During the early 19th century, the role of sappers was not limited to traditional military engineering tasks such as building fortifications and digging trenches. Instead, they became an integral part of the offensive operations, responsible for breaching enemy defenses and creating avenues for the main attacking forces. These highly specialized engineers were trained to handle the dangers and challenges associated with undermining enemy positions and constructing siege works. The sappers were distinguished by their distinctive uniforms, which often included a leather apron to protect against splinters and tools such as axes, shovels, and explosives. Sappers possessed versatile skills in a wide range of engineering tasks. They were adept in the construction of pontoon bridges, vital for ensuring the rapid mobility of troops across rivers and obstacles. These engineers also played a pivotal role in the creation and maintenance of supply lines, building roads and repairing infrastructure to facilitate the movement of troops and supplies.


In Marshals Unleashed Napoleonic wargaming sappers have the ability to build pontoon bridges, sandbag walls / barriers and wooden fences.

Advantages in using their tools

Blocking roads with wooden fences, building pontoon bridges to cross your troops across rivers, building sandbag fortifications to protect artillery and other units against cavalry attacks, sappers can also be used to breach through wooden gates, wooden palisades and sandbagwalls.

Deployment and restrictions

During the deployment phase preceding a battle, sappers have the privilege to construct various engineering elements. However, certain exceptions exist such as with pontoon bridges. Pontoon bridges can only be constructed once the battle begins. A total of up to eight (8) constructible elements, which include wooden barriers and sandbag walls, may be strategically built prior to the battle or within the duration of the battle. Once these tactical assets are strategically positioned,  repositioning them to an alternate location is not possible. Consequently, prudent strategizing is imperative when deciding upon initial placement of these elements within the battlefield. Concerning pontoon bridge construction, availability is restricted up to four (4) bridge constructions during a battle. It's therefore important to print and build  sufficient components to ensure optimal field utilization.


How to use in the gameplay

To build an element whether it be parts of a pontoon bridge, fence or sandbag fortifications, one turn is needed to add one element on the battlefield using one action point. It’s not allowed to use all 4 action points and add 4 elements in one turn. To build an element, the sapper unit must be positioned in the same battlezone ( the big squares on the battlemap) as the location you intend to build your element. Once elements are built, it is not possible to move them during battles.

Destruction of Sapper Constructed Elements

Structures constructed by sappers have the potential to be annihilated in the course of a battle.


Using artillery 
by using artillery as howitzers, each element has a 2 damage point which can be marked by a damage icon upon the element. Add the damage icons on top of the wooden fences, sandbag barriers and at the sides of the floating pontoon bridges elements.


Sapper attack
It requires two turns for sapper units to demolish wooden gates, fences, and sandbag fortifications. Simply move your sapper units towards the element, retaining their position for a span of two (2) turns to successfully dismantle it. Subsequently, a damage icon may be placed upon the element as a means of tracking the inflicted damage after each turn has passed. Sapper's can not destroy floating pontoon bridge elements.

Unit statistics

Engineering corps Sappers

  • Defense 4
  • Move 2 / charge range 1
  • Charge damage 2
  • Fire range 1
  • Fire damage 1

Unit download

The unit sheet consists of 8 sapper units and 4 elements of each type of build you want to use on the battlefield, you can print as many elements you need in order to prepare your campaign or battle.