They are really bad cards to take with you, but if they were both in a single card so you could send them twice, they could see some use outside of treaty. It just competes too much with all the other important fortress cards japan needs to keep in their deck.


They are very bad unfortunately. I’d love to see the cards moved to age 1 or 2

They’re free unit production. They’re worth something like 5-6 villagers. Sure, a factory is worth 7, but you also have to put that in context with what Japan gets. Japan has fewer villagers and the shrines. The shrines give the same flexible production as the factories, but they get it built-in from Age 1 and get a Wonder to boost it. Shrines are very strong, so naturally the Japanese “factory” has to be weaker. Yes, they cost a card, but the value on these over the length of a game adds up. Once you’ve maxed your villagers and put animals on all your shrines, the dojos are the only way to get more economic productivity. On late games and treaty mode, this is something of very real value.

Yes, they’re in Age 3. I’d love to see one moved to Age # ## better yet, 2. It would reduce the overcrowding of cards in Age 3 that Japan has, but to say they’re terrible just isn’t quite accurate. They’re terrible if you’re playing 1v1 supremacy. Other cards give you a bigger, more immediate impact, but again, longer games with maxed economy, the dojos pay for themselves.


I always thought the military rickshaw from Japanese isolation should give a Dojo rickshaw. That could be another avenue for cutting down on the number of cards needed.


That’d be a significant balance change. You can get the military rickshaw in Age 2 for ~100 export. It’s super cheap, because it’s only worth 200 wood. That’s ok. If you want to offer something that’s the equivalent of a factory, it has to come at a later age and at a much higher price because a dojo is a shipment only, card-limited option.

I’m not sure that’s the right approach. Splitting it like how the forts are dealt with might be an option:

  1. You get 1 dojo in Age 3
  2. You get 2 dojo in Age 4, with the monk ability to rebuild a lost one (a bit like Castrametation lets you rebuild forts)

This alleviates some of the Age 3 card pressure, doesn’t change up the treaty mode meta too much, and rebuilding can be balanced by simply choosing a high enough construction price, construction time, or by allowing only monks/daimyos to rebuild them.

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you’ve gotta be the first and only person in my nearly 20 years of aoe3 to say dojos are strong, even a potential balance issue


I didn’t say they’re strong. I simply said they’re not as weak as the “forum consensus” says they are in some situations. They’re simply worth villager-seconds. The shrines are worth villager-seconds. The villagers themselves are worth villager-seconds. If you add up the options, you get a maximum economic potential. If you’re playing a game where you need to maximize your economic potential, the dojos are very valuable, because they’re worth villager-seconds you can’t get without them.

If you’re playing supremacy and the game’s going to be over in 20 minutes, you’ll never see the potential of a dojo. They suck. If you’re playing a game that’s going to be over an hour, you absolutely will see it and it’s not worthless at all. Never underestimate the power of free units. I find them useful in long games.

Every game has a “meta” defined by a tiny handful of ultra vocal players, typically your streamers or competitive players. These are the people who write the guides and spend hours on social media giving their opinions. Metas shift. A lot. And the reason is that these gamers aren’t always right. RTS is a bit of a unique genre in that you really can’t think during a game. You react. You do your thinking after the game when you’re watching the replay and analyzing why you won or lost. Even the “pros” miss things. They fail to consider unique situations outside of their own game play style. All I’m saying is that there are reasons you might want to use them.


Keep in mind that monks can rebuild Dojos. That’s an ability Europeans can rightly only dream of (rebuilding factories with explores would be crazy strong).

I made some calculation about the Dojo training rate or resource/second equivalent long ago, turns out a single of them is better than the Chinese Summer Palace wonder. The only downside of Dojo is they are taking 2 slot of age 3 card.


They have strong potential value that is too good for a Age I or Age II shipment.

Getting a Dojo rickshaw and making them rebuildable from Japanese isolation is a great idea but needs to be a Age III thing.


yup, 5 ashi every 2 1/2 minutes is like, super scary, way too good for age 2.

It would be fine as long as it’s priced accordingly. Make it cost 200 influence and lock rebuilding behind the one sent by a card. If it’s too strong then lower the base training rate and make the Kamidana upgrade a little more effective, or just make it more expensive.

As it stands, getting a military rickshaw from the Consulate is just about the lamest thing you could possibly have for a technology. Especially when Japan already has a mobile barracks that also buffs units.

It kinda is, for Japan. The free units will allow Japan to snowball into age 3 or aggression once the shrine booming in age2 is complete.

Also the thing with slow tickles of stuff is that the earlier you sent them, the more value they can provide.

shrine booming is dead, it’s do or die as japan these days

and to make the kamidana upgrade worth it, it should still be able to be sent twice

I absolutely guarantee that if dojos were age 2,it would still be a great way to lose a game by sending it. It takes build time 148 seconds to be equal to just shipping 5 ashi and is completely useless until that point. After 5 whole minutes it would finally be superior to 5 ashi, at which point in the game (at least 10 minutes in, minimum, even if its your first age 2 card) its unlikely to be impactful in any meaningful way. Also, shipping it would just straight up handicap any build, regardless of whether it is boomy, aggressive or passive. You need wood, you need vills or units, amd by the time you’ve stabilized enough that you could afford to send a dojo you need to send cherries, or it will take too long to pay off. Just because its worth x number of res doesn’t make it useable. The quantized, slow nature of the way it pays off makes it too great an investment for early game and too small a result for lategame. Literally zero decent players would send it age 2, except maybe some niche team game build.

Japan can squeeze an extra shipment in age2 to send at least one of the dojo cards either by opening TP or going Spanish consulate first. Will it be meta against Lakota? Probably not, but it is do-able against other booming civs like Brits.

Dojos could come accompanied by additional units so you don’t have to wait more than 2 minutes for them to be of any use, for example, Genbukan Dojo +3 Samurai and Renpeikan Dojo +3 Naginata Riders. They could also change a Dojo to IV Age and have it come with +5 Samurai or +5 Naginata.

Another idea I have is that Dojos can deliver their units one by one, for example, instead of having to wait 154 seconds to receive 3 Samurai, every 51 seconds the Dojo delivers 1 Samurai.

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Dojos provide good value in terms of resource per second, the issue with them is you need to reach age 3 and they take up 2 card slots.

If you want them to be used the card should be just 1 card that can be sent twice or have just 1 card that gives build limit of 2 so you can build a second dojo for a wood cost.

Tempo is important in 1v1 and using 2 shipments for these is just not worth doing, even if you do some xp orientated build either with shrines and the xp card or capitalism from spanish consulate, tori gates etc it is still too slow. Perhaps even make them 1 card that is available in age 2 and allow the second to be built, age 3 seems too late.


I once said that it could be a good idea for the dojos to give a small trickle of exports, they told me that it was a bad idea, I still think it is a good idea, that is what they have done with many initially unsubtle buildings such as the church - tavern .