Civilization Idea: the Chams (2023 Update)

Recently I’ve read through some articles regarding the Chams and decided to remake this civ. My main references are these two sources ( Champa - Wikipedia and Military of Champa - Wikipedia )

I’ve already made a civ crafting about the Chams back in 2021, this is an update to that.

Chams - Archer and Naval civilization

Civ Bonuses:

  • Foragers and Fishermen require no drop-off sites

  • Destroyed enemy eco units (Villagers, Trade Carts, Trade Cogs, and Fishing Ships) return 10% of their cost to the player (I reckon this might be a bit similar to the Viking’s Castle Age UT Chieftains effect on Infantry, but then again it’s not exactly the same. If you feel that it’s too similar we can replace this Civ Bonus with something like Villagers repair ships X% faster)

  • War galleys have 5 population spots and can transport units (when they have units ###### #### they would have a small flag on top)

  • Trade cogs +2 LOS and +2 pierce armor

  • Can upgrade Docks to Ports in the Imperial Age, once upgraded team Trade Cogs will not only bring back Gold but also some Food and Wood as well. Note that this effect won’t apply to Trade Carts, they still only bring back Gold. This Civ Bonus (and the previous one) is to reflect on the fact that historically Champa’s economy relied mostly on maritime trade, with rice, aloe, and eaglewood being their top export commodities.

Team Bonus:

  • Archers +3 attack against Ships

Unique Techs:

  • Rukaiyah (Castle Age UT): crossbowmen have a secondary weak projectile (similar effect to the Hul’che Javelineers of the Mayans, though applied to crossbowmen rather than skirms)

  • Chamic City States (Imperial Age UT): when a TC gets destroyed by the enemy, an Ox Cart will spawn automatically on its ruins, and the player can drag it elsewhere on the map to deploy into a new TC. Not sure if this tech is too OP or not, maybe there needs to be a number limit on this, like for instance the effect can only apply 3 times. And also note that this only applies to TCs destroyed by the enemy, doesn’t apply to self-deleted TCs. This tech is to reflect on the fact that historically the Champa kingdom wasn’t really a unified kingdom where the king holds absolute power over all of his dominion, but instead was a confederation made up of a number of city states. And when the dominant Chamic city state fell another to its south would rise in power, which is quite unlike the case with centralized powers (like ancient China for instance) where once the capital fell the whole country would fall shortly afterwards. This is the reason why the Annamese (the period accurate name of the Vietnamese) took more than 800 years to fully annex Champa’s territory.

Unique Unit:

  • Mangpung (literally “Sea Warrior” in the Chamic language): this would be a light raiding infantry wearing a leather lamellar helmet and a butted vest. Unlike all infantry units currently in game, this unit is able to swim across shallow waters to get to the other side (though cannot swim in areas with medium or deep water). And this unit has two different attack modes, one in water and one on land. When in water, this unit would throw fire bombs at the enemy, and once on land, it becomes an ordinary infantry similar to others, wielding a shield and a short spear. The transition is fully automatic and the player doesn’t need to change it by hand like with the Ratha. And these two modes are mutually exclusive: on land the unit won’t throw fire bombs and in water it won’t use shield and spear. I envision that such a unit would work best on maps like Team Islands, where other civs need to build a transport ship to send units to the other side, the Chams can just send their Mangpungs to the other island and start raiding. Though this unit is a Castle Age unit and requires a Castle to be trained, so by the time the Chams are sorting out their Mangpungs the enemy side would likely already have some defenses, so I don’t think this would be OP.

Mangpung Stats:

  • HP: 50 / 55 (elite)

  • Cost: 60 Food 30 Gold

  • Melee Attack 1 (land only): 9 / 11 (elite)

  • Melee Attack 2 (throwing fire bombs water only): 5 / 6 (elite)

  • Attack Bonuses (both modes): +4 / +5 (elite) against eco units (villagers, trade carts, trade cogs, and fishing ships) ; +3 / +4 (elite) against ships; +2 against standard buildings; +1 against Eagles

  • Rate Of Fire (land): 2

  • Rate Of Fire (water): 2.5

  • Range (water): 3 / 4 (elite)

  • Accuracy (water): 60%

  • Min Range (water): 1

  • Projectile Speed (water): 6

  • Melee Armor: 1

  • Pierce Armor: 2

  • Armor Classes: Infantry / UU

  • Speed: 1.2 (land) / 1.1 (water)

  • LOS: 5

Tech Tree

  • Barracks: having access to all upgrades and techs except Eagles

  • Docks: only missing Heavy Demo

  • Archery Range: missing Parthian tactics, fully upgraded skirms and archers, missing the cavalry archer line entirely instead having access to elephant archers and elite EAs (Khmers and Burmese should be like this too), also missing hand cannoneers

  • Stable: missing bloodlines, missing hussar upgrade for their light cavalry, have access to Knights but missing Cavaliers and Paladins, missing the camel line entirely, missing the steppe lancer line entirely, though have access to BE and elite BE. Their stable is even worse than the Malays, only slightly better than the Dravidians.

  • Siege: missing BBC and Armored Elephant

  • Monastery: missing Heresy

  • University: missing Arrowslits and Bombard Tower

  • Castle: missing Hoardings

  • Blacksmith: missing Plate Barding


This is an interesting civ concept, but I feel like they might be too weak on land maps.

Initially I quite liked this - it saves you the time and resources needed to build a mill for berries. But then I realized that wasn’t particularly helpful; you need a mill to transition to farms eventually anyways, and berries provide a convenient opportunity to get that mill up. I think this is more useful for fishermen since they’re often far from drop-off sites, but on land maps this isn’t really an option.

I think its distinct enough, and I wouldn’t replace it with a ship-repairing bonus precisely because that would leave this civ with only one bonus that isn’t restricted to water maps (the foraging bonus, which as I mentioned, is only marginally useful). Otherwise, this civ has virtually no bonuses on a land map, which I think severely cripples their viability. Consider other naval civs: Vikings, Dravidians, Malay, and Saracens have 2 water-exclusive bonuses; Bengalis, Berbers, Koreans, and Portuguese have only 1 water-exclusive bonus. This civ has 4 water-exclusive bonuses (including the team bonus).

Most bonuses for trade units apply to both carts and cogs - I would recommend having these bonuses apply to both (if for no other reason than making this civ marginally more viable on land maps, albeit only on team games). I would also recommend just having trade units generate food and wood automatically, without a dock upgrade (also, how would this upgrade happen? Automatically or do you have to research something?) Alternatively, since the Malay already have a dock upgrade, it might be better for the upgrade to apply to the units instead (Aoe1 also had upgrades for trade units). Maybe this would work better as a unique tech?

I actually like this unique tech, but I think it could be very powerful (particularly because they also have FU archers). Maybe this should be an Imperial Age tech?

I don’t think its OP. Chances are that, if the enemy has just destroyed your TC, they’ll kill the Ox Cart pretty quickly (I’m assuming that the Ox Cart can be killed). Does the Ox Cart instantly spawn a TC when deployed, or does it require time to build? That would also affect the balance. Maybe this would work better as a civ bonus, rather than an unique tech.

Don’t know how I feel about an amphibious unit, but I like the raiding aspect of it!


What happens when the uu is in the water and is attacking something on land?I assume it will throw the bomb,if so how can none ship units counter it?you can throw the bombs are swim away from enemy ranged units right.

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Yes, when it’s in water and is attacking sth on land, it will throw the bombs at the target.

This unit can be easily countered by many other units because it has the following limitations:

  1. It can only swim in shallow water areas and not in areas with medium or deep water.

  2. The max range of its bomb mode is only 4 when upgraded to elite and it’s not buffed by anything, there’re many units on land that have a longer range and can easily kite it, forcing it to go on land. And when on land it can be easily countered by cavalry or heavy infantry.

  3. The accuracy of its bomb mode is only 60%.

Come to think of it, the UU Mangpung should have a fire effect. When the Mangpungs are attacking ships and buildings with their bombs, the units under attack will have a small flame icon on top of them indicating burning damage. Even after the attack has ended, affected units will still carry the flame icon for 10 sec during which time they’ll continue to lose HP at X number per sec.

You are forgetting that this will be only useful if the unit is in the water.If there is no water or buildings closer to the shore line the bombing has no use.

In that case they can still function as a pretty decent raiding infantry, they do have the ability to attack units while on land, just not with the fire bombs but spear and shield, like a normal melee infantry.

Please give some more feedbacks for this civ crafting as well, thanks.

Slight changes to the Civ Bonuses and Team Bonus to make this civ more viable on land

Civ Bonuses:

  • Foragers and Fishermen require no drop-off sites

  • Start the game with a small pond of water with 2 shore fish right beside their starting TC on any map (except Nomads)

  • Destroyed enemy eco units (Villagers, Trade Carts, Trade Cogs, and Fishing Ships) return 10% of their cost to the player

  • War galleys have 5 population slots and can transport units (when they transport units they would have a small flag on top just like transport ships)

  • Trade cogs +2 LOS and +2 pierce armor, and bring back both Gold and Wood

  • Battle Elephants can cut down trees, one tree per two attacks (I really wanna give the Chams a bonus to their BE since all other SE Asian civs have it, though I couldn’t really think of any special one so I decided to give them this. And I think BE cutting down trees fits quite well with their civ theme as well as their history, cause in history the Chams were known to be excellent pirates and raiders)

Team Bonus:

  • Archers +3 attack against Elephant Units

Heh, what was censored here?

It’s supposed to be “in the ship”, not sure why it got censored LOL.

Anyways, please take a look at the updated civ bonuses and team bonus (right above your comment) and share with me what you think, thanks.

Does anybody use Trade cogs? I don’t have much playing experience to rule that this bonus is useless, but if water is already impopular, I picture that trade cogs never see the day of light. Don’t worry though; the same happens to Ethiopians and they increased LOS for Outpost, since nobody uses Outposts.

I like the idea, just make them slower than a regular transport since they are carrying twice the load (units plus fighting equipment)

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Thanks for your support, but I don’t really think their speed matters that much.

I intended to design this civ as an Asian version of the Vikings, with even stronger raiding capabilities though a lot weaker against cavalry.

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I like the forager & fishermen bonus (combined with free fish) and the pillage bonus giving them the raider identity.
If Chams or SEA civs are added, they could come with a water rework. And if the Dock is split in two buildings (Docks only for civil units, then separate “military” port), the Chams could have some bonus for that, e.g. cheaper military port - or Docks can switch to port and back (the multipurpose Docks we have now :sunglasses:) okay that was confusing I guess :smile:

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I can’t understand its missing cavalry archer line, they(Jaya Indravarman IV) had once used cavalry archers to defeated the Khmers’ warelephants by the assistant from Hokkienish Chinese.

Civ Bonuses:

I also suggest to add some civ bonus about monks and trade ships.

The others should be appropriate.Good job.

By the well , here is a list of Chams leaders:
Bhadravarman I , raja of the 2nd Dynasty, the 1st raja recorded in Chams history, built Bhadresvara Temple for Lord Shiva
Sambhuvarman, raja of the 4th Dynasty, rebuilt Bhadresvara Temple
Indravarman l,raja of the 5th Dynasty
Harivarman,raja of the 5th Dynasty
Indravarman II, raja of the 6th Dynasty ,changed the national religion into Mahayana
Rudravarman III,raja of the 9th Dynasty ,resisted Vietnamese offensive though failed
Harivarman IV,raja of the 10th Dynasty ,resurrected Champa
Jaya Harivarman I,raja of the 12th Dynasty ,resurrected Champa
Jaya Indravarman IV,raja of the 12th Dynasty ,defeated Khmers
Jaya Paramesvaravarman II,raja of the 12th Dynasty ,resurrected Champa
Po Binasuor,raja of the 13th Dynasty ,reformed war elepants tactic and defeated Vietnamese
Jayasimhavarman V,raja of the 14th Dynasty ,resisted Vietnamese offensive though failed but defeated Khmers

Historically speaking the Chams weren’t known for their cavalry archers or cavalry in general, the few ones that they had rode on horses that were smuggled from Song China. And later the Song cracked down on the smuggle of horses to Champa.

And they didn’t defeat Khmers using horse archers. They took Khmers by surprise in 1177 by sending a large navy to the Tonle Sap lake, defeated the ill-prepared Khmer navy, and sacked Angkor.

I intend to make them a raiding civ, so monks aren’t my focus. Plus historically speaking they were mostly on the receiving end when it comes to religion, first converting to Hinduism under the influence of Funan and Khmer, and then changing to Islam under the influence of Arab merchants and Malays.

Come to think of it, instead of Mangpung the name of the UU could also be called the Vijaya Raider.

In the mid to late 12th century the southern coast of China around Fujian and Guangdong was raided by a group of people known by the Song Chinese as 毗阇耶 (Pisheye in Mandarin, but Bishaya in Middle Chinese). According to Song descriptions they were a dark-skinned people that spoke an unintelligible language. They were adept at using javelins and their javelins were often tied to a long rope so that they could be retrieved after battle. They transported themselves and sailed from one place to another using very light bamboo rafts which could be carried overland if needed. And they had a particularly keen interest in looting metal objects from the Chinese, from armors to weapons to everyday utensils.

Chinese and Taiwanese historians have conflicting opinions about the identity of this people, with hypotheses assigning them to Taiwanese aborigines and Visayans. Yet according to my knowledge neither the Taiwanese aborigines nor the Visayans had an established trade relation with China at that time and probably didn’t know where the major ports in Fujian and Guangdong were located. The most probable candidate is the Chams, since their capital at that time was called Vijaya, which sounded similar to Bishaya. Of course these people may not be the Chams themselves, could be a group that was affiliated to or hired by the Chams.

The appearance of this UU could be interesting, it could wear a Song military hat (like the one worn by Lin Chong in Water Margins) and Song style paper armor or butted gambeson coat, which were looted from the Chinese.

In a similar fashion, I think the Tarkan UU of the Huns needs a visual redesign too. It could wear Roman armor which was looted from the Romans, instead of wearing leather and wool. And instead of using a torch in battle maybe it could use the lasso, which was a weapon that the Huns used to great effect.

Chams weren’t known for their cavalry archers or cavalry in general really, but at least they have had "the few ones " for a short time as you said ,also Khmers and Malays have cavalry archer in this game while their cavalry archers were worse than Chams’ in the real history.I suggest Chams only miss elite cavalry archer but still keep cavalry archer in the archery range.By the way, they could not
only get horses smuggled from Song China but also buy some from Dali Kingdom in history.

Chams changed their religion for many times but they were Hinduists during most of the game’s timeline.

Not sure where you learned your history, from what I know SE Asian civs in general weren’t well known for the use of cavalry or cavalry archers.

I suggest removing the cavalry archers of Khmers and Malays as well and give them elephant archers instead. Burmese and Vietnamese can keep their cavalry archers since they both received more influences from East Asia than the other SE Asian civs.

The fact that the Chams had access to smuggled horses is already reflected in their access to Knights (though not Cavaliers and Paladins), I guess that’s fair enough. The Dravidians probably also had access to traded or smuggled horses in history, and yet they don’t even have Knights.

And I’ve never heard any mention anywhere about the Chams buying their horses from Dali, not sure where you pulled that out. Champa and Dali didn’t even share a border there were several states in between.

And the fact that they’ve changed their religion several times due to outside influences doesn’t really warrant them to be a monk focused civ, not sure how you think but at least that’s my opinion.

Really stop nitpicking about these small details I already tried my best to stay faithful to history. If you aren’t satisfied you can write your own version.