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What makes this faction stand out?
Quality over quantity is the name of the game. Japanese units are powerful but few in number due to high costs. Additionally, the Shogun hero unit allows Japan to quickly adjust against counters by erecting different Banners.
Notes on the concept:
This is a total overhaul of my previous Japanese faction concept. Last time, I put too much emphasis on the different Japanese clans, and ultimately created a faction that lacked identity, so this time I changed up everything.
- In addition to their units costing more, Japan’s also limited by the Shrine, which replaces the House.
- The Shrine costs 100 wood, which is 2x as expensive as a regular house, while providing the same housing space.
- For Shrines to be maximally efficient, Japanese players will need to spread them out over the map, which means they will have to defend a larger area.
- Shrines are somewhat of a cross between Japanese Shrines in AOE3, Swedish Torps in AOE3, and Rus Hunting Cabins in AOE4.
- The powerful “Yabusame” armored horse archer unit is a crazy OP unit available in Age 2. They are meant to help Japanese players establish map control early on.
- Since Japanese units cost so much, it can be very difficult to transition into alternative compositions to deal with counters. The Shogun’s “Command Banner” ability is designed to offset this. The Command Banner’s aura gives nearby units bonus damage against specific unit types, allowing a Japanese composition to address counters more efficiently.
- For example, an army of Spearmen with the “Bonus Damage vs. Armored units” may fare a little better against Men-at-arms than normal.
- The Command Banner is also meant to offset the lack of Crossbowmen and Lancers.
- Samurai are a stronger Man-at-arms unit with very high attack speed. This makes them a natural pairing with the Shogun’s bonus damage buff.
- While this concept features 6 unique units (tied with China), 2 of those unique units are gated behind Landmarks, and 1 of them cannot be controlled. So in reality Japan only has about 4 unique units.
- Japan has a very powerful super-late-game. A maximized Shrine trickle means less villagers population, meaning more military units. This reflects well with history, as Japan had a hugely powerful military at the end of the 16th century which they took to invade Korea with.
- As usual, this concept does not look into Water/Naval at all. All AOEIV concepts should be able to stand on their own on land.
- Art is from Age of Empires III with some modifications made by me in Photoshop.
- Flag comes from Seisig of the AOE4 forums.
- Mithrik’s Japan Concept, Kameho3743’s Japan Concept, googlesomethingonce’s Japan Concept, and GoldenArmorX’s Japan Concept all served as inspiration.
For more concepts please check out my website: Chilly’s AOEIV Civilization Concepts