Update Politicians to include underutilized game mechanics

Politicians are very lacklustre and boring compared to the varied age-up options for the newer civilizations. New ones like the Logistician and Mercenary Contractor have taken this in the right direction but there is a lot more that could be done with the rest. They should grant short term benefits like they currently do, but also grant small buffs that can carry through the rest of the game. That would give more depth and make it less of an obvious choice based on which one grants the best short term benefit. It could also give access to features that are locked behind lower value cards like how the Inventor grants a Hot Air Balloon (cows, upgraded spies, etc) and lessen the reliance on cards like Advanced Arsenal or Unique Church Upgrades for getting essential upgrades. Short term benefits could be decreased to compensate for giving more power long term.

Age 2


Current - Grants Balloon
Additional - Ships crates of books (experience)


Current - Ships an Outpost Wagon and coin
Additional - Minutemen can be called again (second batch only 4 but still the same cost)
Alternate - Or maybe just a buff to Outposts (maybe a very small batch of Minutemen from Outposts). Any other suggestions?


Current - Ships Settlers and semi-fattened Cows
Additional - Livestock Pens can train Cows at a cost of 100 food each. The card that allows this should be changed as follows:

Ranching - Enables training cows at the livestock pen & -20% cost for all livestock (this keeps it the same for cows if their base cost is increased to 100 food, but it now also buffs sheep). Possibly also ship a couple skinny cows

Philosopher Prince

Current - Ships food
Additional - Shipments arrive more quickly (just time to send, not how quickly they are obtained)


Current - Ships wood
Additional - Houses are cheaper (-15% to house cost but shipping only 350 wood would result in only minimal changes to this popular age up)


Current - Various
Additional - Mostly good as is. The British one could spawn 2 Longbowmen for every Outpost built instead of replacing villagers from Manors.

Age 3


Current - Ships a Caravel and wood
Additional - Increases Caravel build limit


Current - Ships Longbowmen/Crossbowmen/Strelets
Additional - Allows these units to be upgraded to “Royal” Guard (something like Expeditionary Longbowmen/Crossbowmen/Strelets)
Alternate - Or these units gain a multiplier versus Guardians and Heros allowing them to go “adventuring”


Current - Ships a Covered Wagon
Additional - Enables researching most (or all?) of the unique church technologies but their cost is higher than the current cards. The cards that enable them should be changed as follows:

Unique Church Cards - Reduced penalties of unique upgrades (for example, Thin Red Line could have a speed reduction of 15% instead of 25%). Armies sent from the Church should also enable the training of those units at Forts or Taverns. Other changes are probably also needed.

Exiled Prince

Current - Ages up 2.75 times as fast (rework below)
Rework - Age up 1.5 times as fast for this age up and all subsequent age ups (Industrial and Imperial age ups are already faster than Fortress so the impact is comparatively smaller for those ages). Ideally, fast Fortress should be slowed, fast Industrial should stay the same, and time to Imperial be reduced.

Gentleman Pirate

Current - Ships a Privateer and Barbary Corsairs
Additional - Enables hiring Privateers (build limit of 1)


Current - Ships Skirms/Abus/Cassador/Leather Cannon
Additional - Enables researching Paper Cartridge. Researching is discounted if already enabled

Mercenary Contractor

Current - Enables various mercenaries
Additional - Enable a greater variety so it’s not useless if the map already has the mercenaries. Cannoneers for Portugal and gatling Camels for Ottomans would be good to include

Mohawk Statesman

Current - Ships Tomahawks and a Native Scout
Additional - Changes native wood cost to coin. The Native Lore card could also be made to do this in addition to its current function

Native Lore - Native upgrades cost no coin and wood cost of native units is replaced with coin


Current - Ships Hussars/Cossacks
Additional - Cavalry get more LOS. Possibly also discount the Town Watch upgrade

Sergeant at Arms

Current - Ships Halberdiers/Doppelsoldner/Pikemen
Additional - Enables researching Military Drummers and grants Infantry Breastplate. Researching is discounted if already enabled

Age 4

Cavalry Marshal

Current - Ships Ruyters/Cuirassiers/Uhlans/Hussars/Cossacks/Lancers/Hakkapelits
Additional - Enables researching Pillage and Imperial upgrades for Ruyters/Cuirassiers/Uhlans/Hussars/Cossacks/Lancers/Hakkapelits in the Industrial Age


Current - Ships 2 Falconets/Organ Guns
Additional - Enables researching Professional Gunners and Trunion. Researching is discounted if already enabled

Grand Vizier

Current - Ships Spahi
Additional - Forts can train Spahi

King's Musketeer

Current - Ships Skirms/Musks/Caroleans
Additional - Enables researching Flint Lock and Military Drummers (France/Ports/possibly British) or Flint Lock and Paper Cartridge (the rest). Different techs for different civs would reduce overlap with the Sergeant at Arms and Marksman politicians

Alternate - Enables researching Flint Lock and enables the Imperial upgrade for Skirms/Musks/Caroleans (depending on what is sent) in the Industrial Age.


Current - Ships a Fort Wagon
Additional - Allows Explorers to rebuild Forts

Papal Guard

Current - Grants upgrades and enables Imperial upgrades for archaic units
Additional - Doesn’t really make sense for Sweden since it doesn’t upgrade their Crossbows and they aren’t even Catholic


Current - Ships Coin
Additional - Upgrades Spies to Agents (alludes to strikebreakers)


Current - Shipps Settlers and resources
Additional - Enables Immigrants and Legendary Native Warriors to be researched at the Town Center. This would allow you to get a couple of Capitol upgrades even if you revolt

War Minister

Current - Ships Oprichniks/Rodeleros
Additional - Enables researching Pillage and the Oprichnik Imperial upgrade in the Industrial Age (Russia) or enables researching Military Drummers and Rodelero Imperial upgrade in the Industrial Age (Spain). Researching is discounted if already enabled

Age 5

El Presidente

Current - Ships Coin
Additional - Capitols trickle coin and can train citizens (like from revolutions). Sans-Culottes could be alternate to citizens for France and be just as strong as Coureur des Bois


Current - Ships Heavy Cannons/Rockets/Great Bombards
Additional - Artillery Foundry can train Heavy Cannons/Rockets/Great Bombards (same train time as a factory)


Current - Ships an Advanced Hot Air Balloon
Additional - Ships crates of books (experience)


Current - Grants Knighthood and Peerage
Additional - Reduces cooldown duration of Hero abilities. The Assassin ability should probably be able to target any unit to make this more useful. As long as it deals ranged damage, it shouldn’t even one-shot any artillery

Mercenary Contractor

Current - Upgrades Outlaws and Mercenaries
Additional - Actually send a couple of Mercenaries


look I need to just go out here and say it: the quartermaster does not need a buff, nor do the exiled prince civs need further adjustments to make it easier to get to their already exceptional age 4s


I’m not suggesting across the board buffs to make Europeans overall better. The short-term benefit of Quartermaster could be dropped to 350 wood to compensate and make it no longer the only viable option. Maybe my numbers for Exiled Prince are still a bit too generous. However, aging to Fortress Age takes by far the longest and gives the biggest power spike so nerfing that while keeping a similar fast Industrial time was what I’m going for. My suggestion would allow for a faster time to Imperial, but that probably only comes into play in treaty, and if there are a variety of other long-term bonuses then it still may not be the best option for in that mode.

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look, honestly. you cannot possibly be suggesting to completely undermine and destroy 16 years of german, french builds. good players, and i mean like, actually good players, have resources and timings down to a couple of seconds. -50 wood to Germany dutch or france would absolutely cripple them (and don’t even suggest adding a wood crate to their start). already there’s hardly any decent players left playing because of the obscene number of changes made to the game they knew. and now, for the sake of adding even more complexity and literally no other reason, you propose a sweeping change to literally the only balanced civs left. I’ve been playing aoe3 since 2005 and let me tell you, the state of this game is just so overwhelmingly complex. i had every single unit stat, hc card and ageup on tad memorized and now idk everything changes every 4 weeks

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Most of the politicians are fine as they are the mercenary contractor is risky since you gain nothing immediately on age up and british logistician is very bad.

The age 5 politicians might be worth looking into.

If that’s the case, why don’t we just get rid of every age 2 option other than Quartermaster? It’s obviously the only viable strategy so why even bother trying to give more variety. Maybe one or two options could stay bland for the sake of the pros but there is always legacy for the crusty. The balance of the game is constantly evolving with the new factions so making things consistent instead of never updating anything would be a good thing.

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well why bother changing something that isn’t broken? tower and quartermaster are both used for ports and otto, 500f and tower is common for brits, lots of variety. germany is so painfully pop heavy it needs the wood, thats why its meta. no matter how good the other options are, 400w is always gonna be what you need to actually play germany well. same with a lot of the others. i agree inventor and merc contractor have room for improvement but thats really even debatable

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It would add some variety and consequences for decisions beyond just the next building and many of them could be ways to include features of the game that are ignored (enabling cows through the Naturalist). I’m just putting out some suggestions, it doesn’t have to be exactly these things. A quartermaster is someone who is in charge of the lodging of soldiers. A change to it could be as simple as: Ships 350 wood and houses support 20% more population (or cost 15-20% less). It might make it slightly less enticing for very tight build orders but after 3 houses you’d be ahead again and have a permanent perk. A change like that would make things a bit more forgiving for civs like Germany and Russia who need tons of population space. The change to the Governor could be as simple as increasing tower damage when units are garrisoned (Although that’s probably how Outposts should work by default).

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Most of the politicians are alright but there are a whole lot of underused features that could be brought into use if they were part of the bonuses of politicians. Making the Naturalist enable cows, or the Tycoon enable Agents are some examples.

British Logistician would probably be better if the Longbowman spawned from newly constructed Outposts instead of replacing Settlers from Manors.

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Some of these would just become auto picks instead of the current picks. This just replaces a problem with another one.

That’s not really the problem I’m trying to solve. I’m trying to make the choices more impactful for the duration of the game beyond just gathering your resources and forgetting about it.

Also note how I didn’t list any quantities in the options. Options with a strong long term bonus could have their short term bonuses reduced more.

The politicians could grant upgrades that would only be useful at the end of the game and would require a fourth resource to use it in the capitol, church, armory or university. In addition, only one of these benefits could be used at a time.

Depending on which politician you apply, you will have certain benefits, but you can alternate just like in the Asian consulate.

It would be a good way to balance it out and make better use of politicians to provide permanent benefits.


The exiled prince would still be busted and the default pick. Hell, civs that don’t have him will be at a huge disadvantage. Regardless of numbers.

The exiled prince is so tied up with the play style of certain civs that it is impossible to buff or nerf. But it is still possible to improve other options, especially for those that do not have the exiled prince.

Some of the options are very bad like the Mohawk Statesman.
And age 3 mercenary contractor looks very promising, but still not viable enough.

The age3 merc contractor could increase the number of taverns to build. Or allow the unlocked mercs from barracks /stable/artillery foundry.

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I think a good balance can be found where Exiled Prince is no longer a guaranteed pick.

Currently, it lets you get to Fortress Age 2.75 times faster (70 seconds sooner).

Changing it to 1.5 times faster for all age-ups would probably be enough of an adjustment to make it fair.

That would get you to Fortress Age 37 seconds sooner, Industrial Age 67 (37+30) seconds sooner, and Imperial Age 97 (37+30+30) seconds sooner.

That would mean fast Fortress is 23 seconds slower and fast Industrial is at least 3 seconds slower. A fast Imperial would be faster, but I’m not aware of that being a viable strategy. Advancing to Fortress is the biggest power spike with it enabling cannons, more Town Centers, bigger crates, etc, so any delays to that would also be delaying Industrial Age even more than the 3 seconds from just the raw numbers. With delayed Fortress Age shipments/upgrades, a fast Industrial strategy would also be more vulnerable.

La idea me parece genial pero permĂ­teme cuestionar algo.

Hay 3 tipos de juego que conozco, Tratado (Eco), FF/FI, Rush, Âżlos cambios en los polĂ­ticos no tendrĂ­an que favorecer estos estilos de juego?

Gracias por tu tiempo :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes: