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An arquebusier

An arquebusier was a soldier armed with a long firearm called an arquebus. Similar to archers and crossbowmen, they patrolled rooftops, protected high-profile locations, and guarded noteworthy targets.

Though arquebusiers did not have as great a range as crossbowmen, what they lacked in distance, they made up for in power. Their shots dealt significant damage to targets and enemy armor.


Like crossbowmen, arquebusiers did not carry melee weapons to supplement their long-ranged attacks. Instead, they would only back away and resume shooting if engaged at close quarters, using the arquebus itself to block melee attacks.[1]

Aside from their firearms, arquebusiers carried several bags across their belts, likely containing gunpowder and lead projectiles to serve as ammunition.[1]

Like all other guards, the color of their uniform indicated their allegiances; with red signifying them as soldiers of the Borgia, blue of French, and yellowish-green for those of Viana.[1]


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Arquebusiers during the Siege of Monteriggioni

By 1500, arquebusiers served the Papacy and supported Cesare Borgia's forces during the siege of Monteriggioni. A contingent of them was able to seriously wound Ezio Auditore da Firenze in the shoulder and abdomen, tipping the attack in their favor.[1]

Throughout Rome in the 16th century, arquebusiers could be found guarding Borgia towers, as well as rooftops around the Pantheon and Castra Praetoria. They could also be seen patrolling the streets of the Antico or Campagna districts in pairs.[1]

Around 1503, Baltasar de Silva organized a division of arquebusiers as an ambush. He lured the traitor Fiora Cavazza into a warehouse, in which the arquebusiers were hidden; however, a team of Assassins was able to shoot down the enemies and rescue her.[2]

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Arquebusiers firing on the Assassins

Later that year, a number of French arquebusiers under Charles de la Motte were key factors in a trap set by Charles and Cesare Borgia for the Assassins of Rome. Though the Assassin apprentice team of Francesco Vecellio was able to kill several arquebusiers with bows, this broke their cover and led to them being overwhelmed by the combined Templar forces.[2]

Though the Assassin team escaped to the roof of an inn, another contingent of arquebusiers surrounded and fired upon them from nearby buildings, wiping virtually all of them out.[2]

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A Byzantine rifleman in Constantinople

Arquebusiers continued to be used by the Templar forces around 1511. Leandros made use of them as protection in a stronghold near Masyaf, while the Byzantines used them to protect any Assassin Dens they captured in Constantinople, as well as the rooftops of Cappadocia.[3]

Unlike in earlier years, other than patrolling rooftops, arquebusiers also stationed themselves in reinforced outposts, which protected them from close-range or melee attacks. However, they were still vulnerable to ranged weapons.[3]


  • Similarly to enemy Crossbowmen, it was impossible to pick up the dropped weapon of an arquebusier. The weapon also disappeared shortly after moving out of the camera's view.
  • Similar to Papal Guards and Brutes, arquebusiers were more often encountered during story missions.
  • In the War Machine memory, "Hell on Wheels", several agiles wielded weapons of the arquebuses.
  • The arquebusier in the E3 trailer of Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood wears the uniform of a regular militia.