The 1979 film The Warriors and the 2005 video game of the same name, set circa 1978 and 1979, both revolve heavily around numerous fictional street gangs, biker gangs and crime syndicates. Each gang has a different background as well as members of different races or ethnic groups and control their own turf in New York City. The film revolves primarily around the Warriors gang, but the game is set in the months leading up to the events of the film and introduces more gangs in greater detail.

Rank[edit | edit source]

Gangs in The Warriors have a specific, military-like ranking system. The ranks, from highest to lowest, are as follows:

  • Warlord: The Warlord, or Overlord, is the highest-ranking member of a gang. Warlords are usually older, more experienced and better fighters than other members. They must also be level-headed and have a good knowledge of combat.
  • Warchief: A Warchief is a gang's second-in-command and often acts as leader when the Warlord is absent or if something bad happens to the Warlord.
  • Lieutenant: A gang's lieutenants are the third-highest ranking members. There is usually more than one lieutenant.
  • Soldier: A soldier, or full member of a gang is a low-ranking but official gang member. This is the most common rank that members rise to.
  • New Blood: A new blood is a newly-recruited member. Every gang member must go through a period as a new blood to prove themselves to full members of the gang. Certain gangs will reward their members with a vest or patch when they complete this period.

Gangs in The Bronx[edit | edit source]

Moonrunners[edit | edit source]

The Moonrunners are a graffiti artist gang from Pelham Bay. They are predominantly Black, with a few White members and wear purple vests with silver jackets. Their Warchief and Lieutenants wear red jackets, however. Their hangout is the Pelham Bay Metropolitan Transit Authority depot, where they often spray their tags onto subway trains. They are bitter rivals of the Van Cortlandt Rangers.

In the film, they are shown making their way to Cyrus' meeting and in the video game, they show up in Level 3 (Blackout), rioting and looting, and they crossed out all of the Baseball Furies' tags. They appear in Level 6 (Writer's Block) where The Hi-Hats host a set-up graffiti art competition, invite a number of gangs and then attack them. They also appear in Level 13 (All-City) where The Warriors invade their turf in order to mark the newly manufactured trains.

Orphans[edit | edit source]

The Orphans are a bottom-of-the-barrel gang, led by Sully, a coward and poor fighter, and are known to be one of the weakest gangs in New York, with a maximum of around thirty members at full-strength. Their uniform consists of a green T-shirt with 'ORPHANS' written on the back in black, and blue jeans. All of their members appear to be White or Hispanic. However, the names given to their members in the Armies of the Night mini-game suggest they could be of Jewish descent.

In the film, they confront The Warriors when they leave the local Subway station and walk through their turf, Tremont. The Warriors leader, Swan, explains that they were on their way home from the meeting but their train was stopped because of a fire, so they had to get off and walk. Sully is about to let them through, however, Sully's girlfriend Mercy instigates a confrontation. It appears that The Orphans were not even told about the meeting. This implies that they are considered to be a joke to the gangs that are under the Gramercy Riffs' network. In the game, the Orphans are encountered twice. The first time is in the fifth level (Real Heavy Rep), in which Sully, has told the DJ that the Orphans have wrecked the Warriors, hoping to gain more reputation. The Warriors hear this claim on the radio, and Cleon and Fox take the newly-recruited Warriors to Tremont to test them as well as restore their growing reputation, and teach the Orphans a lesson. The second encounter occurs in the fifteenth level (No Permits, No Parley), and the first and final parts of this level follow the encounter seen in the film. The middle of the level shows the Warriors fighting Orphans, in which case the Warriors win, the police and other gangs in an attempt to get to the next subway station.

Turnbull AC's[edit | edit source]

The Turnbull AC's, or simply Turnbulls or AC's, are an anarchistic, hardcore punk gang from Gun Hill Road. Their logo is a bull's head sandwiched between the words Turnbull and AC's. Most of their members are Irish-Americans or African-Americans who all have shaven heads and drive around in an old, graffiti-covered school bus. Their hangout is located in a truck yard but they also frequent a bar called The Red Devil. Some of their lieutenants are Birdie, Sid and Thrash. They commonly use knives and machetes as weapons.

During the events of the film as depicted in the game, the Turnbulls are the Warrior's most aggressive pursuers, hunting them as they attempt to make the train station. In the video game, Birdie was killed in retaliation for having his gang ambush two of the Warriors in Level 11 (Boys In Blue). They also appear in Level 14 (Desperate Dudes), which is simply a recreation of the events of the film.

Van Cortlandt Rangers[edit | edit source]

The Van Cortlandt Rangers, or VC Rangers, are a African-American gang from Van Cortlandt Park. They wear white shirts with purple stripes (reverse for their Warchief and Lieutenants) and fedora hats. They were invited to the Gramercy Riffs' meeting, which was held on their home turf, and are bitter rivals of the Moonrunners.

They are shown very little in both the film and video game. So little that when used in Rumble mode in the video game they are addressed by the DJ as if they were a created or fictitious gang, and their name is abbreviated to VC Rangers using only ten spaces as you can only do when naming a created gang, while gangs such as Electric Eliminators uses well over ten spaces.

Gangs in Brooklyn[edit | edit source]

The Homisides are the original Real Life Street Gang In Coney Island. The warriors are loosely based on them.

Destroyers[edit | edit source]

The Destroyers were once the most powerful gang in Coney Island but lost control and eventually disbanded after their leader, Virgil, a cocaine-addicted alcoholic, attempted to get Cleon, his Warchief, killed in a set-up drug deal with the Satan's Mothers. After surviving the assault, Cleon then rebelled and established his own gang, the Warriors, made up of several former Destroyers. Virgil was eventually violently deposed and his gang destroyed in retaliation for the murder of Ash, one of the Warrior's New Bloods. Their members wore sleevless denim jackets with the Destroyers logo embroided on the back. Their hangout was a large warehouse in Eastern Coney Island, with a mural of Virgil painted on the side.

They only appeared in the video game.

Jones Street Boys[edit | edit source]

The Jones Street Boys, or JSB's, are a cocky bunch of trust fund kids who live in a world where money is no object and petty crime is just a thrill ride. The JSB's are an entirely White gang and due to the location of part their turf, it is highly likely that most of the JSB's are of Italian and Sicilian-American descent. They dress in black and gold-striped, or sometimes black and white, shirts. The JSB's turf is Bensonhurst and Bay Ridge, and they are led by Knox. They are bitter rivals of the Saracens and are known to commonly use wrenches, crowbars and lead pipes as weapons during fights.

They are shown at the meeting during the film. In the game, they appear in Level 12 (Set Up) and are working with dirty cops to keep the Saracens at bay. For an assist, the Saracens consult the Warriors, who proceed to kill two birds with one stone: they frame both the JSB's and the cops by planting stolen goods on them. In return for their help, the Saracens secure a place for the Warriors on the Gramercy Riffs' network. Lemmy, of The Destroyers, supplied them with drugs. It is unknown if this was on an industrial scale or simply for recreational use, however.

Saracens[edit | edit source]

The Saracens are a gang from Bensonhurst who have a long-running rivalry with the Jones Street Boys. They wear black vests with white trim but their Warchief and Lieutenants wear white vests with black trim, with the exception of their leader, Edge. It appears that most of the members are White, but there are some Black members. The Saracens' logo is a cobra with a scimitar in its mouth. The Saracens seem to have some form of a relationship with the Electric Eliminators. In the second flashback level, King of the Hill, the Saracens and Eliminators are seen patting each other on the backs. Later, during the conclave after Cyrus is murdered, two members of the Saracens are seen helping some Eliminators scale a wall to escape the park. They are also allies of the Gramercy Riffs. The Saracens are seen during the intro of the film, walking down a subway platform. In the video game, they have a bigger role. They enlist the help of the Warriors to take down the Jones Street Boys, their rival gang in Level 12 (Set Up). The JSB's are working with some corrupt police officers to keep the heat on the Saracens. If the Warriors can break up the deal, the Saracens will put a word in for them with the Gramercy Riffs to invite them to a huge meet in the Bronx.

Satan's Mothers[edit | edit source]

The Satans Mothers Motorcycle Club (SMMC), commonly known as simply the Satan's Mothers or Mothers, are an outlaw motorcycle gang from Sheepshead Bay, responsible for drug distribution throughout Brooklyn and New Jersey. Their members dress in typical biker fashion and wear leather vests with their logo (Satan's face, sandwiched between the top rocker, reading Satans, and bottom rocker, reading Mothers) on the back. Their vests also have the letters MC (Motorcycle Club) on the back. They are one of the most powerful gangs in New York City and are led by Tiny and Spider. They are loosely based on the Hells Angels.

In the film, they can be seen at the meeting and in the video game, they pursue Cleon and Vermin of The Destroyers after they attempt to rip them off in a drug deal (actually a set-up by The Destroyers leader, Virgil). They chase them to a warehouse roof but are defeated by the pair in the ensuing fight. This happens in Flashback Level A (Roots). Their fights with the Savage Huns are often mentioned by the DJ on the radio, but it is implied that they were once allies.

They appear with a minor role in Level 15 (No Permits, No Parley), and brawl with the police and the Warriors. It's suggested that three of the Mothers are responsible for knocking out Cowboy.

The Satans Mothers surnames on arcade suggest Irish, German and possibly Jewish ancestry

The Warriors[edit | edit source]

The Warriors, sometimes referred to as the Coney Island Warriors, are the main gang in both the film and the video game. Their turf is Western Coney Island and it is mentioned in a deleted scene from the film that they are a "street family of 120, plus affiliates." Their main hangout is located near the amusements and Deno's Wonder Wheel. The Warriors have members of a number of races and wear red leather vests with the gang's logo (a Hells Angels-style death's head adorned with a Native American warbonnet patterned to resemble up-turned wings) on the back.

The Warriors were formed in the spring of 1978 when Cleon and Vermin split from The Destroyers, the original gang in Coney Island. The Destroyers and Warriors then became rivals and fought over the right to rule Coney Island. The Warriors eventually won the war and The Destroyers ceased to exist from that point on.

After hearing rumors about an upcoming gang meeting, The Warriors decided to increase their reputation by battling other gangs in the hope of being noticed. The Saracens promised to put a word in for them with the Gramercy Riffs to invite them to the meet if they helped them out by framing members of the Jones Street Boys. The Warriors planted drugs in the JSBs' hangout and were eventually put on the 'Riffs' network'.

In 1979, The Warriors were invited to the midnight summit in Van Cortlandt Park, The Bronx by Cyrus, the leader of the Gramercy Riffs. All gangs invited were asked to send nine unarmed representatives to the conclave. The nine members sent by the Warriors were Cleon (Warlord), Swan (Warchief), Fox (scout), Rembrandt (the gang's graffiti artist), Ajax, Cochise, Cowboy, Snow and Vermin.

The Warriors then had to fight their way back to Coney Island after The Rogues shot and killed Cyrus, the leader of the Riffs, and blamed it on them. On the way back, they encountered numerous gangs including The Turnbull AC's, The Baseball Furies, The Orphans, The Punks and The Lizzies. Cleon and Fox were killed by gangs and the police and Ajax was arrested while trying to battle their way back home. When they finally reached Coney, they came face-to-face with The Rogues and were preparing to fight. The Riffs interrupted, however, and revealed that they had been told who really killed their leader. The Warriors then headed home as the Riffs swarmed The Rogues.

Most of the warriors are of Irish, Italian, German and African-American descent although Rembrandt is of Hispanic descent

Gangs in Manhattan[edit | edit source]

Baseball Furies[edit | edit source]

The Baseball Furies, or simply The Furies, are a gang from Riverside Park, the baseball fields in particular. Their leader is Cobb. They are a New York Yankees-inspired gang in white pinstriped baseball uniforms with the Furies logo embroidered on the back, wielding baseball bats and wearing facial makeup similar to that of the rock group KISS, only multicolored instead of black and white. Their Warchief and Lieutenants wear black pinstriped uniforms. They are never heard to speak; this adds to their frightening presence and mysterious intentions. The Furies were created because of Walter Hill's love for baseball and the band KISS.

In the film, they chase the Warriors through Riverside Park, but prove ineffective fighters during the ensuing brawl. In the video game, The Furies are encountered twice. The first time is in Level 4 (Blackout) they are first spotted beating up a pair of Rogues and then chase three of the Warriors (Vermin, Snow and Ash) to the Subway station. The second encounter occurs in Level 16 (Home Run). The first two portions of this level are recreations of the iconic chase scene and Riverside park fight from the film. The final portion of the level takes place in the Riverside Park Rotunda and pits the Warriors against Cobb, the Furies' leader.

The majority of the furies are a mix of Irish, Russian and German ancestry.

Boppers[edit | edit source]

The Boppers are an African-American gang from West Harlem, and their usual hangout is a disco hall named Club 45. They are also found in a pool hall and The Black Cat Lounge, a strip club. Their members who mostly speak in jive and wear purple waistcoats and fedoras, black shirts and cream-coloured trousers. Their Warchief and Lieutenants wear gold long-sleeved shirts with their vests. They are bitter rivals of the Hurricanes, who hail from East Harlem.

The Boppers are seen in the film walking down a subway platform during the intro, and later at Cyrus' meeting. In the video game, they appear in Flashback Level E (Sharp Dressed Man), in which the Warriors must gain entry to a Boppers-owned night club before beating up Big Moe, their leader, and stealing his hat.

Electric Eliminators[edit | edit source]

The Electric Eliminators, or simply the Eliminators, are an all-White break dancing gang who wear purple t-shirts and shiny gold jackets with their logo on the back, and sometimes black fingerless gloves. They are bitter rivals of the Hi-Hats, who also hail from SoHo.

In the film, they are shown making their way to the meeting and scaring civilians in the subway. They appear in Level 6 (Writer's Block) in the video game, where the Hi-Hats host a set-up graffiti competition then attack the attending gangs. They also appear in Level 15 (No Permits, No Parley), fighting both the police and the Warriors.

Gramercy Riffs[edit | edit source]

The Gramercy Riffs, or simply the Riffs, are the largest and most important gang in New York City. They are disciplined, well-organized and based on martial arts. As their name suggests, their turf is Gramercy, but as they are the largest gang in the city, their influence most likely spans much further. The Riffs seem to be made up entirely of African-Americans. They dress in orange, karate gi garb, resembling those worn by Shaolin monks, but at the end of the film, they are seen wearing black T-shirts and matching jeans. It is never mentioned how many members the Gramercy Riffs have, but it is speculated that their numbers range from around 500 to 1,000. At the start of the film, the Riffs' Warlord, Cyrus, is giving a speech to all of New York's heavier gangs, stating that if they all worked together they could run the city, outnumbering the police three to one. At the climax of the conclave, Cyrus is shot by the Rogues' leader, Luther, who then frames the Warriors for the crime. After Cyrus' death, the second-in-command, Masai, takes over, and has the Riffs hunt them down until the Rogues are proven guilty of the crime by an onlooker. In the video game, the last few missions follow the same story as the film, with the Riffs hunting down the Warriors. Earlier missions revolve around the Warriors' trying to get on the Riffs' network. Cyrus is also shown in several cutscenes explaining his idea to his Warchief, Masai. The Warriors never directly encounter the Riffs until the end of Level 18 (Come Out to Play), which plays out exactly as it did in the film.

Hi-Hats[edit | edit source]

The Hi-Hats are a mime gang from SoHo whose members sport red-and-black-striped shirts (black-and-white-striped for the Warchief and Lieutenants), painted faces and top hats. They are bitter rivals of the Electric Eliminators, who also hail from SoHo, and commonly use knives. They are led by Chatterbox a 6'5" overweight 40 year old with a prominent stutter, and later they are led by Crackerjack.

The Hi-Hats are only seen in the opening credits and at the conclave during the film. In the game, however, they are featured in two levels. In Level 6 (Writer's Block), they hold a writer's competition to find the best graffiti artist in New York City. This is a setup, however, to eliminate other gangs. The Warriors escape to Chatterbox's art gallery which they trash. In Level 8 (Encore), the Hi-Hats go to Coney Island to take revenge on the Warriors. After a prolonged battle, the Warriors kill Chatterbox and his invading soldiers. Crackerjack then becomes the Hi-Hats' Overlord.

Most of the Hi-Hats' surnames in arcade suggest German origin although some Italian.

Hurricanes[edit | edit source]

The Hurricanes are a Hispanic and Latino (mainly Puerto Rican) gang from Spanish Harlem. Hurricanes members are usually heavily tattooed and wear white muscle-shirts (or no shirts at all) with bowler hats and matching beige trousers. Lieutenants wear short-sleeved blue shirts and their Warchief, Sanchez, wears a short-sleeved brown shirt. Like the Satan's Mothers and the Turnbull AC's, the Hurricanes have two leaders, Diego and Vargas, both of whom are very muscular, heavily tattooed and over 6 feet tall. They are bitter rivals of the Boppers, and their usual hangout is the "Stripes and Solids" pool hall.

The Hurricanes are seen in the film walking down a subway platform during the intro and later at Cyrus' meeting. They appear in level 7 (Adios Amigo) of the video game, in which the Warriors go to Spanish Harlem to collect money owed to them by Sanchez. A conflict ensues and the Warriors become surrounded, eventually fighting their way out.

Lizzies[edit | edit source]

The Lizzies are an all-female, and possibly lesbian, gang operating out of Bowery. Their hangout is located near CBGB. For a uniform, they all wear a watercolor-patterned rainbow shirt, which can be seen under their hooded sweaters and jackets in the film. In the game, members wear jackets with their logo (designed for the game) embroidered on the back. The lack of a gang patch in the film explains why Vermin asks them what "outfit" they are.

In the film, they meet Vermin, Cochise, and Rembrandt of the Warriors in the subway and bring them back to their hang out under the guise of partying and having sex. However, it soon becomes apparent that they lured them there in an attempt to take revenge on the Warriors, whom they believe shot the Riffs' leader, Cyrus. This scene is recreated in the video game.

Panzers[edit | edit source]

The Panzers are an African-American, militant gang from Washington Heights. They are seemingly modeled on the Guardian Angels and Black Panthers as their members wear camouflage jackets or black turtle neck sweaters and sometimes red berets. They are essentially a neighborhood vigilance organization, and one of the city's least-respected gangs, but are still invited to the meeting.

In the film, they are shown making their way to the meeting during the intro, and in the video game they appear in Level 6 (Writer's Block), where The Hi-Hats host a set-up graffiti competition and then attack the attending gangs. They're also shown in Level 3 (Blackout), as one of three gangs rioting in Riverside.

Punks[edit | edit source]

The Punks are a gang operating out of the Bowery. They are mostly White, with at least one Black member, and wear traditional worker's outfits and their leader uniformly moves around on roller skates. They are known for the swiftness and savagery of their attacks. Their members carry knives.

In the film, they accidentally stumble into a skirmish with the Warriors inside a subway station washroom (while seeking to ambush Swan, alone) and are beaten up. This scene is recreated in the video game.

The majority of the Punks are of Irish origin although some African-American.

Rogues[edit | edit source]

The Rogues leader, Luther.

The Rogues are a gang from Hell's Kitchen. They dress like 1950s greasers, resemble stereotypical metalheads, and wear biker-style uniforms consisting of leather kutten with their logo - a hooded grim reaper in chains - embroidered on the back, and matching patrol caps and jeans and drive an old graffiti-scribbled Cadillac hearse. The leader, Luther, is a small man with extremely violent and psychopathic tendencies. He killed Cyrus merely because "I just like doing things like that!" Luther's Warchief is Cropsey.

In the video game, the Rogues follow the same storyline as the film, but you are introduced to them earlier on, via cut scenes before and after certain missions. At the beginning of Boys In Blue for example, you discover how Luther got the gun and police badge in the first place. The cut scenes show more of Luther's character and mentality, and also the bullying of another member of the gang. At various points in the game, Luther is seen speaking to an unknown person on a payphone, however, portions of his conversation imply that someone had put Luther up to killing the cop to retrieve the gun and badge, as well as the assassination of Cyrus. In the game, Rogues are encountered in Blackout alongside the Moonrunners, Panzers and Baseball Furies. They are encountered a second time in Come Out to Play, this level re-creates the climatic Hearse chase and final fight between Luther and Swan. The fight, however, is longer in the game, starting with a one-on-one fist fight between the two, then, after being severely beaten, Luther hides behind a fence on the beach and shoots at Swan and Snow. The battle eventually ends when, as in the film, Mercy gives Swan a knife to throw at Luther. During the game's closing credits, the player takes control of the Gramercy Riffs and is able to waste the Rogues.

The Rogues are mostly of Italian and irish descent.

Savage Huns[edit | edit source]

The Savage Huns (Chinese: 野蠻的匈奴), or simply Huns, are a Chinese American gang loosely affiliated with the Triads in control of Chinatown. They wear traditional Chinese worker attire (apart from the gang lieutenants, who wear stylish martial arts outfits) and are responsible for enforcing the Triads' bookmaking, protection and gambling rackets in Chinatown. They are led by Ghost. They commonly use knives during fights.

In the film, they are shown waiting for a train in the subway, during the intro. In the video game, they appear in Flashback Level D (Scout's Honor) where two Warriors members travel to Chinatown to steal their gambling and protection books. Their fights with the Satan's Mothers are often mentioned by the DJ on the radio, but it is implied that they were once allies. They appear briefly in Level 3 (Blackout), trashing a paint store and then vanishing.

External links[edit | edit source]

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