Phyletichoi Illyrioi are not particularly reliable soldiers, but they can give a good account of themselves in battle if deployed properly. They wear no armor, and have only a light shield for protection allowing them to fend off light cavalry for a time, if need be.
The most basic and numerous of the infantry units used by Epeiros were the Phyletichoi Illyrioi. The Illyrians have learned to fight in ordered formations and with short spears and javelins in order to break up the formations of their Greek enemy. They are not particularly reliable soldiers, but they are certainly better than their eastern counterparts. They can give a good account of themselves in battle if deployed properly. They wear no armor, and have only a light shield for protection, so most other infantry will slaughter them in droves. They can fend off light cavalry for a time, if need be.
Historically, the Illyrians were a people that inhabited the northern part of modern day Albania and were bordered in the south by the Greeks of Eperios and Aitolia, and in the east by Makedonia and Thessalia. Thus, they had to adapt their warfare to fight these enemies, a task they became frighteningly good at. By the time of Philippos of Makedonia, they had carved out a fairly large kingdom at the expense of Makedones and Epeirotai. Philippos married Olympias of Epeiros and retook the Makedonian and Epeirote provinces for their respective owners, using Parmenion to take the Makedonian portion back. His son Alexanderos, a product of this marriage alliance against the Illyrians, attacked, subdued, and won over many of the Illyrian tribes. Fairly large contingents of his light infantry in the Persian conquest were of Illyrian extraction. They won their independence once more after Alexanderos’ death, but were never again to become a major power. The Illyrioi as a people were extinguished by the Romanaioi and Illyria became the first Roman province outside of the western Mediterranean. The Illyrians adapted quickly to Roman culture and became the first extremely loyal non-Italic subjects of the growing Empire.