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This article is about the unit in Age of Empires III. For the related unit in Age of Empires II, see Eagle Warrior.

Nobleman that flings javelins from an atlatl. Good against cavalry and Coyote Runners.
—In-game description

The Eagle Runner Knight is a ranged shock infantry unit in Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs that is unique to the Aztecs and can be trained at the Nobles' Hut.


Eagle Runner Knights are a fast ranged shock infantry unit equivalent to the European Dragoon. They are cheap and have a good attack and a decent range, but a poor siege attack. They are effective against heavy cavalry and hand shock infantry. They are vulnerable to long-range infantry like Skirmishers, and heavy infantry in melee.

Note that like the Longbowman, these units attack twice as fast as most other ranged units with a Rate of Fire of 1.5 instead of 3.0.


Eagle Runner Knights are fast units useful for assaults and rushes. It's useful to face cavalry and helps a lot to repel aggressive cavalry civilizations, like the Germans or the Lakota. The Eagle Runner cannot be used effectively for wholesale pillaging, due its very poor siege attack. This drawback makes the Eagle Runner only a support unit, while other siege units like Puma Spearmen or Arrow Knights take down enemy buildings. Also, the Eagle Runners are fairly cheap in comparison with ranged cavalry units, like the Dragoon. The best counter to Eagle Runners are Skirmishers, and other ranged infantry can be used against them too. Rodeleros make an excellent counter unit as well, due to their speed being equal and having a large bonus vs Eagle Runners.

Eagle Runners can be used to counter Musketeers and other similar units at range very effectively. This is due to their high rate of fire, high damage and excellent range once the temple support card is sent. They actually have similar damage per second to Skirmishers, while possessing more hit points and speed.

Eagle Runner Knights are very population effective units once all the Home City combat cards have been sent. They are very similar to the Dutch Ruyter, but with more hit points, damage, range, and ranged resistance. These factors all combine to make the eagle knight one of the best anti-cavalry units in the game.


Age Upgrade Cost Effect
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
Champion ranged infantry.png Champion Eagle Runner Knights 400 wood,
200 coin
Upgrades Eagle Runner Knights to Champion (+25% hit points and attack)
Imperial Age
Legendary ranged infantry.png Legendary Eagle Runner Knights 1,500 wood,
1,500 coin
Upgrades Eagle Runner Knights to Legendary (+50% hit points and attack); requires Champion Eagle Runner Knights

Further statistics[]

As Eagle Runner Knights are unique to the Aztecs, only technologies that they have access to are shown in the following table:

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Cavalry, Coyote Runners
Weak vs. Heavy infantry, Skirmishers, archers, artillery
Hit points Comanche Horse Breeding.png Comanche Horse Breeding (+10%)
Cree Tanning.png Cree Tanning (+5%)
Navajo Weaving.png Navajo Weaving (+5%)
Attack Carib Kasiri Beer.png Carib Kasiri Beer (+10%)
Carib Garifuna Drums.png Carib Garifuna Drums (+1.0x multiplier vs. villagers)
Seminole Bowyer.png Seminole Bowyer (+25%)
Tupi Poison Arrow Frogs.png Tupi Poison Arrow Frogs (+10%)
Yoga.png Yoga (+5%)
Clenched Fist.png Clenched Fist (+30% melee attack)
Speed Apache Endurance.png Apache Endurance (+5%)
Creation speed Inca Chaquis Messengers.png Quechuan Diet (-25%)
Cheyenne Horse Trading.png Cheyenne Horse Trading (-25%)
Other Cinteotl Worship.png Cinteotl Worship (ships 1 Eagle Runner Knight for every 2 minutes of the game time, up to 30 minutes)
Merritocracy.png Meritocracy (-20% upgrade cost)

Home City Cards[]

As Eagle Runner Knights are unique to the Aztecs, only their cards and other civilizations' TEAM cards are shown in the following tables:


Definitive Edition[]

  • Eagle Runner Knights' ranged attack inaccuracy removed.

The African Royals[]

  • Although it is not listed in the patch notes, with update 50830, the Eagle Runner Knight portrait has been updated.


Aztec warriors who had captured at least four enemy soldiers became eligible for the ranks of the eagle runner knight or the jaguar prowl knights. Presumably, this emphasis on capturing enemies was to collect a pool of captives for sacrifice, but the Aztec were also known for dealing death in battle, killing with single strokes of their obsidian swords, or hurling barbed spears with atlatls. Their own warriors who caused confusion or disorder in ranks were beaten on the spot and sometimes killed.

The dress of eagle runner knights incorporated feathers and a helmet resembling an eagle's head. The eagle was a symbol of the sun, the focus of Aztec worship and sacrifice. Eagle runner knights are usually depicted carrying shields and spears.