Balance For African And Native Civs

read that most of the problems from the last (unplayable)patch were fixed and decided to try some pvp. it is still bad with lots of issues remaining such as the ui and social features, no ranks or match history, unable to compare decks, performance issues, crashes, losing when winning and buggy unit behavior/pathfinding.

but these problems have been here for years now, and it does not seem that they will be fixed anytime soon sadly. they should be priority. aoe3 de still feels like a single player focused game, mp can’t be taken seriously.
at least the monster truck rallies seem to be a thing of the past.

otherwise here are some balance issues that I think should be addressed soon:

                              Hausa (and Ethiopia)

javelin riders are still too strong and need to be more specialized. change cost to 80 food 40 gold, hp to 180, resistance to 20% melee, and damage to 8 with increased bonus. this makes them less of a tanky generalist. they are too oppressive and hard to punish with their current price point and durability.

increase Fulani cost by 5 wood and 10 food, but also their damage by 1/heavy infantry bonus to 1.5x. less affordable early, but more effective later. enable the Fulani rifle tech at the university in age 4, and have the tech also switch their wood cost to gold. the tech has been in the game files for a while, it should be enabled.

nerf griot slow to 25% and reduce their hp. allied unit shipments should be cheaper but give less units.

war camp cost increased to 300 from 200, and combined upgrade cost increased by ~20%.

                           Natives in general

war chief dance split between damage and hp. attack dance changed to 10% hp/damage split at 25 vills. water dance and town dance removed outright and civs balanced without it. warriors should train in a batch and cost pop like minutemen, this dance spawn thing makes the game worse. enable mortars age 4 and mercs age 3.


huaraca too close to abus and not enough like arrow knights. halve pop, reduce damage to 5, increase their range and bonus vs artillery, buildings and ships, and make their shots instant fire.

strongholds are cool but feel too aggressive. halve hp and damage, reduce cost and build time by 25%, and add 2 to build limit. give them a new non stacking mechanic that increases nearby building hp and damage when linked to an allied town center directly or through other strongholds. makes them more defensive in nature.

reduce mace men pop to 2. they are as common in my games as Hatamoto, grenadiers or ronin. never seen.


175 cost bow rider, 4 vill age 1, 4 axe rider age 2, age 2 evening star, 400 cost tc, 200 pop no house, bow rider full damage vs vills, stacking tepee aura, cav war chief aoe troll pole 11x and aura, siege dance, bow riders.

abomination of a civ. people complained about Protoss in sc2, but even at its most infuriating was better designed than this. losing to this civ is among the worst feelings in this game. should have been the first to be reworked and playing against it reminded me why I never switched to tad from vanilla. Lakota people deserve better.


eagle runners still an abomination like bow riders. big buttons need to be reworked, pikes need cost and siege damage reduced along with removal of siege trooper tag. coyote runners too effective vs counters, not effective enough vs targets, shock infantry tag still a mistake.


playing as and against Haud still convinced tomahawk bb is problematic with good treasures. high siege early on without train time or building is bad for game, replace with aenna instead. toma and horsemen wood cost is a tragedy and reason civ will never be popular unless broken.

musket riders need a cape for readability. remove siege pop card. mantlets and rams should be available age 2 with reduced stats, increased move speed, and wood cost changed. move conservative tactics to age 4.

                                Spain Rework

was excited about Reconquista card, somehow thought it was 1 vet lancer shipped for any 5 infantry trained. instead, its 1 for every 5 archaic infantry dead and in exchange you get a worse version of age 2 dragoon. why this card exists? if you want conquistadors for Spain give them an age 1 embassy alliance card for Jesuits that also enables cannoneers. simpler, easier, and more direct way of giving them access to the units.

unction should never have stacked or affected artillery. missionaries still run when damaged and default melee attack with attack move making it frustrating to use. melee units should be compensated as well. card still problematic and should just be removed or reworked, same for Spanish gold. 2 battleships are an awesome idea, but water still sucks and is not fun to play.

other cards are cool. haciendas feel good. liberation march a great change. lots of fun Mexico vibes.

rod gold cost should be reduced, and xbow/pike should be pure food for all civs Imo. enables better age 2 play.


Where do I start.

Javelin riders are comparable in stats to ruyters, so nerf those first then we can see. Ruyters also get cav combat which is better than the jav riders upgrade cards. You can’t even catch cav with jav riders due to low speed.

The fulani do need an extra multiplier vs heavy inf and I think it should come with the fulani age 3 card as they did with longbows. Cost is fine though.
Griots are fine, barely even used in 1v1.
The combined upgrades isn’t necessarily a good thing, forcing you to pay a lot more when maybe only 1 unit needs upgrading, also only effects lifidi by 10%.

Native dances are fine.

Unnecessary inca changes, without a major rework to inca to make other strats viable again like the kancha boom you can’t just destroy the huaraca FF when it’s their only viable strat. Kancha gives 15 pop so 150 wood worth, that means the trickle costs 30 wood, compare that to a brit manor where a free vill costs 35 wood, or a torp worth a vill collecting multiple res also just 35 wood. The trickle is terrible in comparison for almost the same cost.
Macemen do need changes, worst unit in the game.

Lakota are fine though a few new cards are needed.

Aztec ERK’s are fine, they need a strong unit with no artillery or strong cav.

Haud is fine.

The new spanish card is trash I agree.


“give them an age 1 embassy alliance card for Jesuits that also enables cannoneers”.

This would been great…

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All these civs strategies can be countered and beaten, most changes are not necessary. Ide caution the devs in trying to level all civs and standardize things because it makes the game incredibly boring. For example, what would the Lakota be without strong cav? That is literally what their entire civ is about. While they have many bonuses they also have their weaknesses, like no artillery, very slow coin gathering, etc. They are fairly balanced as it is. Yesterday I SMOKED a high ELO Lakota player attempting to do 10/10 BR strat by using a simple jan rush. No need to make changes.

Im afraid many people will come onto the forums and request nerfs to things for the simple fact that they get beaten by it, without instead considering a counter strategy on how to beat what just happened to them.


The game is P2W atm, hausa and ethiopia S+ tier

Am I the only one not owning people with Jav Riders? They get melted by skirms and halbs like any other dragoon, and their range is bad and they are slower. They suck!

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They’re nothing special, worst thing for me is they can’t catch cavalry raids due to lower speed.

They were pretty OP on release, but now they are fine.

Javelin riders have multipliers vs artillery in age2, zamburaks don’t, big difference there.
Also, influence shipments are way to strong, it doesn’t work like export, you are trickling it from tp,/cattle/university/monastery, whereas export is based on your villager’s work. And since you can pay for natives in influence, you’re saving the time to gather coin/wood, which take 0.66/0.5 villager seconds to gather, therefore every influence shipment is worth almost the double, Imagine sending 1400coin in age2, sheesh devs, you’re really pull that off.


Export and influence are not directly comparable. Influence is used for a lot of things, whereas export is strictly for the consulate cards.

I’d say that about 50% of units and tech available to affrica are influence, which cannot be gathered directly and the cows often conflict between keeping them for tickles and selling for resources.

Artillery and specific counter units are only available though influence. This is a weakness in supremacy, in early and mid game, affrica cannot field artillery and specialized units as easily as other civs. You should be exploiting that.

How much artillery do you come up against in age 2 though?

What’s the point of aging up to fortress and get falcs when your enemy can stay in age2 and mass jav riders to kill your artillery in 5 seconds? It makes aging up worthless, they have a complete roster of units, mercs & natives at age2.


Ideally you don’t walk your falcs into javelin riders, get a decent skirm mass built up first then at least if they suicide their jav riders for 2 falcs then you get the better trade resource wise.

how are javelin riders comparable to ruyters? please prove that assumption. if you removed 50 hp javelin riders will still be much stronger. they also have the same speed as most hand cav, and unlike ruyters(or the much slower janissary) can beat a hussar or uhlan 1v1 without kiting. all this for 10 more resources.

the huge hp pool and low cost makes it problematic, combined with the highest dps among light cav it warps the game and negates traditional counters while demolishing hand cav better than dragoons on a 1 to 1 basis.

they are the most powerful 1 pop ranged cav in the game, with the highest hp and damage per pop for light cavalry. it’s not even close.

fulani cost is not fine, its cost is too low and allows too strong a mass early game. the damage boost is simply to compensate for late game. griots are almost always used in my 1v1s, they are amazing units.

native dances are problematic. war chief pure hp dance was always a stupid mechanic, reducing the hp bonus and making it an equal split with damage will bring down how abusable it is and make it more micro intensive rather than a low effort battle winning hp tank. equalizing attack dance into a straight 10% hp/damage also makes it easier to balance.

mm spawn through dancing is a bad mechanic for a strategy game, it got even worse after it was buffed. mm changed to standard batch would solve so many issues with it.

water and town defense are the same abusable and gimmicky mechanics that cover core issues, native water should be able to stand on its own without needing them.

if their only viable strategy is bad for the game, it needs to be changed. if it ruins the experience and fun for players and promotes bad gameplay, viability is the least concern. make a gameplay pattern that is fun and fair, then buff as required.

viability is never a good excuse for making the game worse. else we may as well flip coins to win games to get a perfectly balanced game.

on that same token, Lakota are not fine. they promote unfun and frustrating gameplay that has you play in a repetitive and boring way because of all the absurd bonuses they get to compensate for their bad design.

that you think Aztecs require a such a unit because shock infantry are a poorly designed unit class rather than fixing shock infantry is alarming. if their unit isn’t functioning as well as they should, fix it. not buff a random one with absurd stats.

promoting good gameplay with clear counters and balanced units should be the goal, not hiding a civs deficiencies by making their units far too strong compared to their peers.

bb can still be too abusive, rams and mantlets are terrible, too many cards stacked in age 2, horsemen and musket riders are difficult to tell apart in game, and wood cost toma/horsemen hinder the civ in many ways.

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that is poor reasoning. if it promotes bad gameplay and feels frustrating to play against it does not mean it’s good for the game/mp even if it results in a 50% win rate. there’s a difference between lakota cav being strong and being frustrating.

using 1 or 2 games as an example that something is fine isn’t a good argument. what is this “high elo” anyway? I’ve beaten 1800+ elo players as Dutch without making a single bank, stopped water booms with grenadiers, won with double stable opening in a Russian mirror and as ports with a ronin pop at tc.

that doesn’t make them any good. I’m not going to tell people these are viable strategies and to say otherwise means they just didn’t try hard enough.

there’s a difference between beatable, being balanced and making a great pvp environment/meta. and if personal experiences are invalid, what does that make your jan rush story vs lakota br?

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They are very comparable to a ruyter, same cost and same pop, ruyter is more gold heavy but dutch vills gather gold 20% faster + banks so it evens out.

Ruyter do more damage and are faster, also benefit from ranged cavalry caracole giving them 14 range and making kiting very easy, javelin riders have a far slower animation too that combined with slow speed makes kiting difficult and catching hand cav impossible. Cav combat is also a better card and effects hussar too which dutch use. The jav card is literally just for that 1 unit.

Speed is the most important stat in the game, sure if some noob slams his cav into my javelin riders I’m fine but when I’ve got huss raiding me from both sides I can never catch them with javelin riders.

Fulani suffer as longbow do vs heavy infantry, they really need a higher multiplier or something with a card. It’s cost is 10 extra food but 5 less wood than a longbow so perfectly in line considering the longbows longer range and far higher DPS.

Lakota are a fun civ and far from broken.

Ideal scenario is that they rework all of aztec and inca units but that’s not going to happen so if they have a particularly strong unit like ERK for aztec or Huaraca for the inca then I’m fine with that.

Haud will likely see some changes when it’s their time for an update, hopefully some changes to mantlets and rams.

you made a mistake, jav riders attack twice as fast as ruyters, they have 43% more damage output. they also happen to have 36% more hit points. against ruyters they nearly win 2v3 and easily win the 3v4. shiwa riders affects Oromo as well, and a javelin rider with a card will solo a veteran hussar, a Ruyter wont.

they aren’t similar in terms of hp or damage at all, they beat musketeers and trade evenly with jans and skirms while being faster than them. they also do massively more damage to cavalry (and every other unit) either in range or in melee. as a general purpose unit they are unmatched, against cavalry they are even better. ruyters cannot perform like them regardless of cards.

jav riders are also available in age 2, ruyters are an age 3 unit. if they are splitting hussars on both sides, just do the same with javelin riders? they are the same speed as hussars, if you can’t predict and stop raids in age 2 with javelin riders then how do you do it with civs that have foot explorers and no light cavalry in age 2?

predicting raids and stopping them with far slower heavy infantry is a basic skill, javelin riders make it so much easier in comparison.

Lakota are broken. their cards have far more value than others, bow riders and siege dance break so many game rules, and playing against them is among the worst experiences in the game. the gameplay they force on their opponents isn’t healthy or interesting.

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the problem is with nerfing ERK is you would be hitting the literal only good unit Aztec has. Their strength is balanced by their steeper cost and how slow it is to train/mass them.


Higher ROF doesn’t matter when kiting it’s better to get all the damage off in 1 shot then move back, not sit there as the jav riders have to. They need more HP because they’re slower and have high ROF and lower damage so they need to sit still and fire. Oromo are useless so it’s irrelevant if they effect them tbh. A ruyter can solo a hussar all day, just move and shoot.

Ruyters may not perform as well vs other units but they do perform better in the role of anti-cav, they can chase down huss all day.

I’m aware of how to stop raids in age 2 lol my point is that upon reaching age 3 they still remain far slower than hand cav, any other dragoon can punish raids by catching enemy cav, it’s easy to just run away from javelins.

Lakota aren’t so easy to play, their units are strong but expensive. Lack a lot of eco upgrades for wood and coin too only offset by their great food eco. All their infantry is trash too.

ERKs are beaten by skirmishers like every aztec unit, they are far from be unbeatable. Also they are trained slowly as hell. An aztec player cant stop training units because they dont reach 200pop effectively.
Also aztecs have got a poor transition to estates, remember that natives get worse ones (without adding cards, in that case is even worse) while ERLs and AKs are coin heavy.

Natives are limited to few barracks while dont have canons also lakota cant build walls neither. Town dance just give them time to reach the same situation because other civs just have to train mortars and protect them while nats have worse stats and train time. Same for water, they will run out of wood. Also they cant train units from ships, so far from OP.