The Heavy Persian foot archers represent some of the finest archers mustered from the Iranian plateau, and with the greater range of their composite bows will add a stronger punch to their volleys.
These archers are the result of numerous Achaemenid Persian reforms, in themselves more or less inspired by Greek military traditions. They wear a soft, padded cap of leather, often of the ingenious kyrbasia design, in addition to their armour which could either have been quilted cloth, leather or quilted leather, often studded with bronze or iron rivets, offering some rudimentary protection without compromising too greatly on mobility. This may at first seem like quite needless additions, however understanding the Achaemenid military structure and relationship between the defensive contingents, the spearmen, and the archers as well as how they interacted as a unit in their decimal formation, reveals that the additions were vital and in this formation, the Persian archers were renowned, not only for their skill and marksmanship but also their discipline, with the formation being instrumental in outlasting their enemies when exchanging volleys. With the Achaemenid world order not existing anymore, Iranian archery traditions have remained strong in spite of Hellenic martial traditions, and will serve Hellenes and Easterners alike. Replacing their simple bows with a Scythian-influenced composite bow, they have greater range and penetrating power than their Achaemenid forebears and with their basic armour are not as vulnerable as their more lightly equipped brethren, neither in volley exchanges nor in melee. Still, they are not by any means capable of sustaining themselves against melee infantry and as such are only meant to be used as an auxiliary.
Historically, the Iranian plateau has always bolstered a fine archery tradition where the rugged environment encouraged skills in using missile weaponry. During all four native Iranian dynasties of Iran, archery has always been valued, however prior to the great Iranian migrations, peoples such as the Elamites were lauded for their archery skills, especially by the conquering Assyrians who had faced them in battle. The Elamite skills did not wane by the destruction of their kingdom, but survived well into the Neo-Elamite era where they established connections with the Persians and the Medes. During the Achaemenid era, the Elamites were accorded a position of honour as skilled archers, even though they were not allowed to either bear the akinâkâ, a gilded short sword, or to enlist as the Ânûsîyâ, or the 10,000 Immortals. As a result, archery was in general a praised practice, something not exclusive to the Iranians among who the Achaemenians added it as one of their three virtues, but to the native peoples who lived there as well. The Achaemenid military organization was clearly made to facilitate archery, where a satâbam, or one hundred men, would mainly consist of archers who from the second rank (As the first rank consisted of spearmen who formed a defensive wall with the spârâ which in turn a decorated pavise of wicker) would continuously increment the angle, to the tenth rank. This would require a great discipline and a good number of junior officers, also ranked accordingly in a decimal manner to coordinate the formation properly. The wicker shields would be vital in outlasting the enemies in volley exchanges, but individual additions of armour facilitated this effect as well.