Age of Empires Series Wiki

The hero of your civilization. Explores, fights, builds Forts and Trading Posts. Cannot die. If he falls unconscious, he can be rescued.
—In-game description

The General is a hero in Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition exclusive to the United States and Mexicans. He explores uncharted areas of the map and has some special abilities to help himself and his civilization. In standard random map games, those two civilizations start with a General.


The General can build Trading Posts like every other Hero/Explorer unit, but instead of the ability to build Town Centers, he has the ability to build Forts. He builds a Trading Post faster than regular Settlers, nearing that of a Coureur des Bois or a Settler Wagon. The General can explore and fight longer if he has a few units accompanying him. He can regenerate health, which increases as the player Ages up.

Unlike other units who simply die when their hit points reach 0, the General will collapse. While the General is in this state, the player can either pay 100 coin as ransom to whoever dealt the final blow (including Mother Nature) or help him back up on his feet with an allied unit or building (this also includes projectiles fired from friendly units); in order to rescue the General, he must have at least 100 hit points.

Special abilities[]

  • Sharpshooter attack.png Sharpshooter Attack: The General fires a single shot that does 750 ranged damage to the target Treasure Guardian. 60 seconds cooldown.
  • Ability inspiring flag us.png Ability inspiring flag mx.png Inspiring Flag (available from the Commerce Age): The General plants an Inspiring Flag at the target location which increases the attack of allied units by 10% and makes them build buildings 50% faster, and makes military buildings around it train units 25% faster. The Inspiring Flag has an AOE and LOS of 14 which increases by 10 in every Age. The Inspiring Flag will be destroyed when an enemy is in a radius of 12 to it, cannot be placed in a radius of 65 to a Town Center and a radius of 3 to a building or other Inspiring Flags, and only one may be present at a time. 160 seconds cooldown.
    • Inspiring Bear Flag (replaces Inspiring Flag when the "Bear Flag Revolt" Home City Card is sent): The United States/Californian General plants an Inspiring Bear Flag at the target location which spawns 6 Honcho the Pet Grizzly Bears around it but are otherwise identical to Inspiring Flags in all but name and appearance.
  • Ability carbine shot us.png Carbine Attack (automatically activated when attacking with a cooldown of 45 seconds, available from the Industrial Age): The United States General fires a single shot from his carbine rifle which does 60 damage (180 against Treasure Guardian, 15 against Villager) from a range of 20.
  • Ability saber strike.png Saber Strike (automatically activated when attacking with a cooldown of 45 seconds, available from the Industrial Age): The Mexican General lands a powerful blow from his saber which does 8 damage (32 against Treasure Guardian, 2 against Villager) with an AOE of 3.
  • Balloon portrait.png Hot Air Balloon (requires the "Hot Air Balloon" Home City Card the "Missouri River Expeditions" Home City Card for the United States): The General spawns a Hot Air Balloon that remains for 20 seconds. 240 seconds cooldown.


The General is automatically upgraded on each Age starting from the Commerce Age.

  • Colonial age up.png +25% hit points and attack
  • Fortress age up.png +30% hit points and attack
  • Industrial age up.png +40% hit points and attack
  • Imperial age up.png +50% hit points

The attack increase also applies to the General's special abilities.

Further statistics[]

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Treasure Guardians
Weak vs. Villagers, cavalry, Spies, Ninja
Hit points Flint lock.png Flint Lock (+10%)
Cadets.png Cadets (+1,000)
Brigadier General.png Brigadier General (+1,000)
Cree Tanning.png Cree Tanning (+5%)
Navajo Weaving.png Navajo Weaving (+5%)
Sikh Gurus.png Sikh Gurus (+50%)
Attack Paper cartridge.png Paper Cartridge (+10%)
Brigadier General.png Brigadier General (+100%)
Yoga.png Yoga (+5%)
Smokeless Powder.png Smokeless Powder (+30% siege attack)
Clenched Fist.png Clenched Fist (+30% melee attack)
Speed Military Drummers.png Military Drummers (+10%)
Inca Road-building.png Quechuan Mountaineering (+20%)
Apache Endurance.png Apache Endurance (+5%)
Sight Town Watch.png Town Watch (+2)
Other Refreshing Beverages.png Refreshing Beverages (Carbine Attack cooldown -30%)
Carib Ambush Party.png Carib Ambush Party (train Carib Ambushers)
Loyal Nootka Warchief.png Loyal Nootka War Chief (train Nootka War Chief)
Penalties Cadets.png Cadets (ransom cost +50 coin)
Brigadier General.png Brigadier General (ransom cost +50 coin)

Home City Cards[]

Click for a list of Home City Cards related to the General
Green: TEAM Shipment that is sent to each player in a team


Card Description Age HC level
Dutch Home City 2 (Infantry Hitpoints).png TEAM Infantry Hitpoints Infantry get +15% hit points
Age II tech tree aoe3.png


Card Description Age HC level
French Home City 2 (Ranged Infantry Attack).png TEAM Ranged Infantry Attack Ranged infantry get +15% attack
Age II tech tree aoe3.png


Card Description Age HC level
Iroquois Home City 2 (Scout Infantry).png TEAM Scout Infantry Infantry get +8 LOS
Age II tech tree aoe3.png


Card Description Age HC level
Shivajis tactics.png TEAM Shivaji's Tactics All units get +5% hit points and attack
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png


Card Description Age HC level
Portuguese Home City 2 (Gunpowder Infantry Hitpoints).png TEAM Gunpowder Infantry Hitpoints Gunpowder infantry get +15% hit points
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png


Card Description Age HC level
TEAM Explorer Combat.png TEAM Explorer Combat Heroes get +20% hit points and attack
Age I tech tree aoe3.png
Spanish Home City 3 (Inquisition).png TEAM Inquisition All units get +10 LOS
Age I tech tree aoe3.png

United States[]

Card Description Age
US Home City 1 (Sheriff).png Sheriff The General gets +50% hit points and attack, +2.0x multiplier against Treasure Guardians and Outlaws, and Carbine Attack becomes available immediately
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
US Home City 2 (United States Army).png United States Army The General, Minutemen, and heavy infantry get +15% hit points and attack
Age III tech tree aoe3.png


Definitive Edition[]

  • Originally, the General gave 100 XP when killed, the ransom cost was 150 coin and the Inspiring Flag had a cooldown of 180 seconds. With update 26865, the General gives 45 XP when killed, the ransom cost is 100 coin and the Inspiring Flag has a cooldown of 160 seconds.

In-game dialogue[]

United States[]

The General speaks American English, but with some unique military-type lines.

  • Select 1 Yes?
  • Select 2 Orders?
  • Select 3 At attention.
  • Move 1 Make ready.
  • Move 2 Advance.
  • Move 3 Forward march!
  • Attack 1 Attack!
  • Attack 2 To battle!
  • Attack 3 For America!
  • Disabled I’m wounded! Fetch a medic!
  • Ransomed Thank you for paying my ransom!
  • Revived It's going to take a lot more than that to keep me down!


Random names[]

The Mexican General uses names that are combined from the first and last names of various 19th century Mexican military leaders and politicians.


  • The United States General is modeled after General Washington from the The WarChiefs campaign, but is also armed with a pistol (for standard attacks) and a carbine rifle (for special attacks) in addition to his officer's saber. In addition, his hand attack animation is changed to that of the traditional Explorer’s hand attack.


Whether as revolutionaries, expansionists, or reunifiers, effective military figures hold a distinct status in American patriotic lore. The United States’ military was originally composed largely of local militias and men on the frontiers regularly enlisted. Able commanders achieved widespread acclaim and often political power later on; American presidents such as George Washington, Andrew Jackson, and Ulysses S. Grant all had decorated military backgrounds. These backgrounds also brought a touch of modesty that was rare among leadership figures in other nations: Washington, for example, retired from the Presidency after two terms, stressing that the station should be neither autocratic nor a life appointment.


See also[]

  • Explorer – fulfills the same role for European civilizations
  • War Chief – fulfills the same role for Native American civilizations
  • Monk – fulfills the same role for Asian civilizations
  • Ras – fulfills the same role for the Ethiopians
  • Emir – fulfills the same role for the Hausa