Raiding is the stealing of other survivor's possessions, either by a sneaking and stealing method or by more violent means. Those who do this are known as raiders or bandits. It is the more bloodthirsty and aggressive way of gathering supplies, the other ways being looting and scavenging. It is suggested to avoid this as news may spread in the apocalypse of who you are.
Items to look for
1. As a raider, it is generally a bad idea to take on more than you can chew. That military base sure has a lot of loot, but ten to one says that you will be caught. If you get caught, you will die. Thieves are never looked highly upon, and unless you are packing an army of your own, an assault is out of the question. Pick your targets accordingly.
2. Getting in and getting what you want is the easy part. Getting away and keeping it is the tricky part. If you are trying to be stealthy, make sure it is nothing that you can't get away with in a quiet hurry. If you're holding someone up, make sure you can get away in a loud hurry.
3. Engage on your terms. It is advisable to attack when your target is out in the open and away from their refuge. Bases are defended, lowering your chance of success.
4. Everyone wants an eye for an eye. Assume that for the first 48 hours after raiding, the life of your team and/or yourself is endangered. The victim of the raiding may probably send hunting parties to look for you to take back their stuff, especially if your loot includes something the victims value as special and cherished. The worst case scenario is that the parties coming for you are the ones tasked with a retaliatory attack. Be aware of who you are raiding.
Attacking a group in the country
So you and your party of bandits have seen a band of refugees walking through what has become your turf. Ideally, they would be unarmed, but luck will not always be on your side. Information will be your greatest resource, with surprise close behind, so get as much information without compromising your position. Signs of easy prey include but are not limited to: few weapons, many children, older people and wounded, bewildered people, slow moving people, small groups and other signs that can be picked up at the moment.
If you decide to press the attack these are some general tips for attacking.
1. Terrain. Terrain can be an invaluable asset to any attack but is not always available. If an assault takes place on the plains, there is nearly no chance of positioning your men to take advantage of cover while still maintaining surprise. If the place is mountainous and a forest, then there is ample opportunity for both positioning and surprise. It can be a very delicate balance to try to have both surprise and position. Sometimes, it may be better to sacrifice one for the other. Surprise can be a great advantage, but if you are in a position to be cut down if any fighting must take place, it becomes useless.
2. Surprise. Surprise is something that can be used in most situations with great effect. Though an ambush is not always necessary, the need to suddenly pop up in front (or preferably around) your victims will have a profound psychological effect. If accompanied by a demand for surrender, it can even prevent any fighting at all.
3. First Shots / Warning Shots.These can be very dangerous when confronting victims. *If* you want to start your assault with a headshot to the lead in a band, it will have a great emotional effect. If you are lucky, it causes fear and confusion and they will surrender. If not, you have just guaranteed a fight. Maybe you shot someone’s brother or husband. Now you have a very angry loved one who wants revenge and will start a fight. People do not make good decisions under such stress and as such will be more likely to fight back. Warning shots, even when aimed in the air, can also cause a fight easily. Maybe somebody sees the muzzle flash and now they are firing on your position or the position of one of your men. Now you return fire and now you have a fight. Bandits are not an army, you are not meant to wage a war against anybody who comes into your territory and your men are not soldiers. There is a lack of discipline in a rabble of bandits compared to an army; it would be hard to judge how they would react to casualties in a fight.
4. Ask For Surrender. Ask for surrender, but not in a bandit way. Once you have them as best surrounded as you can, yell at them to drop their arms. Follow up quickly with an apology, and tell them you simply want to be safe. It is likely that they have come upon other survivors and won’t be totally taken off by the demand. If they refuse, try to surround them at least a little bit more, but use extreme caution. You can send a man to take another position, and they may take it as an understandable caution, or they can see it as aggression and at least fire a warning shot, or at most shoot to kill. This does not ruin the reason for surprise though, because you are still surprising them with your presence. Then yell at them again to drop their weapons one last time and tell them that you will count to three. Count fast, this is not to build tension like so many movies, you are trying to force them to decide quickly, without logic or reason. If they don’t drop their weapons then, they never will and you will have to fight them.
5. Dealing with Victims. You have either captured them without a fight, or you have beaten them sufficiently to cause them to surrender. Now you have to move quickly to secure them and nullify any threat they can still pose. Now is time for the most precarious aspect of being a bandit, now you have to deal with the people you are about to rob and may have killed a couple of. This can create a great amount of animosity against you. The state of the people afterward should dictate the amount you steal. You could steal everything and execute all the survivors, but there will likely be children and women with them, which would be harder to do than you may think. But, there is also the danger of them returning for revenge. Also, there is a small but not impossible chance that other survivors in the area may even come to take revenge. This is why bandits never work where they live, and instead, go into other areas for raiding. If you took them without any fighting, you can feel free to let them go and try not to take too much of their supplies. If you can see that there is a great amount of hate, then you may have to execute your victims. Being a bandit is not for the weak of heart.