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This article is about the unit in Age of Empires. For the untrainable unit in Age of Empires II HD: The Forgotten, see Heavy Swordsman.

Upgrade of Short Swordsman. The Broad Swordsman has more hit points, attack strength, and armor.
—In-game description in the Definitive Edition

The Broad Swordsman is an infantry unit in Age of Empires that is a stronger upgrade of the Short Swordsman. The Broad Sword technology is available at the Barracks in the Bronze Age for 140 food, 50 gold. The Broad Swordsman can be upgraded further to a Long Swordsman once the Iron Age is reached.


The Broad Swordsman is stronger than the Short Swordsman and is an upgrade available immediately after reaching the Bronze Age. Only three civilizations in the game cannot upgrade to the Broad Sword. It has more hit points and attack, making it useful in the Bronze Age, being better equipped to stand up to cavalry. However, their speed still poses a problem, making them vulnerable to archers, just like Short Swordsmen. However, they do make a good army when massed for a Bronze Age assault.

Further statistics[]

Strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Buildings, Chariots, Camel Riders
Weak vs. Cavalry, Hoplites, archers
Attack Toolworking Toolworking (+2)
Metalworkingicon Metalworking (+2)
Metallurgyicon Metallurgy (+3)
Armor Leatherarmorinfantryicon Leather Armor Infantry (+2/0)
Scalearmorinfantryicon Scale Armor Infantry (+2/0)
Chainmailinfantryicon Chain Mail Infantry (+2/0)
Bronzeshieldicon Bronze Shield (0/+1)
Ironshieldicon Iron Shield (0/+1)
Towershieldicon Tower Shield (0/+1)
Creation speed RoR Conscription Conscription (+25%)
Other Logistics Logistics (-0.5 population usage)
Long Sword Long Sword (+20 hit points, +2 attack, +1/0 armor)
Civilization bonuses
Hit points Choson AoE Choson (+20)
Conversion resistance Macedonians AoE Macedonians (4×)
Attack speed Romans AoE Romans (+50%)
Line of Sight Macedonians AoE Macedonians (+2)
Creation speed Lac Viet AoE Lac Viet (+25%)

Team bonuses[]

  • Palmyrans AoE Palmyrans: Upgrading Broad Swordsmen to Long Swordsmen and researching technologies that benefit Broad Swordsmen is 30% faster.


ReturnRome-AoEIcon Age of Empires[]

  • Broad Swordsmen have 70 hit points.
  • Upgrading Broad Swordsmen to Long Swordsmen costs 160 food, 50 gold.

Age of Empires Definitive Edition icon Definitive Edition[]

  • Broad Swordsmen have 80 hit points.
  • Choson: Broad Swordsmen get +20 hit points.
  • With update 46777, upgrading Broad Swordsmen to Long Swordsmen costs 240 food, 100 gold.

AoE2Icon-ReturnRome Return of Rome[]

  • Since balance changes of update 46777 were missed, upon release upgrading Broad Swordsmen to Long Swordsmen cost 160 food, 50 gold and Broad Swordsmen had 70 hit points. Both changes were fixed in hotfix 85208.
  • Palmyrans AoE Palmyrans (team bonus): Technologies benefiting Broad Swordsmen are researched 30% faster.


There are two heroes in the game with the appearance of a Broad Swordman:


The appearance of bronze short swords led to further advances in weaponry as competing cultures sought an advantage in military technology over their neighbors. Where the early short sword was primarily a piercing weapon, the broad sword evolved as a slashing weapon. The width of the blade increased strength sufficiently to support a slashing attack that could cut into armor and break short swords designed for stabbing.
—the Age of Empires manual



Tech tree[]

Stone Age Icon (DE)
Tool Age Icon (DE)
Bronze Age Icon (DE)
Iron Age Icon (DE)
Aoede clubman available
Aoede short swordsman available
Aoede broad swordsman available
Long Swordsman

Units in Age of Empires
CivilianReturnofrome female villager icon Villager · Returnofrome trade cart icon Trade Cart
OtherAoE2 DE priest icon Priest · Slinger-0 Slinger · Returnofrome artifact icon Artifact
Civilian ship1 Fishing Boat Fishing Boat · 2 Fishing Ship Fishing Ship
3 Trade Boat Trade Boat · 4 Merchant Ship Merchant Ship
InfantryClubman Clubman · AxemanAoEDE Axeman
Short Swordsman Short Swordsman · Broad Swordsman Broad Swordsman · AoE nuRoR Long Swordsman icon Long Swordsmen · Returnofrome legionary icon Legionary
HopliteDE Hoplite · AoE nuRoR Phalangite icon Phalangite · Returnofrome centurion icon Centurion
ArcherBowman aoe1de Bowman
Improved Bowman22 Improved Bowman · Composite Bowman Composite Bowman
Chariot Archer111 Chariot Archer
Horse Archer Horse Archer · Returnofrome heavy horse archer icon Heavy Horse Archer
EAICON DE Elephant Archer
CavalryScout-0 Scout
ChariotDE Chariot · ScytheDE Scythe Chariot
Cavalry111 Cavalry · Returnofrome heavy cavalry icon Heavy Cavalry · Returnofrome cataphract icon Cataphract
War ElephantDE War Elephant · Returnofrome armored elephant icon Armored Elephant
Camel RiderDE Camel Rider
SiegeStone ThrowerDE Stone Thrower · CatapultDE Catapult · Returnofrome heavy catapult icon Heavy Catapult
BallistaDE Ballista · Returnofrome helepolis icon Helepolis
War Ship7 Scout Ship Scout Ship · 8 War Galley War Galley · 9 Trireme Trireme
Catapult Trireme Catapult Trireme · Returnofrome juggernaut icon Juggernaut
10 Fire Galley Fire Galley
5 Light Transport Light Transport · 6 Heavy Transport Heavy Transport
Scenario Editor-only units
Short Swordsman Chieftain · Donkey caravan aoe2DE Donkey · Clubman Explorer · Returnofrome heavy cavalry icon General · AoE2 DE priest icon High Priest · Returnofrome horse icon Horse · HeavyCavalryDE Mercenary (removed) · Penguin aoe2DE Penguin · AoE2 DE priest icon Pharaoh · 5 Light Transport Raft · Returnofrome artifact icon War Chest