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This article is about the unit in Age of Empires III. For the similar unit in other games of the series, see Halberdier.

Slow, heavy infantry with a large attack.
—In-game description

The Halberdier is a melee heavy infantry in Age of Empires III that can be trained at Barracks, Fort, and Galleon/Fluyt once the Fortress Age is reached.

Halberdiers are available to Dutch, French, John Black's Mercenaries (Act II: Ice campaign), Portuguese, and Russians.

Overview[]

The Halberdier is a powerful hand infantry unit, good against cavalry, but vulnerable to Skirmishers. It is similar to the Pikeman in terms of its purpose and function. However, it is more versatile, dealing more damage to non-cavalry units, has more health and damage, and can be upgraded to Guard and Imperial, but has less speed and siege damage when accounted for cost. Halberdiers have extremely high attack and hit points for an infantry unit, but are slow, and thus unable to catch up to almost anything to get into melee. This makes them much better at defensive purposes than as a primary offensive unit. The Dutch are somewhat able to overcome this weakness by combining the "Military Reforms" Home City Card and Military Drummers for a total of 5.2 speed. Training 5-10 Halberdiers and placing them behind artillery to guard from cavalry flanks is an extremely cost-effective way to defend cannons. Unlike Musketeers, they will automatically block and melee down cavalry, and can go into cover mode, which greatly increases their durability.

Additionally, Halberdiers are able to beat almost any melee infantry that gets into combat with them (with the notable exception of the Jaguar Prowl Knight), making them more versatile than Pikemen.

In the Definitive Edition, the Dutch can train Halberdiers as early as the Commerce Age if they Age up with The Logistician.

Upgrades[]

The Halberdier starts at the Veteran level, though this does not increase their hit points and attack.

If made available in the Commerce Age by Aging up with The Logistician for the Dutch, Halberdiers will be automatically upgraded to Veteran when the player reaches the Fortress Age.

Age Upgrade Cost Effect Civ.
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
Guard spear infantry.png Guard Halberdiers 600 wood,
600 coin
Upgrade Halberdiers to Guard (+30% hit points and attack)
Flag FrenchDE.png
Portuguese
Flag RussianDE.png
Guard spear infantry.png Stadswachts 1,000 wood,
1,000 coin
Upgrades Halberdier to Stadswachts (Guard Halberdiers with +10% hit points and attack)
Flag DutchDE.png
Imperial Age
Imperial spear infantry.png Imperial Halberdiers 1,500 wood,
1,500 coin
Upgrade Halberdiers to Imperial (+50% hit points and attack); requires Guard Halberdiers
Flag FrenchDE.png
Portuguese
Flag RussianDE.png
Imperial spear infantry.png Imperial Stadswachts Upgrade Stadswachts to Imperial (+50% hit points and attack); requires Stadswachts
Flag DutchDE.png

Civilization differences[]

Further statistics[]

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Cavalry, shock infantry, buildings
Weak vs. Archers, artillery
Improvements
Hit points Infantry Breastplate.png Infantry Breastplate (+10%)
Corselet.png Corselet (+25%; Spanish only)
Cree Tanning.png Cree Tanning (+5%)
Maya Cotton Armor.png Maya Cotton Armor (+20%)
Navajo Weaving.png Navajo Weaving (+5%)
Attack Carib Kasiri Beer.png Carib Kasiri Beer (+10%)
Mapuche Tactics.png Mapuche Tactics (+50% siege attack)
Zapotec Cult of the Dead.png Zapotec Cult of the Dead (+20%)
Yoga.png Yoga (+5%)
Master Lessons.png Master Lessons (+10%)
Armor Somali oryx shields.png Somali Oryx Hide Shields (additional 10% melee/ranged resistance)
Speed Military Drummers.png Military Drummers (+10%)
Inca Road-building.png Quechuan Mountaineering (+20%)
Apache Endurance.png Apache Endurance (+5%)
Akan Drums.png Akan Fontomfrom (+5%)
Sight Town Watch.png Town Watch (+2)
Creation speed Standing Army.png Standing Army (-25%)
Inca Chaquis Messengers.png Quechuan Diet (-25%)
Akan Drums.png Akan Fontomfrom (-20%)
Train cost Mapuche Ad-mapu.png Mapuche Ad-mapu (-10% coin cost)
Other Petrine Reforms.png Petrine Reforms (grants Guard upgrade; Russians only)
Quatrefage.png Royal Alabarderos (ships 13 Guard Halberdiers; Spanish only)
Gustavian Guards.png Gustavian Guards (ships 16 Veteran Halberdiers; Swedes only)
Merritocracy.png Meritocracy (-20% upgrade cost)
Penalties Coffee Trade.png Coffee Trade (-10% speed; Dutch only)
Corselet.png Corselet (-15% speed; Spanish only)

Home City Cards[]

Click for a list of Home City Cards related to the Halberdier
  • Green: TEAM Shipment that is sent to each player in a team
  • Purple: Shipment that can be sent an INFINITE number of times

Dutch[]

Card Description Age HC level
Dutch Home City 2 (11 Halberdiers).png 11 Halberdiers Ships 11 Halberdiers
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
10
Dutch Home City 2 (8 Halberdiers).png 8 Halberdiers Ships 8 Halberdiers
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
10
Dutch Home City 2 (Military Reform).png Military Reforms Halberdiers get +20% speed and -0.25× multiplier against Infantry
Age I tech tree aoe3.png
25
Dutch Home City 2 (Infantry Attack).png Infantry Attack Pikemen, Skirmishers, and Halberdiers get +15% attack
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
10
Dutch Home City 2 (Infantry Hitpoints).png TEAM Infantry Hitpoints Infantry get +15% hit points
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
10
Dutch Home City 2 (Infantry Combat).png Infantry Combat Pikemen, Skirmishers, and Halberdiers get +15% hit points and attack
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
25

Europeans[]

Card Description Age HC level
Portuguese Home City 2 (7 Halberdiers).png 7 Halberdiers Ships 7 Halberdiers
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
1
Portuguese Home City 2 (10 Halberdiers).png 10 Halberdiers Ships 10 Halberdiers
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
1
Portuguese Home City 2 (8 Halberdiers).png 8 Halberdiers Ships 8 Halberdiers
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
10
Dutch Home City 2 (13 Halberdiers).png 13 Halberdiers Ships 13 Halberdiers
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
25
Spanish Home City 3 (Fencing School).png Fencing School Infantry train time -40%
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
10
  • "7 Halberdiers", "10 Halberdiers", and "8 Halberdiers" are available to Dutch and Portuguese.
  • "13 Halberdiers" is available to Dutch and Russians (at a level 1 Home City).

Haudenosaunee[]

Card Description Age HC level
Iroquois Home City 2 (Infantry Attack).png Infantry Attack Infantry get +15% attack
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
10
Iroquois Home City 2 (Infantry Hitpoints).png Infantry Hitpoints Infantry get +15% hit points
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
10
Iroquois Home City 2 (Infantry Combat).png Infantry Combat Infantry get +15% hit points and attack
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
25
Iroquois Home City 2 (Scout Infantry).png TEAM Scout Infantry Infantry get +8 LOS
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
10
Iroquois Home City 5 (11 Halberdiers).png 11 Renegade Dutch Ships 11 Halberdiers; costs 500 coin
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
1
Iroquois Home City 5 (20 Halberdiers).png 20 Renegade Dutch Ships 20 Halberdiers; costs 1,000 coin
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
10

Incas[]

Card Description Age
Inca Home City 2 (TEAM Inca Bridges).png TEAM Inca Bridges Infantry and civilian units get +5% speed; +1 Chasqui
Age I tech tree aoe3.png

Indians[]

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
25

Japanese[]

Card Description Age HC level
Japanese Home City 3 (Cheaper Unit Upgrades).png TEAM Cheaper Unit Upgrades Unit upgrades cost -20%
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
1

Russians[]

Card Description Age HC level
Russian Home City 2 (9 Halberdiers).png 9 Halberdiers Ships 9 Halberdiers
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
1
Russian Home City 2 (15 Halberdiers).png 15 Halberdiers Ships 15 Halberdiers
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
10
Russian Home City 2 (Ransack).png Ransack Infantry get +50% siege attack
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
25
Russian Home City 3 (Dueling School).png TEAM Dueling School Infantry train time -25%; Banner army train time -12%
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
25

Spanish[]

Card Description Age HC level
Spanish Home City 1 (Hand Infantry Attack).png TEAM Hand Infantry Attack Melee Infantry get +15% attack
Age II tech tree aoe3.png
10
Spanish Home City 3 (Inquisition).png TEAM Inquisition All units get +10 LOS
Age I tech tree aoe3.png
10

Swedes[]

Card Description Age
Swedish Home City 2 (Dalecarlian Rebelion).png Dalcarlian Rebellion Turns Pikemen into Halberdiers
Age III tech tree aoe3.png
Dutch Home City 2 (Infantry Hitpoints).png TEAM Heavy Infantry Hitpoints Heavy Infantry get +15% hit points
Age II tech tree aoe3.png

Changelog[]

Age of Empires III[]

  • Halberdiers have 25 hand attack, 10% melee resistance, and 4.0 speed.

Definitive Edition[]

  • Halberdiers now have 28 hand attack and 20% melee resistance.
  • The Logistician introduced for the Dutch.
  • Halberdiers shipped by Quatrefage now use the Spanish Pikeman dialogue instead of the Dutch Halberdier's.
  • With update 50830, Halberdiers have 4.25 speed.

Trivia[]

  • The Halberdier's function and its availability in the third age is similar to the Hoplite and Phalanx from the original Age of Empires.
  • Despite being a weapon of German origin that was also used by the British and Spanish, none of them use it for balancing reasons.
  • Dutch Royal Guard Halberdiers' name, Stadswacht, translates to "City Guard".
    • Before the Definitive Edition, they are named Nassauer, which refers to Maurice of Nassau who was the first to utilize linear infantry tactics on a large scale in Europe (confirmed by the Royal Guard upgrade, which is named Nassau's Linear Tactics). Contrary to the in-game upgrade, however, the tactic was introduced to Dutch musketeers rather than melee troops.

History[]

Riders with lances had better range than halberdiers, so halberdiers often fought alongside Pikemen. The axe blade of a halberd was more than capable of cleaving plate armor, flesh and bone alike, but because the halberdier had to swing the long weapon with both hands, he was virtually defenseless when attacking. This required tight coordination and unwavering resolve within a regiment of halberdiers.

The halberd is essentially a very long-handled axe. It was a six foot staff of stout oak or ash topped by a long, stabbing spear point and a heavy axe blade balanced by a spike. The spear point was used to thrust and stab, the axe blade to cut through a mounted warrior's heavy armor, and the spike opposite the axe blade to push, or pull, riders off balance.

Gallery[]

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