Civilization Craft: Avars

The Avars represent the Pannonian Avars, an early medieval alliance of nomadic tribes that combined and formed an empire in Central Europe. It is likely that they are the ancestors of the Hungarians, represented in-game by the Magyars, but this civ concept is notably different from the Magyars in many ways.

The Avars were allied with the Byzantines for a few centuries, but ended up invading them later. This is represented by their Wonder being a ruined and sacked version of Didymoteicho Fortress, as, while there’s no guarantee it was attacked by the Avars themselves, it did face many sieges in the early centuries after the fall of Rome, and is thus rather representative of early Byzantine conflict at the hands of barbarians.

The Avars have Eastern European architecture. I thought about giving them my Caucasian architecture set to reflect where they hailed from, but given they ended up settling around Hungary, it made more sense this way.

Anyway, enough chit-chat and on with the brainstorm.

Cavalry and Siege civilization

Civilization Bonuses:

  • Repairing costs -50% wood, -25% stone
  • Light Cavalry, Steppe Lancers +1 melee armor in Castle, +2 in Imperial Age (for +3 total)
  • Siege weapons +25% HP

Team bonus: Steppe Lancers +2 attack vs cavalry

Unique Unit: Sabir (cavalry unit that can repair friendly siege weapons)

Unique Technologies: Steppe Dynamics (Steppe Lancers +20 HP), Pannonian Woodworking (siege weapons cost -30%)

Tech Tree:

Military Buildings



  • Militia - Man-at-Arms - Long Swordsman - Two-Handed Swordsman - (X) Champion
  • Spearman - Pikeman - Halberdier
  • (X) Eagle Scout - (X) Eagle Warrior - (X) Elite Eagle Warrior
  • (X) Supplies
  • Squires
  • Arson


Archery Range

  • Archer - Crossbowman - (X) Arbalester
  • Skirmisher - Elite Skirmisher
  • (X) Elephant Archer - (X) Elite Elephant Archer
  • Cavalry Archer - Heavy Cavalry Archer
  • (X) Hand Cannoneer
  • (X) Thumb Ring
  • Parthian Tactics



  • Scout Cavalry - Light Cavalry - Hussar
  • Knight - Cavalier - (X) Paladin
  • (X) Camel Rider - (X) Heavy Camel Rider
  • (X) Battle Elephant - (X) Elite Battle Elephant
  • Steppe Lancer - Elite Steppe Lancer
  • Bloodlines
  • Husbandry
  • Bonus: Light Cavalry, Steppe Lancers +1 melee armor in Castle, +2 in Imperial Age (for +3 total)
  • Team bonus: Stable units cost -15%
  • Steppe Dynamics (Steppe Lancers deal trample damage)


Siege Workshop

  • Battering Ram - Capped Ram - Siege Ram
  • Mangonel - Onager - Siege Onager
  • Scorpion - Heavy Scorpion
  • (X) Bombard Cannon
  • Siege Tower
  • Bonus: Siege weapons +25% HP
  • Pannonian Woodworking (siege weapons cost -45% wood)



  • Monk
  • (X) Redemption
  • (X) Atonement
  • Herbal Medicine
  • (X) Heresy
  • Sanctity
  • Fervor
  • (X) Faith
  • Illumination
  • (X) Block Printing
  • (X) Theocracy



  • Sabir - Elite Sabir
  • Petard
  • Trebuchet
  • Unique technologies: Steppe Dynamics (Steppe Lancers deal trample damage), Pannonian Woodworking (siege weapons cost -45% wood)
  • Hoardings
  • Sappers
  • Conscription
  • Spies/Treason
  • Bonus: Trebuchets +25% HP
Research Buildings



  • Scale Mail Armor - Chain Mail Armor - Plate Mail Armor
  • Scale Barding Armor - Chain Barding Armor - (X) Plate Barding Armor
  • Padded Archer Armor - Leather Archer Armor - Ring Archer Armor
  • Forging - Iron Casting - (X) Blast Furnace
  • Fletching - Bodkin Arrow - Bracer



  • Masonry - (X) Architecture
  • (X) Fortified Wall
  • Ballistics
  • (X) Guard Tower - (X) Keep
  • (X) Heated Shot
  • Murder Holes
  • Treadmill Crane
  • Chemistry - (X) Bombard Tower
  • (X) Siege Engineers
  • Arrowslits


Economic Buildings


Town Center

  • Villager
  • Loom
  • Town Watch - Town Patrol
  • Wheelbarrow - Hand Cart
  • Bonus: Repairing costs -50% wood, -25% stone



  • Horse Collar - Heavy Plow - Crop Rotation


Lumber Camp

  • Double-Bit Axe - Bow Saw - (X) Two-Man Saw


Mining Camp

  • Gold Mining - Gold Shaft Mining
  • Stone Mining - (X) Stone Shaft Mining



  • Trade Cart
  • Caravan
  • Coinage - Banking
  • Guilds



  • Fishing Ship
  • Transport Ship
  • Trade Cog
  • Fire Galley - Fire Ship - Fast Fire Ship
  • Galley - War Galley - Galleon
  • Demolition Raft - Demolition Ship - Heavy Demolition Ship
  • (X) Cannon Galleon - (X) Elite Cannon Galleon
  • Gillnets
  • Careening - (X) Dry Dock
  • (X) Shipwright


Defensive Buildings


Palisade Wall


Palisade Gate


(X) Stone Wall - (X) Fortified Wall




Watch Tower - (X) Guard Tower - (X) Keep


(X) Bombard Tower

Stats and Costs:

Sabir Stats:

HP: 110, 115 (Elite)
Attack: 9, 11 (Elite)
Attack Bonuses: None
Rate of Fire: 1.75
Armor: 1/0, 2/1 (Elite)
Speed: 1.35
LOS: 5

Cost: 45 food, 80 gold
Training Time: 12 seconds
Elite Upgrade Cost: 1000 food, 850 gold

Steppe Dynamics Cost: 650 food, 400 gold
Steppe Dynamics Research Time: 35 seconds

Pannonian Woodworking Cost: 1200 wood, 980 gold
Pannonian Woodworking Research Time: 60 seconds

Historical Explanations:

Repairing costing less wood than usual is a reference to how the Avars specialized partly in siege weapons. Stone is thrown in as a pragmatic addition to make repairing fortifications much easier.

Light Cavalry and Steppe Lancers having a lot of extra melee armor is a reference to the fact that the Avars tended to be heavily armored when riding into battle.

Siege weapons have an additional 25% hit points as a further nod to Avar siege weaponry.

The team bonus of Steppe Lancers dealing +2 vs cavalry is due to lances generally being effective against cavalry.

The Sabir is named after a nomadic tribe that was conquered by and eventually inducted into the Avars. They specialized in siege weaponry, which is why the Sabir can repair siege weapons on the battlefield, a very useful skill if they’re heavily damaged, especially with the bonus.

Steppe Dynamics references the politics that often ended up creating nomadic empires. Since “steppe” is in the name, Steppe Lancers are affected by the tech.

Pannonian Woodworking is yet another reference to Avar siegecraft, which was one of their specialties. It’s not difficult to assume that they’d figure out how to build their siege weapons as efficiently as possible, saving them resources in the process.


Represented by the Huns, in fact.
There is a saying that the trebuchet bonus of the Huns is based on the Avars.
Just check the fandom.

Yes, I know that. That article was what inspired me to design this civ. But don’t mind that. Just evaluate the civ based on its attributes.

Not a fan of the UT names, they sound too generic.

I’m open to changing them if you think of better names. I’m not changing the functionality though.

@TungstenBoar @TheConqueror753, what are your thoughts?

I dont like the team bonus, way too OP, and without it the civ kind of sucks early game. Also, the UU is overpriced for such a weak gimmick and stats. The extra armor and blast damage and cheaper steppe lancers are also quite ridiculous

I like most stuff here beyond the team bonus but I think you can balance it better or use it across multiple civs

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What kind of changes do you suggest I make?

Replace the team bonus and steppe lancer UT, give them an eco bonus and make the UU be stronger (or much cheaper) and have something else unique beyond their repair ability

Agreed. I’ll start racking my brain right away.

Shame…I rather liked that one. Oh well. I guess trample damage doesn’t work well for 1-range melee units.

I’ll try to think of one, but all that cheap stuff was meant to be their eco bonus. However, that’s rather flimsy, so I’ll give them an eco bonus proper.

I can certainly do one or both of those things. However, I am not sure what other gimmick to give them besides the repair ability. It’s meant to complement their siege affinity and repair bonus.

Since you are open to change TB, here are my proposals -

  1. CA units train 20% faster.
  2. SL +2 attack bonus vs Cavalry.

For proper eco bonus, you may consider some sort of wood bonus to buff their siege and cavalry (more wood = more farm) play.

Setting aside mangudai and camel archers, that first one is just the Britons tb but worse

Can be increased to 25% but I fear that can be OP. Especially when you consider some UU like Conqs, Arambai, WW.

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Forgot those other ones 11

These are all good ideas. I like them!

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What could their Wonder be?

It’s detailed in the post - it’s a ruined Byzantine fortress, meant to represent how the Avars eventually sacked Byzantine towns as punishment for not being able to pay them.

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Eco bonus of this civ can be like this:

  • huntables contain 30% more food (representing their successful hunting methods).

Avars light cavalries aren’t heavily armored, thus Melee Armor doesn’t feel right. Therefore, I propose bonus attack.

  • Ligh Cavalry&Steppe Lancer +1/+2 attack in Castle/Imperial Age.

+25% HP for siege weapons is boring. Faster projectile feels more convenient.

  • Siege projectiles moves 20% faster.

UU Sabir is too weak.

  • My proposal is armor 2/1, speed 1.45, hp 110/150, attack 11/17.

For Tech tree:


  • After +1/+2 attack Hussar and Steppe Lancer (+2 vs Cavalry and +20 hp, too), Civ doesn’t need Halberdier to counter Cavalry. Only Spearman is enough.

Archery Range

  • Avars are cav archer in real history, they need thumb ring.
  • I assume you removed " Team bonus: Stable units cos# ###### it is still written in here.
  • I assume Steppe Lancer trample damage changed to +20 hp.

Siege Workshop

  • It is good, siege weapons cost -45% wood is nice bonus for late game I think.


  • I don’t care Monanstery in AOE2, that’s why I am not commenting about it.


  • Cavalry units will be useless without Plate Barding Armor in late game. It needs to be added.
  • Blast furnace should also be added. Without these 2 upgrades, Cavalry untis will be useless.
  • Other blacksmith tech are okay I think.


  • Siege Engineers should also be added. If 30% cheaper siege discount remains, removing Siege Engineers is possible. But with 45% wood discount, Siege Engineers must remain.

Dock and Defensive Buildings

I think tech tree choices are in place for these 2 buildings.

If they don’t have camel then I must ask your ELO to say that so straight faced.


Yeah, for real. What? There’s a reason nobody uses Turk spearmen, it’s because they are terrible. You need at least pikes if you don’t have another anti cav option.