Age of Empires Series Wiki

Russian hand cavalry.
—In-game description

The Cossack is a melee heavy cavalry in Age of Empires III that is unique to the Russians, which replaces the Hussar, and can be trained at Stable, Fort, and Galleon.


The Cossack functions as the Russian version of the Hussar. Although they are somewhat weaker than Hussars, they are cheaper, train faster and only occupy one slot of population. This means that they can be produced in large numbers compared to most other cavalry, which take up two slots of population, and are good as raiding cavalry. With the proper cards and upgrades, an almost colossal army of Cossacks can be used to overwhelm opponents. An effective method of using them is to raid enemy Settlers and as a counter to enemy hand cavalry, as they can defeat even some of the best heavy cavalry when fully upgraded, due to their massive numbers. Only a mass of heavy infantry or ranged cavalry such as bow riders or cavalry archers can stand up to them. They are also very efficient if used against Shock Infantry and artillery.

When training Cossacks, it is a good idea to train a complementary unit, preferably one with range, that can soften up enemy units before the Cossacks get close. Strelets and/or Cavalry Archers can be used with Cossacks to counter heavy infantry and other cavalry, and to assist in the destruction of buildings, a Russian player can mix in some Oprichniks.


Age Upgrade Cost Effect
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
Veteran cavalry.png Veteran Cossacks 200 wood,
200 coin
Upgrades Cossacks to Veteran (+20% hit points and attack)
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
Guard cavalry.png Guard Cossacks 600 wood,
600 coin
Upgrades Cossacks to Guard (+30% hit points and attack); requires Veteran Cossacks
Imperial Age
Imperial cavalry.png Imperial Cossacks 1,500 wood,
1,500 coin
Upgrades Cossacks to Imperial (+50% hit points and attack); requires Guard Cossacks

Civilization differences[]

Further statistics[]

As Cossacks are unique to the Russians, only technologies that they have access to are shown in the following table:

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Ranged infantry, Shock Infantry, artillery
Weak vs. Heavy infantry, light cavalry
Hit points Cavalry Cuirass.png Cavalry Cuirass (+10%)
Comanche Horse Breeding.png Comanche Horse Breeding (+10%)
Cree Tanning.png Cree Tanning (+5%)
Navajo Weaving.png Navajo Weaving (+5%)
Attack Pillage.png Pillage (+25% siege attack)
Yoga.png Yoga (+5%)
Sight Town Watch.png Town Watch (+2)
Speed Comanche Mustangs.png Comanche Mustangs (+10%)
Apache Endurance.png Apache Endurance (+5%)
Creation speed Mass Cavalry.png Mass Cavalry (-35%)
Cheyenne Horse Trading.png Cheyenne Horse Trading (-25%)
Inca Chaquis Messengers.png Quechuan Diet (-25%)
Train cost Mapuche Ad-mapu.png Mapuche Ad-mapu (-10% coin cost)
Other Westernization.png Westernization (grants Veteran upgrade)
Petrine Reforms.png Petrine Reforms (grants Guard upgrade)
Merritocracy.png Meritocracy (-20% upgrade cost)

Home City Cards[]

As Cossacks are unique to the Russians, only their cards and other civilizations' TEAM cards are shown in the following tables:


The Cossacks fled a life of poverty and serfdom in Moscow to settle as a free people on the frontiers of Imperial Russia, where they became legendary and feared horsemen. Every man rode and fought; the Cossacks did not have an army, they were an army. The Russian government understood the value of having these very territorial, independent warriors as a buffer to invasion and established an alliance with them, giving the Cossacks land and property.

The Cossacks wore furred caps, long overcoats, loose trousers, and tall boots. They carried lances, sabers, short pikes, and muskets.