The Inuit represent the Thule people of North America and Greenland, including the Skraelings who attacked the Norse settlers in Canada. They have a unique architecture set; the Feudal Age architecture is sod-based and represents the fall dwellings of the Inuit, while the Castle Age architecture is made of snow and represents winter dwellings, like igloos; the Imperial Age architecture, as well as the Monastery and Castle, is made of piles of stones, with the occasional whale bone, and is largely inspired by inuksuit. The Inuit Wonder is Inuksuk Point, the largest group of inuksuit in the world.
The Inuit are an archer and naval civilization, which is justified by them having independently developed crossbows and other types of advanced bows, and using ships to navigate and fish.
Let’s talk about their civ bonuses.
- Start with 3 Caribou
Caribou, or reindeer, would be a new type of huntable animal in snowy maps, and the Inuit would start with three under their TC in addition to normal huntables. In a Nomad start, the Caribou would spawn after the TC was built.
Caribou live in the northern parts of North America and Siberia, and they were probably frequently hunted by the Inuit and other Arctic peoples.
- Archer line upgrades free
As mentioned before, the Inuit independently developed crossbows free of contact with anyone else, and while they were mostly used for hunting, they could also be used for combat.
- Fishing Ships and Galleys take -50% bonus damage
The Inuit were skilled shipbuilders, and mostly built them for fishing, but they could presumably also be used for combat. They knew how to make robust ships that held up under pressure.
- Careening, Dry Dock, Gillnets free
This, of course, further references the Inuit skill with shipbuilding and their typical usage of ships for fishing.
- Team bonus: Ranged units and Town Centers can safely hunt animals
Most Inuit ranged weapons were designed as hunting weapons first, but they could double as combat weapons in times of need.
Unique Unit 1: Qimmiq
The Qimmiq is a mounted archer riding a dogsled. It is the only mounted option for the Inuit, and the only hit-and-run archer available. This alone gives the unit an important role in raiding, but it also has high pierce armor and 3 archer armor (5 for Elite). This means that even Elite Skirmishers will do very little damage to the Qimmiq. Pikes are the best counter, since the Qimmiq does not have a bonus against them and the Inuit do not have Parthian Tactics.
Like all the other Inuit units aside from their ships, the Qimmiq is tanky and expensive, and perhaps exemplifies their archetype the best. Without the proper units to handle pike counters, the Qimmiq will be difficult to deal with, as skirmishers are woefully ineffective. Sheer numbers alone, or high pierce damage units like Conquistadors and Arambai, are the only options against it.
Qimmiq is the Inuit word for “dog.” The Inuit and other North American native peoples have a long heritage of using dogs for transport. Riding dog sleds for sport or transport is still popular in snowy regions to this day, and is known as mushing.
Unique Unit 2: Kayak
- The Kayak is a combat ship that possesses high pierce armor and a high attack bonus against other ships. It is maneuverable and easy to micro. However, it does not have as much HP or attack as other ships.
Bone Armor: Swordsmen, Eagle Warriors, and Crossbowmen take -50% bonus damage
Cost: 500 food, 500 gold
This technology makes swordsmen, eagles, and the archer line significantly more tanky against their counters. The Inuit do not have an especially good counter to swordsmen, so their eagles being more tanky against them is useful, and helps them last longer.
The Inuit did not have a lot of wood available, being residents of arctic regions with basically no trees, so when they didn’t use the little driftwood that washed ashore, they used the bones of large ocean creatures like whales and walruses. They created a form of laminar armor just using bones, and it probably had similar protection as European plate armor or Asian lamellar armor.
Cable-Backed Bow: Arbalesters, Qimmiqs, and Kayaks fire 25% faster
Cost: 750 food, 450 gold
This technology essentially grants a second Thumb Ring, but only to three units. With this tech, Inuit Arbalesters become the fastest-firing archer unit in the game, Elite Qimmiqs gain a significant attack boost, and Kayaks become a truly threatening naval unit. Although Bracer is missing and therefore so is one range, the DPS boost granted by the tech is substantial, and Inuit Arbalesters become truly top-tier, especially since they’re upgraded for free and instantly.
The cable-backed bow is a type of bow which is reinforced by a cable in the back, which seems fairly obvious based on the name. This cable increases the bow’s tensile strength and makes it less likely to break. In the case of the Inuit, they used animal sinews as the cable, which not only reinforced the bow, but also increased its power.
Missing Units: Halberdier, Elephant Archer, Cavalry Archer, Hand Cannoneer, entire Stable, Siege Ram, Siege Onager, Bombard Cannon, Demolition Raft, Cannon Galleon.
Missing Techs: Supplies, Parthian Tactics, Redemption, Atonement, Heresy, Sanctity, Block Printing, cavalry armor, Bracer, Architecture, Keep, Bombard Tower, Arrowslits, Crop Rotation, Gold Shaft Mining, Stone Shaft Mining.