First of all, I don’t speak neither English nor Thai as my native language. So please bear with me if I make any grammar or puctuation mistakes.
This is just a conceptual suggestion, that’s why the thread will only address bonuses, unique units and techs. Specific bonus values and the tech tree can always be tweaked for balance later.
The Tai (Siamese)
Why the Krung Tai kingdom?
-It’s already in-game as part of the History section of the Khmer.
-Krung Tai was a notorious regional power during the era portrayed in Age of empires II.
-Krung Tai’s history is interesting enough to be part of Aoe II. It started as a small group of immigrants and ended up defeating the Khmer empire and winning against the Burmese kingdom.
-There was a strong rivalry between the Tai (Siamese) and the Khmer; and the burmese to some extent.
-Krung Tai was the home of the Tai people. The Khmer empire, Cambodian people. The Burmese kingdom, Bamar people. The 3 kingdoms had different ethnicity, language and culture.
-Krung Tai fought against the Khmer, the Burmese, the Malay, Ming dynasty detachments, and interacted with the Portuguese.
Civ concept: Elephants and gunpowder.
-Farmers generate X wood per second while in gathering animation.
-Bloodlines for free.
-Hand Cannoneers don’t cost food.
-Elephant upgrades are X% cheaper.
Chang Samkhan: White elephant unit with generic elephant stats. But everytime they deal damage, they can heal nearby units (indirect lifesteal).
Mechanic: Reverse trample damage. Instead of damaging adjacent enemy units, it heals friendly units for what the trample damage would have been. Trample area and heal % can be adjusted accordingly.
Krabi-Krabong warrior: Fast light infantry that only costs food and has small attack bonus vs siege workshop units. Available at the barracks since the Castle age.
- Ngao (Castle age): Elephants attack X% faster.
- Silver cannons (Imperial age): Cannon galleons and bombard cannons have their minimum range improved to a value of 2 and their speed increased by X%.
Krabi-krabong warriors are available at the barracks.
Arquitecture: Southeast Asian.
Note: This suggestion combines Lavo, the Sukhothai kingdom, and the Ayutthaya kingdom -but there are some references to the southern part of Lan Na- because they were Tai.
Also in this suggestion, the term Thai will be used for linguistic and cultural matters; while Tai will refer to ethnicity. Tai means free, and that’s the demonym they used to call themselves after their emancipation. Besides, it is theorized that Siam comes from the Pali word syam (red) related to suvannabhūmi (land of gold), or the Sanskrit word syāma (dark). The word was used by the Portuguese in the 16th century and became the accepted term. As opposed to Angkorians who called them Siem, meaning savage or barbaric in old Khmer (later adopted as Sien by the Chinese) but usually it wasn’t used as a slur or taunt, back then it was more akin to stranger or outsider.
Just if you are interested in reading it.
About the Krung Tai kingdom from Aoe II:
Finally, the king commanded the army. Between the ninth and fourteenth centuries, Khmer rulers continuously conducted military campaigns and conquered much of Southeast Asia. Their major enemies were the Siamese, the Vietnamese, and the Cham, who raided Angkor in 1177 and 1178. The Khmer had no standing army, but relied on appointed captains who were responsible for conscripting peasants in times of war. Aside from this large contingent of peasant infantry, the army deployed war elephants, sometimes mounted with ballistae.
The Khmer not only fought other civilizations. Because kings married multiple women, disputes between different lineages often resulted in civil wars. For example, after Suryavarman I (1002-1049) had claimed the throne, he fought eight years with other contenders. Political instability was inherent to the Khmer society. However, from the fourteenth century on, civil wars became more frequent as rulers were unable to deal with other, structural problems: rice cultivation declined due to a cooling of temperature, the conversion from Hinduism to Theravada Buddhism undermined the legitimacy of kings as divine ruler, and warfare with the Siamese resulted in a continuous loss of territory. Eventually, king Ponhea Yat (1405-1463) abandoned Angkor in 1431, marking the end of the great Khmer Empire.
About the Tai kingdoms:
Over the centuries, from the mandala centers period through the Lavo period, the Sukhothai kingdom, until the Ayutthaya kingdom, the Tai have relied on agriculture to support their villages. They mainly cultivated rice (Oryza sativa) and mung beans (Vigna radiata). The dominance of rice reflects the natural environment of their territory and the historical importance for Tai traditions. Production areas were the irrigated and high-rainfall lowlands, mainly the central plains and the south, while the northeast was affected by variable water regimes, and the north was highly productive thanks to its narrow river valleys. The northern areas such as Phitsanulok, Chakangrao, and Phrae, and Lamphun and Chiang Mai from Lan Na (known as the Kingdom of a million rice fields) were major rice producers. This suggests that there was farmer risk aversion and rice was locally perceived as low risk. Due to their desire to reduce risk and save up resources, the Tai implemented a system of irrigation to control water levels in flooded paddies to favor glutinous rice, and reused the water from irrigation canals to sustain other plantations. For example, it wasn’t rare to see paddy fields next to plantations of yang trees (Dipterocarpus alatus) and Thailand rosewood (Dalbergia cochinchinensis), or thai ornamental flowers farms (Brassavola nodosa, Cymbidium insigne, etc). It is important to note that Thailand rosewood is one of the most valuable hardwoods in the world even to this day.
In the floodplain of the Chao Phraya, farmers turned to a different variety of rice (the so-called floating rice, a slender, non-glutinous grain introduced from Bengal) that would grow fast enough to keep pace with the rise of the water level in the lowland fields.
The military organization evolved consistently across the history of the Tai people. During the Lavo period, mueangs (towns) were defended by militia groups led by the chao (chief). Their forces consisted of light infantry militia equipped with leather-wood based armor and wielding swords, rustic glaives, and spears, supported by independent squads of cavalry. The most common documented Lavo strategy was the human wall: a line of infantry would advance in wedge formation, while cavalry would orbit around the flanks so they can engage in hit-and-run or block enemies whenever it was necessary. This tactic was unfruitful for offense, but it proved to be very effective for defense against Khmer forces. Notorious achievement considering the Khmer army was vastly stronger than Lavo’s in that era. During the Sukhothai period, the military was organized into columns of infantry and small elephant corps supported by heavy horse riders and cannons. Traditionally, the elephantry would go as vanguards followed by the infantry in arrow formation; in the meantime, the cavalry would block or encircle enemies depending on the situation. This army arrangement was preferred to reduce infantry losses as much as possible in case the elephants would rampage. However, there have been cases where elephants got out of control before reaching the battlefield and setting up the formation. During the Ayutthaya period, even though the use of war elephants continued, with some battles seeing personal combat between commanders on elephants, the infantry was still the backbone of the army. Conscripts were usually raised just prior to or during wartime and provided manpower to resist attacks and project power beyond the boundaries of the empire. Most of the conscripts served in the infantry but the men for the elephantry, cavalry, artillery, and naval corps were drawn from specific hereditary villages that specialized in respective military skills. Ayutthayan infantry also used early firearms such as arquebuses, but the more advanced muskets were used exclusively by foreign mercenaries (Portuguese and Muslim) during the 16th century.
Asian elephants were an integral part of warfare in Tai kingdoms. They would commonly be mounted by higher-ranking warriors like generals or royalty. The king or general rode on the elephant’s neck and carried ngao, a long pole with a blade at the end, plus a metal hook for controlling the elephant. Ngao blades were very important since they could be used to fight and give orders to the elephants at the same time, thus increasing reaction speed and efficiency. Sitting behind him on a howdah, was a signaller, who signaled by waving of a pair of peacock feathers. Above the signaller was the chatras, consisting of progressively stacked circular canopies, the number signifying the rank of the rider. Finally, behind the signaller on the elephant’s back, was the steerer, who steered via a long pole. The steerer may have also carried a short musket and a sword. The main use of war elephants was to charge the enemy, trampling them and breaking their ranks. Although the elephantry units made up only about one percent of the overall strength, they were a major component of Tai war strategy throughout the imperial era. The army on the march would bring expert catchers of wild elephants.
Just like war elephants, there is another kind of elephant that was a symbol of power: the white elephant (chang phueak). These elephants are not necessarily albinos but are much paler than common elephants. Their skin may be light grey, beige, or even have a rosy or pinkish hue. In Thai culture, the status of kings have been rated by the number of white elephants that were in their possession and they have been historically considered a symbol of the King’s majesty. Royal white elephants are also called auspicious elephants (Chang Samkhan). An elephant has to undergo a number of tests conducted by the Bureau of the Royal Household since it is important to ensure that the elephant is suited for the title and has not only the physical but also the behavioral characteristics required. In the past, Tai kings also gave auspicious elephants as presents to friends and allies. This was a blessing or curse since an elephant considered sacred was not supposed to work and at the same time it needed care and food. However, while it’s true auspicious elephants can’t be put to work, there are records that chang samkhan were sent to the battlefield as good luck charms with intentions to increase morale among the troops.
The infantry was conscripted based on the phrai system which required local chiefs to supply their predetermined quota of men from their jurisdiction on the basis of population in times of war. Soldiers wore uniforms and leather-metal chest protectors; their weaponry largely consisted of swords, spears, and bow and arrows. Though their history, the Tai mostly used light infantry as shock troops and skirmishers. They were highly trained in krabi-krabong martial arts, which was a combat system developed from the use of the Thai sword (krabi) and staff (krabong), and unarmed (muay boran) fighting styles. Practitioners could also use daab and ngao blades. During the Burmese–Tai War (1593–1600), krabi-krabong soldiers were in charge of bypassing fortifications and sabotaging Burmese cannons. It is believed krabi-krabong was established as a complete martial art between the 15th and the 16th century, but archeological findings and Tai traditions show that a precursor martial arts existed as early as the 13th century that was developed by the ancient Tai warriors for fighting on the battlefield. According to Tai accounts, Naresuan The Great was a krabi-krabong practitioner and expert at using the ngao. By the 16th century, some infantry units shifted their attention to the use of arquebuses, but they still were required to practice martial arts.
In the 13th century, gunpowder technology was introduced into the region by Kublai Khan of the Yuan dynasty in the invasion of Java. Over the following years, it was quickly assimilated by Sukhothai and Ayutthaya. The Tai developed cannons that were attached to walls and war boats ordered to defend the Chao Phraya river. Tai ships were well-known for being armed with silver cannons; these royal cannons were actually made of bronze but were usually covered in silver to give them a whitish shade. For the Tai culture of that era, white and silver colors represented the god Indra, pureness, and monarchy, and were associated with the king in the same way as white elephants were. The most famous of these cannons are the two gifted by King Narai to Louis XIV of France in 1686. Furthermore, through their foreign relations with China, they could develop pole cannons, successors of the fire lance. In the 15th century, they gained access to arquebuses thanks to the Muslims. Finally, in the 16th century, the Portuguese introduced matchlock guns and muskets but they weren’t generally part of the Tai army.
-Sri Indraditya (1188-1270):
He was the first king of the Sukhothai Kingdom and ruled from 1238 until around 1270. He emancipated Sukhothai, and is credited as the founder of the Phra Ruang Dynasty
-Ramkhamhaeng the Great (1237-1298):
He was the third king of the Phra Ruang Dynasty, ruling the Sukhothai Kingdom from 1279 to 1298. He sent embassies to Yuan China from 1282 to 1323 and imported the techniques to make the Sangkhalok ceramics. He had an expansionist policy.
-Mahathammaracha I (1300-1368):
He was a king of the Sukhothai Kingdom, and the first Buddhist philosopher to write in the Thai language. He reigned from roughly 1347 until his death in 1368. Originally called Li Thai.
-Mahathammaracha IV (???-1438):
He was the last king of the Sukhothai Kingdom. Originally called Borommapan.
-Ramathibodi I or U-Thong (1314-1369):
He was the first king of the kingdom Ayutthaya and founder of Ayutthaya city, reigning from 1350 to 1369. Originally called Prince U-Thong, which means Golden Cradle, before he ascended to the throne in 1350
-Somdet Phra Ramesuan (1339-1395):
He was a son of king Ramathibodi I. Ramesuan reigned as the second (from 1369 to 1370) and fifth (from 1388 to 1395) king of the kingdom of Ayutthaya. He was denied help from the nobles in the capital, so he had to gather sufficient support from his power base in Lavo to return to Ayutthaya and challenge Thong Lan for the throne.
-Borommarachathirat I (1310-1388):
He was the third king of Ayutthaya Kingdom from 1370 to 1388. He forced King Ramesuan from power and took the throne of Ayutthaya. Known as a great warrior, his reign marked the expansion of Ayutthaya to the north.
-Borommarachathirat II (1386-1448):
He was a king of Ayutthaya. His reign saw its early expansions. Also known as Samphraya. In 1433 Samphraya led Tai forces to subjugate Cambodia plundering Angkor Thom. This assault eventually caused the Khmers to abandon Angkor and to relocate their capital further south-east. He married a daughter of the vassal Prince of Sukhothai, Maha Tammaraja IV, and had a son, who will grow up to be Prince Ramesuan of Ayutthaya.
He was the king of the Ayutthaya Kingdom from 1448 to 1488. Originally called Prince Ramesuan of Ayutthaya. He was one of many monarchs who gained the epithet King of White Elephants.
-Maha Chakkraphat (1509-1569):
King of the Ayutthaya kingdom from 1548 to 1564 and 1568 to 1569. Originally called Prince Thianracha. He was the king during the first siege of Ayutthaya city. During the second siege of Ayutthaya, he was defeated by the Burmese in 1564.
-Maha Thammaracha or Sanphet I (1509-1590):
King of Ayutthaya Kingdom from the Sukhothai dynasty from 1569 to 1590. Originally called Phirenthorathep. He was forced to ally with Bayinnaung of Burma and was appointed as viceroy of Ayutthaya.
-Naresuan The Great or Sanphet II (1555-1605):
He was the 18th monarch of Ayutthaya Kingdom and 2nd monarch of the Sukhothai dynasty. He was the king of the Ayutthaya Kingdom from 1590 and the overlord of Lan Na from 1602 until his death in 1605. Originally called Prince Naret, and thought to be a genius. He invaded Burma and cut down Mingyi Swa of the Toungoo dynasty, then invaded Cambodia, Burma again, and Lan Na.
-The Tai defeating the Khmer empire.
-The rise of Ayutthaya: from the foundation of the city until the siege of Malacca by the portuguese.
-The life of Naresuan The Great.
These eco and military bonuses were chosen to emulate the Tai kingdoms from real life. Especially the warfare part (read it if you are interested) and the fighting style: In feudal, the bonus for scouts represents the resilient horses from Lavo. In the Castle age, light infantry (represented as krabi-krabong) and elephants like during Sukhothai. In the Imperial age, elephants, speedy cannons, and gold-only hand cannoneers (mercenaries) representing the quick acceptance and development of gunpowder in the Ayutthaya kingdom.
Base tech tree:
Khmer tree with bombard cannons and vietnamese monastery.
Adding or removing techs for balance.
Thanks to google translate
-Chula Chakrabongse (1967). “Lords of Life: A History of the Kings of Thailand”. Alvin Redman.
-Coedès, George (1968). Walter F. Vella (ed.). “The Indianized States of Southeast Asia”. trans.Susan Brown Cowing. University of Hawaii Press.
-Coedès, George (1921). “The Origins of the Sukhodaya Dynasty”. Journal of the Siam Society.
-Encyclopædia Britannica (2021). “Thailand: The Ayutthayan period, 1351–1767”. Encyclopædia Britannica (online).
-Facts And Details (2014). “Ayutthaya Period (1350–1767) Of Thai History”. Facts and details (online).
-Falvey, John Lindsay (2001). “Thai agriculture from Ayutthaya to the early 20th century”. University of Melbourne Press.
-Kistler, John M. (2006) “War elephants”. Westport, Connecticut: Praeger, 2006.
-Land, Graham (2016). “‘More valuable than gold’: Thailand’s fight to save the Siamese Rosewood”. Asian Correspondent.
-Phongpaichit, Pasuk; Baker, Christopher John (1995). “Thailand, Economy and Politics”. Kuala Lumpur: Oxford University Press.
-Polkinghorne, Martin (2018). “The Renaissance Princess Lectures - In Honour of Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn”. Siam Society Press. (Status of the Thai Native Orchids; pp.25-49), (Evidence for the 15th Century Ayutthayan Occupation of Angkor; pp.98-132).
-Sirinya Pakditawan (2017). “White elephant in Thai culture, highly auspicious and symbols of royal power”. The Phuket News.
-Sud Chonchirdsin (2017). “Elephants, kingship and warfare in Southeast Asia”. British Library: Asian and African studies blog, May 2017.
-Wikipedia (2021). “Ayutthaya Kingdom”. Wikipedia (online).