Zamorakian battle tactics are adapted from Zarosian tactics, although a huge part of that knowledge was written by Zamorak himself. Fundamentally their battle strategy is the independent tactical flexibility of the legions and the cohorts and maniples within the legions. Each of them is capable of operating both independently and part of a larger force, and the leaders of units even down to the maniple level are given the operational authority to make decisions on their own. Whereas the other god armies operate through the communication of orders which are expected to be followed, Zamorakian leaders are instead issued objectives and are expected to accomplish them.
This combination of discipline and tactical flexibility is unique to the Zamorakians and is the cause of much of their early military success, even over and beyond the large numbers of demons at Zamorak's command. Where Saradominists spend much of their time in prayer, and Armadyleans spend their time building culture, the sole profession of a Zamorakian legionary is soldiering. Any time not spent fighting is spent practicing drills and tactical exercises.
On the battlefield Zamorakians have a myriad of strategies for almost any imaginable enemy, terrain and circumstance. Typically the legate need only announce a pre-formulated strategy by name and the maniples of the force will quickly assemble into an appropriate formation. As battlefield conditions change, the tribunes and centurions are free to adapt as they see fit in order to accomplish the overall objective, and each leader knows and trusts his soldiers and the other leaders to work together cohesively.
A typical deployment places the Milites in an adaptable line supported by Sagitarii and flanked by Clibinarii. The Foederati are positioned in front of the line to bog down and confuse the enemy forces. A typical battlefield tactic has the center of the line intentionally weaken and fall back, drawing the enemy forces in and flanking them. This sort of false retreat and rapid redeployment is typical of the intricate strategies Zamorakians will deploy.
Legions were the main structure of Zamorak's armies. Compared with the Zarosian legions, Zamorakian legions are much smaller but more tactically flexible, and accustomed to working together in larger armies where the Zarosian legions typically fought alone.
Legions, which consisting of about 1000 soldiers, were led by a Legate, or Legatus. They were made up of an average of five cohorts.
Cohorts, which consisted of about 200 soldiers, were led by a Tribune. They were made up of several maniples.
Maniples consisted of around 100 soldiers, commanded by a Centurion. They were made up of around ten contuberniums.
Contuberniums were lead by a Decanus. They were made up of about ten soldiers.
Zamorakian legions are divided into four grades based on their effectiveness in the field: Limitanei, Comitatenses, Palatini and Scholae. Earlier in the god wars these grades had specific meanings, but they are now in disuse.
Early on, these were local militia and border guards. Now the lowest grade of legion.
Early in the wars, they were field armies that deployed to defend against enemy invasions or used as an expeditionary force.
In the beginning of the God Wars, they guarded the capital at Senntisten, before its capture.
At the start of the wars, they were the elite personal forces of Zamorak himself. Towards the end, this was the highest grade a legion could hope to achieve.
Very few Mahjarrat remain on Gielinor now, and those that do are almost exclusively powerful sorcerers and leaders in the Zamorakian forces. Most are legati, with a handful serving as tribunes. Mahjarrat support their forces with magical offence and defence when they are not busy supervising the tactical situation. Zamorak, normally egalitarian to the extreme, has often shown favouritism towards his Mahjarrat siblings, failing to punish them to the extent he would a human or demon and granting them commands when a more effective non-Mahjarrat candidate was available. Some even whisper that the Zamorakian's failures at the end of the God Wars can be attributed almost solely to this.
Avernic are fractious and undisciplined by nature, and this has been challenging for Zamorak's disciplined military leadership style. When he conquered Infernus during the Avernic rebellion, he re-organised the demon forces into the system that he had perfected on Gielinor. While it would be a lie to say that this had a major impact on Avernic society as a whole, his influence has perpetuated within the standing armies of Infernus. Zamorak is a holy figure on Infernus, and service in his forces on Gielinor is considered the highest honour in their military tradition. Because portal capacity is so limited, only the finest and most disciplined troops are considered.
The largest and most physically powerful troops at Zamorak's disposal, Tsutsaroth (better known as elder demons) have proven difficult to fit into the military hierarchy. Even though on Infernus the tsutsaroth rule through their unquestioned might, in the legions they are poorly suited for command, being rarely intelligent or even-tempered enough to remain behind the lines and issue orders. Most tsutsaroth have ended up in the alarii where their mobility and power can be deployed with the most flexilibity.
Small and weak next to the Tsutsaroth, the alyaroth still tower over humans. As a species, alyaroth (or greater demons) are probably the most flexible troops Zamorak has at his disposal, although each individual demon has their own abilities and proclivities. Many serve in the alarii, but they can also be found amongst the foot legionaries and even in command positions. Those alyaroth who have magical ability serve in that capacity on an ad hoc basis.
The smallest intelligent Avernic, byzroth (or lesser demons) are not too dissimilar in capability to humans and can be found in any part of the legion as a result. Some byzroth can even rise to become high-ranking leaders, although this can occasionally lead to problems when larger and stronger demons are unable to overcome the bigotry they hold for smaller and weaker members of their race.
Shakroth, better known as hellhounds even amongst other demons, are pets and beasts more than they are soldiers. On the battlefield they are deployed in packs either to disrupt enemy formations or chase down and destroy fleeing enemies.
A handful of other demons, and even a few more bestial chthonians such as ripper demons, can be found in the legions.
Where the others gods see humans as weak fodder, or a necessary but undependable force, Zamorak places them at equal position with all others, save perhaps the Mahjarrat. He has spent thousands of years leading humans, and rather than bemoaning their lack of wings and physical or magical strength, he instead prefers to focus on their potential. They are both more disciplined and more adaptable than demons, and often more intelligent. They can be found all across the legions, even at the highest levels of command, and even in the alarii where a few brave humans armed with flying enchantments or riding flying beasts can keep pace with the demons and vampyres.
Vampyres were once a stalwart component of Zamorak's forces, giving the legions aerial superiority even over the icyene and aviansie. In recent years Lord Drakan betrayed Zamorak and withdrew to Morytania with most of the Gielinorian vampyres. This has devastated Zamorak's air forces, although the god has given strict instruction that the remaining vampyres who chose to remain loyal are to be treated without discrimination for the betrayal of their kin. Vampyres are experts at aerial combat and capable of devastating melee and ranged magical attacks.
Though Zamorak dislikes their use, due to limited potential and lowering troop morale, in the final years of the God Wars as his forces became more desperate, they have started to rely more and more on undead troops.
Wights are animated using a complex and demanding process which results in them retaining some degree of intelligence and independence. Although somewhat less cerebral than a human, they are stronger and much tougher, and capable of serving on the front lines of the legions. The ratio of wights to living soldiers has to be kept low because they are largely incapable of participating in the legion's camaraderie and tend to lower morale. However, as things have become more desperate for the Zamorakians the proportion of wights has been rising. By the end of the third age as much as one fifth of Zamorak’s legionaries are wights.
Zombies are almost mindless and completely incapable of independent thought. They are impossible to integrate into the legion structure which requires operational independence, and instead herding into battle in great mobs as disposal shock troops.
As the heir to the Zarosian empire, Zamorak has inherited - or earned - the fealty of a great many strange beings from across Gielinor. These creatures can be found within the legions where Zamorak's egalitarian principles work in their favour.
Second and Third Age Army Composition