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Initially, the streltsy were recruited from among the free tradespeople and from the rural population. Subsequently, military service in this unit became lifelong and hereditary. Thus, while earlier in the sixteenth century they had been an elite force, their effectiveness was reduced by poor training and lack of choice in recruiting.
— The Streltsky's Wikipedia page

The Streltsy were Russia's premier guardsmen from the 16th Century to the 18th Century. Ivan the Terrible first established the force in the 1540s, recruiting peasants and supplying them with the arquebus. The Streltsy was divided into several divisions, each with its own task. The Streltsy of Moscow were given the task to defend the Kremlin and perform military guard duty. Because of their commoner backgrounds, the Streltsy partook in the government and fought for an end to serfdom. Totaling 20,000-25,000 members, the Streltsy soon became the primary marksmen for the Russian army. Peter the Great soon brought an end to the Streltsy. He tried to limit their power which resulted in their rebellious attitudes, launching the Streltsy Uprising. The revolt was a failure resulting in the execution of capture Streltsy. The group was replaced with the Russian Imperial Guard.

Battle vs. Landsknecht (by BattleGames1)[]

Landsknecht: White White White White White

Streltsy: Darkred Darkred Darkred Darkred Darkred

In an open field near an abandoned village, 5 Streltsy (with the prikazi/chief on horseback) continue firing their pischals in the direction of the village, scaring off and/or killing the villagers inside. From a distance, 5 Landsknecht mercenaries (with their Hauptmann/captain on horseback) are walking down a dirt road near a forest when they hear the gunfire and screaming. The Hauptmann, concerned, orders his men to ready their arquebuses while he readies his own. Unfortunately, the prikazi has noticed the Landsknecht taking aim and yells for his men to duck as the Landsknechts open fire. One of the Streltsy men however is too slow and is hit by one of the bullets going through his stomach Darkred. While the German arquebusiers hastily reload their weapons, the prikazi has his men ready their bardiches and pischals to return fire. The Hauptmann notices this and orders his men to scramble but one of them is killed with a hit on the neck White while another is knocked down with a hit to the chest. Noticing his fallen comrade, the Hauptmann helps his fallen comrade up onto the horse as the 4 mercenaries scramble in different directions all charging towards the village. The Streltsy continue to hold their ground, albeit panic-stricken as they hastily reload their pischals. As one foot soldier charges with his pike, a Streltsy man fires and hits the Landsknecht in the face White. The prikazi then orders his men to retreat into the village with their polearms and swords drawn. The three remaining mercenaries stop at the entrance to the village, firing their arquebuses but missing their shots. The Hauptmann and his soldier dismount from their steed and all three men walk inside, preparing their swords as they do. The three men continue to stride further in with no sign of the Streltsy yet. Reaching the village centre, one of the men notice a hut with an open door in it. The Hauptmann has his man go inside to inspect it, not knowing that a Streltsy with his spontoon is lying in wait. As the Landsknecht enters the premises, the Streltsy holds his ground waiting for the Landsknecht to go past him. When he sees the Landsknecht's back facing him, the Streltsy sneaks up and hits the mercenary on the back, not being able to pierce the armor but at least throwing the mercenary to the ground. The Streltsy prepares to strike the spontoon into the Landsknecht's face but the mercenary rolls out just in time for the spontoon to strike the floor... and get stuck. As the Streltsy tries to pry his polearm out of the floor, the Landsknecht gets on his feet and slashes the Russian's nape with the katzbalger, killing him Darkred. As the Landsknecht exits the house on command of the Hauptmann, he warns the two mercenaries of the two Streltsy coming up behind them. Turning around, they see the pair charging up from behind them - one with a sabre and the other with a spontoon. The prikazi, meanwhile, is hiding behind a window with his pischal at the ready. The 4 warriors then duel with the Landsknecht from before preparing his arquebus. At first the Streltsy gain the upper hand but are unable to get past the armour the Landsknecht are wearing. Eventually, the pike-wielding mercenary begins to tire out and tries to stumble back but the Streltsy stabs the Landsknecht in the thigh before drawing his sabre out and slashing the Landsknecht in the face White. Unfortunately for him, he is then shot in the chest by the arquebusier from before Darkred who is in turn shot in the neck by the prikazi from the window White. The Hauptmann, meanwhile, continues duelling with the sabre-wielding Streltsy; the prikazi tries to sneak away via the front door just as the two swordsmen find themselves stuck with their swords locked. The Hauptmann, out of the corner of his eye, notices the prikazi leaving and this distraction gives the Streltsy enough time to headbutt the Hauptmann making him stumble to the ground. The Streltsy then tries to charge at the mercenary captain but as he raises his sabre, the Hauptmann stabs the katzbalger in the Streltsy's stomach Darkred. The Hauptmann stands up in pain and kicks his dead opponent aside as he sheathes his katbalger and brings out his zweihander before rushing in the general direction he saw the prikazi rush off in. Down a little avenue, the prizaki turns back and fires another shot from his pischal but misses. Knowing that he has run out of ammunition, the prizaki continues running down with the Hauptmann in pursuit but unfortunately, he reaches a dead end. Realising his blunder, the prizaki unsheathes his bardiche as the Landsknecht captain comes into view holding his zweihander. After staring each other down, the prizaki charges at the Hauptmann and swings his bardiche only to be countered by a swing from the zweihander and no matter how hard the Streltsy chieftan swings his bardiche, he is either countered by the zweihander or blocked by the armour. Eventually, he manages to slash the Hauptmann across the cheek but that only serves to anger him more. Eventually after a few more seconds of fighting, the prizaki begins to tire out - giving the Hauptmann a chance to swing his zweihander and break the staff of the bardiche in half before taking another swing and cutting into the prikazi's head Darkred. Looking at his fallen opponent, the Landsknecht notices a bag of gold around his waistbelt. After taking and inspecting the contents of the bag, the Landsknecht holds onto it tightly as he sheathes his zweihander and walks out into the sunlight.

Winner: Landsknecht

Expert's Opinion[]

The experts have noted that while the Streltsy had a big advantage with the pischal dominating over the arquebus, when there was close combat, the Streltsy could stand no chance beating the Landsknecht since the latter had better armour to protect them with and superior close range weaponry (especially the zweihander). If you think this battle is unfair in any way, shape or form, by all means you can go ahead and do a rematch.

To see the original battle, weapons and votes, click here.

Battle vs. Tercio (by MilenHD)[]

Streltsy: Red Red Red Red Red

Tercio: Yellow Yellow Yellow Yellow Yellow

A squad of Tercios were walking in a plain field with few trees around, until the officer didn't spot a destroyed village, which is still burning. Not away a boyar girl that managed to escape, she saw them and with tears in her eyes, she pointed at the village, as five Streltsy soldiers emerged. As the girl began to run, the two arquebusiers aimed their guns and fired at the Streltsy and one of them was shot at the abdomen and killed.Red

The Streltsy aimed their pischals on their bardiches, and fired, killing two of the Tercios.Yellow Yellow Than both sides charged at each other with their polearms, and the Tercios knelt down with their partisans only managing to impale one unlucky Streltsy in the chest.Red

While the other three remaining Streltsy swung their bardiches and destroyed all of the Tercio's partisans. As the Tercios began to back away and as one struggled to pull his rapier from the pressure and for this reason, he got his head nearly severed by a single blow of the bardiche.Yellow As his companion tried to kill a Tercio with overhead swing, this cost him his life, because the Tercio pierced his throat with his toledo rapier and as the Streltsy began choking blood from his mouth.Red

The other two Streltsy were coming toward the other two Tercio's, and one of the Russians pulled his sablia and began swinging forward, the first hit bounced from the cuirass and this cost the Russian his life, because the Tercio pierced his heart with the parrying dagger.Red The last remaining was the captain of the Streltsy and he began swinging his bardiche, and he managed to cut the the leg of the Tercio and as the Spaniard felt to his knees, the Russian pulled his sablia and decapitated him.Yellow

As the captains of both the Tercio and Streltsy were holding their swords and both clashed, with the Tercio parrying the Russian's blows. After few unsuccessful swings from the sablia, the Streltsy pulled his kindjal and stabbed the throat of the Spaniard, which sprayed blood onto his face.Yellow As the Tercio's body collapsed, the Russian raised his kindjal and yelled in victory.

Expert's Opinion[]

While the Tercio had better melee weapons and armor, but the Streltsy were more ferocious and had superior polearm and firearm. Possibly the biggest advantage for the Streltsy is that they are suited for small squad battles, unlike the Tercios who are good at big army battles.

To see the original battle, weapons, and votes, click here.

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Battles here were deemed to be unfair or otherwise not in accordance with wiki standards, and have been removed from the statuses of the warriors and displayed below.

Battle vs. Serbian Revolutionary (by Omnicube1)[]


TealTealTealTealTealTealSerbian Revolutionaries

A gunshot rings out through the snow-blanketed forest, followed by the deep chuckle of two men.

"That's another one, Arkady." a burly Russian bent down and picked up the body of a dead grey squirrel. "Poor creature was your thirds."

"I'm telling you put your arquebus on your bardiche, you'll get a more precise shot." Arkady snatched his game from Vadim. He wrapped his right arm around the soldier's broad shoulders. The two made their way back to camp where there comrades were waiting for more meat for their stew.

"Ahhh, what is it today? Oh, wait let me guess...squirrels?" shouted a Russian soldier as the two friends approached the campsite. Vadim dropped the bodies of four squirrels onto the ground.

"You know everything, Boris," replied Arkady in a sarcastic tone. Two thick-bearded men emerged from a large tent. "Fedot and Oleg, you two made it just in time to skin these bastards."

"Damn cold weather, it's the middle of spring. Spring!" yelled Oleg.

"We have lived our lives in Omsk, Oleg, how have you not become accustomed to this?" questioned his twin brother.

"I just don't like it, Fedot." The streltsy squad began to prepare their lunch.

Pavle rubbed his hands together, which were wrapped in white canvas. He huddled into the front corner of his men's dainty ship. He gazed at his comrades. They were lucky to escape the persecution of the Ottomans. Their plan was to escape and move north and return to their homeland with a large force of volunteers. Unfortunately, they lost their map and were now in unknown territory. His men were weak from the cold. Bratislav had a frostbitten left hand, Petar was suffering from pneumonia, Stefan and Jovan took shrapnel from a cannon blast, and there was Dimitar, young, young Dimitar. He was shaken by the death of his brother, the bearer of the map, Nikola. Pavle sighed to himself. All they needed was a fire. He gazed upon the horizon and saw a small pillar of smoke rising from the snow-covered coast.

Arkady and three of his fellow soldiers howled with laughter.

"He then ran around the house and stepped on the snow shovel. The shaft flew up and hit him right on the forehead. BONK!" Fedot laughed as he recounted the story of his brother. Oleg did not find this funny. He kept to himself. "Aw, brother you know I love you."

Oleg turned away, trying to finish his squirrel stew. As he turned, he saw upon the coast a ship docking with five men disembarking. He grabbed his portable telescope and extended it. He looked through and saw that they were unloading supplies and weapons.

"You fools, we have raiders coming upon the shoreline!" Oleg shouted. The men hurried to their feet and ignored their meals. Vadim quickly put out the fire by throwing snow upon it. They rushed down the coastal hill, weapons ready.

"Why did we land here?" questioned Bratislav. "There's nothing here, but snow."

"I saw a smoke, smoke means there's people here." Pavle was unloading the remaining food stuffs.

"I don't see anywhere." Pavle looked up. Bratislav was right, the smoke was gone.

"We'll just go towards the direction from where I last saw it." Suddenly, gunfire rang out. Pavle and Bratislav dived into their boat for cover, scrambling to grab whatever weapons they could lay their hands on.

"Sir, we have men shooting at us from the hills above!" shouted Stefan. "What do we do?"


The streltsy fired their arquebuses at the enemy soldiers below. However, they were missing their shots.

"We can't kill them from here, Arkady, we must move down." Vadim ducked behind a rock after a lead ball nearly cut into his flesh.

"Me and you will stay here and provide fire upon the enemy below. We will have the others move down and engage the enemy." was Arkady's order. They carried it out, and Oleg, Fedot, and Boris made it to ground level successfully. They found cover behind various rocks. Boris placed his arquebus on his bardiche and fired. The ball pierced through the skull of an enemy combatant. Teal However, this caused him to move out from cover, exposing him. Soon two balls made it into the Russian's torso. Darkred

"Boris is dead!" shouted Fedot. Arkady and Vadim looked at each other. They shared the same thought of sadness, Boris was a quiet, but hard-working soldier.

Pavle stared at the body of Stefan. If he hadn't joined the revolution, he would've been a fantastic scholar was Pavle's thought. He grabbed Stefan's Maratha musket and rushed out of the boat. He joined up with Bratislav.

"We need to get them out of their position, do you have any grenades left?" asked Pavle. The young soldier handed him a ceramic grenade. Pavle lit the wick on fire, ran out and hurled the explosive. There was a large blast, sending snow, sand, mud, and clay shards everywhere. That surely must have killed someone. He signaled his men to move up.

Fedot struggled to get up and leaned against a large rock. He looked down and saw his brother, riddled in shrapnel and covered in dirt and snow. Darkred He began to weep for his brother, but heard voices that began to grow louder. They're coming, he thought to himself. He got to his feet and was determined to make his final stand. He drew his Tula pistol and took his brother's out from his belt. He swiveled around the rock and fired the pistols. He managed to severely wound one. He then charged with his bardiche, shouting out a war cry. He finished off the wounded soldier by slashing off an arm and stabbed another soldier in the chest. TealTeal He turned, but was greeted by a slender pistol.

Both Arkady and Vadim winced after the enemy soldier ended Fedot's crazed attack with a lead ball to the head. Darkred

"They'll try to head up here, we must set up an ambush at the campsite." ordered Arkady. They rushed back to camp with low morale.

Bratislav was reloading his Kubur pistol, the same weapon used to kill his brother.

"Come Bratislav, we must hurry up. We can finish these fools." said Pavle. The soldier nodded and they dashed after the remaining enemy combatants. After a 10-minute sprint up-hill they made their way towards the enemy camp. Pavle noticed the fresh footprints in the snow. He followed one set and told his surviving comrade to follow the other. They both lead to separate tents. At the same time, they peeked in both found no soldiers.

"YAAHH!" The two soldiers turned and saw two enemy combatants charging at them. One speared Pavle in the stomach, causing him to collapse to the ground in agony. Bratislav drew his pistol, but was quickly whipped out of his hand by a soldier armed with a sabre. The Serb quickly drew his kilij and sliced at the Russian. He parried the blow, and counterattacked. Bratislav moved aside and slashed overhead several times. The enemy soldier was quick enough to block the blows. His comrade stepped in with the pike, but was quickly destroyed as the Serb leaned back and broke off the head of the pike. He kicked the soldier down and attacked his nemesis with the sabre. He sliced hard, spun around, and hacked again at his nemesis' feet. He collapsed to the ground. Bratislav lobbed off his nemesis' head. Darkred He turned to fight the other Russian, but lost his sword after his enemy swiped it out of his hands with a bardiche. Bratislav ran back and grabbed an Ottoman halberd and stabbed. He missed and the Russian was able to knock the halberd out of his hands. He stabbed the Serb and kicked him down. He went in for the killing blow, but felt a sharp pain on his back. He saw blood gather on his torso and back. He collapsed to his knees and fell forward. Darkred Bratislav looked at his leader, who had his Kubur pistol in hand. He crawled towards Pavle and began to tend to his wounds.

"The revolution, sir? Will it live on?"

"Yes, son. But through you, but through you." Pavle began to slip into death. [1]

Winner: Serbian Revolutionaries

Expert's Opinoin[]


To see the original battle, weapons and votes, click here.


Battle was declared invalid due to the Streltsy being given a weapon that they did not use.