Bronze Shield Pikemen
Strengths & Weaknesses
- Very good defensive unit
- Low damage but average armour penetration
- Average attack
- Good morale
- Very vulnerable when not in phalanx
An elite phalanx of pikemen, the Bronze Shields were modelled on their hoplite forebears and, subsequently, the Alexandrian pike reforms. Their most distinctive feature, and the one which gave them their name, was their bronze shield, emblazoned with the name of their king. Although fighting in the style of Alexandrian phalangites, they probably wore a uniform of Persian origin. This would include a reinforced cuirass of scales or stiffened linen, bronze helm, and probably a patterned tunic and trousers. Their main weapon was the sarissa, a pike of up to 22 feet in length. As this required both hands, a neck strap in addition to a loop over their left arm would support their heavy bronze shields. In close order, phalanxes, such as the Bronze Shields, presented an impenetrable wall to the front, pushing back or pinning an enemy so that it could then be flanked and broken by cavalry.