“Japanese heavy foot soldier armed with a musket. Good against cavalry in a melee.”—In-game description
The Ashigaru Musketeer is a heavy infantry in Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties that is unique to the Japanese and can be trained at Barracks and Atakabune, and by a Daimyo. It is the Japanese equivalent of a Musketeer that is effective against cavalry.
Ashigaru Musketeers are relatively cheap and cost only one population. They are strong against Light infantry and cavalry in melee. Like most heavy infantry, Ashigaru can be easily defeated by artillery, and are weak to skirmishers.
One of the extraordinary advantages of the Ashigaru Musketeer is the upgrade stacking advantages it gets. Between the Golden Pavilion passive boost, the Golden Pavilion Arsenal improvements, the regular Arsenal improvements (acquired by allying with Dutch in the Consulate), the Ashigaru attack cards, the passive consulate boost, the Daimyo boost, and the Shogun boost, the Ashigaru can reach very high power in the early ages, making them difficult to counter.
Ashigaru are quite powerful, however, they can become more powerful by stacking upgrades. It is possible for the Ashigaru to have around 140 hand attack to cavalry and slightly above 80 attack in ranged mode.
It is possible for Ashigaru to have around 500 hit points, 80 ranged attack, 140/70 attack against cavalry and light infantry, all while maintaining a relatively cheap cost (with shogunate, native upgrades, and cost-lowering treasures) and good speed. Usually, Ashigaru stats can only be maxed out in treaty games. This is extremely effective since they only cost one population slot. Something to note is that Ashigaru Musketeers have about twice the stats (not hit points) of a Russian Musketeer if they are fully improved.
- Note: Ashigaru were weakened in later patches, but remained one of the strongest and most expensive musketeer type units. The Spanish unction musketeers still remain the hardest hitting musketeer, but they have fewer hit points. Other powerful musketeers include Indian Sepoys, British Redcoats, and Portuguese Guerreiros.
|Disciplined Ashigaru||200 wood,|
|Upgrades Ashigaru Musketeers to Disciplined (+20% hit points and attack)|
|Honored Ashigaru||600 wood,|
|Upgrades Ashigaru Musketeers to Honored (+30% hit points and attack); requires Disciplined Ashigaru|
|Exalted Ashigaru||1,500 wood,|
|Upgrades Ashigaru Musketeers to Exalted (+50% hit points and attack); requires Honored Ashigaru|
Further statistics Edit
As the Ashigaru Musketeer is unique to the Japanese, only improvements available to them that are shown in the following table.
|Unit strengths and weaknesses|
|Strong vs.||Cavalry, light infantry, heavy infantry|
|Weak vs.||Skirmishers, archers, artillery|
|Hit points|| Flint Lock (+10%)|
Cree Tanning (+5%)
Navajo Weaving (+5%)
|Attack|| Socket Bayonet (+20% melee attack)|
Paper Cartridge (+15%)
Smokeless Powder (+30% siege attack)
Clenched Fist (+30% melee attack)
|Speed|| Incan Road-building (+20%)|
Apache Endurance (+5%)
|Sight||Town Watch (+2)|
|Creation speed|| Standing Army (-25%)|
Incan Chasquis Messengers (-25%)
|Train cost||Mapuche Ad-mapu (-10% coin cost)|
|Other||Meritocracy (-20% upgrade cost)|
Home City Cards Edit
As the Ashigaru Musketeer is unique to the Japanese, only other civilizations' TEAM cards that affects them are shown in the following tables.
|Click for a list of Home City Cards related to the Ashigaru Musketeer|
“During the Heian Period (794-1185 CE), Japan’s system of a centralized military began to rapidly disintegrate with the rise of the warrior aristocracy. This left the creation and training of armies once again in the hands of powerful local lords. The ashigaru, which means “light-foot” or lightly armored, filled a growing need for enlisted warriors. They were the lowest class of warriors, commoners who were paid a stipend to enlarge a lord’s local army. Because they essentially fought as contractors, the ashigaru often had to provide their own provisions and were not always as reliable as their commanders would have liked.
However, the status of the ashigaru evolved dramatically in the fifteenth century, following the introduction of European firearms to Japanese warfare. The arquebus required very little training to operate properly, unlike the use of a bow, which was considered an art form. By equipping his many ashigaru with guns, a local daimyo could complement his samurai warriors with a constant and brutal ranged attack. Thus, the ashigaru quickly became indispensable.
The most famous ashigaru to rise to prominence was Toyotomi Hideyoshi, the warrior turned powerful daimyo that spent the final years of the sixteenth century seeking to unite the disparate feudal warlords of Japan.”—In-game history section