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This article is about the Age of Empires III unit. For other uses of the term, see Chu Ko Nu.

"Archaic Chinese crossbow that fires at an extremely fast rate. Good against infantry."

In-game description

The Chu Ko Nu is a light Chinese infantry unit in Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties that functions similarly to the Crossbowman.

Overview Edit

The Chu Ko Nu reload quickly, can fire three arrows at once and are good against heavy infantry. They are the best option for the Chinese to counter heavy infantry and light cavalry although they are not best option against ranged cavalry such as the War Wagons, Howdahs, or Yabusame due to their short range.

The Chu Ko Nu is relatively cheap, costing only 85 Food, and are available since Colonial Age. Due to the fast firing speed of the Chu Ko Nu, the Chu Ko Nu's arrows deal only 5 (x3) attack, less damage than an ordinary Crossbowman, but with bigger multipliers. Also, they can be upgraded to Honored/Guard and Exalted/Imperial levels while the Crossbowmen can't, which allows them to be used in Fortress Age and beyond. They fall quickly to hand cavalry as they are fairly weak, with only 90 hit points.

The Chu Ko Nu has a 2x attack bonus against heavy infantry and light cavalry. Repelling Volley increase the bonuses into 3x against heavy infantry and light cavalry, although they have a 0.75x attack multiplier against cavalry, making them particularly weak against heavy cavalry units such as the Spahi and the Cuirassier.

Upgrades Edit

Age Improvement Cost Effect
Ages fortress
Disciplined chu ko nu
Disciplined Chu Ko Nu
100 wood,
50 coin
Upgrades Chu Ko Nu to Disciplined (+20% hit points and attack)
Ages industrial
Honored chu ko nu
Honored Chu Ko Nu
300 wood,
300 coin
Upgrades Chu Ko Nu to Honored (+30% hit points and attack); requires Disciplined Chu Ko Nu
Ages imperial
Exalted chu ko nu
Exalted Chu Ko Nu
750 wood,
750 coin
Upgrades Chu Ko Nu to Exalted (+50% hit points and attack); requires Honored Chu Ko Nu

Home City Cards Edit

As the Chu Ko Nu is exclusive to the Chinese, only other civilizations' TEAM cards that affects them are listed here.

Trivia Edit

  • "Chu Ko Nu" or 諸葛弩 literally means "The crossbow of Zhuge." Zhuge Liang was a famous tactician who lived and died during China's Three Kingdoms era. However, the Chinese more commonly refer to it as the "Lian Nu" (連弩), literally translating to "chaining crossbow".
  • Despite its name, the Chu Ko Nu was not invented by Zhuge Liang, being in use some two hundred years before his birth. However, it is likely that he improved its design to make it a more effective weapon of war.
  • The actual Chu Ko Nu had a firing rate of around two arrows per three seconds, making it the most rapid-firing weapon in existence until the invention of the Gatling gun 1800 years later.

History Edit

"The Chinese chu ko nu repeating crossbow was known for its simple design and incredible rate of fire. It held a magazine of 10 bolts with steel tips, which it shot in succession, and was operated by grasping the stock in the left hand and working the lever with the right. In that swift movement, a bolt would drop into place, the string would be strung, and then the bolt would be fired, with another bolt dropping in to take its place. The weapon was specifically designed to fire rapidly and be turned on groups of enemy troops at a distance of no more than 150-250 feet. It was especially effective against cavalry. Horses provided large targets for the generally inaccurate chu ko nu, and when the animal was wounded it usually lost control and sowed pandemonium in the surrounding ranks.

Stories of the chu ko nu date back to 250 BCE, when legend has it that the first Chinese emperor Qin Shi Huang used the weapon to shoot sharks for sport. Most accounts, however, have the creation of the chu ko nu occurring during the Chinese Han Dynasty, around the year 200 CE.
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Gallery Edit