Factions are various single-player groups or organizations that players will encounter in Red Dead Redemption. These include American or Mexican criminal gangs, law enforcement organizations, and more, and are not to be confused with Multiplayer faction members.
Standard Singleplayer Factions
There are two standard faction types; law enforcement and criminal factions. Law enforcement will typically pursue the player when a crime, or crimes, are committed. Criminal gangs are the exact opposite; they are outlaws, normally territorial, who control hideouts across the territory and will normally shoot the player if they intrude. Both faction types can be encountered, without hostility, in towns or settlements.
These factions, made up of Marshals, American Army soldiers, Mexican Army soldiers, Federales, Lawmen and the Blackwater Police Department, as well as the Rebeldes after a certain storyline checkpoint, will typically pursue the player when a bounty has been earned. Typically, four-man law enforcement posses will appear at random across the world in both countries. At higher bounty levels, Army soldiers or Marshals will begin to pursue the player, as well as bounty hunter posses. Law enforcement officials can be encountered in all towns or settlements, however, Army soldiers are only encountered when running from a bounty, or in storyline missions later in the game.
Factions that are made up of known outlaws are simply referred to as criminal or outlaw gangs. They are made up of the Banditos, Walton's Gang, Bollard Twins Gang, and Dutch's Gang, as well as the Rebeldes, up to a certain point in the storyline. These gangs can be encountered in towns or settlements, acting as normal civilians, or can be encountered in gang hideouts or through bounty posters that are posted around various settlements. They are only hostile when encountered in the latter two locations. They will pursue the player only if a bounty hunting excursion has been completed recently and is en route to a town with proof, or a hogtied criminal.
Many of the law enforcement and criminal gangs factions mentioned above have multiplayer counterparts in the Outfitter, which allow the player to use a character from a specific faction and bring him/her into online games or Free Roam sessions. The information listed below also applies and describes the respective single player Factions.
The Rebeldes, or Reyes' Rebels, is a gang that is based in Nuevo Paraíso.
Most of the rebels wear poncho and Bandoliers, with the women wearing black or white robes. Reyes' Rebels stay around their guerrilla base in Agave Viejo, until Abraham Reyes and John Marston overthrow Colonel Agustin Allende's oppressive reign and free Nuevo Paraíso. Reyes' Rebels then come out of hiding and uphold the new leadership of Mexico as Reyes' personal enforcers.
Right after Nuevo Paraíso is seized by Reyes, the Mexican soldiers under Allende's command disband and flee the city of Escalera. The rebels insert themselves as the new lawmakers in town. Their rules are the same as before. If Marston commits a crime, he'll gain a bounty with the only difference being the rebels will come after him instead of the Mexican Army, with the exception of the gang hideout at Nosalida, where the player still fights with the Mexican Army against the rebels.
Also known as the "1911 Gang", or Dutch's Tribe, formed from disaffected young Native-Americans off the nearby Reservations who hate the U.S. Government, and the white man in general, for taking their land, destroying their way of life and forcing them into lives of squalor.
The gang's main hideout is the northern Tall Trees settlement of Cochinay; they are also known to use the abandoned logging camp at Bearclaw Camp as a stopover. Dutch's gang can be found just about anywhere in West Elizabeth, occasionally (in singleplayer) even in Blackwater during a Nightwatch job (they are usually breaking into a building). Hassun is commonly seen in Manzanita Post, often playing Five Finger Fillet, occasionally riding through in a Wild Posse. Most of the criminal activity in West Elizabeth, indeed, is down to Dutch's wild boys - ambushes, bandit attack during an escort quest, the hijacking of supply wagons (common at Manzanita Post). They hold their own respective category in the Multiplayer outfitter.
The first appearance of the gang in Red Dead Redemption is in the mission "Political Realities in Armadillo" where the player must fight past gang members to capture or kill Walton Lowe. Walton's Gang are possibly one of the most dangerous gangs, due to their ruthlessness and that they have one of the biggest territories in Cholla Springs. Members of the Walton's Gang stand out due to the top hats and matching scarves. The player can unlock the Walton's Gang Outfit and dress as a member of the gang. They have their own faction category in the Multiplayer outfitter.
Bollard Twins Gang
A gang of cattle rustlers and robbers led by the, presumably twin, brothers Ike and Willie Bollard in Red Dead Redemption. They often wear leather chaps or riding pants, and all members wear a red kerchief around their necks. Several members also carry a non functioning lasso across their chests, presumably to steal cattle.
They are based in New Austin, specifically Hennigan's Stead, with a hideout located in Pike's Basin. Members of the gang can also be found in Thieves' Landing. The player can see them near shops, the docks and the saloon and they can be seen committing crimes in the town and around other places throughout New Austin. They are playable in Multiplayer under the faction "Cattle Rustlers".
The United States Army is the branch of the United States armed forces responsible for land-based military operations. Soldiers fight alongside John Marston in the hunt for Dutch van der Linde. The Army appears to cooperate with the infant Bureau of Investigation, as seen by the fact the Army soldiers fight Dutch's Gang, as well as come for Marston himself. During the mission "And The Truth Will Set You Free" if Marston rides near the front of the column of U.S soldiers, the captain will imply that the Bureau is forcing them to cooperate, similar to Marston's situation. American Army soldiers are also a playable character faction in the Multiplayer game mode.
FederalesThe Mexican Federal Police are a form of law enforcement that operate around Escalera, Chuparosa, El Matadero, and Torquemada. There are also 8 playable Federales characters in Multiplayer. Federales in Red Dead Redemption greet the player upon turning in a bounty target.
Once the player gains a bounty of $1000 or more, Federales will join in the hunt. Fleeing into the Wilderness will cause posses of Federales to assault the player at random intervals.
Even in settlements like Casa Madrugada, Federales will still come into town and attempt to bring Marston down.
While most Federales do not wear a uniform, in Chuparosa there is a group of uniformed Federales, similar to the police in Blackwater. The non-uniformed Federales all wear the same badge, which is a different badge then the uniformed Federales.They operate out of the Chuparosa Mayor's Office and will also attempt to take down any outlaws. After the events of "An Appointed Time", they no longer appear as Law Enforcement officials and are replaced by the Rebeldes.
Lawmen are one type of law enforcement in Red Dead Redemption. They will usually go after Marston if he is seen committing a crime by law enforcement or witnesses. If Marston kills a Lawmen his Bounty will increase and he will lose 100 honor. The bounty will go up $50 for every lawmen killed. The 100 lost honor points is double the normal 50 for killing a civilian. This could be to discourage players from killing lawmen carelessly (or a faster way to lose honor, alternatively).
If Marston is wearing the Bureau Uniform, lawmen will not pursue him if committing crimes. They will appear in multiplayer free roam sessions if the player commits a crime. Unlike singleplayer though, there are no witnesses to crimes. Instead, the law will just come after the player.
The United States Marshal Service is the oldest form of law enforcement in the United States, the office being created by the first U.S. Congress in the Judiciary Act of 178. Marshals in Red Dead Redemption are usually in charge of one county. They pursue the player after he gains a bounty in excess of $1000.
In single player, the player can obtain the U.S. Marshal Outfit.
The Nuns are god believing people who are mostly found in Las Hermanas. If the play has high enough honor, they will occasionally come to either ask the player for money or give them a gift which is the Obscuridad del Santo Andres or money.
Most of the Factions from the main game also appear in Undead Nightmare. Members can be found as survivors, defending settlements from the Undead hordes. Enemy gangs will not be hostile (unless the player attacks them first), so they assisting them and providing ammunition is in the player's best interests.
Some members of these Factions can be encountered as Undead. Undead Lawmen or Undead Gang Members are most encountered in places they were found in Single Player. For example, Undead Walton's Gang will most likely be found in Twin Rocks, Armadillo, and around Cholla Springs. Not all of Walton's Gang will be undead, as some members will be defending Twin Rocks from undead.
Lawmen can also be found defending their settlement, but also sometimes in the wilderness as undead.
No members of the U.S. Army will be undead, but they can be found at Fort Mercer with other Survivors wondering how to escape.
Undead Nuns can only be found in Las Hermanas during an attack.
Notable Faction Members
- Mother Superior - Nun
- American Army Captain - Captain
Bollard Twins Gang
Bureau of Investigation
- Dutch van der Linde - Leader
- Salvador Vegas - Captain
- Agustin Allende - Colonel
† = Arsenio Baldizon uses the uniform of a Teniente (Lieutenant) and would actually be a higher rank than Agustin Allende if his rank was correct. It is generally accepted that this is a mistake.
- It is worth noting that the Williamson's gang is mainly made up of miscellaneous, unaffiliated criminals.
- Many of the faction leaders are available as playable Multiplayer Characters with the addition of DLC. These include Abraham Reyes, Edgar Ross, Dutch van der Linde, and Bill Williamson.