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As Sahin is driven from Malta, Morgan and his men regroup and prepare to push the surviving Ottomans from their camps.

Into the Caves is the second scenario of Act I: Blood in Age of Empires III. The knights must wipe out the remaining threat to the island.


Into the Caves.png

As shown in the cutscene, Morgan Black wants to find any remaining Ottomans and soon finds Sahin The Falcon making a swift retreat. They have a short conversation about the future of the knights and Sahin gives an annoyed Morgan the nickname "Frenk" before he departs. Later Alain informs Morgan that pockets of Ottomans are located to the east and so Morgan orders his men to follow him. Bringing with them a bombard captured from the enemy, in the event they will need it's firepower.

The player still does not have access to the Home City, nor can they send for shipments, much like the previous scenario. Any experience earned will be saved for later, and the player does still level up the Home City.


  • Defend the base from the Ottoman attack.
  • Destroy all the Ottoman Weapon Caches. (8 total)

Secondary objectives[]


  • Morgan Black (Knights of St. John) - The player starts in the Fortress Age, with 24 Crossbowmen, Alain Magnan, Morgan Black himself, a Priest, a Great Bombard, and three Swiss Pikemen. Their base consists of a Town Center, two Barracks, two Outposts and several Settlers, as well as a Field Hospital.
    • On Easy, the knights start with 1500 food, 1300 wood, 1300 coin. There are much fewer Janissaries. The Ottomans have fewer villagers and in general are much easier to rush and overwhelm. They only have 1 Barracks and 1 Artillery Foundry.
    • On Moderate, the knights start with 1300 food, 1100 wood, 1100 coin. The Ottomans have fewer Janissaries and fewer villagers, but have 2 Barracks, an Outpost near the mine entrance, and an Artillery Foundry.
    • On Hard, the knights start with 1000 food, 800 wood, 800 coin. The player starts with one less silver mine near them, while the Ottomans have the full number of Janissaries and Settlers. In addition, they have 2 Outposts guarding the mine entrance from different approaches, and their initial attack is more formidable and heavy.


  • Ottomans (Ottomans) - The Ottomans attack the player's position immediately as the mission begins, with multiple Janissaries. They also control eight Weapon Caches that must be destroyed and three Stockades with a total of 15 Swiss Pikemen held captive. They also have an established base outside the caves, and will eventually include cavalry and siege units (such as Abus Guns) to their ranks.


There are 5 treasures on the map, some of which are guarded.

  • Lost Moche Gold worth 80 gold. It is guarded by 2x Wolves. Collecting this is a secondary objective.
  • The Boots of El Pollo Guapo, which increases the speed of whomever picks it up by 25%. It is guarded by an Outlaw Rifleman and an Outlaw Rider.
  • Some Oak Trees worth 75 wood
  • A carob plant worth 75 food
  • Some Oak Trees worth 75 wood

Aggressive Strategy[]

The player begins under attack, though the bombard proves the player's greatest weapon repeatedly during this battle. The town begins moderately sized. Equipped with two Outposts, two Barracks, a Field Hospital and some Houses along with 11 Settlers and a single fishing ship. It's not overly important to start building more right away.

The strategy runs mostly on the initial units the player saves, the Bombard, 15-20+ trained Crossbowmen, and the high siege damage Swiss Pikemen the player saves. It's not important to earn large amounts of experience in the campaign, since the player won't be able to Build a Deck like in skirmishes. Any new cards the player unlocks will not be able to be switched out for inferior cards, the player is stuck with both. Furthermore, if the player reaches the maximum number of cards allowed in a single age line (9) the next card purchased for that age will push one off the list (can never be used again), maybe even one the player wanted to keep. For this reason it's best to know what's most useful so the player can precisely take the cards the player wants for the ages they want (with or without cheats). The trick below (leaving the scenario running) is one way to "buy" a greater number of Home City Cards (when the HC becomes active) with a time investment instead of a cheat code.

Note: Enemy settlers will typically flee into the cave, or to the gold deposit north of the treasure X in the first picture.
Note: The ship treasure wreck has 1000 coin, 500 food and 500 wood available to collect in crates.
Note: The Ottoman Mosque near their Dock has a similar bounty of resources available, with 2,000 coin and 1,500 food. There is also a pile of 600 wood near the cave entrance that can be quickly stolen if the player rushes up there.

Speedy Strategy[]

Technically all the player must do to win this scenario is destroy all of the Weapon Caches, the time taken to win can be reduced to 5–7 minutes. Instead of following the above strategy to stop them from building, instead focus solely on destroying each of the caches and destroying them as quickly as possible.

Instead of immediately counterattacking and destroying their town hall follow the same steps above but then head in that direction and clear a path into the cave with the bombard in tow. Train 10-15 more crossbowmen and send them to the cache north of the starting town. Trying to build an artillery foundry to train some hoop throwers (bonus objective) at the base for defense is optional. Hotkey the bombard so the player can quickly deploy it or get it ready for travel. When the last cache is destroyed the scenario ends.


  • In the cutscene "Answers" before the scenario, Morgan's civilization is actually French (likely a reference to Sahin calling him Frenk).
  • In the "Library of Stone" cutscene that succeeds the scenario, at a certain moment Alain Magnan says: "America sive nobi orbis", which can be translated from Latin to "America or the New World".