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Fast anti-cavalry unit.
Age of Empires II description

The Heavy Camel Rider (called Heavy Camel before the Definitive Edition) is a cavalry unit in Age of Empires II that can be upgraded from the Camel Rider at the Stable once the Imperial Age is reached. It excels at battling other cavalry, but is rather ineffective otherwise. Every civilization that has access to Camel Riders except for the Cumans can upgrade them to Heavy Camel Riders, but the upgrade to the Imperial Camel Rider is unique to the Hindustanis.

Availability chart[]

Heavycamelrideravailable AvailableHeavycamelriderunavailable Unavailable
x means that the civilizations gets fully upgradeable Heavy Camel Riders. The technologies being considered here are Blast Furnace, Plate Barding Armor, and Bloodlines.
+ means that the civilization gets some civilization or team bonus or a unique technology that benefits the combat strength of the Heavy Camel Rider.


Heavy Camel Riders are a great counter to enemy cavalry. They perform better in combat than Halberdier as they deal similar amounts of damage but are much more durable. Additionally, unlike Halberdiers, they can force engagements against enemy cavalry. They also fare well against enemy mounted archers due to their bonus damage, something the Halberdier line is unable to do. Camel units are the second fastest land unit type in Age of Empires II, only superseded by light cavalry.

Since they have very low armor and base attack, they are not effective against anything else than mounted units, so it is wise not to send them against foot archers or infantry. Camel Riders are also ineffective against buildings and take extra damage from defensive structures (especially before The African Kingdoms). They also have a decently expensive cost of 55 food, 60 gold, especially when compared to the cheap Halberdier.

Compared to its predecessor, the Heavy Camel Rider has +20 hit points, +1 attack, and +8 anti-cavalry bonus damage. The latter in particular makes this upgrade paramount against enemy cavalry, and the inexpensive cost makes it worth picking up before other technologies.

Comparison in the Post-Imperial Age[]

Civilization Berbers AoE2 Berbers Byzantines AoE2 Byzantines Ethiopians AoE2 Ethiopians Hindustanis AoE2 Hindustanis Gurjaras AoE2 Gurjaras Malians AoE2 Malians Saracens AoE2 Saracens
Cost 44 food, 48 gold 41 food, 45 gold 55 food, 60 gold 41 food, 60 gold 55 food, 60 gold
Hit points 140 120 140 170
Attack 7+4 7+2 7+4 7+2 7+7 7+4
Attack bonus +18 vs Cavalry
+9 vs Camel
+25 vs Cavalry
+13 vs Camel
+18 vs Cavalry
+9 vs Camel
Armor 0+3/0+4 0+2/0+2 0+3/0+4 0+7/0+4 0+3/0+4
Rate of Fire 2 1.6 2
Extras Regenerates 0.25 HP/s - Receives -3 damage from mounted units +2 vs buildings
Imperialcamel Imperial Camel Rider Upgrade
Trained 25% faster -

Further statistics[]

Strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Elite Skirmishers, siege weapons, mounted archers, cavalry
Weak vs. Infantry, foot archers, Cataphracts, defensive structures
Hit points BloodlinesDE Bloodlines (+20)
Regeneration UniqueTechImperialDE Maghrebi Camels (15 HP/min, Berbers only)
Attack Forging aoe2de Forging (+1)
IronCastingDE Iron Casting (+1)
BlastFurnaceDE Blast Furnace (+2)
UniqueTechImperialDE Farimba (+5, Malians only)
Armor ScaleBardingArmorDE Scale Barding Armor (+1/+1)
ChainBardingDE Chain Barding Armor (+1/+1)
PlateBardingArmorDE Plate Barding Armor (+1/+2)
UniqueTechImperialDE Frontier Guards (+4/+0, Gurjaras only)
Damage resistance UniqueTechCastle-DE Royal Heirs (-3 from mounted units, Ethiopians only)
Conversion resistance Devotion icon AoE2DE Devotion (+1 min, +1 max)
FaithDE Faith (+4 min, +4 max)
HeresyDE Heresy (die upon getting converted)
Movement speed HusbandryDE Husbandry (+10%)
Resource cost UniqueTechCastle-DE Kshatriyas (-25% food, Gurjaras only)
Creation speed ConscriptionDE Conscription (+33%)
Civilization bonuses
Hit points Saracens AoE2 Saracens (+25%)
Attack Gurjaras AoE2 Gurjaras (+40% bonus damage)
Tatars AoE2 Tatars (+20% {+50% instead of +25%} damage from elevations)
Attack speed Hindustanis AoE2 Hindustanis (+20%)
Resource cost Berbers AoE2 Berbers (-20%)
Byzantines AoE2 Byzantines (-25%)
Ability Gurjaras AoE2 Gurjaras (Auto Scout)
Other Chinese AoE2 Chinese (upgrade from Camel Rider costs -15%)
Team bonuses
Attack Hindustanis AoE2 Hindustanis (+2 against standard buildings)
Conversion resistance Teutons AoE2 Teutons (+3 min, +1 max)
Creation speed Gurjaras AoE2 Gurjaras (+25%)
Huns AoE2 Huns (+20%)
Other Huns AoE2 Huns (upgrade from Camel Rider and to Imperial Camel Rider is 20% faster)
Portuguese AoE2 Portuguese (upgrade from Camel Rider and to Imperial Camel Rider is 25% faster)

Civilization bonuses[]

  • Chinese AoE2 Chinese: Technologies that benefit Heavy Camel Riders are 5%/10%/15% cheaper in the Feudal/Castle/Imperial Age.

Team bonuses[]


AoE2-DLCicon-0 The Age of Kings[]

  • The unit is named Heavy Camel.
  • Heavy Camels take 29 seconds to train.
  • Heavy Camels have a movement speed of 1.4.
  • Heavy Camels are in the cavalry armor class, thus taking bonus damage from anti-cavalry attacks.
  • Heavy Camels have 4 Line of Sight.
  • The upgrade from the Camel needs 125 seconds.

AoE2-DLCicon-1 The Conquerors[]

  • Heavy Camels train in 22 seconds.
  • Heavy Camels have a movement speed of 1.45.
  • Heavy Camels are removed from the cavalry armor class, and put in the ship armor class (henceforth called the ship and camel armor class). Hence, they take new anti-ship (bonus damage from ships and defensive structures) and anti-camel attacks, the latter of which is almost half of anti-cavalry attacks. Camels also gain an attack bonus of +5 against this class.
  • Bloodlines introduced.
  • Heresy introduced.
  • Saracens AoE2 Saracens: Zealotry introduced in the Imperial Age. It gives Heavy Camels +30 HP.

AoE2-DLCicon-2 The Forgotten[]

  • The upgrade from the Camel needs 105 seconds.
  • Indians AoE2 Indians: Heavy Camels have +1/+1 armor.
  • Indians: Upgrade cost to Imperial Camel is 1,200 food, 600 gold.
  • Indians (team bonus): Heavy Camels have +5 attack against buildings.

AoE2-DLCicon-3 The African Kingdoms[]

  • The ship and camel armor class is split in ship armor class and camel armor class to make ships and defensive structures selectively good against ships only, but not against camels. Consequently, these attack bonuses against camels were reduced to 0 and +1 respectively.

AoE2-DLCicon-4 Rise of the Rajas[]

AoEIIDE icon Definitive Edition[]

AoE2Icon-LordsWest Lords of the West[]

AoE2Icon-DynastiesIndia Dynasties of India[]

AoE2Icon-MountainRoyals The Mountain Royals[]

  • Persians AoE2 Persians: With update 95810, killing military units with Heavy Camel Rider provides 5 gold per unit. With update 99311, this bonus is removed.
  • Saracens AoE2 Saracens: Heavy Camel Riders +10 hit points civilization bonus changed to Heavy Camel Riders +25% hit points. Zealotry removed.


There is one hero in the game with the appearance of a Heavy Camel Rider:


The heavy camel was an especially experienced warrior and camel rider who wore some armor. They were used by desert civilizations of the Middle East who fought against archers from the Byzantine Empire and horse archers raiding down from the steppes of Asia.


  • The Camel Rider is one of the few units whose availability among civilizations corresponds very well with real-world history. Camels were used by different armies between the Mediterranean Sea and India from antiquity to modern day. While it is not known if the Mongols, and Chinese used camels for combat, they certainly used camels for transporting ammunition, and for food, respectively. Cumans have no access to the Heavy Camel Riders in-game, possibly for balancing reasons.
  • The Far Eastern civilizations of the Mongols, Chinese, Cumans, and Tatars (the two latter originated from East Asia) would have been as likely to domesticate the lesser known of the two species of camel, the two-humped Bactrian Camel, native to the steppes of Central Asia, as the familiar Arabian one-humped dromedary; both would have been introduced by Silk Road traders.
  • The Camel Rider line is one of three military units that do not make the usual military sound when created, the other being Trebuchets and Flaming Camels.
  • Even though they have "heavy" in their name, Heavy Camel Riders have no armor.
  • The Heavy Camel Rider's beta model was modified and reused for the Imperial Camel Rider in Forgotten Empires until patch 3.5.
    • This beta sprite has the camel wearing a caparison. Although this is not the case in the final sprites, the icon for the Heavy Camel Rider upgrade still shows a camel with a caparison, and the icon for the Imperial Camel Rider upgrade shows the camel with caparison and armor.
  • The Camel Rider line units are the only common cavalry units that do not have any base pierce armor.
  • Heavy Camel Riders deal bonus damage against the cheat unit Saboteur (since The Conquerors) because it is in the same unit class as ships.
  • With 7 melee armor, the fully upgraded Gurjara Heavy Camel Rider is now tied with the Teutonic Paladin for the highest melee armor of stable units.
    • Despite lacking Blast Furnace, Gurjara Heavy Camel Riders might be the strongest Heavy Camel Riders in the game, as they deal 40% more bonus damage (which means they perform as good as Malian Heavy Camel Riders with Farimba, killing Paladins in 7 hits), cost the same amount of food as Byzantine Heavy Camel Riders after researching the Castle Age unique technology Kshatriyas while having access to Bloodlines, extra melee armor with the Imperial Age unique technology Frontier Guards, and also training 25% faster thanks to the team bonus. However, it is necessary to invest a large amount of resources to upgrade the Camel Riders.
  • None of the civilizations introduced in The Conquerors and The Forgotten (the latter since Dynasties of India) have access to (Heavy) Camel Riders. Lack of Camel Riders in further expansions is not notable since they are region based, rather than generic.
  • All civilizations with access to Heavy Camel Riders have access to Husbandry as well.



Units in Age of Empires II
CivilianMaleVillDE Villager · Tradecart aoe2DE Trade Cart · FishingShipDE Fishing Ship · Trade cog aoe2DE Trade Cog · King eu aoe2DE King
ReligiousMonk aoe2DE Monk
InfantryMilitiaDE Militia · Manatarms aoe2DE Man-at-Arms · Longswordsman aoe2DE Long Swordsman · Twohanded aoe2DE Two-Handed Swordsman · Champion aoe2DE Champion
Spearman aoe2DE Spearman · Aoe2-infantry-2-pikeman Pikeman · Halberdier aoe2DE Halberdier
Eaglescout aoe2DE Eagle Scout · Eaglewarrior aoe2DE Eagle Warrior · EliteEaglewarrior aoe2DE Elite Eagle Warrior
ArcherArcher aoe2DE Archer · Crossbowman aoe2DE Crossbowman · Arbalester aoe2DE Arbalester
Skirmisher aoe2DE Skirmisher · Elite skirmisher aoe2DE Elite Skirmisher
Hand cannoneer aoe2DE Hand Cannoneer
Cavalryarcher aoe2DE Cavalry Archer · Heavycavalryarcher aoe2de Heavy Cavalry Archer
Aoe2de DOI elephant archer icon Elephant Archer · ElephantArcherIcon-DE Elite Elephant Archer
CavalryScoutcavalry aoe2DE Scout Cavalry · Lightcavalry aoe2DE Light Cavalry · Hussar aoe2DE Hussar
Knight aoe2DE Knight · Cavalier aoe2DE Cavalier · Paladin aoe2DE Paladin
Camelrider aoe2DE Camel Rider · Aoe2 heavycamelriderDE Heavy Camel Rider
Battle elephant aoe2DE Battle Elephant · Elite battle elephant aoe2DE Elite Battle Elephant
Steppelancericon Steppe Lancer · Elitesteppelancericon Elite Steppe Lancer
Xolotlicon Xolotl Warrior
AoE2DE Armored Elephant icon Armored Elephant · AoE2DE Siege Elephant icon Siege Elephant
SiegeBattering ram aoe2DE Battering Ram · Capped ram aoe2DE Capped Ram · Siege ram aoe2DE Siege Ram
Mangonel aoe2DE Mangonel · Onager aoe2DE Onager · Siege onager aoe2DE Siege Onager
Scorpion aoe2DE Scorpion · Heavyscorpion aoe2DE Heavy Scorpion
Bombard cannon aoe2DE Bombard Cannon
Trebuchet aoe2DE Trebuchet
Petard aoe2DE Petard
Siegetower aoe2DE Siege Tower
War shipTransportship aoe2DE Transport Ship
Galley aoe2DE Galley · War galley aoe2DE War Galley · Galleon aoe2DE Galleon
Fire galley aoe2DE Fire Galley · Fireship aoe2DE Fire Ship · Fastfireship aoe2DE Fast Fire Ship
Demoraft aoe2DE Demolition Raft · Demoship aoe2DE Demolition Ship · Heavydemoship aoe2de Heavy Demolition Ship
Cannon galleon aoe2DE Cannon Galleon · Elite cannon galleon aoe2de Elite Cannon Galleon
AoE2 Dromon Dromon
ReligiousMissionaryIcon-DE Missionary · AoE2 WarriorPriest Warrior Priest
InfantryBerserkIcon-DE Berserk · Aoe2de Chakram Chakram Thrower · CondottieroIcon-DE Condottiero · Aoe2-icon-flemish-militia Flemish Militia · GbetoIcon-DE Gbeto · Aoe2de Ghulam Ghulam · HuskarlIcon-DE Huskarl · JaguarWarriorIcon-DE Jaguar Warrior · KamayukIcon-DE Kamayuk · Karambitwarrioricon-DE Karambit Warrior · AoE2 DE Legionary new icon Legionary · Aoe2-icon--obuch Obuch · SamuraiIcon-DE Samurai · Aoe2-icon-serjeant Serjeant · Shotelwarrioricon-DE Shotel Warrior · TeutonicKnightIcon-DE Teutonic Knight · ThrowingAxemanIcon-DE Throwing Axeman · Aoe2de Urumi Urumi Swordsman · AoE2 WarriorPriest Warrior Priest · WoadRaiderIcon-DE Woad Raider
ArcherArambaiicon-DE Arambai · CamelArcherIcon-DE Camel Archer · ChukoNuIcon-DE Chu Ko Nu · AoE2 CompositeBowman Composite Bowman · ConquistadorIcon-DE Conquistador · GenitourIcon-DE Genitour · GenoeseCrossbowmanIcon-DE Genoese Crossbowman · Imperialskirmishericon-DE Imperial Skirmisher · JanissaryIcon-DE Janissary · Kipchakicon Kipchak · LongbowmanIcon-DE Longbowman · MangudaiIcon-DE Mangudai · PlumedArcherIcon-DE Plumed Archer · Aoe2de ratha ranged Ranged Ratha · Rattanarchericon-DE Rattan Archer · SlingerIcon-DE Slinger · WarWagonIcon-DE War Wagon
CavalryBallistaelephanticon-DE Ballista Elephant · BoyarIcon-DE Boyar · Aoe2de camel scout Camel Scout · CataphractIcon-DE Cataphract · Aoe2de roman unique centurion icon Centurion · Aoe2-icon-coustillier Coustillier · Flaming camel icon Flaming Camel · ImperialCamelRiderIcon-DE Imperial Camel Rider · Keshikicon Keshik · Konnikicon Konnik · Leitisicon Leitis · MagyarHuszarIcon-DE Magyar Huszar · MamelukeIcon-DE Mameluke · AoE2 Monaspa Monaspa · Aoe2de ratha melee Melee Ratha · AoE2 Savar Savar · Aoe2de shrivamsha rider Shrivamsha Rider · TarkanIcon-DE Tarkan · WarElephantIcon-DE War Elephant · Aoe2-icon-winged-hussar Winged Hussar
SiegeAoe2-icon--houfnice Houfnice · Aoe2-icon-hussite-wagon Hussite Wagon · OrganGunIcon-DE Organ Gun
War shipCaravelIcon-DE Caravel · LongboatIcon-DE Longboat · Aoe2de Thirisadai Thirisadai · TurtleShipIcon-DE Turtle Ship