Some notes on Ethiopia balance in aoe3

Because of stall in development of african civs, i decided to share my vision of some aspects i would like to be implemented for this civ.
1)Cards and shipments.
Sadly, compared to other civilisations, ethiopia (from now and on- “itiopia”) has way fewer shipments. And even some of those they have, are not playable in any mode. Below i mark all of them in my humble opinion.

I would really like to see following cards revised and added some more to encourage different strategies.
P.S. Some shipments are really underwhelming to use, and math beyond them is too loose.
for example 8 conquistadors in age III for 500 inf. which is effectively:
1 120(units cost) -500inf. =620 res value of shipment itself
whereas incan
And let me mention, for example, german 9 black riders shipment,
which is 2430-1000c=1430 res value of shipment itself, effectively double the itiopian one, for 10% extra XP cost.

2) Age ups and techs.
In brief,first of all, people are complaining about sudanese rush(which i never had trouble to play agaisnt, and i see this effectively as 400w age up).
But this play is the best ethiopia can offer, just because all other approaches for them are way too slow (dont forget itiopia doesnt have 3 vill shipment and crates, making it one of slowest age up civs).
Well, to encourage Itiopia play in age 2. I request to Swap sudanese and India age ups.
So people can finally benefit from Goa Followership tech (vill per shipment). (before it just was too late to make difference.)
And sudanese in Age 3 will be pretty useless, unless we switch Red sea wagon tech for other (because africans benefit the least from wagons, its capped to 200w buildings, when other civs can get 400w-700w buildings). And also if allying sudanese allows training askari and sennar horseman by default it will open way for some interesting strategies.

Next problematic tech is Oromo tech " Irreechaa" which " make Fields reward 10 influence to the player upon being built." People wont ever go for it consciously,
I just find this tech totally useless and wortheless, same mountain monastery tech “solomon dynasty”. which costs 1500 inf. and makes Itiopia get around 15% of killed unit cost as reward in influence. So, for example, for each killed longbowman, player will get 1 (ONE) seashell…
In order to make it better, need raise % of reward, and make it also apply to killed enemy artillery (which it, for some reason doesnt apply to). (all following also can be said about “cartridge currency” tech in age 3, which gives small coin bounty for killed units.)
Arab age up is very situational, but i feel like underwhelming to use. Better to both of techs this age up allows merged in one, and grant them additional tech… (any).
Overall Itiopian Age up options are more viable than hausan.

3) Last but not least. Units. Javelin rider is pretty meh, after all those nerfs. 6.75 speed doesnt allow them to catch raids. Their stats are not impressive for their cost. They do very poor vs arty (which african civs always struggle against), and they have only 1 card for upgrade (compare eurocivs casually having 3 upgrade cards for their goons).
Also javelin and oromo are tech’ed separately, which makes them kinda redundant, itiopia can do just fine with musk+skirm+shotel, which all tech’ed together…
My heart aches, but i would suggest add shotels to “elite cavalry”, even tho it kinda defeats idea. This also will make Oromo warriors more viable, altho they still outclassed by shotels… and their charged attack is is annoying, when they need to dive into arty or chase.

African outlaws - Sadly, not viable at any case, i dont ask to add cut outlaws from unknown, like knife thrower or swashbuckler, but at least give some cards/techs to make them what they meant to be- supplimentary units for warcamp compo.
Overall african dream is 2 culv shipment. Everything including arty nukes them.
2 falc push timing.-> if survived, have to deal with more arty. and heavy cannon spam is just instaGG for africans. They, even with new tech, still cant deploy arty and add it consistently throughout the game. it wouldnt be such problem if their primary compo included unit like hand mortar /huaraca /arrow knight, but they simply dont have it.
Itiopia, at least has options to go somalian skirms and somehow barely kite cannons, unlike hausa.

4) Last one. fields suck… make them employ 5 vills at least.
Thanks for attention, cringepost is over. (maybe one day will do about hausa, if requested.)


the cost for Conqs is 160 so the Ethi shioment is 780 res while the Incan is 850 so yeah it should et better numbers since Inca can send theirs twice aswell. Germany on the other hand has their big shipments as civ bonus so with Uhlan Bonus their merc shipment is within reason.

not a single other civ can get as many res shipments out as ethiopia can with all basic crates + Influence crates AND double big Benny

in every game I played vs Ethiopia or with them in my team they instantly became the most powerful player in the match due to that ageup. 30% cheaper mercs with halfed cost are just completely insane while also adding two of the best merc units to their roster.

Fields are the cheapest gather building by a very long shot so them being more efford to set up is 100% justified imo.

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Conqs are ciminally underpriced for their stats by design(boost nat play on jesuit map) and shadowtech plus available age 2/3. Spamming them is a balance concern and was op when ethopia could after jesuit.rework. compare age3 conqs to others goons for the price. Inca gets a good shipment due to card designed.before rework and civ cant make them normally.

The Sudanese rush was one of the most broken rushes in DE as of yet. I guess your better than the entire playerbase but as the Mikael pointed out the tempo and res plus a fast melee skirm is too much for ethopia. Fast musk 1.pop lancer age2 goon easy to.break sudan with. Also habesha ports very popular on ladder for age ups for shotel/gascenya plays.

Fields for ethopia are strong. 2 cards (Iyeasu and roof of africa) alone bring you parity plus can boost with and if you understand euro farms dont calculate walking youll learn fields are right up there for food. Coin is less relevant on a civ with infinite coin mining.

Ethopian javs are one of the best 1 pop goon and scale from age2. Amazing. Oromo are ackward the fire animation but also slept on cause everyone spamming shotels. No need to boost just fix animation so they pursue easier.

Weaknesses to falc.timings is actually player skill check. Fat cannon can outmicro or you can delay and get culv or just timing with bigger mass. Your going to have to use your brain and not just musk falc in return. Like every native civ and a few.others do vs falc timimgs. Ofc vs usa spain its hard but these 2 civs are just broken atm everyone does and they need to nerf them not brings others to that level of broken.

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And still coin is where they really shine because food upgrades cost around double as for other civs to compensate for the low cost of fields but coin upgrades cost the same res per boost as food upgrades so they are about the same while fields cost only a fraction compared to Estates


I agree especially with the outlaw part, the population for the outlaws should be reduced a little bit. If a unit is strong, it’s better to change it’s stats instead of making the pop too expensive. Granary build time should also be a little bit faster.


Some of the cards you crossed out do see some use in treaty modes and team game sometimes, like the resource exchange and the market sell factor one. Some cards are just common flavour cards for all civ, like a pet card, explorer card, explorer special ability card, advanced dock card which arguably no civ generally uses, but I think is good addition for casual game mode.

Agree about artillery, they are the main weakness of african civs. But I feel 2 culvs card will be OP.


yes, i dont suggest direct 2 culv shipment. but rather analogue shipment (5 sennar arent fulfilling this role and too expensive)

“SpainFFHater” requesting a 2 culv shipment for a civ that is bad against the spain ff is one of the most accidentally funny things I’ve seen in a while


Dont agree with lalibella church card being unplayable. This card synergises greatly with tabot card (especially in treaty mode) as mountain monastery is much preferable to gather coin/influence from comparing to fields due to its insane gathering speed with all upgrades (and hidden +20% bonus). Rebuilding monasteries with tabot grants them 900 gold so it is infinite source of gold 150w cost. Lalibella church make them more cost effective.
It is also very helpful when you want to play heavily relying on gold/influence army like 3 age mass oromo/javs+cannoners+culverins from ports alliance so your current goldmines have much more gold bank to produce from. Btw, oromo and javs are teched together in war camps and also have common card Shewa Riders- comparetively the strongest cav enhancing card in the game. Though i can agree to some extent that musk+skirm+shotel composition is more preferrable due its independence from influence gathering eco(which is quite slow to develop) and absence of necessity to build palaces for certain unit production.
I agree that fields sucks but not cuz of limit of 3 vils for every field but slow as hell build time and downright expensive as f wood cost upgrades. 10%, 15% and 20% for 300w, 600w and 800w for food gathering is insane. 1700w for african fields upgrades against 970w/g for european mills is huge difference. More than that, fields with granary requires much more place to build. Its especially annoying on maps with much of uneven ground to build that requires lot of micromanagement.
I wouldnt call other age ups comparatively bad. Jesuits are good for greedy age 2 with jesuit influence card sent for that exp u get from age up and further habesha age 3 with kingdom builders sent to build tc`s that combines good with faster vills making from jesuits tech.
Somali is good for water maps with TP control.
India age is great in team game with FI strategy as shadowteched howdahs graded to 4 age are insane. Also Karrayyu Pastoralism u called unplayable card is very good in FI to support eco development tempo as much good eco techs require a lot of wood and gold.
At the same time i agree that some age up techs (and some base monastery techs) should be reconsidered to be viable to use. Habesha ones especially. Indians tech for elephants is way too expensive too.
I also agree with the other points ± too.

I would add that in overall ethiopians influence military shipments became too weak to use after series of nerf patches. Almost all of them disappeared from people decks.
5 abuns+ 3 creation limit age 3 card is badly broken. You just cannot ship this card because at the most of games you at least have 1 abun sent from age 1, but this card just cannot be shipped if u have any abun alive cuz your limit of them is 5, sending 5 of them in game`s logic means going over limit to be available to ship, though at the same time it claims that you will have 8 limit then that makes if crooked in realisation. Could be very good card in semi-ff strat with 3 abuns made in age 2 before age up to age 3.


(I dont play Ethiopia on the ladder, only casual team games)

Many of the cards you crossed out are really fun. I like the lions per shipment, spamming militia that doesnt loose health is fantastic (espescially when russian oppri spammers start crying because of the 2x against siege units) or in general having powerfull heroes.

They might not necessarily be strong atm, but i can imagine players (with more skill than me) could use them for niche strats

esp. the lions… pls guys, check them out… its like a mini-horse… combining it with jesuit influence, ethiopia suddenly feels like the weird cousin of spanish gold and german uhlans

Tabot is one of the better cards if your aim isn’t to just rush out your opponent and win in age2-3. It is essentially a free gold/influence source, which Ethiopia really needs. I’d say it is a core card to send as part of an eco/boom strategy.

I think the big age up problem is that you generally really need jesuits early-ish and that makes no room for the indians. The age4 church techs bring available in age2 is just too good to pass on. And the jesuit techs are generally good techs that favor your core units.

And in age3 you generally want ormo for the extea influence tickles on the eco side. Indians are also terrible on the rush side, so that leaves no room for them.

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