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Lunar Army

The following information concerns the Lunar Army in 1617. A lot of this information is debatable in the YGWV (Your Game Will Vary) sense. Also remember that the Lunar Empire embraces contradictions!

Size of the Army

The Lunar Empire's population is about 7.3 million. Its establishment strength (if every regiment had a full number of around 1000 infantry or 500 cavalry) may be as high as 183 000. Its actual strength (of troops actually servinng) is from a maximum of 137 000 to as low as 73 000 depending on the source of information you use. This probably doesn't include militia units and household troops.

Order of Battle

The main formations of the Lunar Army are shown in the sidebar. The following PDF shows the Lunar Order of Battle in 1617. Entries which are blank are where I'm not sure about something. I have only put in the regiments with names - particularly with the Garrison Army, there are many more.

Lunar Order of Battle


Field Armies are usually named for their location . The Empire currently has four Field Armies; Dragon Pass, Oraya, Prax and Pent.  The army commander is appointed by the Ordenviru and assigned forces to acheive a set of military and political goals. The commander is then, in general, then left to achieve them.  The size of such armies varies, as does their composition.  For example, the Army of Dragon Pass is fighting in difficult terrain and requires flexible troops often drawn from the Provincial Army and infantry formations of the Heartland Corps.

Troop Types

These are the troop types described in the Order of Battle:

  • Alkothi - unarmoured medium infantry armed with a mace and carrying a large shield. They rely on a swift advance to contact and personal ferocity in combat.

  • Auxiliary: a recent attempt to integrate Heortling Fyrd into the Provincial Army has led to the introduction of this troop type. They have a helmet and a medium-sized, round, wood and leather shield and carry 2 light spears and a small axe. They are loose order infantry for operating in hilly and wooded country.

  • Avilry: troops mounted on giant birds. Some can fly and are thus Flying Avilry.

  • Carrobalista: mobile bolt shooters mounted on carts.

  • Bows - medium infantry with light armour and a composite bow fighting in close order.

  • Cataphracts - heavy cavalry wearing complete heavy armour on fully armoured horses armed with a long two-handed spear and sometimes a composite bow.

  • Dragoons - mounted heavy infantry with a large heavy shield, heavy armour and long spear.

  • Fyrd - mixed tribal militia, largely medium infantry with large shields and two light spears but stiffened with small numbers of thanes wearing heavy armour and with swords and also some huscarls.

  • Heavy Maul - heavy infantry with heavy armour and a two-handed maul.

  • Heavy Swords - heavy infantry with a large shield, heavy armour and sword. Some have a heavy throwing spear.

  • Hoplites - heavy infantry with a large heavy shield, heavy armour and long spear.

  • Horse Archers - skirmishing light cavalry with composite bow.

  • Huscarls - heavy infantry with heavy armour and a long-handled two-handed axe.

  • Hypaspists - fast moving light-medium infantry with large heavy shield, light armour and long spear.

  • Javelin Cavalry - heavy cavalry wearing heavy armour and carrying a large shield and javelins.

  • Light Chariots - light two horse chariots carrying an armoured archer and a driver.

  • Light Horse - unarmoured light cavalry with a bundle of javelins.

  • Magicians - any predominantly magical unit. Some are mounted.

  • Peltasts - skirmishing light infantry with a small light crescent-shaped pelte shield and javelins. Some also carry a heavy curved bladed weapon called a rhomphaia.

  • Pike Phalanx - heavy infantry with medium armour, small shields and long two-handed pikes.

  • Prodromoi - light cavalry with a long two handed spear (sarissa).

  • Psiloi Archers - skirmishing light infantry with composite bow.

  • Psiloi Slingers - skirmishing light infantry with sling.

  • Sables - sable mounted troops usually in light armour and with a long spear.

  • Scythed Chariots - heavy four horse chariots carrying a heavily armoured driver in an armoured cab. These have scythe blades attached to the axels, yoke-pole and chariot body and are designed to be driven into enemy formations to break them up.

  • Shieldwall - close order medium infantry with large shields and short spears.

  • Spear and Bow Cavalry - heavy cavalry wearing heavy armour and sometimes on partially protected horses armed with a long spear and a composite bow.

  • Thureophoroi - fast moving light-medium infantry with a large light oval thureos shield, long spear and javelins.

  • Xystophoroi - heavy cavalry wearing heavy armour and armed with a long two-handed spear called a xyston.

  • Warband - tribal infantry with mixed weapons and little armour relying on an aggressive charge to contact.

  • Wardog Pack: a mixture of light infantry, often similar to peltasts, with trained war dogs. Common amongst Jajalorings.

  • Wargang - uz armed with mixed blunt weapons.

  • Wyvern Riders – troops mounted on fierce flying reptiles.



The main source is:

Discourse on the Armed Forces of Our Glorious Lunar Empire, an unpublished essay by Martin Laurie written in about 2000, contains many details about the Lunar Army

Martin sent this to me and it is used with his permission.

Other sources:

Jeff Richard's list at Glorantha.com.

Dragon Pass by Greg Stafford and Robert Corbett- the wargame published in 1983 by Avalon Hill contains an order of battle for the Lunar Army in Dragon Pass at some point in the Hero Wars.

Tarsh in Flames, Unspoken Word 1, published 2001, edited by Mark Galeotti and Simon Bray contains an article called 'The Army of Tarsh' by Martin Laurie which provides an order of battle for the Tarsh army in the 1610s and 1620s. (ISNN 1473-7930).

Sons of Kargzant, Unspoken Word, published in 2004, edited by Mark Galeotti, contains information on Char Un regiments.

Masters of Luck and Death, from Issaries (ISS 1303) published 2004 contains a description of the Silver Shields regiment.

.Imperial Lunar Handbook Volume 1, The Lunar Empire, from Issaries (ISS 1302) published in 2003, by Mark Galeotti, Martin Laurie and Wesley Quadros contains an article on 'The Imperial Army' which talks about the sizes of regiments.



Imperial Lunar Handbook 2, Under the Red Moon, from Issaries (ISS 1304) published in 2006, by Greg Stafford, Mark Galeotti, Martin Laurie, Wesley Quadros and Roderick Robertson contains an article on the Lunar Army.

Barbarian Adventures and Orlanth is Dead, from Issaries (ISS 1401 and ISS 1402) contain some information about the Lunar Army in Sartar.

Details of particular regiments are also found in various issues of 'Tales of the Reaching Moon'.