PERSIAN CIVILISATION PROFILE

by Sting, Paal_101 & Acumen. Email: synchronicity84@hotmail.com; acumen@0ad.wildfiregames.com.
Edited by Joshua Gilbert. Email: shogun144@gmail.com. Michael D. Hafer. Email: michaeldhafer@gmail.com

OVERVIEW

  • Period: We're going to represent the Persians at the peak of their civilisation, around Mid Achaemenid with some Early influences. Specifically 550 BC - ca 420 BC. Therefore Late Achaemenid traits like acquiring Greek equipment to overcome their weakness against Greek infantry does not apply.
  • Cosmopolitan: The Achaemenid army was largely comprised of national contingents from the various subject nations under the rule of the Great Kings. These contingents were organized along military/administrative lines and used a decimal system of organization by multiples of ten. Well known national 'regiments' were: Medo-Persian, non Medo-Persian Iranian, Lydian, Carian, Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, Indian, Ethiopian, and Libyan.

Representation: Units from various different cultures. Wide variety of garb, styles and colours.

  • Persian Military: (note that this only applies to the Persians themselves; the other units would use their own national weapons)
    • Spears: Main infantry weapon. Could get around to 6-7ft in length.
    • Swords: Supposedly widespread among the Medo-Persian infantry. The Persian sword, a short sword called the akinakes, was not widely used, primarily by virtue of the Persian emphasis on archery over close combat.
    • Bows: Main ranged weapon. Archers armed with powerful recurved bow, which gained their power by bending the bow opposite to the natural curve of the weapon, creating added tension and force. Achaemenid archery was generally ineffective against the Hellenes due to the armour and martial ethic of the hoplites.
    • Javelins: Also widely used, but not as much as the recurved bow. Most commonly used by the mounted nobility.
    • Slings: Were employed, but in relatively small numbers compared with archers.
    • Representation: In terms of tactics, reliance on range (bows, javelins) and cavalry rushes to overcome limited chance of survival in melee.
  • Cavalry Notes: Alongside missile troops, the cavalry made up the bulk of the Persian army. Under Achaemenid feudalism, the so-called Hatru system, cavalry was recruited from among the wealthiest estate holders and of excellent quality all-around. Representation: All cavalry types. Cavalry are well-armed and armoured, though expensive. They are one of the few units rich enough to afford to full armor and helmets.
  • Infantry Notes: The Persians could and did levy a large number of infantry during wartime due to the sheer size of the Achaemenid Empire and the way in which it was set-up. In general the Persian infantry was well trained and fought with great tenacity. However while this was true the infantry were poor hand-to-hand, close combat fighters, not being equipped to handle that style of warfare (as the Hellenes understood it). Also, with the exception of the elite regiments, the Persian infantry was not a standing professional force. Representation: Quantity over quality. Build time and cost of infantry reduced to quickly amass a large force, but individuals are only lightly armed and armored, compared to the Hellenes. High defense to represent their stubbornness but low attack to represent their inability to inflict serious damage on Western-style heavy infantry.
  • General Representation Combined Arms Warfare is the watchword of the Persians. No branch should be able to win the battle alone but used together and correctly the Persians should be able to win. Melee infantry to pin the enemy down, range infantry to wear him down, and cavalry to finish the enemy by flanking. Persian units are individually weak, so the challenge of playing the Persians is making sure you avoid fighting on terms other then your own. Melee alone against hoplites should be suicide, for example, as should range or cavalry.

UNIT DESCRIPTIONS

Rank Notes: The following convention is used to display the rank for Persian Citizen Soldiers:

  • Basic: Unit is bare-headed (hair is visible).
  • Advanced: The unit wears a generic headband
  • Elite: The unit wears the helmet/cap/whatever indicated in the Helmet: section of its description below.

INFANTRY

  • Generic Name: Shieldbearer
  • Specific Name: Sparabara
    • Class: Spearman.
    • Ranged Armament:
      Basic: 7-foot wooden thrusting spear with a broad iron head and round bronze metal counterweight. Cosmetic akinakes.
      Advanced: Silver counterweight. Cosmetic akinakes.
      Elite: Gold counterweight. Cosmetic akinakes.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb:
        Basic: Light red ornate Median garb. The Persians and Medians favored highly contrasting designs and colors which they inherited from the Elamites. His robes wouldn't be very long, reaching maybe to his knees, with trousers underneath. Unarmored.
        Advanced: Dark red garb. Quilted linen corselet.
        Elite: Bordeaux/purple garb, with "funky psychedelic kiddy-pyjama-like patterns, funny polygons and borders and stuff". Full linothorax with scale embellishment.
      • Helmet:
        Basic: Bareheaded.
        Advanced: Persian/Median? white tiara. (Note: for any of these tiaras, always use the loose version with the mouth uncovered, to keep the distinctive Medo-Persian beard and moustache visible.)
        Elite: Persian/Median? yellow tiara.
      • Shield:
        Basic: Large rectangular reed/wicker shield (spara).
        Advanced: Large rectangular reed/wicker shield (spara), covered with leather. (Could provide for unique defensive sparabara formation for groups of this unit, although we don't have room for it; see Spara in article link in footnotes.)
        Elite: Similar to the Advanced spara, but elaborately painted.
      • Figure(s): Median hair and beard style (also this subject nation's cap).
        Basic:-
        Advanced:-
        Elite:-
    • History: Median and Persian infantry armed with short spears and 2 meter-tall shields comprised the main infantry regiment of the Persians during this period, especially in the reign of Xerxes. First under the Medes and later the Achaemenid Persians, these soldiers were the bread and butter infantry for hand-to-hand engagement. Within the Satabam, the basic tactical unit of the Achamenid army, the shieldbearers formed the first two ranks, protecting the arhcers and also serving as a way to keep the enemy pinned down until the cavalry could act. While well known for tenacity the shieldbearers were not equipped to last long in an extended melee with heavy infantry, like hoplites.
    • Garrison: 1.
    • Function: Brawl unit of the Persians. Primarily used to occupy opponents while missile units rain projectiles from behind their lines and the cavalry hits the enemy rear. Virtually cannon fodder. But since they can be called up quickly they can be produced faster than most civilisations, and so are effective in numbers.
    • Special: high defense, low attack. Cheap and fast train time.
  • Generic Name: Sardian Auxiliary
  • Specific Name: Spardiya Takabara
    • Class: Javelinist.
    • Ranged Armament: Palta, a cornel wood javelin, 1.5 to 1.8 metres in length and tipped with iron or bronze heads. They could be thrown immediately before contact or used as a thrusting weapon (but we'll just use them for ranged attack).
    • Appearance:
      • Garb:
        Basic: Mint green tunic that covers shoulders to knees. High quality leather boots (similar to Peltast's footwear). Tunic has a brooch at each shoulder.
        Advanced: Tunic is emerald green.
        Elite: Tunic is dark green.
      • Helmet:
        Basic: Bareheaded.
        Advanced: Phrygian style cap
        Elite: Wicker helmet with round metal plates along the "head-band" of the helmet.
      • Shield:
        Basic: None.
        Advanced: Round standard Persian wicker shield, without leather covering.
        Elite: Small crescent-shaped taka shield (not quite a buckler).
      • Figure(s):
        Basic: Phrygian hair and beard style (also this subject nation's cap).
        Advanced: -
        Ultimate: -
    • History: Sparda was the name given to the Achaemenid satrapy in western Asia Minor that replaced the Kingdom of Lydia after the conquests of Cyrus. The peoples of Phrygia, Mysia, Paphlagonia, and Pisidia supplied the empire with much of its skirmish force during this period. Takabara was a blanket term used to describe the Achaemenid auxiliries and derived originally from the Iranian crescent shield.
    • Garrison: 1.
    • Function: Best take advantage of long range to support heavy infantry as they clear a path for shock cavalry. Individually weak, so best used in large groups (eg 10-15).
    • Special: Low health and melee armour (due to no armour and lousy shield; not nearly as good as a Peltast up close). Great speed and increased range (light equipment and good boots).
  • Generic Name: Sogdian Archer
  • Specific Name: Suguda Thanuvaniya
    • Class: Archer.
    • Ranged Armament: Persian recurved bow. This man, like all Iranians, has been training with the bow for a long time. As such he is a crack archer. Included in his armament is a Scythian sword, for close quarters. Cosmetic.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb:
        Basic: Blue tunic in the Eastern Iranian style (fastens down the middle). No armour. Quiver on left hip. High leather riding boots.
        Advanced: Tunic is red and green. Quilted linen corselet.
        Elite: Tunic is dark brown. Light scale armor.
      • Helmet:
        Basic: Bareheaded.
        Advanced: Sogdian style cap.
        Elite: Persian helmet.
      • Shield:
        Basic: None.
        Advanced: None.
        Elite: Small buckler.
      • Figure(s):
        Basic: Sogdian hair and beard style (also this subject nation's cap).
        Advanced: -
        Elite: -
    • History: Sogdiana was an Achaemenid province located to the north of modern Afghanistan. The Sogdians were an Eastern Iranian people, and joined the Achaemenids early. In the Achaemenid army the Sogdian infantry served in the Iranian all-arms regiments of the Great Kings. We have chosen to represent them as archers.
    • Garrison: 1.
    • Function: A semi-skilled warrior. Used to take down advancing enemy infantry and to loosen up enemy formations for a Persian charge. He'll probably be used in a similar manner to the Sparda Takabara, although he'd probably be used for more strategic goals, opening and in some cases finishing attacks, instead of just supporting attacks.
    • Special: Very light and quick, but will suffer at close range. Longer build time then the Mada Sparabara but at a lesser cost (bow and quiver of arrows relatively cheap standard equipment but takes a while to learn to use).

CAVALRY

  • Generic Name: Cappadocian Cavalry
  • Specific Name: Katpaduka Asabara
    • Class: Cavalry Spearman.
    • Hacker Armament:
      Basic: Cavalry spear.
      Advanced: -
      Elite: -
    • Appearance:
      • Garb:
        Basic: Western Iranian tunic and trousers. Red and patterned. No armor.
        Advanced: Tunic is dark blue and patterned. Armor is bronze scale shoulder plate, cuirass, and leg pieces.
        Elite: Tunic is green and patterned. Full scale suit, bordering on heavy cavalry like protection. Left arm sports the cheires, laminated band armor worn over one arm.
      • Helmet:
        Basic: Cappadocian cap.
        Advanced: Small helmet with short plume.
        Elite: Tall conical helmet with great plume.
      • Shield:
        Basic: None.
        Advanced: armored Round shield.
        Elite: no shield as the cheires takes its function.
      • Figure(s):
        Basic: Cappadocian beard and hairstyle (also this subject nation's cap).
        Advanced: -
        Elite: -
      • Mount:
        Basic: Mounted on the superb Median horse breed. Strong, large, but of medium height. Predominately chestnut, brown, and black. Chipped mane, tail tied with ribbon, forelock grown out to create a crest.
        Advanced: -
        Elite: Add a bronze skirt over the front half of the horse.
    • History: Katpaduka or Cappadocia was tough mountain and horse country in Asia Minor that came into the Achaemenid sphere after the defeat of Lydia at the hands of Cyrus. The Persians settled great horse estates under the Hatru system in Cappadocia and the new country gentry provided the Persians with some of the finest medium cavalry of Antiquity. This tradition continued to persist long after the Persians as well.
    • Garrison: 2.
    • Function: Highly effective medium cavalry, but generally ineffective against anything heavy.
    • Special:
  • Generic Name: Hyrcanian Cavalry
  • Specific Name: Varkaniya Asabara
    • Class: Cavalry Swordsman.
    • Ranged Armament:
      Basic: Palta Javelin (1.5-1.8 metres in length and tipped with iron or bronze heads). Two decorative javelins. Sagaris is main weapon.
      Advanced: - Elite: -
    • Appearance:
      • Garb:
        Basic: Jacket: highly decorated brown and red tunic (with circles, squares, rosettes and stripe patterns). Trousers.
        Advanced: Add scale shirt (black and red for his clothing).
        Elite: Scale shirt with psychedelic shapes and dark colours on his trousers and tunic sleeves.
      • Helmet:
        Basic: Hyrcanian cap.
        Advanced: Scythian cap.
        Elite: Bronze helmet with black plume.
      • Shield:
        Basic: None.
        Advanced: None.
        Elite: Leather shield.
      • Figure(s):
        Basic: Hyrcanian hair and beard style (also this subject nation's cap).
        Advanced: -
        Elite: -
      • Mount:
        Basic: Same as the Katpaduka Asabara.
        Advanced: -
        Ultimate: -
    • History: The Hyrcanians were the light cavalry of the Achaemenid Great Kings. These men were of superb quality, and are mentioned in every major Persian campaign. Their homeland of Hyrcania bordering the Caspian Sea was both a lush fertile rain forest and foreboding mountain country.
    • Garrison: 2.
    • Function: ?
    • Special: Poorly armoured, but fast.
  • Generic Name: Median Cavalry
  • Specific Name: Mada Asabara
    • Class: Cavalry Javelinist.
    • Ranged Armament: Javelin.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb:
        Basic: Western Iranian tunic and trousers. Unremarkable colors, mostly brown with some patterns. No armor.
        Advanced: Patterned trousers and sleeves. Armor is quilted linen.
        Elite: Tunic is highly patterned and ornate. Armor is lamellar thorax.
      • Helmet:
        Basic: None.
        Advanced: Phrygian cap.
        Elite: Tall conical helmet with great plume.
      • Shield:
        Basic: shield on back (ornamental).
        Advanced: shield on back (ornamental).
        Elite: curved Scythian-style armor on back (ornamental).
      • Figure(s):
        Basic: -
        Advanced: -
        Elite: -
      • Mount:
        Basic: Mounted on the superb Median horse breed. Strong, large, but of medium height. Predominately chestnut, brown, and black. Chipped mane, tail tied with ribbon, forelock grown out to create a crest.
        Advanced: -
        Elite: Add a bronze skirt over the front half of the horse.
    • History: Median cavalry were the empire's best skirmishing cavalry, second only to various Saka (or Scythian) mercenaries. These men and horses were raised in the harsh Iranian steppes and are superb fighters.
    • Garrison: 2.
    • Function: Skirmish cavalry. Low armour (except for Elite level, which gets a +1 armour bonus over normal).
    • Special:
  • Generic Name: Babylonian Chariot
  • Specific Name: Babiruviya Ratha
    • Class: Cavalry Archer.
    • Ranged Armament:
      • Archer: Composite Bow.
      • Driver: None.
    • Appearance:
    • Garb:
      Basic:
      Archer: Noble. Richly embroidered robe (shorter, Persian style). ("Chariots crash. I wouldn't want to be him running away from a wrecked chariot with Hypapsists chasing after me in an ankle-length robe.") Light red. No trousers. Armour: Small pectoral disc. Driver: Something simple, probably identical to the Mada Sparabara (use same colours). Armour: None.
      Advanced: Archer: Robes become medium red. Armour: Scale shirt, throat to mid-thigh. Driver: Same colour adjustment as Mada Sparabara. Armour: Small pectoral disc.
      Elite: Archer: Robes become dark red. Armour: Iron scale hauberk. Driver: Same colour adjustment as Mada Sparabara. Armour: Light scale shirt.
    • Helmet:
      Basic: Archer: Persian tiara/cap. Driver: White tiara.
      Advanced: Archer: Conical helmet. (if you have "Warfare in the Classical World", look at p.59 for a cool pic of an elite Persian cavalryman. I would suggest using his helmet.) Driver: Yellow tiara.
      Elite: Archer: Plumed helmet. Driver: Simple conical helmet.
    • Shield:
      Basic: Archer: None (hard to use a shield while shooting a bow). Driver: None (hard to use a shield while driving a chariot).
      Advanced: Archer: - Driver: -
      Elite: Archer: - Driver: -
    • Figure(s):
      Basic:
      Archer: The chariot crew constantly worked together, training and fighting, and would need to know each other very well to operate such a "complex" machine. Facing danger together would make them very close. Driver: He's not going to be very wealthy compared to the Archer, but he will be slightly better looking than the regular infantry grunt. Decorated beard to indicate the driver is Babylonian. The charioteer was much more than a mere 'driver' - he was a confidant and a trusted adviser of his master.
      Advanced: Archer: - Driver: -
      Elite:
      Archer: - Driver: -
    • Mount:
      Basic:
      Wooden chariot (very sturdy; it was nearly impossible to destroy the chariot itself, so had to kill the horses or occupants -- Peltasts were very effective for this). Led by two unarmoured horses (if necessary, we can reduce the number to one). Knives (scythes) mounted on the axels, underneath the car. These were hung vertically in order to shred anyone unlucky enough to be trampled by the horses. Would make it unsuitable for rough terrain, but would make it significantly more lethal when it could build up speed.
      Advanced: Add heavy armour on the sides.
      Elite: Add even heavier armour on the sides.
  • History: Prior to the rise of Persia the chariot was the defining element of warfare in the East. While generally already phased out as a field weapon, it was important for prestige. The Achaemenids continued this trend to its logical conclusion. However Cyrus the Great did introduce a modified chariot with scythes, which was used on a number of occasions. These were rare, as the chariot and its crew were expensive to maintain. The most famous deployment of Persian chariots was against Alexander the Great. Because the Persians depended on the Babylonians for chariot "know-how", we are calling this unit Babylonian Chariot.
  • Garrison: 3.
  • Function: -
  • Special: Bonus against infantry (or has ancillary passive damage when moving, if possible). Fast. Expensive.

SUPPORT UNITS

  • Generic Name: Persian Woman
  • Specific Name:
    • Class: Female Citizen.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb: Several layers of clothing, long doublet robe with tassels.
      • Helmet: Head scarf.
      • Shield: None.
      • Figure(s): Young (about 25). Dark long hair. Dark eyes. Pale skin. Face clearly visible.
    • History: Persian women had a great deal of personal and public freedom across the span of Achaemenid, Parthian, and Sassanid history.
    • Garrison: 1.
    • Function: -
    • Special: -
  • Generic Name: Magian
  • Specific Name: Magus
    • Class: Priest.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb: White gown.
      • Helmet: The padam, a relative of the Persian tiara.
      • Shield: None.
      • Figure(s): Short hair. No beard or moustache. Otherwise Median facial features.
    • History: Under both the Medes and later the Persians the tribe of the Magi or the Magians were the masters of religious and oral tradition, comparable to the Levites of the Bible (for the Magi are believed to be a tribe of the Medes, as the Levites were of the Israelites). They were connected to Zoroastrianism, but likely tended to other Iranian cults as well. Aside from religious duties the Magians also functioned as the Great King's bureaucrats and kept his administration running.
    • Garrison: 1.
    • Function: -
    • Special: -
  • Generic Name: Aramean Merchant
  • Specific Name:
    • Class: Trader.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb: Aramaean merchant robes.
      • Helmet: None.
      • Shield: None.
      • Figure(s): -
      • Mount: Mounted on a Dromidary (one-hump) camel (inherits "Stench" Aura), laden down with saddle bags.
    • History: The Arameans settled in the Fertile Crescent in the 10th century BC and became very successful merchants by land. Aramaic gradually replaced Akkadian as the spoken language of the Middle East. Eventually most Achaemenid written administration was written in this language.
    • Garrison: 2.
    • Function: Camels are slower than horses.
    • Special: -
  • Generic Name: Fishing Boat
  • Specific Name: Masiyakara
    • Class: Fishing Ship.
    • Appearance:
      • Shell: -
    • History: Not much is known about Persian fishing. We do known fishing was important in Egypt as well as in the Iranian provinces bordering the Persian Gulf and in India.
    • Garrison: Cannot.
    • Garrison Capacity: 1; support, infantry
    • Function: Gathering: Only method of collecting meat from fish.
    • Special: -
  • Generic Name: Ionian Ship
  • Specific Name: Yaunash Nav
    • Class: Merchant Ship.
    • Appearance:
      • Shell: (Standard).
    • History: The Ionian Greeks embarked on many trade initiatives by sea, due to their settlements on both the Anatolian mainland and in the Aegean. As a result, Ionian merchants were a relatively common sight in the western Persian territories, even after the Ionian Revolt.
    • Garrison: Cannot.
    • Function: -
    • Special: -
  • Generic Name: Cypriad Warship
  • Specific Name: Hamaraniyanava
    • Class: Bireme.
    • Appearance:
      • Shell: (Standard).
    • History: Cypriad galleys comprised a substantial part of Xerxes' navy which invaded Greece in 480 BC. While generally considered inferior to the ships of the Phoenicians, these were still very good.
    • Garrison: Cannot.
    • Function: -
    • Special: -
  • Generic Name: Phoenician Warship
  • Specific Name: Vazarka Hamaraniyanava
    • Class: Trireme.
    • Appearance:
      • Shell: -
    • History: The Phoenician war ships made up the bigger and better part of the Persian navy and were considered better than the Greek triremes. Of the Phoenician cities, Tyre supplied the largest number of ships, while Sidon provided the finest ones.
    • Garrison: Cannot.
    • Function: Take advantage of the Phoenician Trireme's superior speed to perform quick raiding attacks. Stay on the move to compensate for its poor armour.
    • Special: Persian triremes were faster and lighter than the Greek ones. This would indicate that the Persians preferred triremes with light shells. Thus, Persian triremes have exceptional speed (though not as fast as Carthaginian ships), but have lower armour. They could afford to build triremes of special, lighter timber, and therefore the Persian trireme is more expensive than normal.

SIEGE

  • Generic Name: Assyrian Ram
  • Specific Name: Athuriya Hamaranakuba
    • Class: Ram.
    • Appearance:
      • Shell: (Standard).
    • History: Even after the fall of the Neo-Assyrian Empire, the Assyrians themselves remained active in events. Under the Achaemenids they served in their own national regiments together with the Chaldeans. Naturally, they continued to employ the siege skills that made Assyria so famous in Persian service.
    • Garrison: 3.
    • Function: -
    • Special: -

CHAMPION UNITS

  • Generic Name: Persian Immortal.
  • Specific Name: Anusyia.
    • Class:Super Infantry Unit.
    • Hacker Armament: Spear of the 'Immortal' (wooden spear with an iron head and a silver pomegranate counterweight. Length about 7 feet. ); ornamental Akinakes sword.
    • Ranged Armament: Persian composite bow.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb: Richly embroidered knee-length tunic. Full iron corselet. Trousers.
      • Helmet: Soft woollen or felt cap (white tiara).
      • Shield: Gerron or Dipylon(violin shield); figure eight shield with two concave "holes" in it. A wooden shield unlike the spara, rimmed with iron and embossed with a bronze emblem in the center.
      • Figure(s): A strong, well-built and confident-looking fellow (should really look like a combat veteran).
    • History: The Immortals or Anausa was the name given mistakenly by the Hellene historian Herodotos to the Persian professional elite infantry known as the Anusyia or Companions. The regiment was the core of the Achaemenid army, a standing force that remained in permanent attendance to the Great King all year. These men were not recruited from the nobility, but from the combat veterans of the levy army. The regiment's arms and armor were provided by the Great King himself. The Immortals may have been able to keep unit strength at 10,000 through a combination of excellent pay, elite status, and the fact they were never dismissed from service.
    • Function: Trained at the 'Apadana' Special Building. Primarily an infantry slaughterer, although very helpful against enemy cavalry too (thanks to their spears). Weak against Greek and Macedonian phalanx (owing to their inferior armour and weaponry) and decent archers (owing to their not so good armour). The Anusyia should be tougher then the rest of the Persian infantry due to their veteran status and their abilty to function as Persia's flexible rapid response force. Should be tenacious like the Spearmen.
    • Special: Amazing offense and defense due to sheer experience. Much more accurate with his bow than conventional Persian archers (dangerous and skilled, shooting Greeks in the throat or eye-slits of their helmets more often than conventional arrow showers).
  • Generic Name: Bactrian Lancer
  • Specific Name: Bakhtrish Asabara
    • Class: Cavalry Lancer.
    • Hacker Armament: Kontos Lance (all iron; 3.6 metres long; two-handed weapon; held the kontos with his right hand towards the bottom of the spear shaft, while the left was in front about 2 feet forward. Then the spearpoint was held on the left side of the horse's neck. So if you looked from the top, the kontos would be at a slight angle from the horse's line of symmetry; absorbed the shock of a hit, since there were no saddles or stirrups to cushion the collision for the horseman). Cosmetic akinakes -- since Lancers were drawn from the wealthy upper class -- and they would used these at close range after charging with kontos (hacking, 2.5-3m long). Cosmetic gorytos, both because of the Iranian emphasis on archery and because it was a sign of military pride.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb: Purple tunic with gold embroidery. Iron scale cuirass with neck protection. See Shogun's Design Document thread for illustrations and possible linothorax material/ leather alternative. Cheires on left arm. Scale armor on trousers, an Eastern Iranian stylistic trademark.
      • Helmet: Sarmatian style conical helmet with nasal bar. and a large horse-tail crest and aventail.
      • Shield: None.
      • Mount: Ferghana horse, unarmored. The Bactrians may not have barded their horses in our target period, horse armor being more indicative of the Western Iranian style until Late Achaemenid times.
    • History: Bactria was an Eastern Iranian kingdom that became part of the Achaemenid Empire early. They fielded some of the best cavalry of the era. Bactrian cavalry are believed to have been an influence on the Kinsmen (Huvaka), the proto-cataphracts of Late Achaemenid period. While Bactrian cavalry was trained to shoot as well as charge with the lance, we have chosen to represent them as lancers.
    • Garrison: 2.
    • Function: See History.
    • Special: The Lancer should be slower than the Hyrcanian Cavalry. Well armoured.

HEROES

  • Generic Name: Cyrus The Great.
  • Specific Name: Kurush II
    • Class: Hero1.
    • Ranged Armament: Javelin. Cosmetic akinakes on his right side.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb: Red Median garb of Median Cavalry. Normal Median Cavalry armour, but adorned with gold.
      • Helmet: See Shogun's Design Document thread.
      • Shield: None.
      • Figure(s): Head and beard as depicted in above image.
      • Mount: Mounted on white Nisaean light horse. Sagaris hung from horse's tack.
    • History: (559 BC - 530 BC) The son of a Median princess and the ruler of Anshan; justly called the 'Father of the Empire', Cyrus the Great conquered Media, Lydia, Babylonia and Bactria, thereby establishing the Persian Empire. He was also renown as a benevolent conqueror. (OP - Kurush). Technically the second ruler of the Persians by that name, and so appears as Kurush II on his documents and coins. Kurush I was his grandfather.
    • Garrison: 2.
    • Function: Cyrus should be the greatest fighter of the three, since he was always to be found in the midst of a brawl.
    • Special:
      • "Hero" Aura increases attack damage of nearby cavalry units.
  • Generic Name: Darius The Great
  • Specific Name: Darayavahush I
    • Class: Hero2.
    • Hacker Armament: Spear of the Immortal.
    • Appearance:
      • Garb: Garb as depicted in image.
      • Helmet: Royal tiara as depicted in image.
      • Shield: None.
      • Figure(s): -
    • History: (521 BC - 486 BC) The son of Vishtaspa (Hystaspes), the satrap of Parthia and Hyrcania; a great administrator as well as a decent general, Darius introduced the division of the empire into satrapies and conquered NW India, Thrace and Macedonia. He was called the 'Merchant of the Empire'.
    • Garrison: 1.
    • Function: Although a former Commander of the Immortals, apart from the Behistun account of Darius' slaying the usurpers of the throne, there are no accounts of him actually leading his troops in combat (he accompanied the army and planned strategy - yes, but did not lead the charges himself).
    • Special:
      • "Hero" Aura increases movement speed of nearby units.
  • Generic Name: Xerxes I
  • Specific Name: Xsayarsa I
    • Class: Hero3.
    • Hacker Armament: Short Sword (Akinakes).
    • Appearance:
      • Garb: Purple or red garb, similar in style to that of Darius. No armour.
      • Helmet: Headgear as depicted in image.
      • Shield: None.
      • Figure(s): Head as depicted in image.
    • History: (485 BC - 465 BC) The son of Darius the Great and Atossa, a daughter of Cyrus the Great, Xerxes was an able administrator, who also extended Imperial rule into Khorasmia. Apart from his failed invasion of Greece, he was famous for his extensive building programme, especially at Persepolis. Xerxes is also famous for his religious innovations.
    • Garrison: 1.
    • Function: Poor in combat (Achaemenid commanders often personally engaged in combat, so Xerxes is the exception). Best used as an economic administrator back at base.
    • Special:
      • "Hero" Aura accelerates the Gather Rate and Build Rate of nearby econ units, thus allowing them to perform their economic tasks faster.

CIV CENTRE UNITS

  • Melee Infantry: Median Spearman.
  • Ranged Infantry: Sogdian Archer.
  • Cavalry: Median Cavalry.

FORBIDDEN CLASSES

  • Swordsman.
  • Slinger.
  • Quinquereme.
  • Onager.
  • Ballista.

STRUCTURE DESCRIPTIONS

VILLAGE

  • Generic Name: House
  • Specific Name: Vith
    • Class: House.
    • History:
  • Generic Name: Farmstead
  • Specific Name:
    • Class: Farmstead.
    • History: Farming probably originated in the lands of Mesopotamia circa 8000 BC. The arable lands of Sumer and Akkad, well irrigated by the Tigris and Euphrates, accounted for food surpluses, which were in turn stored in granaries present in every town. The Persians, who were originally shepherds and hunters, probably began farming under the influence of the nearby Elamites.
  • Generic Name: Farm
  • Specific Name:
    • Class: Field.
    • History: Unlike today, when southern Iraq is almost entirely covered with deserts, ancient Mesopotamia of 3000 years ago was an extremely fertile, arable land.
  • Generic Name: Corral
  • Specific Name: Gaithastana
    • Class: Corral.
    • History: The Persian kings established Royal Horse Herds, for use during military campaigns, at strategic locations throughout the entire Empire.
  • Generic Name: Mill
  • Specific Name:
    • Class: Mill.
    • History: The Persian kings kept the huge annual tribute received by their subject nations in specific buildings in Persepolis and Susa. In the provinces, the satraps were responsible for the establishment of similar foundations, where local taxes and public funds were kept.
  • Generic Name: Outpost
  • Specific Name: Didebani
    • Class: Scout Tower.
    • History: The narrow entrance into mountainous Cilicia was protected by wooden fortifications which made any foreign intrusions extremely difficult.

TOWN

  • Generic Name: Provincial Governor
  • Specific Name: Xsacapava
    • Class: Civ Center
    • History: The practice of using Xsacapava or Satraps as governors to administer the realm was a practice older then the Achaemenids themselves. The term first appears in Median to describe their vassal kings and it is likely that Cyrus the Great introduced it into his new empire. Darius the Great streamlined and formalized this system under his sweeping administrative reforms.
  • Generic Name: Dock
  • Specific Name:
    • Class: Dock.
    • History: Situated on the Mediterranean coast, all Phoenician cities had excellent docks and harbours, the outstanding example being Tyre, which was situated on an island close to the shore.
  • Generic Name: Temple
  • Specific Name: Ayadana
    • Class: Temple.
    • History: Zoroastrian Temples were most often simple structures, not as ornate as Christian churches and Muslim mosques. Fire Altars were also widely spread as small places of worship.
  • Generic Name: Barracks
  • Specific Name: Padgan
    • Class: Barracks.
    • History: The Persian barracks was often the armory where the weapons of the national regiment of that region was stored.
    • Special: Train Infantry citizen-soldiers.
  • Generic Name: Blacksmith
  • Specific Name: ?
    • Class: Blacksmith.
    • History: .
  • Generic Name: Market
  • Specific Name: Bazaar
    • Class: Market.
    • History: Traders from all distant parts of the sprawling empire met, exchanged and sold goods in the huge bazaars present in almost every big city. Babylon and Susa were the largest and most frequented trade centers.
  • Generic Name: Wall
  • Specific Name: Dida
    • Class: Wall.
    • History: The Persians had some skill in fortification, reflected here in their walls.
  • Generic Name: Tower
  • Specific Name: Dezhak
    • Class: Tower.
    • History: When Cyrus the Great campaigned in the north and chose to establish the river Jaxartes as a boundary, he constructed a mighty fortress to protect his territories from Scythian raids. It was called Cyropolis by the Hellenes and was situated close to the place where Alexander the Great later built his Alexandria Eschatae.
  • Generic Name: Gate
  • Specific Name: Duvitaparnam
    • Class: Gate.
    • History: The Persians had some skill in fortification, reflected here in their gates.

CITY

  • Generic Name: Fortress
  • Specific Name: Dezh
    • Class: Fortress.
    • History: The Susa Chateau was a fortress in the administrative capital of Susa, which was reconstructed by a French archaeologist in 1890 with the use of original building material. We are using this as the model for the Persian Fortress.

SPECIAL STRUCTURES

  • Generic Name: Cavalry Stables
  • Specific Name: ?
    • Class: Stables.
    • History: The Persian Empire's best soldiers were Eastern horsemen.
    • Special: Train Cavalry citizen-soldiers.
  • Generic Name: Persian Palace
  • Specific Name: Apadana
    • Class: SB1
    • History: The term Apadana designates a large hypostyle palace found in Persia. The best known example, and by far the largest, was the great Apadana at Persepolis. Functioning as the empire's central audience hall, the palace is famous for the reliefs of the tribute-bearers and of the army, including the Immortals.
    • Special: "Satrapy Tribute." Trains Persian Immortals and Persian heroes.

NEW STRUCTURE TRAITS

  • Satrapy Tribute: When constructed, this structure bestows a benefit similar to an AoK relic or AoM Plenty Vault; the Player's Metal Pool increases by a very small but continuous trickle. The rate is dependent upon the number of terrain tiles under the player's dominion (territory); The larger the player's territory, the greater the trickle of Metal resource from the Apadana. The player cannot build more than one Apadana at a time, and destroying the Apadana removes its effect.

CIV BONUSES

  • CB1
    • Name: Ability to Corral Camels and Horses.
    • History: Horses were of great importance to the Achaemenids, especially in the eastern provinces. Camels, as beasts of burden, were also prized.
    • Effect: Camels and horses can be captured in the wild and placed in the Corral. Unlike normal corralled animals, which generate food, the Corralled Camel/Horse? functions similarly to a relic. As long as it remains in the Corral, the resource cost of training camel-mounted units (the Trader, specifically) or horse-mounted units (as appropriate) is reduced by a fixed amount.
  • CB2
    • Name: Great King's Levy
    • History: The Persians could and did levy a large number of infantry during wartime due to the sheer size of the Achaemenid Empire and the way in which it was set-up. In general the Persian infantry was well trained and fought with great tenacity. However while this was true the infantry were poor hand-to-hand, close combat fighters. Also, with the exception of the elite regiments, the Persian infantry was not a standing professional force.
    • Effect: Population cap for the Persian player is increased +10% (e.g., if the max pop for the match is 300, the Persian player's max population is 330; likewise, 200/220, and so on).

TEAM BONUS

  • TB1
    • Name: The Royal Road.
    • History: Coinage was invented by the Lydians in 7th Century BC, but it was not very common until the Persian period. Darius the Great standardised coined money and his golden coins (known as "darics") became commonplace not only throughout his empire, but as far to the west as Central Europe.
    • Effect: Higher income (+25%) from land trade routes, for the player's traders and his ally's traders.

TECHNOLOGIES

  • Infantry: Since the Persians relied mostly on archers and cavalry, the Persian infantry should be individually weak. If he chooses to use them effectively, he will have to rely on combined arms. Infantry are therefore cheap and can be trained quickly, but individually weak, with no combat upgrades. The Persians get Bow upgrades, as Archers were strong. Virtually no armour upgrades.
  • Cavalry: Cavalry were strong. They should have the strongest cavalry prior to the introduction of Parthians and Huns. Virtually no armour upgrades. Once again, combined arms for maximum effect.
  • Naval: The Persian navy, while being of great stature, actually consisted entirely of non-Persian elements; ships generally came from Phoenicia, Egypt and Cyprus. Strong navy, so they'd get some naval techs, but without the rare Quinquereme.
  • Siege: Neither here nor there. The Achaemenids were not renown for siege warfare, Assyrian service notwithstanding. Persian siege expertise would have to wait for the Sassanid period. So average level at best.
  • Economy: Most techs.
    • Farming: Very good agriculture.
    • Mining: Average.
    • Lumbering: Average.
    • Hunting: Average.
    • Land Trade: They had a good trade infrastructure, such as the Royal Highway, so would have good land trade techs. Neither the Persians nor the Parthians engaged readily in trade themselves, leaving most of it to the subject peoples.
    • Naval Trade: Mediocre. Certainly nothing to match the Carthaginian's naval trading bonus.
  • Architecture: Extremely strong and impressive. They should get most techs that enhance the strength of structures and defences.
    • Defences: Formidable walls.

SPECIAL TECHNOLOGIES

(Note: depending on how the pool of shared techs above turn out, two possible STs are proposed below, since it's likely there'll be a standard tech similar to Persian Architecture)

  • ST1
    • Name: Naval Craftsmanship
    • History: Early Achaemenid rulers acted towards making Persia the first great Asian empire to rule the seas. The Great King behaved favourably towards the various sea peoples in order to secure their services, but also carried out various marine initiatives. During the reign of Darius the Great, for example, a canal was built in Egypt and a Persian navy was sent exploring the Indus river. According to Herodotus, some 300 ships in the Persian navy were retrofitted to carry horses and their riders.
    • Effect: Phoenician Triremes gain the ability to train cavalry units.
  • ST2
    • Name: Persian Architecture
    • History: The Persians built the wonderful 1200 mile-long Royal Highway from Sardis to Susa; Darius the Great and Xerxes also built the magnificent Persepolis; Cyrus the Great greatly improved Ecbatana and virtually "rebuilt" the old Elamite capital of Susa.
    • Effect: Increases health of all structures, but also increases their build time.
  • ST3
    • Name: Immortals
    • History: <>.
    • Effect: Decreases train time for Anusiya champion infantry by half.

FOOTNOTES

Article on Persian equipment, based on Herodotus.

Article on Persian cavalry

TRANSLATIONS

A list of translations of Old/Middle? Persian provided by Spahbod on Wildfire Games Forums and by rez via private message on Total War Center:

  • Archer = Thanvabara
  • Armoured = Zerehdar
  • Armoured
  • Horse = Aspe Zerehdar
  • Fully Armoured Horse = Aspe Bargostovandar
  • Assyria = Athur
  • Assyrian = Athuriya
  • Babylon = Babiru
  • Babylonian = Babiruviya
  • Bactria = Bakhtri
  • Bactrian = Bakhtrish
  • Bireme = Hamaraniyanava
  • Camelry = Oshtorsvaran
  • Cappadocian = Katpaduka
  • Cataphract, Heavy Cavalry = See Armoured Horse, Fully Armoured Horse
  • Cavalry = Asabara
  • Chariot = Ratha
  • Corral = Gaithastana
  • Fishing Boat = Mahigiri Nav
  • Fully Armoured = Bargostovan
  • Gate = Duvitaparnam
  • Horse = Asp
  • Indian = Hindu
  • Infantry = Pasti
  • Ionian = Yauna, Yaunash
  • Javelinist/Javelineer? = Takabara (Not precisely, but Takabara is an all-purpose Old Persian term for an auxiliary, and an auxiliary from central Anatolia is the Persian javelineer.)
  • Magus = (See Priest)
  • Man = Mart
  • Mede = Mada
  • Media = Mada
  • Median = Mada
  • Outpost = Didebani
  • Palace = Apadana
  • Persian = Parsa
  • Priest = Magus
  • Ram = Hamaranakuba
  • Ship = Nav
  • Skirmisher = (see Javelineer)
  • Spearman = Arstibara (technically, the Arstibara were part of the Achaemenid Royal Guard, even higher then the Immortals. Spearmen as what we think of were the Shieldbearers)
  • Temple = Ayadana
  • "the Great" = e Bozorg
  • Tower = Dezhak
  • Transport Ship = Bartaniyanava
  • Trireme = Vazarka Hamaraniyanava
  • Village = Avahna
  • Villager = Daha
  • Wall = Dida
  • War = Hamarana

Persian/English? district and satrapy names revised by Shogun 144:

  1. Parsa/Fars?: homeland of the Persians; plus the lowland of Anshan (Khuzistan).
  2. Uvja/Elam?: Self-explanatory
  3. Babiru/Babylonia?: Southern Iraq
  4. Athur/Assyria?: eastern Turkey, northern Iraq
  5. Arabaya/Northern? Arabia: Self-explanatory
  6. Mudraya/Egypt?: Added by Cambyases I.
  7. Tyaiy Drayahya/Northern? Turkey: "The lands beside the (Black) Sea"
  8. Sparda/Lydia?: Southeastern Turkey
  9. Yauna/Ionian:the same as above
  10. Mada/Media?: northeastern Iran; Tarsus mountains.
  11. Armina/Armenia?: Self-explanatory
  12. Katpaduka/Cappadocia?: Still Turkey; central
  13. Parthava/Parthia?: eastern Iran
  14. Zranka/Drangiana?: Seistan, eastern Iran
  15. Haraiva/Aria?: Herat, Afghanistan
  16. Uvarazmiya/Kwarazm? or Chorasmia: lower Amu Darya: Kazakhstan + Uzbekhstan
  17. Bakhtrish/Bactria?: north of the Hindu Kush range
  18. Sughd/Sogdiana?: Samarkand region: Afghanistan
  19. Gandara/Gandhara?: Peshawar: upper Indus: Pakistan
  20. Saka or Saca: The steppe country inhabited by the Scythian tribes on the Syr Darya
  21. Thatagush/Sattagydia?: Kabul: Afghanistan
  22. Harauvatish/Kandahar?: Self-explanatory
  23. Maka: The desert coast of Makran and Baluchistan in southern Iran
  24. Putay/Libya?: nominal rule only
  25. Kushiya/Ethiopia?: nominal rule
  26. Hinduiya: The Sind region of lower Indus, Pakistan; nominal rule
  27. Karka/Caria?: Self-explanatory
Last modified 4 years ago Last modified on Jul 2, 2013, 12:59:50 AM