Mobile Militia have a profound effect on the Strategic Game. Many HAM features have been written to alter that effect. Some increase their importance, while some, like Mobile Militia Diversity, reduce their strength considerably to make Mobile Militia a far more balanced gameplay device.

History of Political Incorrectness in Arulco (Dark-Blue Supremacy)Edit

JA2 1.13 introduced Kaiden's Mobile Militia feature. Trainable at any city, Mobile Militia patrol the countryside, protecting cities from incoming enemy attacks.

Training Mobile Militia was very expensive - $2250 for a squad of five men. However, this was usually worth it, as each new Mobile Militia squad consisted of 5 Elite Militia (dark blue).

A full squad of 20 Elites can usually win a battle against any enemy group, at least when the numbers are equal. Considering that Mobile Militia tend to reinforce each other, these all-elite groups became an uber-weapon capable of protecting your cities from any harm, especially if the city garrison itself was also trained to all-elite status.

Considering that initially Mobile Militia were allowed to go anywhere on the map, and therefore clean out the entire countryside on their own, prompted many people to abandon Mobile Militia training completely. Roaming Restrictions (which denied militia from roaming all over the map on their own) solved some of the problem, but it still allowed Mobile Militia to perform as an almost impenetrable defense.

HAM's Mobile Militia Overhaul Edit

I personally have always been very supportive of the Mobile Militia feature, as I saw incredible potential for it. Mobile Militia function as a small army designed for asserting your control over the liberated countryside, something which was completely missing in the original game (where the enemy had full control of the countryside 99% of the time).

As such, I designed several features that made Mobile Militia more interesting, by changing their movement options and their training. There are over a dozen features in HAM that affect Mobile Militia in many different ways.

However, I also understood that Mobile Militia are much too powerful in their current form. Whole groups of elites roaming the countryside, even if limited to city perimeters, was counter-intuitive. Therefore, I've created two different methods to change the strength of Mobile Militia by making it possible to train Mobiles that are NOT Elites.

Militia Diversity - Overview Edit

Militia Diversity is all about creating Mobile Militia groups that are not all made up of Elites. Introducing Rookie Militia (GREEN) and Regular Militia (LIGHT-BLUE) into Mobile Militia ranks has the effect of reducing their overall strength, reducing their power and hence making them less of an unbeatable fence or a marauding force.

HAM 2 - Fixed Diversity Edit

HAM 2 started the process by introducing a new INI setting that could be toggled on and off. When activated, newly created Diverse Militia groups were no longer made up of all Elites, but instead had a ratio of 25% Elites, 25% Regulars, and 50% Greens, with no less than 1 militiaman of each type.

Using the normal group size of 5 per training session, this created groups of 1 Elite, 1 Regular, and 3 Greens. Due to their relatively poor strength, a group containing so many Green Militia (hitherto unseen in Mobile units at all!) is considerably weaker than a group of 5 Elites. In fact, a rough estimate would put its strength at around 20-30% compared to a group of 5 Elites.

Combined with HAM's Externalized Auto-Resolve Luck Factor, such groups have FAR less survivability than they did in JA2 1.13.

A group of 5 Elites can comfortably take on about 10 Redshirts and come out unscathed. Enemy Elites (Blackshirts) are often better than Mobile Militia, but a 5-on-5 battle between Blackshirts and Deep-Blueshirts may end badly for everyone involved.

However, a Diverse unit of 1 Elite, 1 Regular and 3 Greens could easily lose to any group of 5 enemies, and such small groups are rare to begin with.

Banding together into large groups is practically essential for the survival of Diverse Mobile Militia. They'll need to reinforce each other to overcome enemy groups trying to go through to the city, and even then, several greens could easily be killed during the battle.

Effects on the Strategic Game Edit

Due to the nerfing effect of diversity, setting up a city's defense isn't as simple as training up lots of Mobiles. You'll need to have your mercs "babysit" them during the early Mobile Militia Training stage, to make sure that they don't get wiped out before more are trained to reinforce them. During these battles, Militia also "level-up" sometimes, especially if they're allowed to do some of the work on the battlefield (assuming they SURVIVE).

Mobile Militia therefore stop being an all-powerful fence against enemy attacks. Instead, they serve as a screen that can slow down enemies from reaching the city, but do not offer complete security. Mobile Militia reinforce cities and each other, enabling them to occasionally engage and defeat enemy groups. They are less useful when attacking enemy forces on their own, and generally try to avoid this, but rely upon each others' protection for defense in numbers.

Effects on the Tactical Game Edit

I hope that by now I don't even need to explain how diverse groups affect the Tactical Game, but here it is anyway:

Imagine that your mercs are moving out to attack Tixa. A large Mobile Militia force comprised of 20 Elites has followed you through a couple of Desert sectors, and then the mercs and militia assault the prison together. The sector is heavily defended by many enemies, who likely to be reinforced from the south by another enemy unit seen lurking in the vicinity. Imagine the battle itself, with mercs fighting to enter the prison while beating off a flanking or frontal attack by the reinforcements. Imagine the militia struggling to make their way around the prison fence, but then climbing the rooftops and charging straight at the enemy with massive firepower. Imagine the casualties this combined force can inflict on the enemy troops.
Now, close your eyes, and imagine doing the same thing with 4 Elites, 4 Regulars, and 12 Greens.

I think this is about as much of an example as you could possibly need.

So, this makes Mobile Militia suck? Edit

No. It's called "taken down a notch". It makes them less powerful than they were before, which was... way too powerful.

Diverse Groups are, admittedly, more reliant on numerical superiority. But that's the entire point, really.

With Militia Diversity activated, Enemies are (finally) not weaker than Mobile Militia. Yeah, you heard me.

As long as Mobile Militia are used for defending your territory, they can still utilize numerical superiority much more often than enemies do. However, if Mobile Militia are used for attack, mercs had better be joining them because of the same numerical superiority issues: Militia can't effectively attack on their own unless the target sector is also surrounded by Mobiles, so in most cases a group of Militia won't survive in enemy-controlled areas, but does receive plenty of support when patrolling in player-controlled areas.

Of course, with HAM's Dynamic Restrictions system, control areas are very clearly defined. Your territory is comprised of all sectors where Mobile Militia can go. Everything else is either wilderness (where enemies might be patrolling) or actual enemy-controlled land. Therefore, Militia usually roam close to your cities, where they can be reinforced by other units, hence retaining their intended role on the Strategic Map.

This means that Mobiles are used primarily for defense, and are still reasonably good at it when properly reinforced by other militia and/or mercs. The change is that if you don't pay at least some attention to setting them up properly, they won't be able to effectively stop or slow down enemies coming at your city. Invest in Mobiles and they can save you time and effort later.

Thus, Mobile Militia becomes a strategic tool which can still provide very good augmentation to your city defenses - but only if you use it wisely.

I see this as a much more realistic and balanced representation of Mobile Militia, and most HAM Militia features are designed around the same idea.

In fact, in later versions of HAM, Mobile Militia Diversity received two more upgrades that would totally expand its scope.

HAM 3 - Set your own Diversity! Edit

With HAM 2's Diversity System included in JA2 1.13, HAM moved on to try and externalize this feature, so that players could decide for themselves how strong they want their Mobile Militia to be.

In HAM 3, we can finally control the exact amount of Elites, Regulars and Greens within each group. The setting can now even be changed without starting a new game, so control is really in the hands of the player.

HAM 3 introduces two new INI settings, which control the percentage of Elites and Regulars in each new Mobile group. You can set them to any number, as long as the sum of both settings is no more than 100%.

You can set either group to 100% if you want, in which case you can create All-Elite groups (as in the original JA2 1.13) by setting the Elite Percentage to 100%. You can similarly produce All-Regular groups by setting the Regular Percentage to 100%.

Of course, setting both percentages to different values is what creates diversity:


Elites are set to 20%. Regulars are set to 80%.
The normal size of a group is 5 men.
The resulting group would have 1 Elite (20% of 5), and 4 Regulars (80% of 5).

You can also use these two values to set the number of Greens that will be created. If the sum of the settings is less than 100%, whatever remains is considered the Green Percentage.


Elites are set to 20%. Regulars are set to 40%.
The normal size of a group is 5 men.
The resulting group would have 1 Elite (20% of 5) and 2 Regulars (40% of 5).
This is a total of 3 men, but we need to create 2 more!
The remaining 2 men created will be Green.

If any of the three percentages is greater than 0, then at least ONE member of that type is created in the new group.


Elites are set to 1%. Regulars are set to 1%.
The normal size of a group is 5 men.
The resulting group would have 0 Elites (1% of 5, rounded down) and 0 Regulars (1% of 5, rounded down).
The Elite and Regular percentages are both positive (1%). At least one MUST be created of each type. So we now have 1 Elite and 1 Regular.
This is a total of 2 men, but we need to create 3 more!
The remaining 3 men created will be green.

These two settings allow you to control the strength of Mobile Militia rather effectively.

The better quality Mobiles are produced, the less you need to worry about defending them or retraining them, but risk that situation where they can practically stop most enemy attacks, or defeat enemies on their own turf.

The lesser quality Mobiles are produced, the more you'll need to babysit them, and the more important it will be to keep their ranks up, increasing the difficulty of the strategic game by behaving like a Native Militia SHOULD behave.

HAM 3.5 - Leadership-based Quality Edit

Main Article: Leadership Requirements for Training Militia

One of HAM's Mottos is that if something can be externalized, it can also be internalized. HAM 3 allows Militia Quality to be affected by INI settings, and HAM 3.5 allows Militia Quantity to fluctuate during the regular course of the game.

In HAM 3.5, you can activate a setting that causes Mobile Militia Quality to depend on the Leadership Score of whoever is doing the training. The more leadership this character has, the better quality militia are produced. This setting overrides all other diversity methods, when activated.

  • With a low leadership score, characters will only be able to train Green militia, and maybe a couple of Regulars, in every new group.
  • Medium leadership can produce better combinations of Greens and Regulars, followed by the introduction of a few Elites.
  • Characters with good leadership scores can train units comprised of Regulars and Elites.
  • And finally, a truly accomplished trainer will be able to train all-Elite groups, as was in JA2 1.13.

Leadership-based Quality works in tandem with several other Militia Training features, such as the minimum required Leadership score to train Mobile Militia, or the TEACHING trait's effect on Leadership for these training purposes.

Interplay with other Militia Training Features Edit

HAM places a lot of emphasis on the Militia aspect of the Strategy game, trying to find the place where Militia behave as a true Native Army. With all (or at least most) of HAM's Militia Features activated, Militia retain their defensive attitude, protecting cities from being overrun by enemy assaults.

Militia Diversity does this by giving Militia a serious disadvantage on the offensive, but retaining much of their usefulness on the defense. Either way, by reducing the combat potency of Mobile Militia groups, the strategic game becomes much more involving, compared to the All-Elites setup that simply uses Militia as an all-powerful defensive force, or offensive force, or both.

However, increased diversity poses a serious problem - it makes the training and upkeep of militia forces much more time-consuming effort, and may cost you a good amount of money in the process. The quality of Militia troops is decreased, but the cost and speed of training remain the same. In other words, you'll need to spend the same amount of effort in training (and more in keeping them alive early on) while getting a much less potent defense.

This becomes much worse when you consider that other HAM features, such as Leadership-based QUANTITY, may hamper training even further. You may not even be producing a full Mobile group in each training session, further wasting your money and time.

Solution: Creative use of INI settings Edit

Fortunately, some of JA2 1.13's original settings can easily be adjusted to make Mobile Militia worth your while.

1. Modifying Mobile Militia training costs

Firstly, you can adjust the cost of training new Mobile Militia groups. This is done with the INI setting called "MILITIA_COST_MODIFIER". It's a confusing name, because it actually means "MOBILE_MILITIA_COST_MODIFIER". It controls the amount of money you must spend to train a single Mobile group, as a multiplier to the price of training a Green Town Militia group. By default, basic Town training costs $750. The multiplier is set to 3, so a Mobile Militia group costs $2250.

If Mobile Militia are set to contain many greens, the multiplier can be reduced to 2 or even 1. This makes Mobile Militia training much cheaper, to compensate for their reduced quality. You'll still be spending a lot of time training them, but at least won't spend so much money!

2. Modifying the size of new Mobile Militia groups

The second method of course is to change the size of the created group.

By default, the size of every new group will be 5 Mobiles. This is a very small group, and if it contains many Greens, it might not be able to stand up to any enemy unit at all. Ergo, you've got a puny little team that will get slaughtered if it ever wonders anywhere near the front lines. This can cause many of your Mobile Groups to get slaughtered before they can even be reinforced.

Doubling this size (to 10) can already make things much more smooth. Groups of 10 Militia will at least be able to survive an attack by a small enemy unit. Two training sessions will yield you 20 Mobiles, who can link up to a large group and start patrolling in earnest. Of course, one group is never enough, but you save 50% on training time because the time to train each group hasn't changed.

If you're also using Leadership-based Quantity, then most of your mercs won't be able to train a full group of Mobiles anyway. Hiring specialized trainer mercs who can make full groups can be difficult at times, so to compensate you could push the size of the groups to 20. This speeds up militia training considerably, although using poor trainers for the job would still yield slow results.

You can increase group size by decreasing the value of DIV_OF_ORIGINAL_MILITIA to 2 or 1. A value of 3 is not very useful (you'll train 6 Mobiles per session instead of 5...).

Please note that the size of the Mobile group is also dependent on the value of MAX_MILITIA_PER_SECTOR. If you change this value from the default (20), group size will change accordingly, but of course it will also have a profound strategic effect so use this with care.

To learn how to change the new group size, please consult Leadership Requirements for Training Militia. The article explains the process in detail.

3. Finding your own balance

The proper balance is something you're going to have to find out for yourself. You can choose to use HAM's recommended settings, but always remember that if you dislike the results, tweaking the settings can't kill you, and you might end up with a cool balance that suits your playstyle more closely.

HAM encourages experimentation, that's why all these values are externalized - so that you can change them. With Mobile Diversity, Mobile Costs, and Mobile Group Size, you can

INI Settings Edit

There are several INI settings for this feature, but each HAM version uses different ones, so please pay close attention

1. HAM 2 - Fixed Diversity


Effect Enables/Disables a fixed ratio for Elites/Regulars/Greens in new Mobile Militia units.
JA2 Default Value FALSE All newly-created Mobile Militia will be Elites. If Elite training is disabled, they will all be Regulars instead.
HAM Recommended Value TRUE Of every new Mobile Militia group, 25% will be elites, 25% will be regulars, and the rest will be Greens.
Notes This setting is only used in HAM B2.8!

2. HAM 3 - Customizable Diversity


Effect Determines what percentage of every new Mobile Militia group will be made of Elites.
Range 0-100
JA2 Default Value 100 All new Mobile Militia groups will consist of 100% Elites.
HAM Recommended Value 20 20% of all newly created Mobile Militia will be Elites. Also, at least one of any new Mobile Militia group will be an Elite.
Other Values 0 No Elites will be created when training Mobile Militia. Mobiles can only become Elites through winning tough battles.


Effect Determines what percentage of every new Mobile Militia group will be made of Elites.
Range 0-100
JA2 Default Value 100 All new Mobile Militia groups will consist of 100% Elites.
HAM Recommended Value 20 20% of all newly created Mobile Militia will be Elites. Also, at least one of any new Mobile Militia group will be an Elite.
Other Values 0 No Elites will be created when training Mobile Militia. Mobiles can only become Elites through winning tough battles.

Please note

If (PERCENT_ROAMING_MILITIA_ELITES + PERCENT_ROAMING_MILITIA_REGULARS) < 100, then the remaining difference will be the Green Militia Percentage. In such a case, at least 1 of any new Mobile Militia group will be a Green. To make ALL-GREEN militia, set both of the above to 0!

3. HAM 3.5 - Leadership-Based Diversity


Effect Controls whether Mobile Militia Diversity is based on the Trainer's Leadership score, or based on the two INI settings above.
JA2 Default Value FALSE Diversity percentages are read from other INI settings, PERCENT_ROAMING_MILITIA_ELITES and PERCENT_ROAMING_MILITIA_REGULARS.
HAM Recommended Value TRUE The Trainer's Leadership score determines the diversity of Mobile Militia. Better trainers will create more Elites and less Greens. The best trainers create All-Elite groups. This depends greatly on other Militia Training settings.
Notes This setting only exists in HAM 3.5 and onwards. Please note that other settings such as MINIMUM_LEADERSHIP_TO_TRAIN_MOBILE_MILITIA have an important effect on this feature.

See Also Edit

Leadership Requirements for Mobile Militia Training

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