For D'Shar troop overviews, see the D'Shar Troop Tree.
The Shavanir Desert in the south of Pendor is the D'Shar Principalities, consisting of dozens of separate tribes united under their current leader, Kadan Bahadur Khan.
The D'Shar were originally mercenaries imported to Pendor by the Baccus Empire to defend against bandits and raiders. Their natural tendencies quickly asserted themselves, spawning a large number of outlaw groups who plague the Principalities.
They are a fierce people, stiff with pride, who once were entirely nomadic, herding their flocks from pasture to pasture in search of grazing. Many of the former mercenaries settled in what began as trading centers and became the towns of Torbah, Nal Tar and Ishkoman. Singal, of course, while technically part of the D'Shar Principalities, is a law unto itself, a festering boil on the backside of the D'Shar kingdom.
Though settled now, the D'Shar remain at heart a free-roving people and there is much contention within the D'Shar Principalities over whether or not the D'Shar have abandoned their traditional way of life, to its detriment and at a cost to their fighting abilities.
Blood feuds are the chief sport amongst all the D'Shar, as they tend to take offense easily at nearly everything. They generally ignore Kadan Bahadur Khan's orders to cease and desist, as a blood feud is not finished until everyone on the opposing side is dead. Blood feuds can go on for ten generations, with each generation eagerly embracing the feuds of its ancestors.
D'Shar take multiple wives and prefer raiding other factions' caravans to trading. They have average infantry and average bowmen. Fortunately, they field some of the best non noble cavalry in Pendor.
Commentary on the D'SharEdit
"There's nothing like a wedding to bring out the best of a good blood feud." -Haji Kalandar Khan, D'Shar Lord
"We will grind those barbarian savages to a pulp beneath the heel of Sarleon." -Lord Andre of Sarleon
"They are nothing but fornicating camel-rapers. The Fierdsvain will show them what real rape is!" -Fierdsvain Huscarl
"The only thing worth a denar that comes from the D'Shar Principalities is spice." -Guild Master of Ravenstern
"A battlefield littered with D'Shar carcasses is the most delightful sight! It almost equals a pack of dead Noldor for sheer aesthetic pleasure." -Empire Legionnaire
"Once, a scholar told me those D'Shar wimps were cousins to the Jatu. I killed him for the insult." -Jatu Mercenary
The D'Shar's nomadic tribal history still has much influence in the warriors they can field. Their archers still use the nomadic short bow and are decent in both attack and defense once leveled to Ghazi, However their mid tier armor and accuracy makes them pale in comparison to other archers in the realm. Their infantry units are nothing special, below average compared to almost every other faction and are considered worthless by some, however every D'Shar Dervish comes with a D'Shar blade, and a D'Shar blade can be deadly in the hands of a peasant, let alone a trained warrior. D'Shar spearmen can also be useful when positioned well, namely away from opposition infantry and infront of calvary. The D'Shar horsemen are the mainstay of any D'Shar centered army. Their horses are fast,and their armor is very strong for non noble cavalry and a D'Shar sabre is deadly from horseback against even armored knights.
To field a D'Shar army well you should focus on harassing your opponents structured formations with missile fire from your horsemen. You can forego archers in a field battle as your raiders will double as both cavalry and archers. The missile fire will either make the opponent break formation and charge, in which case you should retreat to your side of the field and engage them there where you are close to your reinforcements, or they will advance in a controlled manner, in which case you should move your infantry to engage with their cavalry while your horsemen shoot and cut the opposition archers and inf to shreds.
Unit Tactical OverviewEdit
Infantry: One would expect the D'Shar's horsemen to be the most powerful troops in their ranks, due to the nature of their homeland. And you would be right. The D'Shars top tier Ghazi infantry are decent infantry and can hold their own in a fight, but stats wise/armor/weapon speed they are probably the weakest of all factions village based infantry and will usually lose in a one on one fight against other factions top tier infantry.
Another issue is that the non Ghazi infantry, conscripts, desert fighter and warriors are very weak, and the high level of the warriors means it takes a long time to train units to the useful Ghazi tier.
Warriors and Ghazi spearmen can be useful if used correctly however. If you are facing off against a cavalry heavy faction, the polearms can be very effective if placed in front of charging cavalry. But they are exposed to enemy missiles and very vulnerable to strong infantry.
Horsemen:The D'Shar's most powerful troops are their versatile mounted units. D'Shar horsemen at tier 3 are an extremely powerful addition to any army as long as they are nested inside the ranks of other more powerful cavalry. On their own they are vulnerable to missiles and polearms and even other cavalry, but make no mistake, a slash from a sabre of a D'Shar horseman moving at high speed can fell even the most powerful warriors. And they can spawn with bows or darts making them very versatile.
D'Shar horsemen at level 21 are easy for an experienced commander with even one high level companion to train to the next tier Raiders and Reaver's. Raiders are an excellent substitute to the D'Shar hunters and marksmen if you want a more mobile army, and once upgraded to Ghazi they are armed with the powerful Hornbow. Reaver's have very slightly better stats and armor than the Raiders, and come with throwables instead of bows. Whether or not the trade off is worth the extra armor and weapon proficiency is up to the commander in question. However a 50/50 mix of both can be very effective, if Reaver's can flank an opponent from behind, while Raider's charge in from the front after a few volley's of arrows, an opponent may just find himself trapped inside a circle of D'Shar horses and Sabres.
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Swift as a cobra, lethal as a scorpion, these sabre-wielding shock troops are powerful warriors in combat. They use throwing darts as a skirmishing weapon, which may not be as effective as the broadhead throwing spears used by the Empire but are much more difficult to dodge. Facing a faceless-masked D'Shar Bladesmaster in combat is absolutely terrifying for even the most experienced mercenary. Even the Empire's disciplined infantry formations often get torn apart by swift strikes from the infantry. Their top-tier infantry consist of the Blademasters, Scorpion Assassins and Warriors.
Before they are granted the use of a saber, freshly-trained D'Shar Tribesmen are given polearms to wield. This is an excellent addition to their infantry ranks, as their saber-wielding superiors are helpless against cavalry. Poleaxes, glaives and awlpikes generally fill their shieldwall, alongside the Desert Shields used by their top-tier infantry troops. Their weapon variety allows them to halt cavalry, thus rendering them helpless against their Bladesmen and Warriors.
The Scorpion Assassins are even deadlier than the Blademasters, and they can easily hold their ground even against the elite Shadow Legion Centurions, a feat for non-nobles. They are extremely difficult to train, but a small squad of these mysterious agents can prove beneficial in battle. They can tear apart enemies that outnumber them, usually decimating enemies with a single swing of their sabers, although extremely hardy soldiers like the Sarleon Knights and Fierdsvain Huscarls may be able to survive a single slash. Throwing knives complete their arsenal, and even armor-plated soldiers can sustain no more than two of their deadly daggers. However, a lack of shields leaves them vulnerable to archers and cavalry, so support them with Windriders and some heavy infantry.
D'Shar infantry act as powerful light shock infantry, and being armed with shields, grant them some measure of protection against archers. They strike rapidly with their sabers, leaving multiple dead foes in their wake. D'Shar infantry are extremely useful against an unwary enemy group. Even their Scorpion Assassins can easily take down two Fierdsvain Huscarls with ease. As powerful as they are, D'Shar infantry are extremely susceptible to a cavalry charge or consistent hails of missle fire. A successful charge by Sarleon's heavy knights can lead to more than half of the D'Shar's infantry being trampled to the ground. Even the D'Shar spearsmen pale in comparison to the Empire Pikemen or the Sarleon Halberdiers. In order to use the D'Shar foot soldiers effectively, use them to flank the enemy while using heavier infantry and pikemen to absorb the impact of a cavalry charge.