Remind me to avoid China after this is posted.
The Tibetans represent the Tibetan Empire, as well as the various religious groups based in Tibet. The empire itself only lasted from 618-842, but it remained a military power in the region, albeit fractured and divided.
In terms of actual combat strength, the real Tibetan Empire had a big focus on heavy cavalry. This is reflected in the game, with the Tibetans having strong cavalry. Another notable feature of Tibet was its heavy monastery presence, which is also reflected in-game.
I went back and forth a while about whether to give the Tibetans the East Asian architecture or Southeast Asian architecture, but decided that the East Asian architecture would fit a lot more.
The Wonder for the Tibetans would be Samye, the first Tibetan Buddhist monastery.
- Can train Yaks from the Town Center
- Elite Steppe Lancer upgrade free
- Monks and Monasteries available in Feudal Age [Note: Monks cannot pick up relics until the Castle Age, and convert much more slowly in the Feudal Age]
- Monks cost -10% in Feudal, -20% in Castle, and -25% in Imperial Age
Team bonus: Start with a Yak
Unique Units: Depon (cavalry with extremely high pierce armor), Yak (herdable)
Unique Technologies: Lamellar Armor (Knights +4, Steppe Lancers +8 anti-cavalry armor), Golden Arrow Warriors (infantry +5 attack vs other infantry)
Tech Tree Notes:
Tibetan infantry is pretty good, actually. Although they lack the Champion, their Two-Handed Swordsmen are fully upgraded, and they have access to the Halberdier. Their infantry gain anti-infantry bonus damage after Golden Arrow Warriors, making their Two-Handed Swordsmen almost on par with Champions. Overall, their infantry is quite good.
The archers, though, are quite abysmal. They’re the third civ to completely lack Crossbowmen, they don’t have Heavy Cavalry Archers, Hand Cannoneers, Parthian Tactics, or Ring Archer Armor. Avoid their archers.
Their cavalry is quite stellar. Although they are missing Paladins, camels, elephants, and Plate Barding Armor, they are otherwise fully upgraded and their Knight line and Steppe Lancers even gain a bit of anti-cavalry bonus resistance. Their unique unit is also cavalry, and has high pierce armor similar to the Huskarl. The free Elite Steppe Lancer upgrade will give them a bit of a power spike as soon as they hit Imperial. In addition, their Knights are created faster due to Golden Arrow Warriors.
Tibetan siege is nothing particularly of note, only missing the Siege Onager. They do get Siege Engineers, though.
Tibetan Monks are fantastic. They have access to every upgrade, and Monasteries and Monks can be built/trained in the Feudal Age, which makes massing them a lot easier, especially since they get cheaper as the game goes on.
Tibetan defenses are average. They’re missing Keeps and Bombard Towers, but at least have Fortified Walls, Heated Shot, and Arrowslits.
The Tibetan economy is quite good. As a team bonus, they and all their allies start with a Yak, and the Tibetans can train additional Yaks from the Town Center, allowing for potentially infinite and mobile food sources. As a consequence, they lack Crop Rotation, but have all the other economy techs.
Tibetan ships are, unsurprisingly, quite awful. They don’t have Fast Fire Ships, Heavy Demo Ships, Elite Cannon Galleons, or Shipwright.
In conclusion, the Tibetans have a potentially very strong early game, with the capability of training Yaks to augment food production when wood is low and other sources of food are hard to find. They can also build Monasteries in the Feudal Age and train cheaper Monks that only get cheaper as the ages go on. In the late game, they get fully upgraded Cavaliers with some anti-cavalry resistance and faster creation time, extremely arrow-resistant Elite Depons, and swordsmen that are trained really quickly.
Stats and Costs:
HP: 100, 115 (Elite)
Attack: 8, 10 (Elite)
Attack Bonuses: +5 vs Archers
Rate of Fire: 1.8
Armor: 0/6, 0/8 (Elite)
Cost: 85 food, 75 gold
Training Time: 10 seconds
Elite Upgrade Cost: 1250 food, 1000 gold
Maximum Food: 150
Cost: 30 food
Training Time: 6 seconds
Lamellar Armor Cost: 500 food, 230 gold
Lamellar Armor Research Time: 45 seconds
Golden Arrow Warriors Cost: 1000 food, 850 gold
Golden Arrow Warriors Research Time: 60 seconds
The Yak team bonus and civ bonus represent how the domestic yak is a herd animal very common to see in Tibet.
While the Tibetans having Steppe Lancers may seem odd, the Steppe Lancers’ extremely long spears represent how Tibetan cavalry would fight using very long lances, and the free Elite upgrade reinforces that.
Monks and Monasteries are available in the Feudal Age as a reference to how Tibet very early on converted to Buddhism and started building monasteries. They’re also cheaper as a further nod to this fact.
The Depon is named after nobility that were descended from the ancient royal families, but the unit itself represents heavy Tibetan cavalry, which was heavily armored with lamellar that could not be harmed by either swords or bows. This is represented by the unit’s extremely high pierce armor.
Speaking of lamellar, it was worn by regular cavalry as well, so Knights and Steppe Lancers receive some of the Depon’s anti-cavalry bonus resistance, but not any extra pierce or melee armor.
Golden Arrow Warriors is a reference to the part-time officers in the Tibetan military who were signified by golden arrow insignias. They were, naturally, quite good at what they did, and Tibetan infantry gain anti-infantry bonus damage as a reference to this.