Civilization Idea: Bedouins

The Bedouins represent the nomadic and semi-nomadic people group of the same name living in the Middle East and North Africa, mostly Arabia and the Sinai Peninsula. While the Bedouins did not conquer anything to my knowledge, they did engage in raiding and sacking of various camps, villages, caravans, and monasteries. The Bedouins have the Middle Eastern architecture set, with a unique castle based on Tel Arad, an ancient Israelite fortress adjacent to a village historically occupied by Palestinian Bedouins. The Wonder is Saint Catherine’s Monastery, which is on a site important to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, and also has a connection to the Bedouins, being built by Wallachian soldiers who became Bedouins, and it was later captured by the Bedouins.

The civilization is a camel civilization, but also has excellent cavalry archers and cavalry in general. Like the Cumans and Goths, Stone Walls are completely missing, so hyper aggression is necessary.

Because of their historical tendency to raid instead of engage in large battles, the civ’s playstyle revolves all around fast but weak units that hold up poorly in sustained fighting. It also has elements befitting a nomadic civilization, and is in general very unconventional.

Well, enough of the introduction. Let’s get into it!

Civilization Bonuses

  • Mills spawn two goats when completed (limit of 2 Mills per age)

The Bedouins have traditionally been herdsmen, raising both goats and sheep, as well as camels. Their livestock was raised for meat, milk, and wool.

  • Destroyed buildings refund 50% of their cost

The Bedouins, being semi-nomads or full nomads, rarely had permanent dwellings, and either resided among ruins or lived in mobile tents.

  • Pack Camels can be trained in Mills

Camels are very common in Bedouin society, and are used for transportation as well as for food. They are typically raised alongside goats and sheep, as mentioned above. I’ll go into more detail about this unit later.

  • Raider Tents available starting in Dark Age

This is a reference to the Bedouin tradition of raiding other tribes, caravans, or settlements. I’ll go into more detail about this building later.

  • Team bonus: Camel units +2 LOS

This is a reference to the Bedouins relying on camels for a great many things, especially travel.

Unique Unit 1: Ghazi

  • The Ghazi is a fast but weak cavalry archer, with 45 HP (50 for Elite), no armor, and a speed of 1.45, a tad slower than the Light Cavalry. It has only 5 attack, with 5 range, but it has a charge attack of 5 (7 for Elite) that takes 30 seconds to recharge (25 for Elite). This charge attack is distinguished by an arrow with a straight trajectory, like the Composite Bowman, but then all other projectiles are normal. The charge attack is unblockable for all targets except buildings.

  • The Ghazi’s intended playstyle is to weave in and out of enemy engagements, using the charge attack to get hits off against enemy armies, then retreating before it takes damage. If it is caught out against an enemy army and cannot escape, it will perish, meaning that it requires a great deal of player concentration and micro to be effective. It will most likely only be a capable unit in the hands of competent players.

  • In Arabic, the word ghazi refers to warriors or defenders of the Islamic cause. However, in Bedouin society, the word has an association with raids carried out against their enemies, often to steal livestock or other supplies.

Unique Unit 2: Pack Camel

  • This is a totally passive unit with no combat abilities. It costs 75 food and can be trained at the Mill. Its main purpose is to boost the movement speed of villagers by 10% and their carry capacity by 3 within an 8-tile radius. However, it can also be used as an alternative scout, particularly in Nomad starts, because it benefits from the team bonus of extra camel unit LOS, so it ends with 6 LOS, greater than the Scout Cavalry initially. While it is rather expensive for the Dark Age, its value in scouting and then being used as an economic boost can be very useful. It moves at a speed of 1, so slower than the Scout Cavalry, but its better LOS can make up for that.

  • Since the Pack Camel is considered a camel unit, it takes the appropriate bonus damage, and while it cannot attack, it does benefit from the cavalry armor upgrades and Husbandry, making it marginally better in the late game with 2 base melee and pierce armor. Since the Bedouins do not have Bloodlines, it remains with the same 50 hit points throughout the game.

Unique Building: Raider Tent

  • This building costs 175 wood, like the other standard military buildings, and in essence functions like a combination of the three. It is able to train swordsmen, Scout Cavalry, Camel Riders, and Cavalry Archers, though their respective buildings must be built to upgrade them. For prerequisites and aging up, it counts as a Barracks. The Raider Tent is essentially a one-stop shop for all raiding unit necessities, which is very useful.

Unique Technologies
Maghazi: Raider Tent units move 10% faster and are trained 50% faster

  • Cost: 400 food, 400 gold

  • This technology improves the Raider Tent’s raiding ability by making the units trained there produced faster. While their normal building variants are improved in speed, since that’s a stat change to the units themselves, only the production speed boost applies to Raider Tents. The Bedouins have access to both Squires and Husbandry, which stack with this technology, making their swordsmen, light cavalry, Camel Riders, and Cavalry Archers the fastest in the game, the latter being 5% faster than Cuman units and the former being 5% faster than Celt units. However, key hit point and armor upgrades are missing, making the units fast, but very weak in direct combat.

  • The term maghazi now typically refers to Muhammad’s initial military campaigns, but it originally referred to pre-Islamic Bedouin raids for plundering purposes. It is one of the etymological origins for the French word razzia, which is now a loanword in English.

Dromedaries: Camel Rider gold cost replaced with 20 extra food

  • Cost: 800 food, 600 gold

  • This technology, while expensive, makes Camel Riders cheaper in total resources than that of any other civilization, and they become a trash unit as well. It pays for its gold cost after only 10 units, so the payoff is very quick. Camel Riders’ food cost changes from 55 to 75, but 60 gold is saved for each unit. They become marginally cheaper than generic Hussars, making them a cost-effective counter in trash fights, though they are still missing 20 HP and 1/2 armor.

  • Because Hussars, Pikemen, and Paladins are missing, Heavy Camel Riders should make up the core backbone of a late-game Bedouin army. Despite their lack of robustness in sustained fighting, they are the only unit cheap and sturdy enough to be cost effective in large engagements against enemy cavalry. They should essentially replace Pikemen in late-game trash wars, since Spearmen are inadequate against enemy Hussars.

  • Dromedary is another word for the Arabian Camel, which is the main pack animal for the Bedouins. They typically appear in the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa, especially the Sahara Desert. Dromedaries have not appeared in the wild for at least 2000 years; for all of their known history, they have been domestic animals. The only major population of feral dromedaries to date is in Australia, which is also the main source of dromedaries for modern Saudi Arabia.

Tech Tree

Missing Units: Pikeman, Eagle line, Arbalester, Elephant Archer line, Hussar, Paladin, Battle Elephant, Steppe Lancer, Siege Onager, Heavy Scorpion, Fast Fire Ship, Heavy Demolition Ship, Elite Cannon Galleon, Dromon.

Missing Techs: Gambesons, Bloodlines, Redemption, Atonement, Heresy, Illumination, Block Printing, Theocracy, Hoardings, Plate Barding Armor, Ring Archer Armor, Masonry, Fortified Wall, Guard Tower, Heated Shot, Treadmill Crane, Bombard Tower, Arrowslits, Gold Shaft Mining, Stone Shaft Mining, Shipwright.


Their tech tree is very limiting with the exception with exception of Aztecs and Viking every civ has at one trash units with full upgrades in both of those cases they have UT and bonus that make their trash usable. in fact with the exception of the Siege Ram Trebuchets ,and Bombard Cannons no unit has FU. Despite being ostensible a raiding civ their light cav lack Bloodlines and PBA. (I know that is to balance Trash Camels but why are they missing Hussar?) Their Camel lines are simulatiously both oppressive and underwhelming. In castle age they just lack Bloodline and besides being trained in raider tents they have no real bonus. In imperial age they are a downgrade until you are able to afford the UTs which is quite expensive for a must get in which case they destroy all cavalry. But my biggest problem is they have no answer to Archers they Lack RAA for their skirms, they lack PBA and bloodlines for their light cav, and they don’t have Onager or Heavy Scorpions.

I like the Ghazi as a UU the combinations of fast speed, charge attack, low HP and PA reinforce the intended playstyle that said the elite should have 6 atk and I would probably reduce the charge time by 5 seconds.

When I came up with this civ concept initially, I thought it was far-fetched and unrealistic. However, there can be a campaign for the civ centered around Salih ibn Mirdas, who conquered Aleppo and interacted with multiple civs in the game. I think this civ has a lot of potential with a more balanced tech tree.

Isnt bedouins the same as arabs/saracens?

Yesn’t. Bedouins are nomadic, and I wanted to try something different.

The design itself is interesting too bad not many have commented on it.

Why not give a shot at making a kurd civi concept?

Maybe I will. I also want to do a Latins civ at some point soon, representing the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem.


Okay, hopefully I’ll come up with 2 more Camel civs within a week. Since I’m too lazy to study history, I’ll just try to create a balanced civ.

That will always end well…

Looks like Bedouins can be a total opposite of Saracens. Saracens is no eco (Market eco) into strong military civ. Bedouins can be a fish+sheep eco into weak military.

Don’t have any idea on Kurds. Only thing I know is Saladin was a Kurd.