Structure and Basics

Zulu-Alpha (ZA) is based loosely on the US Rangers. This is primarily a function of our style of play, and not necessarily an indicator of any eliteness.

The definitive basic unit and maneuver element in ZA is the fire team which will be used as the model for most ZA drills. The next most common unit is the Squad Headquarters Team, which coordinates and supports the fire teams and those three teams make up a Squad. Three squads and an HQ element form a Platoon.

A fire team can be temporarily broken up into two buddy teams, the smallest maneuver elements.


Fire team Structure:

The following are the members of a fire team listed in their correct formation and parade order:

First buddy team

1. Fire team Leader (FTL)
2. Rifleman (R) – Point Man\Ammo Bearer\Specialist\AT

Second buddy team

3. Automatic Rifleman (AR) – Second in Command
4. Grenadier (G) – Explosives\Breaching

General Rules:
  1. Always be aware of your Fire Team Leader’s position
  2. Listen and do as he says
  3. All members of a fire team are responsible for the whereabouts of their buddy.
  4. Weapons should be set to safe at all times when possible, unless a target has been identified.
  5. Everyone must repeat orders given so that it is known that each person has head the order.
  6. Don’t talk unnecessarily


Fire Team Leader (FTL)

the Fire Team Leader is responsible for controlling the actions of his four-man team while responding to the directions of the Squad Leader. The Fire Team Leader serves a key leadership role within each squad as there is no other position that has as much leadership and active warfighting responsibilities. The Fire Team Leader is constantly balancing his responsibilities as a leader with his role as a member of a team that directly engages the enemy.

Carries an M4/M16 with magnified optics.

Rifleman (R)

The Rifleman is often called upon to serve on special teams, such as breaching, demolition, aid and litter, personnel under custody (PUC) search and control, and anti-armor/bunker teams. The Rifleman carries perhaps the least casualty-producing weapon within the squad yet this allows the Rifleman more freedom of maneuver and the ability to carry additional ammunition for crew served weapon systems and/or assist in transporting specialty equipment. The Rifleman can also act as a designated marksmen if the mission requires it.

Usually carries an M4/M16, or DMR depending on the mission.

Automatic Rifleman (AR)

The Squad Automatic Rifleman serves a key role within each Fire Team as he employs the teams’s most casualty producing weapons system. Additionally, the Squad Automatic Rifleman is capable of providing overwatch and suppressive fires. He is also the second in command of the Fire Team.

Carries an M249 or M240 with magnified optics.

Grenadier (G)

The Grenadier serves a key role within each Fire Team through his employment of organic indirect 40mm fires. The Grenadier is often called upon to serve on special teams, such as breaching, demolition and anti-armor/bunker teams.

Carries an M4/M16 with with under-slung grenade launcher



Squad Headquarters Team:

Squad Leader

The Squad Leader’s primary responsibility is controlling the actions of his ten-man squad while responding to the directions of the Platoon Leader.

Carries an M4/M16 with magnified optics. An under-slung grenade launcher is optional when using special equipment (such as the HuntIR) and signalling rounds.

Combat Medic

The Squad’s Combat Medic provides critical life saving medical care to injured members of the platoon. Immediately upon injury, a Soldier is most commonly first attended to by either the closest Soldier (“Buddy-Aid”) or a fellow Infantryman within his squad who is trained as a Combat Lifesaver. The casualty is then either evacuated to the platoon’s Casualty Collection Point run by a Squad Combat Medic, or the Combat Medic comes forward to the location of the injured Soldier. The Combat Medic stabilizes the casualty, and if necessary, prepares the casualty for evacuation to a rear area medical facility.

The Combat Medic will carry only one weapon,  the M4 Carbine, for personal and patient protection.



All members should have:
  • Their own medical supplies, and the fireteam medic should have additional reserves.
  • Compass, watch, map, radio and GPS if available.
  • 300 rounds of ammunition (10 magazines) if carrying a rifle, and 800-1300 rounds if carrying an Automatic Rifle.
  • If that member has an under-slung grenade launcher, then between 12-24 explosive rounds, including some smoke and signaling rounds, especially if PL.
  • At least 8-10 smoke grenades, including green smoke grenades for medical purposes.
  • 2-4 hand grenades, although this is not as important if that member has an under-slung grenade launcher.

Exact loadouts can be found here. 


Backpacks should contain half of all your ammunition and  equipment, such that it is a mirror image of the gear you have on your person and so that when you drop your backpack to reduce combat weight, you still have everything you need to fight.