Steppe Lancers

Recruitment Cost 340
Upkeep Cost 80
Melee Attack 34
Weapon Damage 25
Bonus vs. Large 10
Charge Bonus 51
Melee Defence 16
Armour 10
Health 70
Base Morale 35
Strengths & Weaknesses
  • Average charge
  • Low damage but average armour penetration
  • Weak in prolonged melee
  • Poor morale

Developed from the cavalry skills of their ancestors, the steppe lancers of the Scythian, or Saka, tribes and the Sarmatians were a type of heavy cavalry comparable to their Hellenic counterparts. They wore scale armour to protect themselves and their mounts, and used a long lance known as a kontos. This enabled them to deliver devastating charges in a fashion comparable to the Alexandrian Companion cavalry. The scale armour was made from horn, or later metal, and allowed the wearers to run down their western counterparts. They were still vulnerable to dense pike or spear-armed formations. Archery provided a solution: sustained volleys from skirmishing foot and horse archers were used to thin and spread out the enemy. At the Battle of Carrhae in 53BC, the tightly-packed Roman infantry were forced to spread out by Parthian archers, which enabled their cataphracts to charge and break an overconfident Roman force four times their number.

Faction Availability