Lack of Gunpowder - a tactical disadvantage

So before starting out, let me point out that there are 5 civilizations completely missin out on gunpowder units - Aztecs, Mayans, Incas, Huns and Cumans. The first three are due to civ design - no cavalry or gunpowder. As a consequence, they have been given Arbalesters to compensate for Hand Cannoneers, which is always a plus, and Siege Ram to compensate for Bombard Cannons, which is situational. It isn’t an exclusive choice for civs to choose, like how Ethiopians have Arbalesters and Hand Cannoneers, and also Siege Rams and Bombard Cannons. But this isn’t important.

The Cannon Galleon is the most important gunpowder unit, because there are no alternatives for it. No warship fills the role of Cannon Galleons.

Elite Cannon Galleons are usually a plus, but they add to the strength of the Cannon Galleon. They are not a new unit. A civ with Cannon Galleon and without the Elite one is also fine.

I do not instate to shake off the balance completely or destroy historical accuracy, but I believe these civs should receive the unit. Goths, Vikings and Celts have this unit.

Maybe, the Chemistry requirement of Cannon Galleon can be waived off, but not the Elite Cannon Galleon, and a similar unit (like the Xolotl Warrior, but actually be easy to mass up) like a reskin + rename to the 5 civs (and possibly Goths and Celts).

No, it’s not. Even on pure water maps, they are very situational. None of those civs are anyway good on water and given how unforgiving the early game water meta is, whether they have cannon galleons or not is irrelevant, as they won’t even survive to the late game against a skilled opponent.

That said, I would’t be against having more water units or something filling the role of cannon galleons for the civs without it, much like the inca slinger can substitute the hand cannons.


I think these civs should take another strat, based in landing instead of naval assault on the coast (Which is the speciality of Cannon Galleon).
Maybe some transport ships bonus, like speed, HP, ARmor, cost, or capacity (Saracens already have this bonus).
Maybe an special tech that allow the transport of units in galleys (3 capacity for War galleys and 5 for Galleons). I think it would fit better with Aztecs

I really don’t know if actually they need it, because these civ just don’t are strong in water…

i agrre its unfair that these civs have no chance of destroying a castle from water.

I would introduce a catapult ship for these 5 civs which is a new unit that if worse than a cannn galleon but has the same range and good anti building bonus damage to fill the niche.

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Mayans are great on water.

Maybe this unit be given to all civs. The Elite Cannon Galleon upgrades it to the gunpowder variant which can be historically locked.

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All civs should get Cannon Galleon. Let’s say you play as Aztecs, you completely destroyed your opponent, but he managed to build a Castle on a small walled island, out of reach of your Trebuchets. How on earth are you supposed to take down that Castle?

I also don’t think this would break balance in any way. Meso civs also have access to Petard and nobody complains about that, so I don’t think giving them access to Cannon Galleon would be such a big deal.

Of course, Elite Cannon Galleon should stay remain to the current civs only.

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Land some siege rams and the castle is gone.

On most map you can range it with trebs from your main land or from neutral islands.

But in general this is a non-issue. On pure water maps generally only 8-10 civs are picked, and none of them lack cannon galleon.

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Well Huns used to have cannon galleons in AoC but that was taken away with the expansions, and it went the other way around for Briton who used to have the exact same navy as Mayan. I suppose there was a reason for this but I wouldn’t be able to know which one 11. The elite upgrade’s distribution makes even less sense, why do Burmese get it but not Chinese, stuff like that.

While it is technically “irreplaceable”, it’s basically a “I’m winning let’s win harder” type of unit because they require you to have a stronger navy to be able to defend them, and the elite upgrade truely is just a flex. And realistically it’s impossible to cover your whole island in stone buildings unless you’re Portuguese, but then there are no issues with the non cannon galleon civs because a non naval civ won’t win against mass caravel spam in the late game anyway.

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What would be the point of playing a dedicated Water civ, if a Land/Arabia civ could just beat you on Water?

I like that Water has it’s own set of viable civs, like Arena has, it opens up design space for civs, by having different Metas.

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I Agree, almost all civs can do it well until Imp Age. If your civ is not good in Water then focus on landing before oponent can exploid his stronger water stuffs

Why would anyone even play a Land civ in a map where you have to perform beach landings?

That is what Water civs are for.

I really like gunpowder units and I’d like to see them on more civs. And the Incas don’t need Hand Cannoneers because they have the slinger.

Random civ, random map…

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With Huns and Mayans, which are decent, it is: “yeah, I have won the water. Now what? Every coast is protected by Keeps and Castles and Kreposts”

tbh from a moderate level skill level onward, if you let your enemies line their coastline with castles it’s your fault. Speaking as someone who’s left that happen a little more than I’m proud to admit :grimacing:


Assuming that your opponent actually tried fighting your ships with their own, they can’t have had realistically mined enough stone and market abused enough to cover their island this much. You have all your time to spread your galleys to shoot their villagers to prevent their defenses from going up, and then plan a landing.

And seriously, kreposts? If they can build that it means they are Bulgarian, ie. a bottom 5 water civ. If they know what they are doing they will barely try to fight you on water and go for a landing ASAP.

If the battle is between Aztecs and Bulgarians, I support Bulgarians on water.

I wonder who would win, a civ that eventually gets some defensive bonuses in castle age and galleons in imp or a civ that gets a strong eco bonus right from dark age, and whose warships are trained 10% faster since feudal? And it’s not like Aztecs have shipwright, dry dock and fast fire ships, which result in a fast, cheap unit that directly counters the slow and expensive Bulgarian galleons, and it’s spammed faster on top of that.

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