|Appears in||Napoleon: Total War|
|Belongs to||Ottoman Empire|
|Soldiers in each unit||30/60/90/120|
|Cost||240 SP/250 MP|
|Turns to Train||2|
Vicious and dangerous, these irregular troops are a cheap way of bringing death to enemies.
More than happy to run headlong into an enemy force with nothing but a sword and bared teeth, the Bashi Bazouks are berserk madmen. When engaged in close combat, they are second to none. Their upkeep and recruitment costs are minimal, making them an ideal unit for those with tight purse strings. However, due to their lack of discipline and firearms they are vulnerable to both cavalry and missile-armed troops.
Historically, the original Turkish form of “Bashi Bazouk” literally meant “damaged head” or “leaderless”. These men were raised from all over the Ottoman Empire, although they originally came from tribes based in Afghanistan. They were never given uniforms, but did receive their weapons from the Ottoman government. Plunder was their only real payment, and this was considered legitimate by the government. Their lawless ways made them difficult to control and they often had to be forcibly disarmed after taking part in battles. This unpredictable nature gave them a fearsome reputation and other nationalities generally feared them as brutal and savage warriors.
Along with Cemaat Janissaries, Bashi-Bazouks are some of the only dedicated melee infantry in Napoleon: Total War. Compared to Cemaat Janissaries, Bashi-Bazouks have fewer men per regiment (only 75% of a cemaat janissary regiment) and poorer stats; however, they are much cheaper (being even cheaper than any militia the Ottoman Empire fields), have better stealth capabilities, and have good stamina. These traits mean that, despite their inferior numbers per regiment, Bashi-Bazouks can handle themselves very well against larger regiments--particularly if they can close the distance with their foes without suffering too many casualties. While fresh Cemaat Janissaries handle themselves better in a melee fight, Bashi-Bazouks can more effectively tackle multiple targets thanks to their better stamina. Despite their extremely cheap cost and low numbers, bashi-bazouks still have superior melee stats compared to most other units and can take out targets that are much more expensive than them. As increasing experience in custom battles has its cost based on the base price of a unit, adding experience to bashi-bazouks is extremely cheap and can dramatically improve their performance. Even if they only distract fire or inflict light casualties before routing, bashi-bazouks' low price means that this is usually not a big loss.
Like most Ottoman troops, Bashi-Bazouks are resistant to heat fatigue, granting them immunity from heat attrition, and also a stamina advantage on desert maps.