The Old Guard, originally known as the Survivalists or Survivalist Raiders, are the oldest of the 8 member tribes of the Raider Alliance, originating from survivors of the Great War who hid in Athens-Tec Mine in the San Bernadino Mountains.
Prior to the Great War, Athens-Tec Mine was a private Mining Corporation in California, mining Uranium and Gold from the San Bernadino Mountains. Athens-Tec so dominated the local economy it bought up all properties in the Cajon Pass to house its workers, who included among them Right-Wing Militia and "Preppers" as well as several Undocumented Mexican Immigrant families. When the War hit, these groups put aside whatever animosity they held and hid in the deeper reaches of the mine, surviving the obliteration of the surface and founding a tenuous society based out of the mines.
Over the decades, the survivalist mentality of the Athens-Tec dwellers melted into the other ideologies, resulting in the Survivalists becoming a highly militarized, insular, and xenophobic society who saw all outsiders as resources or threats. Armed with their massive stashes of Pre-War armaments and military training, they would quickly dominate the various Raider Tribes and settlements of the Pass, forming a totalitarian society based on slave labor to mine Athens-Tecs valuable sources of gold and Uranium. Despite being wildly outnumbered by rising societies such as the New California Republic, their entrenched position and valuable resources ensured the Survivalists remained independent even as the NCR came to completely surround them.
The Athens-Tec Survivalist Raiders are one of the most well armed and equipped factions in the entire Core Region, able to match the New California in terms of arms and armor and overwhelm more advanced groups such as the Enclave through tactics and numbers.
Unlike their Tribal and Raider subjects, the Survivalists fully embrace the weaponry and tactics of their Paramilitary Ancestors, utilizing an organized command structure loosely based on the Pre-War United States Military and commonly utilizing high-grade firearms and explosives, preferring paramilitary clothing and salvaged pre-war combat armor and on rare occasions, Salvaged Power Armor. The survivalists fully utilize complex tactics, defending their territory with entrenched positions and bunkers within line-of-sight of one another and more simple forms of communication, while supporting both their offensive and defensive operations with Mortar and Artillery barrages. Much like the NCR, they utilize a small number of restored pre-war vehicles, and, following their betrayal and destruction of Enclave Squad Leonidas, the small fleet of Vertibirds the Enclave possessed as air support.
The Survivalists support their forces with a relatively complex slave-based infrastructure, mining and selling Uranium and Gold mined in Athens-Tec to less savory elements within New California. They have managed to restore much of Athens-Tec to working order, and possess a rudimentary power grid as well as fresh water pumped from Black Bear Lake. Their food is provided by slave laborers growing food and other crops.