efforts. Over the years, control of the Raiders' small fleet and the military aspects of the campaign also became Horner's responsibilities.
Wings of LibertyEdit
The Second Great War found Raynor and the Rangers on Mar Sara inciting an anti-Dominion revolt. They accepted a business proposition from Tychus Findlay, Raynor's old friend recently freed from prison, to collect alien artifacts for the Moebius Foundation. Trading in alien artifacts was illegal in the Dominion but the Raiders needed the money.
The Raiders retrieved the first artifact from a Dominion dig site on Mar Sara. The zerg invaded the planet shortly afterwards, also looking for the artifact, before the Raiders could head off-world. The besieged Raiders were rescued by Matt Horner and Hyperion.
The Dominion abandoned many fringe worlds at the war's onset. The colonists of Agria were rescued by the Raiders and relocated to the refugee camps on Meinhoff. The colony's leader, Doctor Ariel Hanson, joined the Raiders temporarily. A zerg hyper-evolutionary virus struck the refugee camps and the Raiders were forced to purge the affected camps.
The colonists left Meinhoff and resettled on Haven, near protoss space. However, the terrans carried viral spores and a protoss fleet under Executor Selendis arrived to purify the colony. Hanson appealed to Raynor to protect the colony from the protoss, while the executor wanted the Raiders' to assist in the purification.
Spectre of UneaseEdit
Other anti-Dominion groups also took advantage of the war. Gabriel Tosh, a pirate and a spectre, hired the Raiders to acquire materials for a spectre training program. Tosh initially kept the program, and his status as a spectre, a secret; he secured the Raiders' cooperation by offering cash-for-services and an alliance against Mengsk.
Tosh sent the Raiders to mine minerals from Redstone III; the spectre secretly sought the minerals' jorium content. This was followed by a raid on Bel'Shir to acquire terrazine from the Tal'darim.
Tosh's motives and nature were revealed as the Raiders were preparing to break open New Folsom Prison and free Tosh's imprisoned spectres. Dominion ghost Nova Terra, in pursuit of Tosh, warned the Raiders that the spectres were too unstable and dangerous to trust; instead, she wanted the Raiders' help to shut down the spectre training program on Avernus station.
- Matt Horner(src)
The Raiders found themselves on Tarsonis, with the Terran Dominion excavating old Confederate technology and moving it via lightly-defended trains. They raided the trains and retrieved an old Confederate adjutant. The rebels hired Colonel Orlan to decrypt the adjutant's data. Orlan secretly planned to sell the information to the Dominion, and hired Mira's Marauders to fend off the Raiders. However, Mira Han, in turn, betrayed Orlan and resold her services to the Raiders. Orlan was forced to relinquish the decrypted adjutant to the Raiders. The rebels were pleased to discover the adjutant contained a recording proving Mengsk ordered the use of psi emitters on Tarsonis.
Han had another tip for the Raiders: the Dominion was testing a new weapon of war, the Odin, at Valhalla. The Raiders decided to steal it; they could use it to deliver the Confederate adjutant's information to the Dominion citizenry. The mission was successful; Tychus Findlay stole the Odin and used it to destroy five Dominion bases. The Dominion was unaware of the nature of the attack and had no idea their weapon had been subverted. Finally, the Odin was transported to Korhal, where Findlay took it on a rampage. During the battle, the Raiders uploaded the adjutant's information to UNN towers. This prompted Dominion civilians to revolt.
While assaulting Korhal, the Raiders destroyed a science facility which held information about a secret installation on Castanar. Jim Raynor led a small force to raid the installation, using the security overrides to get pass obstacles. Finding a protoss/zerg hybrid cloned over and over, the Raiders destroyed the facility's fusion reactor, but released a powerful hybrid and were forced to run from the facility using a Hercules dropship.
On Monlyth, the protoss present, the Tal'darim, refused to turn the artifact over to the Raiders and to make matters worse, the Zerg Swarm had arrived with the intention of retrieving the artifact as well. The Raiders managed to retrieve the artifact.
The Raiders once again encountered the Tal'darim on Xil, a world that housed a xel'naga temple, succeeding where the Moebius Foundation failed and retrieving the artifact inside. Findlay was pleased with the catch and the pay it would bring, but Raynor was less enthusiastic, wondering if retrieving the artifacts was worth his men's lives.
Infested Kerrigan attacked the Moebius Foundation base at Tyrador VIII, intending to learn the location of the artifacts. However, Dr. Emil Narud hired Raynor's Raiders to destroy their data cores before Kerrigan could get to them.
The Raiders pressed on, capturing yet another artifact from Typhon XI. When the Hyperion arrived to the Moebius Foundation meeting coordinates, they instead encountered a large Dominion fleet led by Bucephalus, Mengsk's flagship. Against Horner's advice, Raynor ordered Hyperion alongside for a boarding action. Raynor and Tychus Findlay led the charge. The rebel leader broke into Mengsk's chambers intending to execute his long-time nemesis. However, Raynor was surprised to find Crown Prince Valerian Mengsk, and not Emperor Arcturus Mengsk. The prince revealed he owned the Moebius Foundation, and the Raiders were unwittingly working for him. Furthermore, Valerian offered an alliance against the zerg; he believed a device could be created from the artifacts to deinfest Kerrigan. Raynor agreed to work with Valerian. This action provoked resentment from most of the Raiders.
Raynor still pressed ahead, acquiring the final artifact from a xel'naga worldship defended by the Tal'darim Executor. He regained the respect and loyalty of the crew by beating a fully-armored Findlay in a bar fight, and convincing them that a successful revolution also required the zerg to be dealt with. The crew were particularly impressed by the resurgence of Raynor's determination.
Going to CharEdit
- Raynor addresses his crew.(src)
Valerian intended to invade Char, a dangerous proposition. He took half the Dominion fleet with him, along with General Horace Warfield. Mengsk contacted him and told him he was in over his head. However, Valerian stood beside Raynor, telling his father that he would deinfest Kerrigan, something his father could never do.
Once on the ground, the Raiders rallied beleaguered terran forces to establish Warfield Forward Base. The Raiders rescued Warfield from a battlecruiser that crashed landed on the surface. Afterward, the commanders planned a preparatory operation to weaken zerg forces; Findlay proposed assaulting tunnels that Raynor was familiar with, destroying the nydus network. Warfield preferred to attack a massive space platform over Char instead, crippling zerg air support.
With the zerg weakened, the terrans brought the artifact within range of Kerrigan's primary hive and dug in. Kerrigan personally participated in counter-attacks, but the terrans held with the tactical application of the charging artifact. Once fully charged, the artifact's effect devastated the hive's defenses and deinfested Kerrigan.
Raynor and Findlay found Kerrigan deinfested. While Raynor was amazed to see her human again, Findlay, under orders from Mengsk, tried to kill her. Raynor stopped Findlay's attempt and shot him with his revolver. He then carried Kerrigan out of the ruined hive cluster, across the battlefield.
In the aftermath of their victory on Char, the Raiders were faced with the arrival of the other half of the Dominion Fleet, led by Arcturus Mengsk himself. Refusing to turn over Kerrigan to him, the Raiders fled the Char system along with Valerian Mengsk and those loyal to him. Mengsk was able to track them however, and eventually, all that was left of the rebel fleet was the Hyperion and the Bucephalus. The Raiders arrived at Dead Man's Rock, to seek aid from Mira Han.
Mengsk was able to track them again, and the Raiders headed for Space Station Prometheus, a Moebius Foundation space base. However, it was revealed that Narud was in league with Arcturus Mengsk, and once again, the Dominion Fleet arrived. However, the Raiders were once again able to escape, and headed for an Umojan Protectorate space platform for repairs, and to turn Kerrigan over for study.
Heart of The SwarmEdit
On XT39323, Valerian continued performing tests on Kerrigan in the refuge of the Umojan Protectorate. However, it went awry when the Dominion raided the lab with only one objective: Assassinate Kerrigan.
Kerrigan escaped to the Hyperion, but Raynor was captured by Nova Terra. A Dominion fleet attacked Hyperion to kill Kerrigan. Matt contacted the Dominion fleet and told them that Valerian was aboard, but it did not deter them.
The Raiders learned from a primal-infested Kerrigan that Raynor was still alive; she needed their help to discover Raynor's undisclosed prison. The Raiders contacted Mira Han to release expert hacker Orlan to them. Raynor had entrusted Orlan to her custody, and without Raynor's express instructions Han refused to release Orlan. The Raiders attacked one of her operations in an asteroid belt until she release Orlan.
Orlan hacked the Dominion deep-encryption network and discovered Raynor was held aboard the prison ship Moros. Kerrigan and the Swarm boarded the ship. By her instructions, the Raiders did not join the boarders, but provided remote support. Raynor was freed but was horrified by Kerrigan's return to the zerg.
Assault on KorhalEdit
While Valerian and Horner were busy with evacuating the Korhalians, the Raiders joined the zerg in the attack on Mengsk's palace. Their goal of overthrowing Mengsk was a success when Kerrigan herself entered the palace to kill the Emperor. Mengsk used the xel'naga artifact against Kerrigan but his remote controller was destroyed by Raynor who arrived just in time. Kerrigan then killed Mengsk.
Post-Second Great WarEdit
In the aftermath of the collapse of Mengsk's regime, the Raiders turned their efforts to rebuilding terran civilization in the Koprulu sector.
- A Raynor's Raiders recruitment blurb.(src)
The Raiders favor reconnaissance and guerrilla warfare, and have access to some older terran technology, such as wraiths, goliaths, and medics; Raynor's been around for a while and uses the older technology. Over the course of the Second Great War, the Raiders gained access to more advanced technology, such as banshees and battlecruisers. The group does not possess a standardized uniform, and its members often appear rumpled and unshaven.
Known Raiders Edit
- Commander James Raynor (leader of the Raiders)
- Captain Matt Horner (second in command)
- Lieutenant Abernathy
- Lieutenant Deke Cavez
SceeVee Special Engineering CorpsEdit
- Sergeant Bill "Pearly" Bousquette (corp leader)
- Lieutenant Chewitel "Choosey" Wsoro
- Corporal Liam Griffud
- First Welder Steiglitz
- Dean Mozian
- Eddie Rimes
- Drew Roder
- Dave Warner
- Lieutenant Hathaway (dropship pilot)
- Belloc (shuttle pilot)
- Wil Merrick (pilot of the dropship Fanfare)
- A Raiders marine(src)
- Marcus Cade (navigator)
- Jessica Hall
- Graven Hill (mercenary recruiter)
- Lily Preston (medic)
- Egon Stetmann (scientist)
- Crown Prince Valerian Mengsk
- "The Commander"
- Lieutenant Physon
- Sergeant Ling
- Sergeant Lisa Mannix
- Petty Officer Wolfe
- Private Deslan
- Private Gina Elani
- Private Lance Messner
- Private Non
- Doctor Ariel Hanson
- Chuck Ayers
- Leanda Bluth
- Cooper (barman)
- Vigo "Tuna" Czark
- Tychus Findlay
- M. Koiter
- Ari Patel
- Melinda Squire
- Annabelle Thatcher
- Concept art for Heart of the Swarm depicted a Raiders base on Char. No such Raiders base appeared in the final game.
- Raynor's Raiders appear as one of the main factions in StarCraft the Board Game.
- The Raiders 'marine speech' is taken verbatim from the film Aliens.
- The Raiders logo can be seen on the back of a tracksuit in the cinematic trailer for Overwatch.