First Crusade is a technology in Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition - Lords of the West that is unique to the Sicilians and available at the Castle. Once researched, it lets up to 5 Town Centers each spawn a one-time group of 7 Serjeants. Additionally, it makes all Sicilian units more resistant to conversion (having the same effect as the Monastery technology Faith).
The First Crusade research is an easy way to get a lot of infantry units very fast. Its effect is maximized after a build using tons of Town Centers. It may allow some greedier strategies like a four or five Town Center boom on a map like Arena. It is a rather expensive technology which takes a lot of time to research though.
In some circumstances, First Crusade may act as a panic button if the player needs to defend against an invasion but does not have enough troops near their Town Centers. One thing to note is that this technology can still be researched and will provide the same number of units even if it results in the player exceeding maximum population.
If the player has 5 Town Centers, each Serjeant delivered by First Crusade will cost approximately 8.6 food and 17.1 gold. Also, researching the technology takes the same time as training 5 Serjeants in a Castle, and so it is always recommended to research it, both cost-wise and time-wise, whenever the player wants to have a big army of Serjeants.
Lords of the West
- On introduction, First Crusade spawned 10 Serjeants per Town Center.
- With Hotfix 45185, First Crusade spawns 7 Serjeants per Town Center.
- With update 47820, adds the effect of making units more resistant to conversion.
- With update 50292, a new sound now plays when the enemy researches First Crusade.
While not active participants in the First Crusade in 1091, Sicily, like many other European entities, experienced the effect of the Crusades as military religious orders set themselves up in Sicily, like the Templars, Hospitallers, and the Teutonic Knights. However, the multi-ethnic state of Sicily kept them from actively participating in the religious conflicts, serving mainly to provide material services to the organizations.
- The feature of spawning a group of military units for existing buildings is similar to the effect of a few Home City Cards, such as the Strelet Horde of the Russians and the Allotment System of the Swedes, as well as the Clan Offerings technology from Japanese Isolation of the Japanese in Age of Empires III.