Natives or minor factions (General discussion)


There have been many forums about it, and since I can’t revisit old topics I will create a new one. Also because some things have changed.

There have been some changes that I feel are correct such as experience dripping, TP slot capture, and auto-building. However, I still consider that there are things to improve. Here I will recycle concepts that I published in this forum ([Suggestion–rework] Natives or minor factions), which in turn was a compilation of mine and other people’s ideas. Based mainly on that forum is this.


Below I will present a compilation of proposals related to the natives, minor factions or whatever you want to call it. Some proposals made by me, others made by other people, and others in which we probably converge.

The goal is to improve the viability of using natives in general, regardless of whether some civilizations like the Africans and Inca civilizations for example already benefit from alliances better than average.

Immediate TP benefits:

Resource or Passive Skill Drip:

The cost of TP was reduced with automatic construction in exchange for the fact that it takes a little longer to build, and now generates more field of view than before, in addition to a trickle of experience/influence or passive ability depending on the alliance.

The passive skills are very good and I actually like them, however there are some passive skills that I think need a touch up. For example, skills that don’t give you something extra the longer you wait, like the fireworks skill that stuns troops.

I think that the minor factions that are not real houses should give something similar to a passive bonus (A passive bonus similar to the Asian Consulate): Now all the minor factions you are allied with will give you a passive bonus, which means you will have an immediate buff once you build the TP, in case the enemy destroys it, this buff is gone. For example:

  • Alliance with Cheyenne: Gathering per hunt is increased by 5%.
  • Alliance with the Comanches: Cavalry and shock infantry are 5% cheaper.
  • Alliance with the Caribs: Fishing harvest increases by 5% and fishing boats move faster.

Minor Civilizations Should Have Passive Abilities

(Just to give some examples)

In this way, an investment that helps you progress is justified, with an inherent quality of the ally.

Income of passive resources: Trading Posts now generate a passive income from some resource depending on the civilization. For example:

  • Asians: Native TPs generate a slight export trickle.
  • Europeans, Pre-Columbian and post-colonial Americans: They receive a slight trickle of experience (Already implemented, so thanks, but I still think that Asians should gain exports instead of XP​)

For civs that have the plaza as a “fourth resource”, instead of gaining experience, native allies give a slight bonus to plaza work. (As if they participated in the politics of said civilization). I read it once and it seemed like a good idea, but I don’t know how much impact it could have on the balance.

African civilizations already generate influence on native and route TPs, so there is no need to emphasize them.

Equitable Alliances:

What do I mean by this? Well, most civs can buff native allies much more than others due to having an arsenal available. For example the Aztecs and the Incas cannot.

  • For civilizations that do not have access to the arsenal, in case of allying with minor facsions it would be good that in those places exclusively for facsions without arsenal, there are 3 improvements available:
  1. In case of being gunpowder cavalry, add the upgrade ‘cavalry snail’
  2. In case they are skirmishers add ‘anti-infantry rifles’
  3. In case they are musketeers add ‘socket bayonet’

This would make native allies more useful for civilizations that lack these technologies. For example, when the Aztecs take the alliance with the Jesuits and cannot improve the reach of the conquerors because they do not have arsenal. This would be more useful to the natives for civilizations without gunpowder and at the same time it would give more balance in the game and usefulness to the natives.

Alliance of Aztecs with Jesuits.

Another example would be an alliance of Aztecs with the Cree where they have access of anti-infantry rifles.

This will greatly improve the natives for civilizations without access to the arsenal. It would even seem fair to me that the upgrades ‘flintlock rifle’ and ‘paper cartridges’ were also available in these native villages. (If the ally is a skirmisher or musketeer, of course) All of these upgrades are unlocked at age IV for them (or V if necessary for the sake of balance).

In case of a hypothetical alliance between Aztecs and Comanches or Mapuches, their respective cavalries will increase one point of reach for each age they advance (age III: +1 reach. Age IV + 1 reach =+2 Total + 14 reach). Arsenal upgrades for them would be pointless since they don’t use gunpowder.

Now that there are also royal houses in the game, it seemed to me that there should also be a benefit for civilizations like Aztecs and Incas without an arsenal.

What was previously demonstrated about some available armory upgrades would fall short in some cases due to limited slots by the big button and available upgrades, so in this case it would be best to enable an armory cart with some upgrades. Generally it would be the same as what I proposed, but now there are melee cavalry and melee infantry units like halberdiers, so if the case arises, the armory will have these technologies available:

Infantry cuirass

Cuirassier horseman

Of course, it would only upgrade the units available in the royal house and not the Inca units (in this case) themselves.

Plot: Well, in this case we can imagine that these minor factions have their own arms race and their own contacts.

Native Values:

Most of the natives cost wood and food, but in the long run wood is scarce and they lose viability. That’s why I think that the natives that should cost wood are those that use more primitive weapons, while those that use firearms or metal weapons such as spears or swords cost food + coins.

For example:

  • Cherokees should cost coins due to the fact that they use a rifle.
  • Tupi can cost wood because they use a bow and arrows.

Cavalry units like Comanches and Cheyennes could also cost coins.

There would still be plenty of units left that would cost wood and food, but I think this is good for variety.

Skirmish-type natives with more range:

Skirmish units like Cherokees and Cree should gain a range point as age 3 and age 4 buffs are applied. These units have a range of 16, so could potentially have a range of 18. (+ 1 of age range III + 1 of age range 4. = +2 /Total 18). They would be 2 rank points below the European skirmish average.

I know that the Cree natives have been readjusted so that the United States does not have too strong use of this unit, but I think that if the range is gradually improved there will be no problems.

Native allies from the metropolis:

I believe that no civilization should have natives that cost population. Even if the unit is very good it is not the way the problem should be approached. For example, the Germans have access to natives with elector princes and circle armies. They gave population costs to elector princes for the sake of balance and I understand it, but I think it takes away the joke of playing with natives.

There are also some native submissions that do not improve or there are no ways to improve them in some way. For example:
The ‘Nine Fanar Allies’ card does not update to stats corresponding to age. Keeps the base stats from Age II. I don’t know if this happens with more native cards.

The army of the circle of Germany should not require the ‘blood brothers’ card to improve. I think that in these cases they should automatically improve or enable the corresponding improvements in the native embassy.

Change the ‘9 Infinite Sufi Allies’ card for another card. This unit is efficient against infantry, but the Ottomans already have very good anti-infantry. Leave this unit as a limited shipment and give us a unit that fights cavalry. They could be Berbers ‘9 infinite Berbers’. I can currently stack ‘18 Sufi allies (Qizilbash)’, so swapping for ‘9 infinite Berber allies’ and limiting it to just 9 would make up for it if they consider ‘9 infinite Berber allies’ to be better.

Improvements to some native related cards:

Many cards that in principle should improve alliances with natives are practically useless, so I propose the following improvements:

Improvements of some cards related to natives:

Native Lore: In addition to the current benefits, it slightly increases the experience drip provided by each TP you control. If they are real houses, passive skills recharge a little faster.

(Because there are already minor European factions, this card could be renamed and rebranded to make sense with all the natives in general, perhaps it could be called local lore.)

Native Treaties: In addition to its current benefits, it gives you a cart that can build a native embassy. Embassies give more experience when building them.
(In case you haven’t already allied with a tribe before this card arrives, it will give you the corresponding warriors once you build the trading post the first time you actually build the trading post. I also consider that in cases where your alliance is with natives that repeat on the map, it only counts as the same alliance, I think should give natives for each native TP, and not for each type of ally. I also consider that it needs a name and appearance change for the reason I explained above.).

Blood Brothers: In addition to the current benefits, the natives from the metropolis arrive faster and are also able to enable some of their improvements in your native embassy (Upgrades would only be activated through natives that are an infinite shipment or are enabled to be created in the native embassy). (I would rename it close relationships or loyal alliance, since I also think it is very emphasized in the new world)

Improvements of some cards related to natives (Asians):

Native Lore: In addition to the current benefits, now each native embassy you build will give you a slight income of experience. (This to differentiate from the card with the same purpose that the Europeans have. In the hypothetical case that the TP generate exports, this would fit better.)
(Because there are already minor European factions, this card could be renamed and rebranded to make sense with all the natives in general, perhaps it could be called local lore.)

Native Alliance: In addition to its current benefits, it gives you a cart that can build a native embassy. Increases the ability to build embassies by +1.

Native Crafts: In addition to the current buffs, add an export X.XX trickle for each native village you control. (Or slightly increases its income in the hypothetical case that the TP generates exports by default)

Note: They would vary by civilization depending on how strong they can be, because for example the US has some of these cards and the improvements suggested here could make them very strong, but remember that these are general proposals.

An alternative proposal on native embassies here.

The natives influence the markets:

I have always thought that both route TPs and native TPs should have some interaction with the rates that are handled in the markets. There are some interesting mechanics that I propose in this regard. (interesting for me at least. XD)

Explained here: Rework to the markets

Upgrade each minor faction separately:

Especially the minor Asian and American factions. Some are unviable and even almost obsolete. For this reason, each should be reviewed separately. (There are even royal house units/upgrades and African alliances that should be improved a bit).

Many alliances are good, but not many civs have viable options to make an alliance worthwhile. So you also have to give a little more versatility to civilizations that do not specialize in alliances with natives, but can still do it in a better way.I think that with everything suggested above it would be enough to justify an alliance.

In these forums suggestions are given on how to improve a specific minor faction. Only the original minor factions prior to the TAR expansion:

Catalog of proposals on minor factions/civilizations (AOE-3 BASIC + TWC + TAD) (This is a well-organized compilation of proposals, based on the one below).

[Minor Natives topic] Post here your ideas for every single minor natives so the devs can look at

It would also be interesting to see new natives for all the continents already represented in the game and to come. For example muiscas for South America. You can propose new natives if you wish.

The general idea is not that you should always use native ones, the idea is that they are useful when you want to use them.


The problem is they aren’t passive abilities. You have to manually activate them which means they’re very easily forgotten or ignored entirely. If they were truly passive they’d be much more useful.

Even so, I think that what real houses do is not bad. What you propose would be better, but nevertheless it is good. Maybe it would be good to put a notification sound when said ability is charged?

As for other minor factions they should definitely implement passive bonuses. They should be very subtle, but useful enough to be worth it.

It depends on which royal house. Some have really powerful and useful abilities, and some are quite terrible like walking 5% faster for a few seconds.

I don’t think this is tenable from a balance perspective. Chinese Arquebusiers doing x4 vs heavy infantry or Indian Howdahs with +2 range and +10% attack would be insane. I think the better approach would be slightly buffing the Exalted Natives technology to compensate for the missing Arsenal technologies.

I would like it to grant units over time (in addition to the skill itself).

I already mentioned that these improvements would only apply to native units, although I also like your suggestion.

It could use a bonus against siege units (grenadiers, firecrackers, etc.).

Could you change armor depending on posture? He uses a shield, so it would make sense.

I think should change armor when in melee mode, since the unit is made to combat heavy infantry. The appropriate thing would be for it to have melee tolerance when attacking mele.

Also allow it to train Berber camel rider

In addition to the current benefits, Enables grenadiers in the native TP and in the bar, tavern, etc.

Enables the incendiary grenade and bayonet upgrade if you do not have them.

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Also enable these units in the tavern and similar buildings.