Socii Equites Extraordinarii

Recruitment Cost 840
Upkeep Cost 140
Melee Attack 34
Weapon Damage 25
Bonus vs. Large 10
Charge Bonus 57
Melee Defence 11
Armour 60
Health 100
Base Morale 55
Strengths & Weaknesses
  • Very good charge
  • Low damage but average armour penetration
  • Weak in prolonged melee
  • Good morale

The equites extraordinarii were drawn from amongst the Socii, allied non-citizens who provided most of the early Republic's cavalry. Up to a third of allied cavalry could be selected to join the equites extraordinarii. As there were typically two or three times the number of Socii than Roman cavalry, a consular army of two Legions could have some 1,800 Socii cavalry, of which at least 600 would be considered part of the elite equites extraordinarii. By tradition, Roman cavalry was habitually deployed on the right flank, while the equites extraordinarii were sent to the left. This imbalance was famously exploited by Hannibal at the Battle of Cannae in 216BC, when the Carthaginian cavalry under Hasdrubal routed the weaker Roman cavalry while the crack Numidian light cavalry waylaid their Socii allies, such was the difference in troop quality. Following the Marian Reforms, and the Allied Wars of 90-88BC, the Socii were reduced to nothing; as full citizens they were absorbed by the regular Roman Legions.

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Faction Availability