How to beat Mercenaries

Hi age of empires 3 DE players. Just had an intense battle in a free for all last night.
Ended up having large battles ( I was Russia) vs a Dutch player who had revolted to South Africa and I was in the V age. We both had tonnes of resources.
He kept throwing waves and waves of mercenaries at me and I tried to counter the best I could with my units but it was to no avail.
Are there any good counters to mercenaries in this late stage of the game I tried going spies but they were average. Was wondering if there were any cards to upgrade them or something?

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The Assassins card is available for Russians that should help greatly.


If you’re playing on a European map you can get Inquisitors which have good multipliers against mercs. And as Russia you can discount their cost with the Patriarchy card. If you have a German ally they have a card to get them on any map and Patriarchy is a team card so it will help them too.


A south African player using mercenaries how Boering

If you had ‘tons of resources’ you could have gone to imperial age and ou’d have regular units as strong as his mercenaries with half the cost and larger since they don’t take as much pop.

PS: Sorry for the pun.


I love the pun. He was already in Imperial, though.

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You gotta be careful letting a South Africa player drag out the game for too long as the “Wanderlust” card will start to multiply like crazy.

It adds and extra 5% hitpoints to all your units and makes your villagers start to teleport.

Once played a game as Dutch with a South Africa revolt and ended up almost getting Fusiliers with 1000hp!!! (Was treaty tho)

I can imagine this is even crazier now Dutch got access to highlanders and royal horsemen with the Dutch State Army card.

My advice is start a push as soon as you hit the imperial age. Catch them before they can boom. Take out as many of their banks as you can. Bring artillery!!!

@bfbc2desertfox Which mercenaries were they using??


the problem is the ridiculous bonus of south africa in games where experience generation is not a problem.


There are actually some mercs that train instantly in age v (with train time cards, church techs and tavern tech), I think the Royal Horsman (often seen from dutch) is one of them. Then there is the Mamulke (often seen from Otto) with 2300hp and 40% range resist (cav upgrade cards, arsenal tech, age V politician). I used to think merc were not a problem since they are not pop-efficient late game but at the moment there are some issues with stacking upgrades and train times.

You can make spies against any merc unit and they will win (Pop and resource-efficient because they have a multiplier against mers). Obviously, you need to micro them onto the correct units since they outright lose to normal troops.

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Spies don’t really win against high powered and upgraded ranged mercs especially not against armored pistoleers and giant grenadiers.


Thanks yes that was the problem so many of his troops were on like 1000 hp.
I held up a good defence and would try get into his base. It didnt help he was in communication with another player on the Free for all that would help destroy my bases as soon as I set them up haha. They were annoying


In age 3 the spies do well against ranged mers but you are correct about the late-game situation when there is a significate mass of ranged mercs with all their upgrades.


I never usually played the multiplayer version of any games particularly I once tested 1v1 pvp in AoE IV, but not in AoE III and so on.

  1. However you can add a plentiful mixture of church units like priests+spies in all armed control groups, for example like in infantry, cavalry and seige control groups. Priests for general healing and Spies for countering mercenaries. This will make your commands more resilient. Could be a best idea for both skirmish and multiplayer modes.

  2. Add plentiful native militias in your control groups particularly the infantry and siege ones. You can also opt for a common control group or various control groups of native militias. Native militias are also a unique outlaws, best suited against the mercenaries. For this you will have to built trading posts on the settlements as much as you can.

  3. Try Native Indian factions like the Aztech ones, you will get plentiful range of odd powerful armored melee and ranged: infantry and cavalry units. The native regular units can be best itself against the mercenaries. But most of them lack siege units except the Incas.

  4. When you play European factions when it comes to infantry, add melee units particularly the heavy ones like Halbrider in your armed control groups, or you can have separate melee control groups, or both. To strengthen your resistance against the melee infantry and melee cavalry mercenaries.

  5. Check out the combat stances as well, opt for the guard one for infantry and stampede one for the cavalry, both in the defense and combat mode, no need to rush as units walk and hold their position, sneakier. These stances will prove effective against both mercenary and the regular army.

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Lol you are talking non sense….no wonder you say you never played multiplayer


I said usually like once in AoE IV, as the modes are based on my preference. Skirmish mode is what I prefer and played the most with various tactics and strategies to enjoy diverse experiences. Though the same experiences can be applied on multiplayer as well.

It has to be a twice card, or even a unique thrice card, not an infinite card.

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Ummm I’m not sure. The card is over powered but I think it is a nice unique feature for this revolution. Plus I’m pretty sure its the only military home city card that the revolution gets (and even then its not an out and out military card coz it also increases the villager movement speed).

I think players are just going to have to learn to tackle South African players quickly. It creates a nice urgency to the game play.

But what you said are straight away just wrong.

“Native militia are outlaw, they are good vs mercenary” this is not true. Native warrior is not outlaw, and they don’t counter mercenary.

Native aztec…im not sure if this is 2005 but those #### ### #### gone…and only on one map, and they don’t counter mercenary.

Adding melee infantry doesn’t help vs mercenary either. Yes they have cover mode i guess that’s what you,trying to say, but it has nothing to do vs mercenary. And not only european civs have melee infantry. What you talked about is complete non sense.

Guard stance on infantry (i guess cover mode)? And trample stance on cav, it reduces damage and speed, does self damage. It is never worth it. And again, it has nothing related to mercenary.

So if you don’t have any knowledge about this game stop misleading players.


the five points are bare minimums in my prespective what he can do best to beat the odds of mercenaries as best as he can.

And all five points are false or irrelevant


It was fine until they added the mercenaries card. These ones should be reserved to the tavern, keeping mercs training at barracks as a Sweden bonus.