The Indians' key economic distinction is that they require Wood to train their Villagers. This requires an overhaul of the usual economic strategies used by most civilizations, making Indians essentially the "Dutch of the East". Instead of sending Villagers to forage berries or hunt animals, an Indian player focuses on chopping wood to accelerate their economy, leaving them somewhat vulnerable if they start on a map with few trees. However, the Indians receive the first two wood gathering upgrades (Water Wheel and Regenerative Forestry) for free automatically. Indian players also need to distribute gathered wood between building Houses or training Villagers early in the game. Fortunately, Indian players will receive free Villagers with every shipment, much like how Germans receive Uhlan with every shipment, although the Indians lack any villager shipment cards. Due to this unique ability, Indian players are considered to be far too reliant on the Home City card deck, thus, a blockade would be devastating.
Note:Indian Villagers' cost can be changed from wood to food with The RajHome City Card.
The Indians are unable to slaughter cows and other livestock, including Water Buffaloes, Yaks, Goats, Sheep, and Llamas, but this is viewed as a bonus rather than a handicap (they are also free to slaughter other animals for food). When a livestock is obtained it generates experience over time, which can be increased by tasking them to a Sacred Field. The livestock XP generation rate varies depending on the animal in question; a Sacred Cow, for example, gathers 5 XP every 50 seconds if not tasked to a Sacred Field, while a Llama generates 5 XP every 40 seconds; which increases to 25 XP every 100 seconds and 80 seconds respectively while tasked on a Sacred Field.
Like the Spanish, the Indians' main advantage in battle is a wide and balanced selection of units. The Indians have one of the most well-balanced armies in the game. The Indians have a unit to fulfill every role in battle - their Sepoys fight well as Musketeers, the Gurkhas provide good Skirmisher support, and Rajputs help shield the long range infantry and assault enemy lines. The Indian hand cavalry, the Sowar, is fast, even when compared to other cavalry, although fairly fragile. The Indians have another hand infantry unit, the Urumi. The Urumi can only be sent from the Home City as it is one of the most vital constituents of any Indian force. The Urumi has bonuses against heavy infantry and ranged cavalry, although it is a hand infantry unit. The Indian dragoon is the Zamburak, equally quick footed as the Sowar, though just as fragile. In order to re-balance the generally fragile camel units of the Indians, the Indians' primary shock troopers are their mighty elephants - powerful cavalry units with incredibly high hitpoints, siege and splash damage.
All Indian units are unique, although most are modeled after a particular European civilization's troops. The Mansabdar units can be visually identified easily during combat; protecting them is an important endeavor if they are trained.
The Indian flag in The Asian Dynasties appears to be a combination of the Mughal Empire (sun and lion over green field) and Maratha Empire (plain pale orange field) flags. For the Definitive Edition, this was changed to the War flag of the Mughal Empire (1526–1540 and 1555–1857).
However - as this design is non-rectangular - the Home City shipment icon, civilization selection screen, and post-game leaderboards all use a flag that resembles the War flag of the Mughal Empire, featuring the lion and the sun surrounded by stars, but with a rectangular design.
The fall of India’s mighty Mughal Empire coincides with the rise of British rule in the subcontinent, occurring in the 18th century; yet even as the British established control, their arrival was little more than the last blow to an already struggling native dynasty. The Mughal Empire, bastion of high culture, geographic expansion, and military might, had fallen.
The Mughal Empire has its origins in neighboring Afghanistan and Turkestan, where descendents of the Mongol Empire had become Muslims and where the Muslim ruler Babur began forming the foundations of a new kingdom in 1504 with the seizure of Kabul, and territories leading east into the Indus River Valley. In 1526, he pushed further into India and defeated the last of the Delhi Sultans, Ibrahim Shah Lodi, at the First Battle of Panipat. Babur’s son Humayun succeeded him in 1530, but quickly lost most of the newly won territory. For a time he ruled in exile, but eventually raised an army large enough to march back to Delhi in 1555 and conquer it a second time.
Next in the line of succession was Humayun’s son Akbar, who succeeded his father on 14 February 1556, while in the midst of a war against Sikandar Shah for the reclamation of the Mughal throne. Akbar won his first victory at the age of 13 or 14, and quickly established himself as a confident ruler who had a vision for the future of his empire. He created fair taxes, built an efficient government, placed an emphasis on high culture, and encouraged radical religious tolerance. Because of his contributions, Akbar is considered the greatest of the Mughal rulers.
The Mughal Empire only lasted for another one hundred years. Its last great ruler was Aurangzeb Alangir, a zealous Muslim who abandoned the tolerance of his predecessors and began to crack down on other faiths, especially the Hindus. During his fifty-year reign, religious prejudice drove a wedge between the ruler and his subjects. Aurang’s intentions were to force the Hindus to convert. Temples were despoiled and a tax for non-Muslims was introduced.
Following Aurang, the Mughal Empire suffered from a lack of powerful authority, causing regional nawabs, or governors, to split and found their own kingdoms, such as the Marathas in the south and the Sikhs in the north. The next 27 years of the Mughal Empire were spent in clashes with its neighbors, and in 1739, invading Persian and Afghan armies invaded Delhi.
The greatest empire in India had crumbled and individual kingdoms rushed to gobble up the pieces. The stage was set for the British, who would overpower the smaller weakened kingdoms and in doing so would gain control the country.