Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties is a real-time strategy game developed by Ensemble Studios and Big Huge Games, and is published by Microsoft Game Studios. It is the second expansion pack for Age of Empires III, following The WarChiefs.
The game introduces three new civilizations; the Chinese, Indians, and the Japanese, as well as several minor characters, campaigns, maps, and game modes. The Asian Dynasties achieved gold status on September 28, 2007, and was released in North America on October 23, 2007.
The Asian Dynasties adds three new major civilizations:
The expansion also introduces Water Treasures that only naval units can gather.
Consulates and mercenaries
The Asian civilizations all have the ability to build a Consulate to form an alliance with major European powers and exchange Export in return for military units, buildings, and additional technologies. Besides European alliances, the player can ally through with Asian Isolation movements.
|Unit Icon||Unit name||Use||Base Unit||Maps|
|Iron Troop||Mercenary||Macehualtin||Yellow River, Mongolia|
|Chakram||Light Infantry||Grenadier||Deccan, Himalayas, Silk Road, Upper Himalyas|
|Rattan Shield||Light Infantry||Coyote Runner||Yellow River, Silk Road, Mongolia|
|Dacoit||Outlaw||Musketeer||Deccan, Himalyas, Upper Himalyas, Indochina, Borneo|
|Tiger Claw||Hand Infantry||Rodelero||Deccan, Himalayas, Upper Himalayas, Ceylon|
|Conquistador||Light Cavalry||Dragoon||Indochina, Borneo, Honshu|
|Sohei||Heavy Infantry||Pikeman||Ceylon, Yellow River, Honshu|
|Wokou Ronin||Outlaw||Samurai||Honshu, Siberia, Mongolia|
|Yojimbo Cavalry Archer||Mercenary||Cavalry Archer||Honshu|
|Wokou Monk||Outlaw||Crossbowman||Yellow River|
|Wokou Pirate||Outlaw||Rodelero||Borneo, Indochina|
|Wokou Horseman||Outlaw||Cavalry Archer||Himalayas, Mongolia, Siberia, Silk Road, Yellow River|
|War Elephant||Heavy Cavalry||Lancer||Deccan, Indochina, Borneo, Mongolia|
|Marathan Catamaran||Naval Vessel||Canoe||Ceylon, Borneo, Indochina|
|Wokou Junk||Naval Vessel||Privateer||Honshu, Indochina, Yellow River|
There are three new campaigns, one for each new civilization. Furthermore, these campaigns return to the historical, civilization-based single-player campaigns, which are different from the past campaigns in the Age of Empires III series.
This Japanese campaign focuses on the unification of Japan, which was also a minor campaign in Age of Empires II: The Conquerors. It mainly concentrates on the establishment of the Tokugawa Shogunate, which players will control a young general, named Sakuma Kichiro, the "adopted son" of Tokugawa Ieyasu, who leads numerous scenarios before the Battle of Sekigahara. Kichiro eventually learns that Tokugawa destroyed his home when he was a baby and murdered his parents. Despite this, Kichiro continues to follow Tokugawa because he is his master.
This Chinese campaign focuses loosely on the 1421 hypothesis concerning the Chinese discovery of the New World before Christopher Columbus. The story mainly focuses on Huang Jian, a Ming captain who dreamed of seeing the outside world, and his partner, Lao Chen, a powerful sailor and friend of Jian Huang, who are given orders to help expand the Ming Dynasty. But before exploring the New World, Admiral Jinhai, the cold and power-hungry nephew to the Chinese Emperor, hopes to become emperor of the new lands. Interestingly, Jinhai seems to "disappear" upon arrival. However, Jian eventually learns of his treason and defeats him and his supporters. He then returns home to China, hoping that no one knows they were once there.
This Indian campaign is about the Sepoy Rebellion of the 19th Century. The protagonist of the Indian campaign is Nanib Sahir, a member of the Sepoy regiments, who first allied with the British East India Company, but slowly becomes disillusioned from its cruel ways and abuse of the Indian citizens. However, Nanib eventually joins the rebels in the Sepoy rebellion after he and his men are forced by the company to use new Enfield Rifles, despite the cartridges' coverings of beef and pork fat, which was a taboo to Nanib's and the Sepoy's Hindu and Muslim beliefs. Nanib eventually leads his forces in an assault on Colonel Edwardson's stronghold and kills him. He then goes on to continue to fight the Company's other leaders. This campaign is taken from the real life of Nana Sahib in the times of the "Sepoy Rebellion" or "The First War of Independence" occurred in India.
New Game Modes
There are 12 new random maps:
|Borneo||Players start on an island filled with dense jungle, bisected by a trade route.||Jesuit, Sufi|
|Ceylon||All players begin with a town center on their own small outcropping of land just off the main island. Migration to the main island is necessary for survival. In the north, animals to hunt flourish, while mines are abundant in the south.||Bhakti, Zen|
|Deccan||Players start out near the edge of the maps, usually close to a southern river. Across this river is a trade route. A plateau rises in the central region, where native settlements are located.||Bhakti, Sufi, Udasi|
|Himalayas||Mountains rise sporadically across the map, as do native settlements. Upper-Himalayas is an option, where there is no trade route.||Bhakti, Udasi|
|Upper Himalayas||A far more barren and emptier version of the regular Himalayas map||Bhakti, Udasi|
|Indochina||A river with some shallows cuts off the teams of players and spills into an eastern sea.||Jesuit, Sufi|
|Honshu||A map that features in the trial version. Players begin on a long, narrow island with two fishing boats. There is also a landmass with a single Trading Post site, and other small islands.||Jesuit, Zen|
|Siberia||Players start on either side of a frozen river (which can be crossed, but not built upon) in the frigid wilderness of Siberia. The future Trans-Siberian Railroad is represented by a trade route in the south.||None|
|Mongolia||Players start in the southern and central zones of the map, while trade routes and natives are localized in the north. There is also an incredible amount of grazing animals to hunt.||Shaolin, Sufi|
|Silk Road||Players are not required to build Trading Posts - instead they will have to defeat the guardians occupying existing Trading Posts in order to capture them. Other players are also allowed to attack the new owners of a Trading Post in order to capture it for themselves. To capture a Trading Post, the opponent needs at least 1 unit to go stand by it. There are 3 different variants of the map, which represent different portions of the road.||Shaolin, Zen, Shaolin, Sufi, Bhakti, Udasi|
|Yellow River||A wide river is in the middle of the map, but forks off into two shallows at each end, creating two deltas. Natives and trade routes are found near these deltas.||Shaolin, Zen|
The Asian Dynasties reintroduces the concept of Wonders. To advance in age, each Asian civilization needs to build Wonders, which provide an initial bonus of units or resources, while continuing to provide a benefit to the players civilization. Unlike advancing from the Town Center a player must select a desired number of villagers to build a Wonder and advance. However, the rate of advancement is dependent on the number of Villagers building. Thus, more villagers increases the building speed, and the more villagers building a wonder, the faster the civilization will advance, but this is negated due to economical reasons, as taking villagers can dent overall resource production.Wonders can be destroyed but not rebuilt, so protect them carefully. You may also task 1 villager to build any wonder, then later task it to do something else. The wonder will continue to slowly build itself, automatically. During construction, the Town Center may continue producing villagers.
|A red fortress, can be upgraded as the fort itself and as a castle can, less powerful than that of the Europeans, available to the Indians. It has a ranged attack. It sends a shipment of Sepoys (if advancing to the Colonial Age) or Gurkhas (all other ages) once built.|
|Initiates a "cease fire" to prevent combat for a period of time. It sends a shipment of crates of coins once built.|
|Provides a gather bonus to all nearby villagers. It sends shipment of all the three resources once built.|
|Has a powerful "Inspiration" ability, which can be used to temporarily boost the attack damage and hitpoints of every unit in a player's army. It also sends a shipment of wood once built.|
|Allows the training of special higher-ranking "Mansabdar" versions of normal units. Mansabdars have twice the hit points of normal units and provide an attack and hit-point boost to nearby units of the same type. It sends a shipment of Sowars when built earlier but if built later it sends Mahout Lancers instead of Sowars.|
|Enhances other Japanese Shrines and acts as a shrine itself. Grants export when built.|
|Provides a player with the "Informers" ability, which reveals enemy line-of-sight for a short amount of time (about ten seconds game time). It also sends a shipment of Naginata Riders once built.|
|Allows you to give extra speed/attack/hit points to your military units. Enables Advanced Arsenal technologies. Grants Yumi Archers when built.|
|Military units train faster and cost less. It grant the ability to train fallen Daimyos/Shogun and also grant a Daimyo (if built to advance to Colonial Age it give the ability to train that Daimyo in Fortress Age).|
|Increases the experience points that a player receives for each kill, every unit and building completed, and the player's base experience points trickle. This wonder also sends a shipment of barracks/stable Rickshaw and Samurai once built.|
|Allows the Player to quickly Heal all of the player's units on the map. Also gives the monk a Healing ability. Sends a shipment of villagers.|
|Generates the player's choice of Food, Wood, Coin, or a small trickle mixture of all three resources, along with experience points and export. A shipment of Food is also sent once the wonder is built.|
|Autospawns Flying Crow Artillery Unit and sends a shipment of Chu Ko Nu archers or Arquebusier.|
|Autospawns the player's choice of Banner Armies. Sends a shipment of Steppe Rider cavalry or Iron Flail cavalry.|
|Increases the attack and hit points of the Chinese monk and his disciples, as well as increases the amount of disciples he can train. Its shipments involves a large number of disciples.|
- The early name for this expansion was Age of Dynasties, as shown in official concept art.