‘Gainst us their shields an hundred thousand bore, / That laced helms and shining hauberks wore; / And, bolt upright, their bright brown spearheads shone....

Chanson of Roland

Spearmen: Vital statistics

Unit type

Heavy infantry

Built/trained at


Damage and weapon type




Production cost

  • Pop cost: 1
  • Resource cost: 50Ore; 60Food
  • Ramp cost: 2Ore; 2Food


  • Melee
  • Low LOS

Unit move and creation speed

  • Unit movement speed: Slow
  • Creation speed: Slow

Unit HP

Rather high

Technological requirements/


  • Mercs Militiae

Upgrades to:

Factions available

All except:

Spearmen are the backbone of your armies. Amongst all Dark Age infantry, they are the hardest-hitting, and are also endowed with lots of armour and HP. Make no mistake, however, as they easily overtaken by missile units — in particular by cavalry archers and skirmishers, and in some cases can be outflanked by faster-moving light infantry. Nevertheless, their proficiency with a spear and their endurance means that they are adept at taking out cavalry and towers (albeit bastions, built by factions such as China and Russia will slaughter infantry to a man). Thus, while spearmen can be an awesome force to reckon with when coupled with forced marching, they do require someone to take out archers (and in some cases, siege weapons).

Spearmen, however, are extremely costly — they have the biggest appetites for food, and they demand the highest quality of arms and armour, amongst all other infantry types, and some may prefer to use light infantry, which performs well against all other units save heavy infantry and cavalry. Still, their military prowess on the Dark Age battlefield is unrivalled, save by lancers, which having greater speed and LOS can lay down some serious damage in a fight, but in many cases, they are not the only units to be found on the battlefield to fill this role. Scandinavia's poor soils mean that there are many resourceful men who are proficient with spears. Similarly, a highly strataed social structure such as those in Alba, Japan and the Welsh states in Europe have yielded access to a warrior elite of exceptional skill, and the cheiftains who dominate the Welsh highlands are fearsome foes who have mastered the art of guerilla warfare.


Amongst all other infantry types, Spearmen have the highest cost in resources, so you might wish to supplement them with light infantry.

Unit summaryEdit

  • Heavily armed but slow-moving unit that bests all other units in close-up encounters.
  • Amongst all other infantry types, Spearmen have the highest cost in resources, so you might wish to supplement them with light infantry.
  • Spearmen are most effective but only as either purely defensive or offensive units, due to their speed. This also makes them vulnerable against more versatile units, such as missile infantry and cavalry, which can easily take them apart or massed light infantry.
  • Rising Sun — The Japanese spearmen are instead salaried with more food as opposed to metal. While this may seem like a handicap, it in fact makes them very cheap in later stages of the game, helped by their being able to be spawned from the Barracks for free once completed.
  • Mental Tartan — Far to the north of Britannia rule the Scots. Their Cliarthaire, while somewhat slow on foot, are highly proficient with the spear, making them the bane of cavalry.