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Age of Empires Series Wiki

Stronger than Two-Handed Swordsman. Cheap and quick to create.
Age of Empires II description

The Champion is an infantry unit in Age of Empires II that can be trained at the Barracks once the Imperial Age is reached. It is the final tier in the Militia line.

Unit availability
Civilization Unavailable

The * indicates that the civilization can fully upgrade their Champions, i.e. gets Blast Furnace, Plate Mail Armor, Supplies and Squires. Faith and Heresy are not taken into account because they only contribute to their combat strength in a very situational manner.

The ^ indicates that the civilization has at least one civilization or team bonus or a unique technology that benefits the combat strength of the Champion.

Overview and tactics[]

Champions destroying a Siege Workshop.

The Champion is the first and only generic Barracks unit that provides its own melee protection: 1/1 armor. They have an attack bonus against buildings and the Eagle line, and are even more powerful when used in conjunction with Rams.

With additional armor for melee combat coupled with an attack rarely superseded by other infantry, the Champion is a good unit when complemented with other units (such as cavalry for tracking down ranged units, or siege units for faster razing) or in waves of units if the player has a massive replenishing stockpile of food and gold. The typical infantry shortcomings do exist, however, as they are still slow and are modest in terms of health, making them vulnerable to archers, heavy cavalry, and splash-damage siege weaponry.

Champions excel in two particular situations: early Imperial Age when their counters aren't as prominent and late Imperial Age when gold is scarce. Champions are informally called 'trash busters' since they can easily defeat all the trash units (Halberdiers, Elite Skirmishers, and Hussars). The unique trash units, the Genitours and the Magyar Huszar, can stand up to most civilizations' Champions, but do not defeat them distinctly.

For some civilizations, Champions are a go-to late game deathball choice. This includes Malians with their +3 pierce armor bonus and the Aztecs and Burmese with their additional attack damage. An Imperial Age Champion rush requires a huge Farm-based economy.

On lush maps with plenty of resources (e. g. Yucatán), it is recommended to opt for another type of army (as long as the additional cost can be shouldered by the economy), as they generally tend to fare better in general combat.

Further statistics[]

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Skirmishers, Halberdiers, Camel Riders, Eagle Warriors, buildings, Light Cavalry, Huskarls, Rams
Weak vs. Archers, Scorpions, Cataphracts, Jaguar Warriors, Boyars, Hand Cannoneers, Conquistadors, Janissaries, Slingers, Teutonic Knights
Attack Forging.jpg Forging (+1)
Ironcasting.jpg Iron Casting (+1)
Blastfurnace.jpg Blast Furnace (+2)
ArsonDE.png Arson (+2 attack against standard buildings)
Unique-tech-imperial.jpg Garland Wars (+4, Aztecs only)
Unique-tech-imperial.jpg Druzhina (Slavs only, gives trample damage)
CastleAgeUnique.png Chieftains (Vikings only, gives +5 attack against cavalry and +4 against camels)
Armor Scalemailarmor.jpg Scale Mail Armor (+1/+1)
Chainmailarmor.jpg Chain Mail Armor (+1/+1)
Platemailarmor.jpg Plate Mail Armor (+1/+2)
Speed SquiresDE.png Squires (+10%)
Sight Tracking.jpg Tracking (+2)
Conversion defense Faith.jpg Faith
Heresy.png Heresy
UniqueTechCastle-DE.png First Crusade (Sicilians only)
Creation speed ConscriptionDE.png Conscription (+33%)
Unique-tech-imperial.jpg Perfusion (+100%, Goths only)
Train cost Suplliesicon.png Supplies (-15 food)

Civilization bonuses[]

Team bonuses[]


The Age of Kings[]

  • Champions have +3 attack against standard buildings.
  • Champions have 0 pierce armor.
  • Goths: Champions are 25% cheaper. Bonus damage against buildings is +1.

The Conquerors[]

The Forgotten[]

  • Champions now have +4 attack against standard buildings.
  • Champions now have +8 attack against Eagle Warriors.

The African Kingdoms[]

Rise of the Rajas[]

  • Vikings: With patch 5.7, Chieftains now gives Champions +4 attack against camels.

Definitive Edition[]


  • The Militia line is the only unit line in the game with more than three stages.
  • The Champion is the only non-unique infantry that has base melee armor.
  • Due to a minor graphical bug, the Champion may appear to be wielding two swords at once depending on the angle of unit rotation.
  • In the alpha, the Champion is in a separate line to the Man-at-Arms.
  • Burmese Champions are tied with Elite Jaguar Warriors with Garland Wars by having the third highest attack of all infantry units with 20 attack, being behind Aztec Champions with Garland Wars and Elite Teutonic Knights with 21 attack and Elite Shotel Warriors with 22 attack.
  • Japanese Champions have the second fastest attack of all infantry units with a reload time of 1.5, being behind Samurai and Japanese Condottieri with a reload time of 1.42.
  • During the Beta, the Malay had access to Champions but lacked Plate Mail Armor, and the Vietnamese lacked them.


Among the best swordsmen there were a few who, through their renown on the battlefield and in tournaments, achieved the status of champion. Such men became war leaders and rose in social standing thanks to abilities so highly regarded at the time. Lords kept champions on retainer for status and because staged fights between elite warriors were used on occasion to resolve disputes. Having a great champion in your pay or as a vassal was the Middle Age equivalent to having a good lawyer. Champions were professional warriors who might also be members of the nobility. A successful champion might gain a noble title through tournament victory, battle honors, or marriage. A minor knight in England named John Marshal was so successful in tournaments that he rose to become a high-ranking noble of great wealth thanks to prizes and successive marriages to admiring women of means.




CHAMPION (Britons) vs EVERY UNIQUE UNIT AoE II Definitive Edition-1