Concepts of Central/East Asian DLCs


This topic compiles my latest (FEB.2024) concepts of 5 potential Central/East Asian steppe civs.

Central Asia DLC:

  • Tibetans/Qiangs
  • Gokturks
  • Sogdians

East Asia DLC:

  • Khitans
  • Jurchens
  • Chinese (campaign only)

I deliberately do not explain the stats of UUs, the cost of UTs and the complete technology tree, because I think these details do not really affect the concept and can be adjusted at will according to the focus of the concept.
None of them have Paladins, and all have Elite Steppe Lancers.


A powerful force of infantry and monks that rules the roof of the world and western China.

Civ Concepts
  • Start the game with 1 Yak, and recieve 1 Yak when hitting a new age.
    Known as the “boats of the plateau”, Yaks are the most important livestock in the Himalayas, just like llamas to the Incas.

  • Blacksmiths and armor upgrades (including the Gambesons) are available one age earlier.
    (The last armor upgrades +1/+1 in Castle Age, then automatically +0/+1 in Imperial Age.)
    Based on their excellent armor making technology. Suluk, the Turgesh khagan, was saved from Arabs’ arrows for wearing Tibetan armor. In records from the Song Dynasty, Qiang people were also said to be good at making armor.
    I had given this to the Khitans, but I changed my mind.

  • Each researched armor upgrade (including the Gambesons) provide 0.1 gold per second. (1 gold per second totally.)
    Early research on armor is encouraged. The 10 techs require a total of 1,100 gold, and the average time required to pay back is 18 mins and 20 secs.
    It also reflects that they exported armor to the surrounding nomadic peoples.

  • Monasteries and Monks are available one age earlier.
    Monks cannot convert units in the Feudal age though.

  • [Team] Monestaries and Fortified Churches provide +10 population space.

  • Have fully upgraded Champions and decent siege, but no Halberdiers, Hussars, Arbalesters, Thumb Ring, Parthian Tactics and Bracer at least.
    In Chinese records, the combat performance of their heavy infantry is the most praised. Their mythology led them to admire swords and spears and not attach importance to bows and arrows.
    They never developed a navy, so their ships were poor.

  • UU: འུར་རྡོ།
    Slinger unit with 100% accuracy, good at fighting infantry and camels.
    It is the traditional Tibetan sling that is used for herding and warfare. Not sure how to spell it in English. Its romanized pronunciation is 'ur rdo, so I used to spell it Urdo, or Wuerduo in Chinese pronounce (“烏爾朵”).
    I’m assuming it’s a foot unit, but herdsmen were proficient in using it, and they would be levied as cavalry in war, so it can either be a mounted unit in the game.

  • UU2: Lama
    Unique upgrade of Monk. Compared to Monk, it regains faith 15% faster, moves 10% faster, has 15 more HP and can build Gompas.

  • UB: Gompa
    Available from the Castle age onwards, built by Villagers and Lamas.
    Can be considered similar to Kreposts, firing arrows, providing 20 population, able to train Monks and Militias, and garrisoned by foot units, but cost stone.
    Does not replace Monestary, but Relics can still be stored here and gold can be generated.

  • Castle UT: Rinpoche
    An honorific title for Tibetan Buddhist masters.
    Upgrades Monks to Lamas and allows Gompas to boost nearby Militia-line units by increasing their movement speed and attack speed.

  • Imperial UT: Golden Arrows
    Scout Cavalry, Spearmen and Skirmishers cost -40%。
    Golden arrows were used to signify the levied warrior’s office. The infantry were usually farmers, while the cavalry were usually herdmen. In war, the nobles could afford heavy armor, but the levied commoners were mostly lightly equipped.

  • Gameplay with Tibetans/Qiangs:
    Use the extra food the Yaks bring to try researching armor earlier to gain an advantage in the early game.
    Build a Monestary early and train Monks, you can pick up Relics early or prepare Monk rush early, forcing the opponent to do something about it.
    The UU can make up for the flaws in the tech tree, while the gold trickle from armor techs can support Champions + Lamas + Gompas into an expensive but powerful combo.

  • Gameplay against Tibetans/Qiangs:
    The benefits of earlier armors are not valid in the Imperial, so the military in the late game is not outstanding.
    The trash units are not fully upgraded, which is still a clear disadvantage even with the Golden Arrows.

Potentional Campaign

Songtsen Gampo

Narrated by Princess Wencheng.

  1. (617-627, 634) Put down the small rebellion that broke out after the father Namri Songtsen died by poisoning, and defeat the Sumpa peaple and 2 of 3 Qiang tribes (Tanguts, Bailang, Qiang) with the aid of troops from Zhangzhung.

  2. (635-638) Defeat the Tuyuhun people who slandered the Tibetans in front of the Chinese emperor. If the emperor is still unwilling to approve a dynastic marriage after that, then show “sincerity” by paying tribute meanwhile invading Songzhou, a Chinese frontier city.

  3. (640-641) Give the king of Nepal refuge and reestablished him on his throne.

  4. (645) Protect Sad-mar-kar, Songtsen Gampo’s sister, and reach Zhangzhung safely. If the king of Zhangzhung refuse to marry her upon arrival, conquer Zhangzhung.

  5. (648) Wang Xuance, the Chinese envoy to India suffered a coup. Attack India and save the envoy with Nepalese ally.


An ancient steppe power that connects Europe and Asia.

Civ Concepts
  • A hunting bonus, such as Hunters drop +15%.
    Apparently they were not engaged in agriculture.

  • No Cavaliers or even the entire Knight-line, however there could be a discount on Steppe Lancers, like -15%/-25% in the Castle/Imperial age.
    According to records, warriors had always charged with light armor on horseback and lances. Only elite positions such as guards are eligible to use armor.

  • Heavy Cavalry Archer upgrade is free or cheaper.

  • Update the explored area when hitting a new age or researching UTs.

  • [Team] UTs can be researched at TCs.
    As a typical nomadic people, they rarely had fixed-location military fortresses.

  • Have fully upgraded Barrack units, at least fully upgraded Champions. No gunpowder and poor defence, possibly even without stone walls.

  • UU: Buri
    Literally means “wolf”. In Chinese records, this is the name given to the guards by their Gokturk people.
    Gokturk warriors worshipped wolves. There were also wolf images on their banners, and some khans also used Buri as their title.
    In the game, Buri should play the role of heavy cavalry and have a mechanic suitable for heavy cavalry charges. Trample damage like Ghurams is an easy option, or like Sion from League of Legends, allowing them to delay death for a few seconds (maybe 3 seconds) after their HP reaches zero.

  • Castle UT: Komg
    Very cheap, giving Scout-Cavalry-line and Outposts 20 LoS, other units and buildings +4 LoS.
    This term is said means scout horseman in old Turkic languages. They had used scouts very aggressively. Scout armies can be as large as thousands of tents. Emperor Xuanzong of Tang was also warned of the presence of their scouts when he fought against them.

  • Imperial UT: Majra
    CA-line and Archer-line generate wood and gold when they get hit by an enemy projectile.
    Gokturk warriors seemed to be the first to use simple auxiliary tools installed on the bow to shoot short projectiles than ordinary arrows, especially the bolts shot by the Chinese crossbowmen. The tools later spread to Korea and were called Tong-ah in Korean, and were also retained in modern Turkish as Majra.

  • Gameplay with Gokturks:
    Feudal SC → Early Castle age SL → CA → HCA + Buri or Hussars
    The bonuses will bring military power peaks at the beginning of each age, but eventually they will tend to be mediocre, although the Majra more or less can give usage of CA some benefits.
    Try to use the wide LoS to assist defense and offense and defeat your opponents as quickly as possible.

  • Gameplay against Gokturks:
    The lack of Knights makes the Gokturks rely heavily on CA, and preventing them from having Castles to train Buri helps make archers their weak point.
    Stick around until the late game and they will lack economic bonuses and good defense.

Potentional Campaign

Ashina Qutlugh

Narrated by his son Bilge Qaghan or Kul Tigin in an inscription.

  1. (681) Gather the Gokturk warriors scattered by previous Ashina Funian’s failed rebellion and survive enough units from the attack of the great veteran Tang Chinese General Xue Rengui.

  2. (682) Siege the three of the five Tang fortresses (the Ding, Gui, Yu, Feng and Lan Prefectures). The Lan is the farthest and most difficult one. Toquz Oghuz in the north are annoying enemy and allied with Chinese, but not a necessary target.

  3. (684-685) Conquer Ötüken, the former heartland and symbolic center of the Gokturks occupied by Toquz Oghuz. The Chinese and Khitans are allies of Toquz Oghuz and will support them against you.

  4. (686-687) Go deep into Tang terriroires from the north, raid various cities while avoiding the powerful pursuit and interception of General Heukchi Sangji from the Korean state of Baekje, and after completing the goal, return to the north and defeat the invading Chinese General Cuan Baobi.

  5. (688-691) Defeat 2 of Tang, Türgesh, and Kyrgyz, and have the envoy visit Sogdia. Tang, located in the east and south, has a stable economy and solid defense structure; Türgesh, located in the north, and Kyrgyz, in the west, have a high desire to attack.


A network of city-states that emphasized trade and religion.

Civ Concepts
  • Can build Caravanserais and have at least one Market bonus, such as no transaction fee for selling.
    Their merchants were founders and important players on the Silk Road. As middlemen in the trade, they make their fortunes through price differences.

  • A bonus about Monasteries, such as Atonement is free.
    Before the Islamic invasion, their dominant religion was Zoroastrianism, with Manichaeism and Buddhism also being quite active.
    Buddhist monks from there were the founders of East Asian Buddhism.

  • If necessary, there could be a small food bonus, such as Mills cost -70%, or the first Farm is free of cost.
    Sogdian society was an agricultural society based on fertile loess irrigation.

  • Parthian Tactics provides double the effect.
    Help them fight large numbers of infantry in the later.

  • [Team] Market technologies are free.

  • Full Monastery and Market techs, but no Plate Mail Armor, Plate Barding Armor and Leather Archer Armor, so the UUs should be used actively and aggressively.

  • UU: Cakar
    Personal soldier-retainer of the nobility in pre-Islamic Central Asia.
    As a cavalry archer unit, it has an attack bonus specifically against cavalry, similar to a mounted Genoese Crossbowman. May be slower to fire and/or have lower base attack, so not good against other units. Also, it has no bonus against Spearmen and cannot obtain the bonus even by researching Parthian Tactics.

  • UU2: Sogdian Cataphracts
    Can be trained at Stables after Imperial UT is researched. Specialized against archers and not good at fighting melee units, similar to a mounted Huskarl.

  • Castle UT: Sartapao
    Villagers, Monks and Trade units have +100% HP; Caravanserais can shoot arrows and heal all type of units.
    Literally means “caravan leader”. In China, it was a title for both the business and religious leaders of the Sogdian immigrant community.

  • Imperial UT: Lamellar Armor
    Infantry, archers (except for mounted archers) and cavalry have +1/+1 armor; Sogdian Cataphracts can be trained at Stables.
    Lamellar armor was especially popular among steppe peoples as it was simple to create and maintain.

  • Gameplay with Sogdians:
    Depending on the opponent’s units, choose the UUs or CAs to use. Their warriors have a clear division of labor and are full of strength once united.
    Monks should always be a decent option, especially if you can trade in team games.

  • Gameplay against Sogdians:
    Their units are theoretically very gold dependent, and it will take a while for the UUs and CAs to fully upgrade. Each of these units has significant strengths and weaknesses, and try keeping their units from covering each other well can be helpful.

Potentional Campaign

The Ikhshids

Narrated by a Sogdian merchant leader in the Byzamtine or Chinese court.

  1. (706) Join one of the two factions, Wardan Khudah and Khunuk Khudah, “protecting” King Tugshada of Bukhara, vying for control of Bukhara and defeat the other, and then the vanguard of the Umayyad Arab invaders.

  2. (706-709) The Umayyas’ cruelty, led by Qutayba, united the Sogdians. Even though failed to win in the end, still try to defend the Wonder of Bukhara from the siege for a while.

  3. (710-720) In Samarkand, the angry people overthrew the pro-Umayyad ruler Tarkhun. The new ruler, Gurak, is forced to constantly pay tribute to the unbeatable Umayyads to avoid war. Before Samarkand can no longer afford, you have many missions to complete: help the Türgesh or Gokturks defeat the other side to form an alliance; send military units as messengers to various Sogdian city-states, including Tugshada’s Bukhara, without being discovered by Muslim armies; help the Chinese defeat the Tibetans on the Silk Road to be able to trade with China.

  4. (720-722) Divashtich, the ruler of Panjakent, revolted because he believed the promises of Chinese and Türgesh to come to aid. Hold your fortress on Mount Mugh for 40 minutes until allies arrive.

  5. (724) Despite the help of Sogdian warriors from various city-states, Divashtich’s uprising ultimately failed. The Chinese never showed up, but two years later Suluk, the Türgesh khagan, did. On the Day of Thirst, the Samarkand Sogdians, who have been forced to be allied with the Arabs, have to minimize casualties and retreat to the city of Khujand with enough units.

  6. (731) In the Battle of the Defile, Gurak, who has lost his brother on the Day of Thirst, finally has a chance to stand on the other side. He’s going to help Türgesh and takes back the city of Samarkand.


The most warlike and disrespectful barbarians would create the great multi-ethnic nation of Cathay on the steppes.

Civ Concepts
  • Receive a Packed TC Wagon when hitting the Castle age.
    This reflects that they traditionally used the horsedrawn cart for their shelters throughout the seasonal migrations. Also, reflects that they let the settled Han immigrants moving from the south to the steppes to farm and develop the economy.

  • Blacksmith technologies are free but takes +250% times as long to be researched. There will be a toggle button in Blacksmiths to choose researching with this bonus or in the usual way.
    The Khitans are said to be good at forging. They mined, used and managed iron ore actively from the eastern part of the empire (modern Liaoning Province). Immigrants from Balhae also brought excellent blacksmithing skills.

  • Steppe-Lancers-line has +1/+2 pierce armor in the Castle/Imperial age.
    Unlike some other empires originating from nomadic tribes, the Khitans preferred to fight in dense heavy cavalry formations rather than the wide formations of horse archers. One of their common formations is to let the horse archers confuse the enemy from both sides and back, and then let the heavy armored cavalry with lances charge and defeat the enemy.

  • Reveal the location of enemy Castles like revealing Wonders.
    According to some Chinese sources, from the borders to the cities, many commonners like beggars, women, merchants and monks, were found to be hired to collect information for Khitans, making Chinese officials very cautious.

  • [Team] Castle techs cost -33%.

  • Have good defense and full Blacksmith techs, but worse siege and navy, and no Heavy Cavalry Archers, Parthian Tactics and gunpowder.

  • Maybe no Thumb Ring too but Archery Range units have 100% accuracy at the beginning.

  • UU: Tielin
    Heavy mounted archer unit that uses cavalry crossbow. Compared to generic CA, it has 100% accuracy, heavier armor, higher HP and attack, slower movement speed and attack speed.
    Or it could be heavy melee cavalry that can fire an arrow with ranged attack when fully charged.
    Tielin, literally “Iron Forest”, is the name of the heavy cavalry unit used by both Liao and Song. According to a record in History of Song, Tielin’s soldiers in Liao were observed using crossbows.

  • Castle UT: Treaties
    Receive 500 gold, and continue to receive resources, like 1 food, 0.5 wood, and 1 gold every second.
    If possible, maybe make the effect a cease fire for a few seconds (similar to AoE3 Taj Mahal) instead of giving 500 gold.
    The rulers of the early Liao Empire used diplomacy rather than siege warfare to cross the Great Wall and rule the Chinese-inhabited land for nearly two centuries. During the reign of Emperor Shengzong, the Chinese were forced through a well-known treaty to recognize equal relations for the first time and to contribute a large amount of resources.

  • Imperial UT: Ordos (or Orda)
    An expensive UT, making CAs (excluding Tielins) have their gold cost replaced by food.
    In the Liao period, this term referred to the personal entourage and troops of nobles such as emperors, queens, princes, etc. There were so many of these warriors that the Liao government even needed to “borrow” these private warriors from the nobles.
    On the other hand, the Khitan army had used a large number of lightly armored or even unarmored tribal horse archers in the lead and on the flanks.

  • Gameplay with Khitans:
    Research urgently needed Blacksmith techs in the usual way, and research others in the free way. It’s worth building an extra Blacksmith.
    Boom with the TC bonus and build an army to overwhelm the opponents.
    They should be good in closed maps, like Arena. Not particularly strong in the early game, but should get stronger as time goes by.

  • Gameplay against Khitans:
    They have almost no advantage when feudal, and damage should be given to them then when possible.
    The armor of the Packed TC wagon is not as high as it is now in the Scenario Editor. It can be killed, and although it does not require villagers to build it, the construction time is long and fixed.

Potentional Campaign

Empress Dowager Xiao

Narrated by her son, Emperor Shengzong of Liao.

  1. (979) The Song Dynasty conquered the small kingdom of Northern Han, an ally of the Liao, and attempted to further drive the Khitan forces away from the Great Wall. Empress Xiao of Liao Dynasty must handle the war on behalf of the sick emperor. Lead the reinforcements to burrow into the besieged city of Youzhou and defeat the enemy in the Battle of Gaoliang River .

  2. (986-989) The emperor had died of illness, but his successor, Emperor Shengzong, is a child. The Song take advantage of this situation to invade again, besieging Yanjing, now Beijing, from 3 sides, and the Empress personally lead the army to fight back. Save the city and defeat the three Song armies who are acting individually without cooperation.

  3. (985-986, 991-999) Conquer the state of Jeongan, a Balhae successor that attempted to continue its resistance to the Khitans, and build 3 castles on the banks of the Yalu River to warn Goryeo. The Jurchen tribes are neutral natives and potential ally or enemy.

  4. (999-1004) The young Shengzong decides to launch an expedition against the Song personally, leading a lightning strike campaign right to the outskirts of the Song capital of Kaifeng with his mother. With limited number of units, you have to take every surrendered cities fast, and isolated every fortress that persisted in resistance, including the capital, to force the new emperor of Song to make the Chanyuan Treaty.

  5. (1010-1011) Although the mother passed away, her teachings live on forever. A coup happened in Goryeo and the king recognized by Liao was killed. Shengzong must execute the murderer. Invade Goryeo, destroy the castles in each city, and destroy the Wonder in the Goryeo capital of Kaesong.


The semi-nomadic Tungus people from the easternmost part of the steppe.
Quickly rose up with the iconic heavy cavalry and severely damaged the Chinese Empire.

Civ Concepts
  • Hunters and Fishermen can generate 10%/30%/50%/70% gold in addition to food in the Dark/Feudal/Castle/Imperial age.
    In addition to agriculture, their most traditional economic methods are hunting and fishing.

  • Free cavalry armor upgrades.
    Make sure their cavalry has a brief power spike early in each age.

  • Fishing Ships are capable of attacking with low dps and short range from the Feudal age.
    Jurchen pirates harassed Korea and Japan. This allows their naval combat capabilities to be better in the early.

  • Bombard Tower tech is free or cheaper.
    They used weapons similar to iron-cased grenades to defend the Great Wall and cities from the Mongols.

  • [Team] Cavalry have +2 attack against UUs.

  • No Bracer, Supplies and Heavy Camels.

  • Regional unit: Fire Lancer
    Available for Chinese, Koreans, Mongols and Jurchens.
    The previous stage of Hand Cannoneer, with a shorter range of 6 and a worse accuracy.
    While not great against archers, having an attack of over 10 should be very effective against melee units and buildings.
    It will be upgraded to Hand Cannoneer after the chemistry is researched. Chinese therefore have access to Hand Cannoneers, while Rocketry also gives them +4 attack.

  • UU: Iron Flail
    References to the AoE3 unit of the same name. Melee medium cavalry using weapons that look like chain whips.
    Can stun the units, or reduce movement speed and attack speed of units by 10% with attack (no stack).
    Maybe has 1 or 2 range and does damage in a straight line, if the whip is long enough in visual.
    The flail and whip are commonly used martial arts weapon in northern East Asia. In folklore, the nine-section whip is the legendary weapon used by the Manchus to conquer China.

  • UU2: Tiefutu
    Literally “iron pagoda”, the famous heavy cavalry unit of the Jin Dynasty. It is a unique upgrade of Cavalier, having 1 point of trample damage within 0.5 tile.
    I used to wish they had Paladins and had Tiefutu as UT, but the Persians rework changed my mind.

  • Castle UT: Minggan Moumuke (or Meng’an Mouke)
    Returns 10% of the cost of military units after they are killed.
    The basic organization of Jurchen society, hunting in peacetime and fighting in wartime. “Minggan” is a tribal unit, and “Moumuke” is a clan unit. At first it was a Jurchen tribal alliance organization, but later it had both military and local administrative functions in the Jin Dynasty. When Jurchen ruled Northern China, they became a feudal privileged class.

  • Imperial UT: Heavy Arrows
    CA-line and Archer-line have +3 attack, or their arrows can penetrate at least one enemy unit.
    The Jurchen/Manchu bows allowed them to use heavier and longer arrows. The weight gives the arrow a shorter effective range, but greater kinetic energy, greater lethality, and can even penetrate armor. Archers with excellent shooting skills were reputed to be capable of penetrating two persons by arrows, such as the Manchu warriors in the early Qing Dynasty.

  • Gameplay with Jurchens:
    Gold by hunting and fishing can allow you to reach the Castle age faster, which coupled with free armor can make Knights’ peak power arrive quickly.
    Use Fire Lancers and archer units against anti-cavalry units, and Iron Flails can assist other units in pursuing the enemy.

  • Gameplay against Jurchens:
    Avoid combat as much as possible before the advantage of free armor wear off, by actively training and properly controlling spearmen to defend against Jurchen cavalry if necessary.
    Allowing Iron Flails to use their capabilities will be a problem, so attacking them should be a priority.

Potentional Campaign


Narrated by a Jurchen captain, descendant of a Wuzhu’s trooper, to a Han recruit in the Jin army camp on the eve of the battle against the Mongols.

  1. (1114) During the Jin-Liao Wars, Wuzhu, then a teenager, want to join his father Aguda’s uprising. Together with the elder brother Wolibu, lead a small army to attack the Liao emperor who were hunting in the hope of catching him off guard. The Song Dynasty is currently an ally of the Liao and an enemy of the Jin, but they will change their diplomatic stance as soon as the Jurchens show strength.

  2. (1125-1126) In the first invasion, the Jin armies invade Song territory from the west and from the north. Wolibu and Wuzhu lead the northern army across the Yellow River and destroy the fortress on the other side. The Chinese defenders will destroy the bridge before long. If there is no time to cross the river, you must sack or capture nearby cities and villages to get supplies or get buildings for creating ships, since you have only military units.

  3. (1126-1127) In the second invasion, the Jurchens have well prepared for the siege of the capital Kaifeng. Try to get close to the monument that symbolizes the Chinese emperors and convert it, cause the Jingkang Incident. Yue Fei, then a young recruit, participate in defending the city. Although his squad is small, Wuzhu will notice this brave youth.

  4. (1127-1129) Wolibu died of illness, and a Song prince fled south. Wuzhu, now the general and commender of the main Jin army, is pursuing the prince. Cross the Yangtze River, continue to inquire about his location and attack cities and even coastal islands where he may be. All the Chinese you encounter after crossing the River are hostile so only force can be relied on if supplies and infomations are wanted since you only have military units.

  5. (1130) Wuzhu has to give up the pursuit, and try crossing the River to return north with the looted wealth after burning the historic city of Lin’an to the ground. Under the attack between Han Shizhong’s navy and Yue Fei’s army, you have to make Wuzhu and enough units arrive on the other side of the River. Both Han and Yue are very powerful. You just have to retreat, trying to defeat them is unnecessary and extremely challenging.


Potentional Campaign

Yue Fei

Narrated continuously by the same Jurchen captain after narrating the story of Wuzhu.

  1. (1122-1126) The young man, son of a poor tenant farmer, join the army and participated in suppressing the rebellion of the local warlords in northern China. Kill the rebels and robbers, escort the looted resources back to the capital of Kaifeng. After the missions complete, the Jurchen army who were supposed to be the ally against Liao will appear outside the capital city walls, and the scenario ends.

  2. (1129-1130) The prince succeeded to the throne as Emperor Gaozong of Song in the south. Defeat the Jin army general Wuzhu in the Yangtze River to defend the Southern Song. When the ally General Han Shizhong attacked the Jurchens on the water, cooperate and match up with him to attack the Jurchens on land.

  3. (1133-1134) Cross the River and head north to rescue the city of Luzhou (now Hefei) surrounded by the army of Qi, Jin’s puppet state. There will be rebels along the way, but as long as Yue Fei gets close, they will be converted and join the army. The Jin army led by Wuzhu will appear in 40 minutes and join the siege, so try to defeat the Qi army before then, otherwise you will have to face two enemies.

  4. (1140) Ignoring the emperor’s order to give up counterattack and withdraw the army, Yue Fei decided to march north and now is isolated in the city of Yancheng. The Jurchens come to attack, but they underestimate Yue’s strength. Protect the castle in Yancheng, kill at least 1,000 enemy military units in the wild outside the city, and counterattack to capture all nearby cities and villages. As long as Yue Fei liberate a city or village, people will be inspired to revolt.

  5. (1140) The armies of Yue Fei and Han Shizhong are approaching the old capital of Kaifeng, and they need to prepare for a siege: liberate all villages outside the capital, destroy all Jin fortresses outside the capital, and defeat Wuzhu’s army to force him to withdraw the army. You will receive a retreat order from the emperor every 5 minutes, and the objectives must be completed under strong resistance from the Jurchens and Wuzhu’s army before the 12th order arrived.

  6. (1232-1233) The time line come to the moment of the narration, Mongol siege of Kaifeng. Yue Fei and his battles were in the past, but history repeats itself. The Mongols in the north became the new conquerors, but the Song Dynasty still chose to ally with the new conquerors and betray its northern allies. This time you have to play as the Jin Dynasty, using a special tech tree that blends Jurchen and Chinese characteristics to defend the Wonder in Kaifeng from Mongols and Song siege for 60 minutes.


I got some thoughts on this, but there’s enough I probably gotta wait until I have a large block of time tomorrow to write everything out. quick spoiler of my opinion I do like a lot of what you have here, though there are a few things i’m quite unsure about. It’s clear you put a lot of time into it though!

I’ll be back tomorrow night with more detail lol

You have clearly put a lot of effort into this.

Should they not be cavalry instead? I may misread. But I thought their cavalry armor was praised.

How much food Yak will have? 150, same as cow? I think this make the bonus too similar to Incas and will play out same as Tatars.

All armors? That’s too powerful. And also potentially taking a lot from other civs as you mentioned Khitans.

New mechanic. I think it is okay. But again all armor? Don’t you think you are overwhelming them with bonuses?

Too much early access. Pick either this or armor.

Make it 10 or maybe even 15.

I like it. I had similar concept for Tibetans but instead replace the monk totally.

Okay. You are definitely flooding them with bonuses.

The name arrow can be misleading. Can you change the name into non-English?

1 Like

Thank you for the reply.

As far as I learned, they were praised for the infantry rather than cavalry. When signing the treaty with them, the Chinese insisted on choosing the place at cities on level ground in order to avoid being ambushed by their infantry, which was adept at mountain warfare. They had good armor, but the performance of the cavalry themselves did not impress their opponents.

Here is articles talking about this issue, but in Simplified Chinese. Maybe you can read by Google Translate.

150 food.

I’ve thought about this issue, but I don’t think it’s as similar as you said.

The Inca bonus is for the team, only 1 animal for up to 100 food and only once. This one has animal for 150 food, and only for this civilization, and not just once.

The Tatar bonus is based on newly built TCs. The more new TCs, the more sheep. This one is only fixed for 1 Yak in an age, no more.

If anything similar, this bonus is probably more like the old Lithuanian bonus. Starts with 150 food (but this one needs to be gathered and will be rotten), and is available in every age. As a rough estimate, you will get about 120 food additionally at each age, but the time the villagers spent gathering it could have been used to gather other resources, so the total amount obtained is even less.

The point is, this bonus is in line with the needs of this civilization. I was once advised that armors one age earlier were not so good because those earlier on were expensive then. Food from the Yaks can encourage players to try it.

The similarities between Chinese and Mayan villager bonuses are probably even higher than these above, btw.

Armors are not discounted. If you research too many in the earlier age, that will be a terrible investment. Your economy should be pretty bad.

Put aside their poor archers, basically, it is equivalent to paying the considerable price for cavalry to get +1/+1 in feudal and castle age respectively. I think in practice, people will tend to only research cavalry armor early and won’t deliberately research other armors for other types of unit. That’s why I didn’t remove their bloodline or Husbandry, although I still consider that maybe remove one of the two is needed.

Based on my explanation above, they won’t get the total trickle of 1 gold per second very early. My hypothesis is that at about 30 minutes in the game, if the player invests as much as they can, they will usually get 3 cavalry armors out of necessity, and then research the first armor of infantry and archer as appropriate, so there is only 0.5 gold per second (equivalent to the level of a Relic), and this trickle is the result of spending a lot of resources in the early game rather than free.

Cumans have 2 earlier too: TC, and Rams.
Burgundians have 2 earlier too: economy techs, and Cavaliers.

The earlier armors and monks may be okay in my opinion. Unlike the two above, this civ should have no such the economy to afford both earlier armor and earlier monks in the same time. It becomes a choice between strategies.


Don’t think of it too complicated.
It is just similar to the Krepost in one respect, being a mini castle where Monks and Militias can be trained but no techs. Similar to the Donjon in the other respect, it can be built by villagers and the UU Lamas.

Sorry, I wish I can do it but it is beyond my capabilities.
It is essentially to reflect their practice of conscripting commoners in times of war. So maybe we can describe this in general terms.

Most of those commoners were poor feudal serfs and herdsmen who were used as cannon fodder on the battlefield. On the other hand, the Tibetan army never prepares food for battle, but instead grabs it wherever they goes, causing destruction. The poor serfs plunder the conquered lands if they could survive.

If possible, use terms that describe such the things as the name for the UT that make trash units cheaper.

You’ve done an awesome job, I generally like your civ concepts. However I do have some suggestions.

For the Tibetans/Qiangs, while it’s true that they shared a common origin several thousand years ago, by the medieval era Tibetans, Tanguts, and the various Qiangic tribes were fairly distinct from one another, therefore I don’t think they should all be lumped together into one civ. There should be at least a Tibetan plus a Tangut civ.

For the Gokturks and Sogdians I don’t have anything to say, since I don’t know about them that much.

For the Khitans I think it’s better to make their UU the Tielin a melee cavalry with a pierced charge attack rather than simply a mounted crossbowman. It feels more unique this way.

For the Jurchens I feel maybe it’s better that their UU be a grenadier of some sort, whereas the Iron Flail could be a unique upgrade of their Cavalier.

I think we talked about them in a different thread.

Do you have something in mind?

Too late to have an impact imho.

Missing armor on all units? That’s new and unique. However also very weak late game. And I don’t see much agressive and strong early game either.

Civ looks weak. I think you should not lock them behind UT.

Missing all armor and combine them here in UT. I don’t like it. Just go with unique design where their armor is bad at late game.

Not “several thousand years ago”. The time when the Qiang tribe of Fa entered the Tibetan Plateau is estimated to be roughly from the 3rd to 5th century, which is equivalent to China’s Jin Dynasty. Of course there are differences between different Qiang tribes, but this does not hinder this umbrella, just like the Gokturk civ can also represent Tiele tribes.

In fact, the focus of these two civilizations is similar, heavy cavalry and heavy infantry.
The advantage of the Tanguts may be that their history is very well documented, due to their direct border with China. In other ways, however, the game needs Tibetans more than Tanguts.

It would be ideal for them to each become their own civ, but I don’t think that’s likely to happen.
If there is only one civ, Tibetans should be picked, but Qiangs is better because it can cover more.

The reason why I prefer Tielins being heavy-armoured mounted crossbowmen is simply that they can be combined with trash CAs or melee cavalry units to form a powerful force. The civ won’t have strong CAs and Tielin can make up the position. If they’re just melee cavalry able to fire an arrow when fully charged, they ultimately just replace Cavaliers in practice, just like the cavalry UUs of other civs.

I know how you feel. I do be aware of the fact that they use grenades for defense, so I give them the Bombard Tower bonus. However, I think more is unnecessary. They started using firearms only after they ruled China and accepted Chinese culture. During their conquests, cavalry was the main part of the army, and even when fighting against Mongols, where they used gunpowder, the cavalry was still the main part. I don’t want to see their campaign when being unable to use their UU in almost all scenarios.

Though Grenadiers cannot become trainable units, they still could be saved in the Scenario Editor, like Flamethrowers and Fire Towers. They could still serve there in the Jurchen campaign, but also in the Chinese campaign and the Byzantine campaign.

I don’t think the ancestors of Tibetans entered the Tibetan plateau that late. From my somewhat limited knowledge on Neolithic China they seemed to have come from the Neolithic Majiayao culture of Northwest China that existed around 5,000 to 4,000 years ago, which was when the various Sino-Tibetan tribes started to part their ways from one another and diversify.

Like I already mentioned in some other threads, Tibetans are highly unlikely to be included in the game, Tanguts is a far more likely choice. And no Tibetans and Tanguts weren’t the same, they had differences in culture, language, religion, as well as military. Tanguts were one of the few peoples in East Asia who actually used camels in warfare.

Then I’m not sure how you’d make this unit distinct from CA. It just sounds like a buffed up CA to me, which is nothing special. Whereas a melee cavalry with pierced charge attack doesn’t currently exist in the game.

I still feel that making them a siege civ is probably better than making them another cavalry civ, since we already currently have many cavalry civs in game with cavalry UUs but not enough siege civs. And it’s not like I’m lying or anything historically they were indeed quite good at siege. Plus their prowess in cavalry can still be reflected by the unique upgrade to their Cavaliers the Iron Flail.

It doesn’t have to be 100% historical sometimes game mechanic is also important, plus according to historical records they were the ones who invented iron-cased bombs.

No transaction fee for selling should be very nice.
Free first Market, or Markets having aura to boost Villagers slightly might be fine.

It would provide +2/+4 armor to mounted archers and +4 attack against spearmen. This obviously shouldn’t be earlier.

Mainly, this is to help them fight against Halberiders who may appear in large numbers from the Imperial age. In the Castle age, Pikemen were generally not heavily trained, so the less armored CAs and Crossbowmen would still work well against them.

The Market bonus could be strong, with reference to Saracens.
I also mentioned that they can get a food bonus, like the Mill that only costs 30 wood or the free first Farm.
They may not be aggressive, but they shouldn’t be weak either.

They would become broken if they were not locked behind UT in my opinion. Simply put, they are more powerful Huskarls.

In the Castle age and before, they have economic bonuses and a monk bonus, and the military units are not particularly weak, except for the archers who lack Leather Archer Armor (a technology that is usually researched very late, even in Imperial, in practice).

In the Imperail age, they lack armors, but this not expensive UT makes them fine. Units generally would lack 1 pierce armor to against archers but there are Sogdian Cataphracts. Also, use Cakars against cavalry and CAs against infantry. I want to encourage them to research this UT, so they don’t need to use trash as possible. Or in other words, a civilization that can get more gold on Markets shouldn’t have good trash.

We can cancel the armor effect of the UT and give them the last infantry and cavalry armor back, but the UT will become only unlock the unit, the Halberdiers should be removed and the archer armors should still be lacked to make sure Cakars and CAs should have clear waekness against archers.

Absolutely there had been natives on the plateau before the Qiangs entered. You can say the natives were also part of ancestors of Tibetans. A tribe of Qiangs entered in the 3rd to 5th century, and in the 6th, their descendants unified the peoples on the plateau and build the Tibetan Empire.

Anyway it doesn’t invalidate Qiangs as an umbrella.

The game, or the communnity, wants Tibetans clearly more.
Personally, the Tibetans’ rise, conquest, and expansion are attractive. They interfered on other states and the Silk Road and seriously affected the Tang Dynasty’s power in Central Asia. This is probably one of the reasons why Sogdia was conquered by the Muslims. While the Tanguts were a small kingdom.
The reason you said the Tibetans unlikely to be included can be resolve by naming the civ to Qiangs well.

Giving UU a nice, decent position and niche is more important than a gimmick. Having strong mounted archers is important and useful when their CAs end up being unfully upgraded trash rather than stronger units.

You said there are too many cavalry civs while you want the Khitans having a melee cavalry UU…

I am more eager to make an interesting civilization that is true to their actual situation. In history, they were typical heavy cavalry civ. I’d like to see a civ who deserves a melee cavalry UU getting it rather than losing it due to the existing civs like Georgians, Lithuanians and Burgundians who not really need it but have obtained it.

Honestly I don’t think it’s bad for Grenadiers to be their UU. I agree that the foot men throwing explosives could be fun. But Personally I also think, allowing them to build a large number of Bombard Towers in the late game is easier to implement and more consistent with the situation that they threw explosives from the city walls and siege towers.

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Mounted slinger seems fun. But It should have same range and attack as foot slinger but with +1 anti-infantry like plume and +3 vs camel.

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Would be the next mamluke visually looks cool but very impractical.

The Tibetan slingers will be strong against infantry and camels, not all mounted units, and they are archer-type unit, can have longer range and be benefited by the Ballistics, which are quite diffirences from Mamelukes.

It is good no matter they are on foot or on horse back. The Tibetans seemed to use slings more often than bows and arrows as projectile weapons. Some sources state that their cavalry troops equipped this kind of weapon. Absolutely the mounted slingers will be pretty cool and unique in visual and function, but some people in the forum had doubted the possibility that people use them on horse back in reality.

I’m not sure where you got your sources but according to two independent studies from the Max Planck institute of Germany and the Fudan university of Shanghai back in 2015 and 2016, the Sino-Tibetan peoples originated from North or Northwest China some 7,000 to 5,000 years ago, not 3rd to 5th century AD.

By the medieval era (the timeline of the game) Tibetans, Qiangs, and Tanguts were fairly distinct from one another and cannot really be covered under one umbrella.

I know that the community wants to see them and personally I want to see them as well. However I feel that the devs are rather cautious on this matter. I heard that there was a plan to introduce the Tibetans in the Forgottens expansion back in 2013, however at the last moment they replaced them with the Indians.

First I don’t think a steppe civ like the Khitans should have trash CA. Secondly we already have several CA type UUs as well as buffed CAs in the game (Huns, Turks, and Magyars come to mind), hence making your mounted crossbowman nothing out of the ordinary. In some sense UUs are supposed to be somewhat gimmicky and unique, or else why making them instead of making ordinary units?

Well making them a siege civ is also true to their actual situation in history, plus I think another siege civ is more urgently needed than another cavalry civ. And their prowess in cavalry can be reflected in civ bonuses, unique techs, or unique upgrade.

These are two different things. The origin of the Sino-Tibetan peoples and the Qiang people’s entry into Tibet are two different things. You’re talking about the time that a basket of eggs was produced, and I’m talking about the time that one of the eggs was made into a cake.

Even the Bohemians have bad cavalry, they were covered by the Teutons or Slavs, the civs with decent cavalry, until they became their own civ. The difference between the Tibetans and the Tanguts seems to me not as great as the difference between the Bohemians and those two civs. they were all famous for their heavy infantry and heavy cavalry, so covering them with an umbrella is okay. If you want to reflect Tanguts’ camel usage, then there is obviously no problem with Qiangs having fully upgraded camels.

Surely that it is better for Tibetans and Tanguts to be their own civs but it is not the point. The point is that the Qiangs are undoubtedly valid as a civ to cover them even though you don’t think it’s effective. There will most likely be only one slot for them, and based on the community it will be the Tibetans. Then, if it can’t be named Tibetans for any reason, then choosing the Qiang to be able to cover Tibetans rather than choosing specific Tanguts is more than likely.

That’s a personally opinion. Again, a Tanguts’ own civ can be nice, but the true issue is the number of slots. If there can be 2 slots one for Tibetans and one for Tanguts, then of course there is no reason to need Qiangs as umbrella.

First, this is my own concept, so there will be personal taste, and I want them to have the gimmick of Trash CAs. If there was any civ suitable for spawning mounted archers in large numbers, it would undoubtedly be the steppe people, and I’ve happened to read that a large number of their horse archers were from tribes and basically unarmored.

Secondly, the uniqueness of Tielins as heavy armored mounted crossbowmen comes from comparing with their own CAs rather than comparing with UUs from other civs. You cannot train them and Mangudais at the same time.

They are slow, expensive and powerful mounted archers, significantly different from the fast, cheap but weak CAs, and also different from the Mangudais and Kipchaks. If anything, their characteristics may be a bit close to those of War Wagons, but they are obviously still different. They are more agile, weaker and cheaper than WWs and clealy with a far differant look.

The unique is that as mounted archers they have rare high armor (maybe 1/2), high health (maybe 100), and high attack (maybe 10), but their slow speed and rof make it more convenient for the player to directly send them, than to micro contral them like using other mounted archer UUs. The player can train them for their strong combat effectiveness, and have even more incentive to make them when the CAs end up no upgade.

Pay for Tielins when you have gold, and spawn trash CAs when you don’t have, which means they each have their own niche and can both be used, not similar to Mangudais and Kipchaks, people just use them instead of CAs. If Tielins are melee cavalry with a gimmick, they will undoubtedly compete with Knights for use, and eventually only one of them will be used, similar to some melee cavalry UUs such as Keshiks, Monaspas and Boyars. That could be a pity.

Having melee cavalry fire an arrow when fully charged is an interesting gimmick too, so that’s why I mentioned it in the original post as a candidate of Tielins’ feature, but there is a reason why I personally prefer the other one. If you still like this one, great, I respect your taste.

I still have my concept for the Jurchens to reflect their use of grenades. I just emphasize this point in a different way.

As far as I read, they did use throwable explosives but not use like 17th century European grenedier troops who move to frontline and shock on foot. They learned and used it only when they conquered and ruled China, and always throwed from the top of city walls or towers at enemies on the ground. Usually for defensive purposes, but even if for siege purposes, they would thrown from the top of siege towers. A bonus that makes them more accessible to Bombard Tower rush is already pretty accurate, maybe even more accurate than on-foot grenadier units that can be trained in large numbers and proactively attack.

Thunder crash bombs, those throwable explosives, were invented by the Song Dynasty and used to fight against the Jurchens and Mongols. The Jurchens later learned or purchased them and used them against the Song and Mongols. Likewise, the Mongols later used them when they invaded Japan. This may also make me feel pity if the grenadier unit is only unique for the Jurchens. Making Fire Lancers as a new regional unit, representing the early East Asian firearms like those throwable explosives and fire arrows and being shared with the Chinese, Jurchens, Mongols and Koreans, is a decent decision for me personally.

Again, I totally respect your reasons for wanting a grenadier, and agree that such a unit can be interesting in its own right. I’m just emphasizing it in a different way, making them a cavalry civ that can train Fire Lancers and do Bombard Tower rush well. I have nothing against a siege civilization, but maybe remake the Koreans and make their UU a true Hwacha Wagon being classfied to siege weapons or cavalry + siege weapons.

Great OP! Many creative ideas

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Sure there were interactions between the Tibetans and the Qiang, but claiming that Tibetans all descend from a Qiangic tribe that existed around 3rd to 5th century AD is IMO lacking evidence and somewhat generalizing. From what I know before the Tubo empire there was another kingdom in Tibet called the Zhangzhung which existed from 500 BC to 625 AD. This kingdom is widely regarded by the Tibetans as their true origin.

The issue is the Qiang may suffer the same political redtape as the Tibetans, since it’s a name that is still used by one of China’s 56 ethnic groups. Whereas the Tanguts had already gone extinct a few hundred years ago and no ethnic group currently uses this name.

I respect your personal opinion, however this civ comes off to me as lacking diversity and flavor. A heavy buffed up CA is still a CA, and will likely have the same strengths and weaknesses as an ordinary or trash CA. This makes the civ highly predictable and easy to counter. Whereas if you make their UU a melee cavalry with a pierce charge attack and give them average or even slightly above average CA, then this combo will be quite strong in late game, even if the opponent decides to make camels or halberdiers.

Again I totally respect your personal opinion, however making both the grenadiers and the fire lancers pan-East Asian regional units is a bit OP and unfair to other civs outside of East Asia. I think it’s still better that the grenadier be a Jurchen UU and the fire lancer be an East Asian regional unit.

What I have said is a tribe of Qiangs entered there during the period and later one of their descendants unified the people, so that the Qiangs are the ancients of Tibetans, so that the relation support the umbrella civ of Qiangs.

I haven’t never claimed they “all” descend from a Qiangic tribe…

First, the Tibetan issue is based on their independent movement, not simply because their are one of the 56 groups. Even though the modern Qiangs is also one of the groups, they do not have independent movements basically.

And, no one can sure that the China government will definitely ban any civ named with the name of those 56 groups. Even the civ is directly named Tibetans rather than Qiangs, there are also other players and forum users from China said that the China government won’t ban it as long as the civ is clearly highlighted their medieval essence since the state media also had produced the videos about the Tibetan Empire.

You like Tanguts, good. You don’t like an umbrella for them, fine. However, it seems to start being annoying that you hard sell Tanguts by abusing the Tibetan issue here.

The CAs are not buffed. They are trash, which is pretty different from normal CAs when they can spawn in a large numbers and raid the bases in the late game. On the other hand, the trash CAs are weak, so you can use the tough heavy-armored mounted crossbowmen to do something needing strength, like fighting in the early Imperial age or cooperating with your teammate’s Knights in a team game. Each unit has its own function and niche, which is the diversity and flavor to me for the gameplay.

After they fire arrows, they are just melee cavalry until charged again. Yeah their arrows make them stronger than Knights and Cavaliers when against the camels and spearmen, but that’s all. Actually, all you want is simply a powerful melee cavalry.

Their situation will become somehow similar to Boyars, Leitis, Konniks, Monaspas and Keshiks which are also powerful melee cavalry with a gimmick. People often just use them to replace the generic units like Knights or Cavaliers, which is exactly why I prefer the mounted crossbowmen instead. It’s not really better in terms of diversity or predictability.

Even the machinic of Keshiks may be better since it can support other gold-costing units and techs, having a deeper meaning about strategies, while the charged arrow is just simply make a melee cavalry stronger when fight. If the players really need arrows to counter camels or spearmen, they can even simply switch to archery range units.

I have never said the grenadiers to be regional units. What I said is the Fire Lancer is the regional unit that represent the use of early East Asian firearms including those bombs.

Sorry but I just feel you often don’t read my replies to you carefully…

Ok whatever, I don’t want our debate to drag on here. Really a lot of our disagreements come down to personal opinions rather than anything serious or fundamental. If you don’t like my proposals that’s totally fine I respect your opinions. Since they’re your civ designs and not mine, you can say whatever you want. No need to get defensive, I only provide opinions and suggestions, whether you accept them or not that’s none of my business.

So many civs in just one thread! I’ll just comment my final thought on Tibetans.

Starting with additional herdable regardless of food amount, will be similar to Incas. I’m not against that. But I think you can be even bolder and just give them 2 extra. Or a more unique bonus will be bringing Tatars lost civ bonus but with Yak - TCs spawn 2 or maybe even 3 Yak upon reaching next age.

On armor bonus, I don’t think early access should be the bonus. Instead armor quality could be improved. Had Romans already not have it, I’d suggest double armor for infantry. Now I’d suggest double effect on Gambeson and infantry armors including Gambeson can be researched without food.

I’m okay with gold generation per armor researched.

Lama should replace Monk from Castle Age. Don’t need to have generic monk in castle age. And it should have an elite version in Imperial as well. I designed this unit a long time ago for Bengalis, way before DOI.
Cost - 85 gold
TT - 45 seconds
HP - 40, 60 (Sanctity not available)
Armor - 1/1
Range - 9, 12 (Block Printing not available)
Cool Down Time - 50, 40 seconds (Illumination not available)
Speed - 0.75, 0.80 (Fervor not available)
Elite upgrade cost and time - 400 gold, 40 seconds

With this, Monastery and monk won’t be available in Feudal Age.

I don’t like the UB. Instead make the Castle UT that will give monasteries a healing aura for all units or maybe a less damage taken aura.

I think rest of the idea is pretty solid.