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An army composed of two types of heavy cavalry.
—In-game description

The Forbidden Army is a Chinese banner army in Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties that can be trained at War Academy and Fuchuan, or automatically spawned for free by the Summer Palace Wonder, once the Fortress Age is reached. It consists of two Iron Flails and two Meteor Hammers.


The Iron Flail attacks at range, doing melee damage with an area of effect. It is a very powerful unit overall due to the area of effect, but is especially effective against light infantry and Artillery. The Meteor Hammer is a heavy cavalry unit doing Hand damage at Range, and is good against ranged infantry, and especially powerful against artillery.

The Forbidden army is a very cost effective cavalry army that is not to be underestimated, and is good when mixed with the Territorial Army or fully upgraded Old Han Army in case the enemy relies on Musketeers instead of Archers or Skirmishers. If combined with Beiyang Army, it serves as one of the most powerful raiders of the game, since they can kill archers, Skirmishers, and artillery (with the Iron Flail, Steppe Rider, and Meteor Hammer) and counter range cavalry (with the Keshik).

As first shock wave attacker, these units recreate the old cavalry flanker strategy in Age of Empires II when facing heavy artillery, before the infantry and your own artillery attack your opponent.


The Asian Dynasties[]

  • The Forbidden Army trains in 29 seconds.

Definitive Edition[]

  • The Forbidden Army trains in 33 seconds. With update 14825, the Forbidden Army trains in 29 seconds.
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Banner armies
Aoe3 war academy.png War AcademyOld Han Army · Standard Army · Ming Army · Territorial Army · Forbidden Army · Imperial Army
Chinese castle.png CastleBlack Flag Army · Mongolian Army