The Crimson Raiders are a rag-tag band of adventurers and ex-soldiers forged from the remnants of the Crimson Lance by Roland. They are based in the rebel settlement of Sanctuary and answer to Roland and Lilith when Sanctuary needs their assistance.
After the original Vault Hunters defeated General Knoxx, the Atlas Corporation's attempted capitulation of Pandora grew sour. ECHO recorders found in Sanctuary during Borderlands 2 suggest that Atlas cut their losses and left a large number of Crimson Lance soldiers stranded with no supplies or ammunition, leaving them defenseless and ripe for Bandit attacks. Roland pledged to give these soldiers a cause worth fighting for if they joined him in the building of a militia against Hyperion, and so the Crimson Raiders were born.
Originally stationed with Roland in New Haven, the Crimson Raiders were forced to relocate to Sanctuary after the Hyperion corporation overran the city. Still under Roland's command, their missions mainly involve disrupting Handsome Jack's Eridium mining and defending Sanctuary from the Bloodshot Bandits.
Members of the Crimson Raiders that the player can interact with include Roland, the leader, Lilith, the co-leader (under the alias Firehawk), Mordecai, a scout, and Tannis, a researcher. Roland contacts the Vault Hunters just as he is kidnapped by Bloodshots, and the player must find Lilith in order to save him. Handsome Jack constantly refers to the Crimson Raiders and the citizens of Sanctuary as "Bandits", and all Hyperion personnel found during the game treat them as such.
After Roland returns to Sanctuary, the Crimson Raiders direct their attention to locating the Vault Key before Handsome Jack. After the player dispatches of Wilhelm, it is revealed that Jack manipulated the player and the Raiders into going after the Vault Key directly, with the help of Angel, who orchestrated Roland & Co.'s hunt for the vault during the events of Borderlands. Sanctuary is forced into the air and phaseblasted away from Handsome Jack's mortars after Angel lowers its shields, putting the Raiders on the defensive.
Due to the lack of other options, Roland, Lilith and Mordecai accept the help of Angel in their quest to find the Vault Key inside a Hyperion bunker. Roland suggests the player acquire the aid of the Slab King, also known as Brick, who was expelled from the Raiders three years prior to the events of Borderlands 2 after the vicious murder of Shep Sanders. The Vault Hunters, the Crimson Raiders and the Slabs successfully break their way into Angel's bunker, killing her. In a fit of rage, Handsome Jack shoots Roland in the back, killing him, then kidnaps Lilith using unknown Hyperion tech.
After the death of Roland, many Raiders throughout the city of Sanctuary express disbelief towards his demise, dismissing it as either Hyperion propaganda or baseless rumors. Mordecai would later go on to inherit leadership of the Raiders. The Crimson Raiders' further actions consist of attempting to wipe Hyperion of Pandora for good.
- ECHO recorders giving information on the Crimson Raiders can be found scattered throughout Sanctuary.