"You want to know something about me? Heh, heh, heh. That's funny. Whenever I tell you something, it'll be a lie to protect myself. If I told you the truth, you won't believe me. But I can tell you one thing, my favorite color is blue."
—Bain introducing himself.
Bain has no background, his face has never been revealed, and it is unknown if Bain is his real name, or an alias, similar to the rest of the crew. Bain is usually set up at some sort of headquarters away from the heist, though close enough that he can monitor it, proven during Panic Room after the explosion when he states "that blew the dust off the shelves even where I'm sitting!" (though this may just be hyperbole on Bain's part). In Diamond Heist and No Mercy, he states that he must circle around a bit before he can pick up the crew, which implies he is in the evacuation helicopter. Bain will also monitor the status of crew members and law enforcement officers; while the exact method he uses is unknown, dialogue proves Bain listens to police dispatches.
If a heist is successful, then Bain will congratulate the crew and tell them to meet him at the safehouse because he has another plan to obtain money. (Aside from one of the endings in No Mercy, which he will leave the crew for dead, the crew will comment to dispose the virus and meet up at the safehouse after successfully escaped.) If a heist fails, then Bain usually blames himself for having "miscalculated" or "underestimated the police," and this is not the crew's fault because he knows that "[they're] the best." He will then tell the crew that he will use his connections to get the crew out of jail in no time. Bain always behaves nicely to the crew, except when a civilian is killed, or if they tag the wrong truck in Election Day. Bain also does care about the wellbeing of the crew, as he wishes them good luck in the beginning of Birth of Sky. He apparently also has connections to the FBI, as he was able to place spy cams in the heavily secured safe house of the Hoxton Revenge heist and is capable of covering up the multiple deaths of the police force for every Safe House Raid.
In-game, Bain is responsible for the following tasks:
Guiding the team through mission objectives.
Warning the team of incoming Assault waves, Snipers, and special units (aside from Shields). In the sequel, the only special unit whose arrival Bain announces are Snipers.
Warning the player when crew members are down or in custody.
Negotiating with the police when crew members are in custody, and instructing the rest of the crew to release the corresponding hostage.
Informing players that they have destroyed half or all of the security cameras in the area. (The Heist only)
Notifying the crew and scolding them when a crewmate kills a civilian.
Informing players in custody of how long until they can be traded.
Telling the crew to go pick up the thermal drill.
According to the dialog, Bain also does the following tasks:
Planning about each heist.
Briefing the team on the main plan, and the alternate plan if it exists.
Coordinating the crew with other accomplices, such as Alex and Bruce.
Using his connections to help crew out of the jail after the heists failed.
In the Diamond Heist, Bain personally assists the team by interrogating the CFO, and later disposes of him if he fails to cooperate by dropping him through the roof of the atrium; he then negotiates with Mr. Garnet for his son Ralph's life in exchange for unlocking the vault.
According to the dialog in Counterfeit and frequent assault-end quotes, Bain used to be a robber in combat just like the crew.
As of Update #168, Bain has gone missing, captured by unknown forces. As revealed in the Reservoir Dogs Heist during the Day 1 successful mission end dialogue, his safehouse is attacked, and unknown assailants breach the room Bain is in. Muffled gunfire before they enter implies either that Bain has guards at his compound or that there are other people present, while Bain himself uses a pistol to fight off some attackers before he's overpowered and taken away or killed. His last words mention to trust Vernon Locke despite his alledged betrayal in Alaskan Deal. With his absence, Locke has replaced Bain's role as seen on Day 2 of Reservoir Dogs and Brooklyn Bank.
He’s the leader. The man who runs Crime.Net. The spider at the center of the web. We know almost nothing about this man. His name was mentioned here and there by lowlifes we would pick up - escape drivers, couriers, that kind of thing. Mainly they would drop his name in the hope of getting a plea deal but not one was able to give us anything solid. No hard evidence. A few intercepted radio snippets, but not a single image.
He works through aliases and go-betweens. Few have a direct connection to him, and those contacts are carefully vetted. We are sure that that level of security reaching him will be even tighter now, after the Morales incident.
He’s certainly smart, and his ability to hack computers and networks is astonishing. He’s connected, and can pull strings we didn’t know existed. He’s been able to convince ground commanders to release one of the Payday gang members even when they are cuffed on the ground - what kind of persuasiveness does that involve?
Difficult to say if he has an agenda beyond getting rich. The nature of his operations range from dime store knock-offs, to elaborate, well-planned heists on high security facilities. One thing is certain, though: he’s going nowhere. He’s expanding his crew, and expanding the scope of his operations beyond Washington.
He seems to be happy to help other people. For example, in PAYDAY 2's First World Bank, if stealthing and the crew gets the wrong computer, he sometimes may give someone money or erase loan debts.
Despite none of the crew supposedly ever meeting him, he will sometimes say things like "I'll see you later at the safehouse" or "nice work, I guess I'll be seeing you at the Tasteful Club tonight" after the crew finishes a heist in PAYDAY 2.
Bain got his name from the fact that he is the "brain" behind the crew's operations. Or as said in the Guide of Bain, he is the person who introduces the heisters to contacts of his own that then will offer them jobs, henceforth simply called "Bain".
Bain is implied to be a middle-aged man, similar to Dallas. If the crew is downed numerous times during an assault wave, he will mention him having grey hair or being "too old for this". His goatee also appears to be partially grey in the Web Series.
Viklund had announced his departure from Starbreeze on his Twitter and Overkill's YouTube channel. This hasn't affected the character of Bain much though, since Viklund still does voice acting for the character and music for the heists, just independently.
Bain is able to monitor the crew's activities anywhere, even in places with broken or lacking cameras. This implies that Bain probably monitors the crew using cameras installed in their masks/sunglasses or/and managed to hack the law enforcers' cameras, as he will report if a law enforcer has jammed a drill.
Bain will still exclaim that an officer has jammed a placed drill, even if the saboteur is a gangster, which would suggest a monitoring device might be placed in the drills that the crew uses.
Bain has his own Steam profile, which he uses to interact with the community.
In one event where Bain interacted with the community, he considers Alex to be the best pilot for the crew and he trusts him, despite the fact that in-game, Bain may scold Alex for the bad C4 drop in Panic Room or he may call himself an idiot for re-hiring Alex in Undercover should the limo fall short to fall through the roof. Based on this fact, Bain may not fully depend on Alex's skills, but he trusts him enough to keep hiring him for whatever heists they have planned.
Bain provided the community with a CRIME.NET website for players to stay updated with information on PAYDAY 2.
Bain will warn players about killing civilians and then yell at them should they continue to do so while warning them that the police will never let the offender go should said offender get taken into custody. Despite the warnings, Bain will still get them out of custody during hostage trades no matter how many civilians were killed by the captured heister, only being hindered by how many civilian casualties each individual heister caused.
Despite Bain's strict stance on killing civilians, he ordered the CFO to be kicked off the helicopter in Diamond Heist, if Bain did not receive the codes for the vault door. Also, Bain "allows" the crew to kill the bank manager in First World Bank (though the cleaner costs still apply).
Also, he is involved in some ethically-questionable activites, as Bain warns the crew to not question him on how he obtained the thumb for the fingerprint scanner in The Big Bank. Nevertheless, he does react with some mortified horror when one of the crew members cuts off the right hand of the scientist leader in Boiling Point.
Bain apparently likes the color blue, as he mentioned in his database introduction.
Perhaps coincidentally, the majority of the Payday gang wears blue rubber gloves which have became a somewhat iconic feature along with the masks and suits.
In Diamond Heist, a man will pull the CFO or Ralph onto the helicopter, it is unknown if he is Bain or just another of his henchmen. It's most likely the latter since his description is stating that no one's ever met Bain, not even the crew.
Bain can be briefly seen in the web series teaser trailer for PAYDAY 2 where he is sitting in a room with several monitors; each monitor displays brief gameplay footage, which is most likely how Bain keeps an eye on everything during a heist. Staying true to the mysterious nature, Bain is only seen from behind in the trailer and is partially covered by smoke.
In episode 1 of the web series, Bain is still seen only from behind, but without the smoke effects. He can be seen having long hair. Bain can also see a screen alerting him that the silent alarm in First World Bank has been triggered, giving the crew only 3 minutes to finish their job before the SWAT team arrives.
Episode 2 takes it a step further by partially revealing Bain's face, showing him to have a goatee similar to Dallas. However, Bain's finer details, such as his eyes, are still hidden from the lack of light.
He is played by Digger T. Mesch in the Web Series.
Bain took an old guide about heisting and added his own opinions and advice on top of it for players who pre-ordered the Criminal Career Edition of PAYDAY 2 on Steam. In the guide, Bain makes mention of the secret that players from the previous game found in Counterfeit and First World Bank and tells them that the "hunt for Baldwin" (who was a part of the solution for the secret) continues while leaving the reader various images and quotes for them to go over; this implies that there may be another secret to find in the sequel.
Bain occasionally would say "Alright, ramblers, let's get rambling!" at the beginning of a police assault. This is a direct reference to Quentin Tarantino's 1992 film Reservoir Dogs or Robert Rodriguez's 1996 From Dusk Till Dawn. Joe and Seth - characters of respective films suggest that ramblers should "get rambling before stuff goes down". Both movies revolve around a group of professional heisters and might have served as a general inspiration for the game. This is reinforced by one of Bain's civilian murder responses, in which he refers to the killer as Mr. Blonde, a character in Reservoir Dogs.
In a voice line from the Big Bank heist upon starting the timelock, Bain asks the crew if he ever told them of his grandfather's "heisting days". This, along with the voice line of him saying "Reminds me of myself back in the day" could mean that Bain's family has a long history of heisting.
He also claims the dock area of Transport: Harbor has been a historic place for heists.
On Day 3 of Framing Frame, Bain will (because of a bug) repeat the same sentences over and over again after the day has gone loud, telling the crew to restore the power to the computer indefinitely even after it has already been done.
Before a patch, a similar bug in any of the bank heists would cause Bain to constantly remind players to pick up the thermal drill, even after it is used to open the vault. This quickly became somewhat memetic, and is still, though rarely, repeated in some locations.
Bain seems to have a much higher quality headset/microphone in PAYDAY 2 compared to PAYDAY: The Heist, as his voice in the second game is much clearer and lighter, with less radio static. Various quotes still have the first game's version of it, including the majority of Bain's quotes from the Payday 2 Beta.
The radio filter is still present in heists like Ukrainian Job, and the escape missions. His quotes for a player entering custody are also reused from PAYDAY: The Heist.
Bain seems to have standards for heisting;
Bain only respects professional heisters and crimes, as apparent when the crew kills civilians, and yells, "You call this professional? This isn't professional!" He also disrespects other organizations such as Murkywater, which are just, "...hired mercenaries and looters.", though this may simply be a re-quote from Gage.
Bain also seems to be patriotic in his own twisted way. When picking up coke in Shadow Raid, sometimes Bain will say he hopes [Murkywater] "wasn't giving this marching powder to our boys," highly implying the boys are the American military. Bain will also say the coke "won't be funding any more terrorism. Just good old American crime," once again showing his pride.
He also enjoys the thrill of going head-to-head against either banks and financial institutions, as he shows extreme enthusiasm during most of the bank heists gone right.
It is probable that Bain served in the military, as sometimes during certain heist(s) he will mention that the situation was "like Baghdad all over again".
If GO Bank goes loud and the players escape trough the sewers, Bain will say: "Time to go Vietcong on them", referencing the VC's tactic of using mazes of complex tunnels to ambush their foes during the war.
It is also probable that Bain was in law enforcement, as evidenced by Dallas' Side Job Cop vs Cop, where it states that any cop can be turned to crime, and references Bain.
In PAYDAY 2, Bain has two different voice "styles". Some of his scripted quotes in Nightclub, Jewelry Store/Ukrainian Job, and Mallcrasher contain much more radio distortion. This situation is likely a result of mid-development style changes.
Unlike in PAYDAY: the Heist, the heisters don't actually "talk" to Bain as much in PAYDAY 2.
However, in the Boiling Point heist, Upon entering the lab after detonating the EMP, the heisters will ask if Bain is still on the other end of their communications.
Hoxton is the only heister who will ever mention Bain in dialogue, during the Hoxton Breakout heist, saying that the only good thing about prison was not having Bain constantly yelling in his ear.
In the tutorial heists, Dallas will distinctively complain to Bain and he will respond to them, displaying Bain is listening.
At the end of Day 1 on the Reservoir Dogs Heist, the heisters will attempt to ask Bain what their next move is, before calling out in confusion when not receiving a response.
Not counting escape scenarios, Bain currently only has one multi-day heist (Reservoir Dogs Heist). Technically, he had one before that, as playing any of the Transport heists in the Armored Transport DLC and picking up the blueprints for the Train heist would result in it being played after the Transport heist as a second day. Since Update #57, the Train heist was made a standalone contract.
Bain has shown to be genuinely concerned of the crew's well-being, as he hopes they're doing fine at the beginning of Birth of Sky and claims to hate seeing how they have to be in the cramped storage container in Transport: Harbor.
Even then, he was nonchalant when the crew reported Bruce's death in Heat Street and saw it only as a minor inconvenience.
In the Diamond Heist remake, should the CFO be kicked off the helicopter to his death, Bain may state that "at least the CFO had the privilege of seeing his face". Whether or not if Bain was sarcastic or truthful regarding this statement remains unknown.