Early Orthodox Russian

This list is designed to represent the early western Orthodox Christian Russian city states and principalities during the late C11th, C12th & early C13th.

It does not cover the gradual use of horse archer tactics and equipment during and following the Mongol subjugation.

Most campaigning was done in winter – with frozen lakes, rivers and marshes being used as routes for raiding. Terrain was generally low and undulating, with woods, streams and marshes – almost totally impassable in the summer.

This army can be used to represent the army of the city-state of Novgorodat led by Alexander Nevskii at Lake Peipus in AD1242 – the famous "Battle on the Ice", where it defeated a combined Teutonic & Crusader army (led by the Bishop of Tallinn).

Era: Age of Chivalry   Early Orthodox Russian 1054 AD to 1246 AD CR: H: 4 L: 2   BP: 2 Init: 5
Number Type   Description Key FV PROT Weapon Cost
1 HC(d) Druzhina X 5(0)0 +1 Lance 11
6 FT Militia X 5(1)1 +1 Various 6
3 Levy Levy X 3(0)0 +0 Various 4
2 SI Militia   2(1)1 +2 Bows 2
2 HC (d) Druzhina X 5(0)0 +1 Lance 11
2 FT Infantry bows X 4(1)1 +1 Spear/bow 6
8 FT Militia X 5(1)1 +1 Various 6
8 Levy Levy X 3(0)0 +0 Various 4
3 SI Militia   2(1)1 +2 Bows 2
1 SI Militia   2(0)0 +2 X-bows 2
2 LC Allies (1) X 2(0)0 +1 Javelins/bows 8
1 HC Allies (1) X 4(0)0 +1 Lance/bow 12


Core: 1 WD

Bonus: (Max: 2 ) 1 RG, 2 WD, 1 GR


Core: 95 Bonus: 138


1. Only the LC or HC option may be used – not both. Not enough is known about the armour and tactics of the mounted allied horse archers which sometime appear as part of these city state armies, or even their ethnic origin for certain. There is one view that they were Kipchacks but I think this highly unlikely as it was the offering of sanctuary to fleeing Kipchack nobles that caused the Mongols to invade and destroy early medieval Hungary! So I doubt they'd have not done similarly to the much weaker and more fragmented Russian city states.

The LC were more likely to be Finno-Ugrian tribes or even Lithuanians. HC were likely to be Mongols or other armoured Turkish steppe tribes.

Druzhina are the personal bodyguard and entourage of Russian znechts or princes such as Alexander or his brother. They now mainly fought mounted but were as comfortable fighting dismounted and were often used to stiffen or support the city Militia. Horse armour was not used by western Russian aristocratic cavalry at this period.

Not enough is known about the percentage of foot bows in Russian armies of this period or their tactical use to be certain about how to represent them. However, convention has it that they formed up in specific units or blocks and I have opted to maintain this tradition. I speculate that some would also have acted as a skirmish screen in the dense Baltic terrain. The Militia were not as good as their Rus or Varangian forebears but had not yet degenerated to the level of their later Medieval counterparts.

The Levy are subjugated local tribes – not very enthusiastic or much use in battle, other than to provide a perception of large numbers. It was tempting to have them as non-key troops in the list as their loss or flight seemed to have had no morale effect on the other Russian troops at all. However, the danger with this is that they could be utilised by opportunist players as a throw away screen in front of the other key troops – which is not how they were generally deployed. By making them highly vulnerable but key, they will need to be deployed behind the better Russian troops, as they were historically. They are ‘true' Armati Levy with unit BP:2.

This list spans the gap between the A2 Rus list and the A2 Age of Chivalry Russian list.

List Author: Aetius