Assyrian horse archers of Ashurbanipal. Kumba uses the left part of this relief.
Carved gypsum wall panel relief fragment: Assyrian soldiers, some on horseback, pursuing an Arab force armed with bows, arrows and short swords and wearing loincloths, perhaps of animal skin, through open country. Arab, in flight, falling from camel back; fallen figures prone on the ground.
Image and museum blurb:
Tribe of MASAI – Primitive Year 986
One day when the sun was setting, a group of people from the land had arrived on the east coast of the Island. They were the people full of hatred and cavort, and they were the devils doing nothing but steal and plunder on the land. They made groups and attacked villages one after another. Their name was the „Masaiâ€ť, and they were very brutal.
Masai. The third clan to arrive. In 986 they settle in the east and immediately harass the other tribes. Somehow their battles start only after Romek, the last clan, come into view.
(They have nothing in common with the Maasai people of eastern Africa. The Maasai prefer red to purple, but don’t shun blue or even pink.)
They are a melee Warrior oriented clan that is tailored to ruthlessly hunt and kill just about anything. Their armories provide varied weapons and strong shields. This gives them power and versatility, but requires buying and equipping individual items, which is unthinkable for the entitled casual modern gamer.
They don’t have much health, but Herbs and Iron Shields are a good way of circumventing this setback.
It is easy for them to hunt and destroy enemy bases. Sniping powerful heroes and sorcerers might prove to be a challenge for the Masai, and requires some micromanagement.
Their legendary weapon is the Hammer of Darkness. It destroys buildings the fastest. It is great for hunting animals (mammals), but weak against dinosaurs. Average damage against cavemen and spellcasters for a legendary item. Which is still not bad.
Against other tribes
The first clan to conquer is Romek. The Masai Warriors take no bonus damage from this spellcaster, and can return ranged fire with Bows, or even better: Boomerangs. Teleportation is dangerous though, even in the hands of ancient AI, as it can just drop every able Ranger instantly on your position. In a hypothetical multiplayer situation the Romeks would be as dangerous as your best unit, because of the dreaded Resurrection spell.
The other eastern clans are Tyrano and Canus. Masai have the weapons to deal with dinos and casters. Melee fighters equipped with spears and shields can tank Tyrano, while ranged Masai can quickly change target to confuse and drain Elven magic. Shields don’t protect against even basic magical attacks, so care should be taken.
All four together form an unstoppable force of nature. Tanky dinos, ironclad Warriors, swift Rangers and invulnerable Elves. Backed by hardy dinosaurs, overpowered resurrection and healing, the Masai are a powerhouse, and the mose offense-themed tribe of their alliance. They also provide Herbs, which help maintain HP and MP among their allied units.
Against the Koaka, Masai win easily. Their powerful Arrows, Spears and Iron Shields make quick work of Koaka Dinosaurs. Swords decimate their Warriors, the Hammer of Darkness crushes their buildings. Koaka’s Moonlight Sword may be a concern, but it is just a single weapon.
Against the Radumba, their old tribemates, the Masai win by sheer power. Warriors with Iron Shields and Swords win against Muscle-Men with Wood Shields and Axes, even backed by bowmen. Avoid Poison Arrows in big numbers and you are golden.
Against the Muspel, Masai Warriors must rely on Boomerangs to inflict serious damage. Their powerful Iron Shields are useless when struck by spells, and they don’t have much HP to tank them otherwise. Suicide squads of ranged attackers or guerilla tactics are needed.
Against the Kumba, Masai has the upper hand. They are the most aggresive Primitive Man Tribe after all. They have superior weapons and shields. Masai Warriors with bows have superior range and the Water Shields fail to defend against them. Melee range is likewise dominated by the Masai, as Swords are a better choice against humans then Axes, and Water Shields don’t defend well against them. Herbs are good enough for Masai Warriors, and the Hammer of Darkness and Moonlight Shield are evenly matched.
Overall, it is a good tribe. They win against most Dinos and Men. They have many ways of dealing damage, but no special traits. On top of that, their health is really low, so fighting spellcasters is dangerous and needs micromanagement. Equipping each unit with items is tedious, but saves time spent on leveling them up. The sheer physical estruction they can unleash makes them ideal for rushes.
Their building style is similar to Radumba’s, as both clans have a history of close relations. Raw, huge spikes and skulls make them look like barbarians. Their Barracksâ€™ shape is similar to a ship, and the added spikes remind me of the Vikings (Well, the stereotypical Vikings, as real norsemen rarely if ever wore horns on helmets). The generic Ancient Greek stoa for the Armory ruins it though. Their Sanctuary screams of blood and skulls, Khorne and Crom style.
Their color, purple, is the darkest color, paired with green and orange as one of the villain colors. It is the color of death, magic, royalty or priesthood. The death theme is strongest with the Masai obviously, as white bones and red skulls adorn their base.
Their alignment is evil, their ruthless aggression against man and beast is evident and persistent. Their Legendary Weapon is the Hammer of Darkness, which also speaks of evil. Perhaps Perox uses them as his instrument in sewing chaos on the Island. They even share their stone interface pattern with the Muspel!
There are just a few things in the sequel that hint at Masai heritage. Blacksmiths can create Shields of Peace for Powermen (human-dino hybrid spearmen… don’t ask), and Spears of Justice for the mounted Knight units.