|This article is about the Age of Empires III unit. For the unit of the same name in Age of Empires II, see Crossbowman (Age of Empires II).|
|“||Archaic archer. Good against infantry.||”|
Crossbowmen are ranged infantry units that use crossbows in battle. They are counter infantry units that are useful for attacking heavy infantry such as Musketeers, but are easily defeated by melee cavalry and artillery. They are similar in many ways to Skirmishers. Although the Crossbowmen might be out-ranged by their Skirmisher counterparts, they are cheaper and are trainable earlier in the game. The exceptions to this rule reside in the Dutch who can train Skirmishers in the Commerce Age and the French through the use of the "TEAM Early Skirmishers" Home City Card which allows them and their allies to train Skirmishers in the Commerce Age.
Spanish players have the option of being able to almost instantly train (2.7 seconds) Crossbowmen and Pikemen in the Commerce Age, due to the "TEAM Archaic Soldier Training" and "Fencing School" cards, and can train instantly if the cards are also used with the Standing Army improvement.
|Veteran Crossbowmen||200 wood,
|Upgrades Crossbowmen to Veteran (+20% hit points and attack)||French|
|Guard Crossbowmen||600 wood,
|Upgrades Crossbowmen to Guard (+30% hit points and attack); requires Veteran Crossbowman and The Papal Guard politician||French|
|Ordinance Besteiro||1,000 wood,
|Upgrades Crossbowmen to Ordinance Besteiros (+10% hit points and attack, as well as upgrading to Guard, granting another +30% hit points and attack); requires Veteran Crossbowman and The Papal Guard politician||Portuguese|
|Imperial Crossbowmen||1,500 wood,
|Upgrades Crossbowmen to Imperial (+50% hit points and attack); requires Guard Crossbowman and The Papal Guard politician||French|
|Imperial Ordinance Besteiros||Upgrades Ordinance Besteiros to Imperial (+50% hit points and attack); requires Ordinance Besteiro and The Papal Guard politician||Portuguese|
- As seen on the table above, Crossbowmen will be automatically upgraded to the Guard level (Royal Guard for the Portuguese) by choosing The Papal Guard to advance into the Industrial Age, which also allows them to be upgraded to the Imperial level.
- Indians and Japanese can get Crossbowmen by allying with the Portuguese, which provides Portuguese Expeditionary Company and Portuguese Expeditionary Force that includes 7 and 10 Crossbowmen (named Besteiro) respectively. These Crossbowmen start with +10% hit points and attack than their regular counterpart, and are automatically upgraded in each Age starting from the Fortress Age (see here for the exact values).
|Unit strengths and weaknesses|
|Strong vs.||Heavy infantry, light cavalry, Eagle Runner Knights|
|Weak vs.||Heavy cavalry, Coyote Runners, artillery|
|Hit points|| Infantry Breastplate (+10%)|
Besteiros (+30%, Portuguese only)
Cree Tanning (+5%)
Navajo Weaving (+5%)
|Attack|| Besteiros (+30%, Portuguese only)|
Carib Kasiri Beer (+10%)
Carib Garifuna Drums (+1.0x multiplier vs. villagers)
Iroquois Lacrosse (+10%, vanilla Age of Empires III only)
Seminole Bowyer (+25%)
Tupi Poison Arrow Frogs (+10%)
Clenched Fist (+30% melee attack)
|Speed|| Military Drummers (+10%)|
Tilly's Discipline (+20%, Germans only)
Incan Road-building (+20%)
Apache Endurance (+5%)
|Sight||Town Watch (+2)|
|Creation speed|| Standing Army (-25%)|
Incan Chasquis Messengers (-25%)
|Other|| Besteiros (ships 22 Crossbowmen and grants the Veteran upgrade, Portuguese only)|
Meritocracy (-20% upgrade cost)
|Penalties|| Tilly's Discipline (+10% cost, Germans only)|
High Crusade (-5% hit points, Knights of St. John only)
Home City Cards
|Click for a list of Home City Cards related to the Crossbowman|
Green: TEAM Shipment that is sent to each player in a team
- Crossbowmen ranged attack inaccuracy removed.
- Guard and Imperial upgrades are available to the French, Germans and Spanish through the Papal Guard. Portuguese can now upgrade Royal Besteiros to Imperial.
- With update 14825, the Swedes can train Crossbowmen, but cannot upgrade them to Guard and Imperial.
- Besteiro, the Portuguese Royal Guard and Consulate Crossbowmen, means "crossbowman" in Portuguese.
- The Dutch originally had access to training the Crossbowman, and there are unused voice files for Dutch Crossbowmen in the game files and in the Scenario Editor.
|“||Handheld crossbows began to appear in the tenth and eleventh centuries. Crossbowmen were attractive to military leaders because they took much less time to train than archers using bows. Firearms eclipsed Crossbows by the end of the sixteenth century.
Europeans, chiefly the Spanish, included crossbows amongst the muskets and cannon they brought to the New World. Cortes arrived with more than two dozen crossbows and less than ten muskets. Columbus' crew had crossbows when they landed in the West Indies. When the original stockpile of munitions ran out it was difficult or impossible to make or trade for more. Explorers had to be very careful with their limited supply.