East African Tribal 200 AD to 1500 AD

These migrating tribes are now considered to have originated in the Nile Valley and though dates for their Southward migrations are set from around 600BC, they were probably dislodged by Auxumite pressure in the Third century AD. As with all other migrants they encountered the swampy Sudd at the head of the Nile valley and had to follow the Savannah across Africa before moving back towards the East under pressure form the more numerous Kingdoms such as Ghana and Bornu over the course of centuries They did arrive on the Plains of East Africa in the Late Middle Ages and quickly sorted out those Arabs who tried to make them a source of slaves or exploit them.

The young men in Masai bands still serve as warriors for 15 years in bachelor Manyatta's being inducted at fixed intervals as teenagers. The men formed warrior groups called Moran which might be around 1,000 men but some 'laibons' (Sages/Medicine men) could unite several of the dozen tribes under their control. Yet it was the ferocity of the people that enabled their long dominance rather than any regimental system. The famous large spear is a relatively recent acquisition, while the military system has a very long tradition among East African tribes. Usually they were more the African version of the Vikings, raiding neighbours in various strengths and much feared by their opponents.

The advent of firearms did not curb their martial ardour and indeed it took the advent of the magazine rifle and belt machine gun to break their dominance. One Arab slaver caravan consisting of 2000[sic] musket armed men was wiped out by the Masai who left their bodies in rows with their muskets shouldered as a sign of contempt. The Masai would send forward small groups of warriors to harass the enemy until they fired a volley and a mass charge would follow. They would also form up in the 'Eagles Wing' formation. which consisted of a central block of men who would launch a frontal attack in support of flanking units. For all their ferocity they were not averse to falling back, if at a disadvantage, until they could attack again and often kept a reserve of warriors to support such a move only if matters became desperate.

These Eastern Tribes have proved VERY conservative in their ways even resisting the blandishments of modern civilisation down to the present day.

Era: Triumph of Cavalry   East African tribal CR: H: 4 L: 4   BP: 2 Init: 5
Number Type   Description Key FV PROT Weapon Cost
4 WB Embikas Key 5[1]3 1 Various 6
4 LHI Eagle Wings Key 4[1]2 1 Javelins 7
3 SI Scouts/Provokers   3[1]2 2 Javelins 2
2 WB Embikas Key 5[1]3 1 Various 6
10 WB Moran Key 4[1]2 1 Various 4
2 LHI Wings Key 4[1]2 1 Javelins 7
2 SI Scouts   3[1]2 2 Javelins 2
3 LI Elders/Youngsters Key 2[1]1 1 Bows 4


Core: 1GR

Bonus: (Max: 3 ) 2GR; 2W; 1SH; 1RG


Core: 92 Bonus: 80

Embikas MUST form deep.

All WB move 9 inches with BP3.

Moran always form on the flanks of the Embikas. They cannot be interspaced with the WB in the Central zone and do not deploy in front of, or directly behind, the Embikas. Their function was to distract an enemy or draw him out, not to get in the way of the Embikas or make up part of their acting group. That honour had to be earned by individual warriors.

This army may fight in the Triumph of Cavalry and the Age of Chivalry eras.

Ordo Link: Central and East African Tribal

Last Edited: 24 November 2005

List Author: Luxor