NOTE: The forum doesn’t play well with large images. Click here for a higher resolution image.
What makes this faction stand out?
This faction has unique access to a 5th resource known as “Spice”, which they use to produce units cheaply. Additionally, they have a diverse selection of unique units, Kris-wielding men-at-arms, swift war chariots, and the powerful Cetbang cannon.
Notes on the concept:
- I recognize Majapahit are low on the list of desired factions. Unfortunately this is a region often underrepresented in medieval games. This does not mean the region is undeserving however! They have a very unique history with colorful characters, awesome warrior traditions, and advanced gunpowder technology that really made them stand out in this time period.
- With this concept I attempted to create a faction with a 5th resource, Spice. It’s what makes this whole faction go round. I think it’ll create a very unique and fun experience for Majapahit players - their macro play will be very unique.
- Java was known for breeding swift horses, but unfortunately I could not find solid evidence for heavy cavalry. I replaced the Lancer with the “War Chariot”, which brings some unique flavor to the region. That being said, the War Chariot is also anachronistic. Chariots by the time of the Majapahit Empire were at most used for transporting nobles, no longer employed in direct combat. There is evidence to suggest that it was used in past conflicts in the region however. So I recognize that this is a fantasy unit, but historically inspired. An alternative is to take inspiration from heavy cavalry employed by the Sultanate of Aceh, but I had limited sources on that too.
- Majapahit rulers often went to war atop War Elephants, but I felt that I already had a lot of faction concepts with elephants, and too many elephants would cheapen their impact. So in this case I opted for War Chariots instead.
- The Trident-wielding spearmen are also a bit of a fantasy unit. There is light evidence of the use of tridents in warfare in this region, but spears were far more common. But I felt that Tridents were a cool bit of flavor that synergized well with the design, so I decided to include it.
- I found little evidence of Crossbows as well, but it’s common in nearby regions, so I opted to include it. It’s possible to omit it for the inclusion of a mace-wielding melee infantry unit however.
- Cetbangs are a really cool unique unit. I see them filling a similar role to the “Flaming Arrow” of AOE3’s Japan. Both anti-unit, and anti-artillery. I’m imagining their design in-game appearing similar - dragon-head, and incendiary arrow.
- The “Java arquebus” heavily overlaps with the Jiaozhi Arquebusier design in the Vietnamese faction concept I previously created. As far as I can tell, there is some historical muddiness - these two may have been the same gun. In this case I’m borrowing from my Vietnamese concept. I may have to redesign or even scrap the Vietnam concept in the future.
- Age of Empires 2 weirdly chose to highlight the “Karambit” as the unique unit for this region. Karambits are cool knives used in farming and martial arts, but functioned merely as a backup dagger on the battlefield. It’d be like creating a unit that solely wielded “Rondel Daggers”. It’s weird. Unless I’m missing something I’m struggling to see how this isn’t just lazy racism. Indonesia is instead known for the Keris/Kris sword - it’s this region’s “Katana”. It’s got an awesome and unique look and it’s the obvious weapon to feature.
- Majapahit was famously a thalassocratic empire, but I omited anything related to water in this concept. As in all my concepts, I feel that all civs need to be able to stand by themselves on land maps in this game.
For this concept I took inspiration from Kameho’s Majapahit concept, and ValkyrieDown’s Majapahit concept, and nikkithegreat’s Majapahit concept. Once again, the image of the flag comes from Seicing on the AOE4 official forums. The cover art was generated through Midjourney, and then heavily edited by me.