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Ivan the Terrible (also known as Ivan IV) (1530 - 1584) is the AI personality of the Russians in Age of Empires III and a leader in Age of Empires IV. He was Grand Prince of Moscow from 1533 to 1584 and the first Tsar of all Russia from 1547 to 1584.

3Icon48px Age of Empires III[]

In Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition, Ivan the Terrible is in his later years. You can expect him to be sinister, taunting and threatening. Ivan loves large armies even at the expense of technological advancement. He is especially fond of infantry units.
—Remark in the Definitive Edition
In Age of Empires III: Ivan is in his later years. You can expect him to be sinister, taunting and threatening. Ivan loves large armies even at the expense of technological advancement. He is especially fond of infantry units.
—Original remark


Ivan is supposed to be in his later years. He often makes sinister comments and will frequently threaten the player.


Ivan is a fairly easy AI to fight; he is considerably tougher than Isabella but not as strong as the other AIs.

The Tsar favors his special infantry units like the Strelet and cavalry units like the Cossack. Ivan builds most of his Blockhouses early in the game for a ready defense against invaders, as well as a way to mass-produce infantry. However he never upgrades the Blockhouses, making them somewhat ineffective in the later ages.

Because of the Russians unique training mechanic of training infantry (who are weaker than those from other civilizations) and settlers in groups rather than individually, Ivan is usually the last AI to advance to the Industrial and Imperial Ages, which can easily get him killed when fighting other opponents who are already at such Ages. This results in Ivan having to devote more settlers for resource gathering which can impede his military progress.

Despite this disadvantage, should Ivan be able to survive into late-game, he can be a strong foe to deal with. Ivan's armies usually consist of upgraded Halberdiers and Falconets, making them strong against infantry and cavalry, but poor against artillery. Streltsy and Musketeers are relatively uncommon at this stage, and cavalry tend to be produced only in minority. Due to the Russian economy setup, Ivan can continually send out wave after wave of units from the Blockhouses, although a relatively strong anti-infantry army can dispose of them with ease.


As an ally[]

  • Beginning of game - "Excellent! A worthy ally. Our foes have no chance."
  • Beginning of game after having him as ally on the same map - "We were here last time. I guess we know the ins and outs of this map by now."
  • Beginning of game where player had carried him previously - "Thank you for being the backbone of our army last time we were allied. This time I vow to be stronger."
  • Beginning of game after winning against him - "You taught me a hard lesson last game. See how well I've learned from your example."
  • Play in the same map he won previously -"I liked this map the last time played. It's a good map."
  • Offers player food - "Here is good hearty Russian food to fortify your nation."
  • Offers player wood - "The endless taiga of Russia is filled with trees. Here is wood from it to boost your might."
  • Offers player coin - "Use this coin to advance our great cause."
  • Declined Player resource request - "You will have to wait. Please ask again later."
  • Requests food -
  • Requests wood - "Without more wood, my progress will stop indefinitely. Do you have some?"
  • Requests coin -
  • Received coin - "I know just how to spend this!"
  • Received wood - "I can use this wood for many things - all of which will harm our foe."
  • Received food - "My men will eat well tonight."
  • Player collects multiple treasures - "You are skilled at gathering treasures. Keep it up."
  • Player is the last to Age to Colonial - "You certainly took a long time to get to Colonial. I trust that means you have a huge army waiting somewhere."
  • Constructing a fort - "I have commanded a base to be made here, to menace the enemy."
  • Agreeing to a strategy- "Yes, Brilliant!"
  • Agrees Attack - "Of course!" or "At once."
  • Declined Attack - "Wait until I build an army!"
  • Under Attack - "The cursed enemy has somehow amassed superior forces! Hurry! Send Help!"
  • Enemy attack repelled - "The enemy is crushed, thanks to us. Well... mostly thanks to you."
  • Finally being able to counterattack - "Now is the time to unleash the dogs of war. Onward, soldiers of holy mother Russia!"
  • Losing - "Our towns burnt, our people scattered, our hopes are shattered but we will never surrender never! Do you hear our enemies, you will have to hunt us down and kill us one by one!" or "I see no hope ahead, no sun on the horizon. This defeat chokes me like gall, but what else can we do but resign?"
  • In battle with the Portuguese (Specific conditions unknown) - "The Portuguese... I had never dreamed that such a small nation could house such dangerous soldiers!"

As an enemy[]

  • Beginning of game - "It will be a pleasure to crush you beneath my boot heel!" or "You are doomed. You have foolishly made me, your enemy."
  • Play in the same map he won previously -"I liked this map the last time played. It's a good map."
  • Increased difficulty - "By raising the difficulty since last time, you have unleashed powerful Russian forces you did not expect."
  • Decreased difficulty -
  • Player claims the first treasure - "Your luck will not hold. Yes, you have acquired the first treasure, but the bulk of the rest will fall to me."
  • Player collects food-related treasure - "Food? I sneer at it. Wood and coin drive my war machine."
  • Player collects wood-related treasure - "Wood - what a useless resource."
  • Player collects multiple treasures - "Pick up treasures (nuggets) while you can. When my forces march into your town, it will be too late." or "Your men rummage through the bush like rodents, looking for tasty tidbits. Soon I bring a bayonet for you to bite on instead." or "Such talent at killing bandits and wild animals. We'll see how you do against my disciplined army."
  • Ivan claims a food-related treasure - "This food is being used immediately to train soldiers, to attack your puny base."
  • Ivan claims a coin-related treasure - "This coin is being used to buy gunpowder and shot, to be fired at you!"
  • Ivan collects a warrior-related treasure - "Free soldiers! The best kind!"
  • Ivna collects more treasures - "Your lack of skill at treasure hunting probably demonstrates that you will be surprised by the size of my army."
  • Ivan discovers your colony (whispering) - "I see your town. I can already hear my armies march down your streets".
  • Player builds Trading Post (trade route) - "You may have built on the first trade route, but you have not built the last."
  • Ivan builds Trade Post (natives) - "My native warriors can easily trounce yours. Especially since you do not have any yet, you fool."
  • Destroys player's Trading Post (trade route) - "Ah, I love the smell of burning trading posts."
  • Destroys player's Trading Post (natives) -
  • Player destroys his Trading Post(s) (trade route) - "I needed that trading post! You will be sorry you attacked it."
  • Player destroys his Trading Post(s) (natives) - "What? My native allies! You will pay for this."
  • Player advances in age - "Your advanced technology will be a bittersweet memory when my cossacks burn your town!" or "Such speedy advancement in Age means you are neglecting military production. You shall learn the hard way how wrong your priorities are." or "While you progress in Age, I sharpen my saber. A blade through the heart kills even the most advanced soldier type." or "Do not take it too hard when my men raze your fine new buildings." or "Your age advancement is too little, too late."
  • Last to Age to Colonial - "It is about time you reached Colonial. Now you can train a few troops before I devastate your countryside."
  • Player is behind Ivan - "I see that you are still in the previous Age behind me. Have you even discovered gunpowder yet?" or
  • Major battle between several players - "I see you have banded together in hopes of forestalling your doom. It will not help you. You see OUR armies have teamed up as well." or "Now THIS is the kind of battle I like! Vast numbers of soldiers, with a variety of commanders, all pushed together into the scrim! Have at you!"
  • Small force enters enemy territory - "I see your army. Sadly, it's not large enough to merit concern." or "Your men seem to lack direction. Where are they going?" or "This may not be the end, but it is at least the beginning of the end." or "Is THAT your army? It's so small... it must be a decoy." or "That force seems too big for a band of scouts. You must think it is an army."
  • Large force enters enemy territory - "What? No! How can you be here, no!" or "Your army, so large. I'll bet you've left your colony undefended back home!" or "What are you doing? How can you be HERE? No!"
  • Loses battle - "Curse you! I thought I had you that time!" or "How did you pull that off? Your army was all but defeated!"
  • Town center destroyed - "My town! No!"
  • Destroys the player's Town Center - "How can you fight on when I am able to destroy your town centers as I please?"
  • Colony is ravaged - "You cannot take credit for this victory. I'm sure I was betrayed by my own jealous underlings."
  • Defeat - "My armies ... crushed. My town ... a burning ruin. It is hopeless. I must offer my surrender."


  • One of Ivan's quotes may be glitched; when he destroys a player's native alliance, he will say "What? My native allies! You will pay for this!".
  • Ivan is the fourth oldest AI personality in Age of Empires III. He is contemporary of Suleiman the Magnificent and Queen Elizabeth.

GameIcon-AoE4 Age of Empires IV[]

Tsar of all Russia. Effective against most units.
Age of Empires IV description

Ivan IV is a heavy melee cavalry leader in the The Rise of Moscow campaign of Age of Empires IV. He appears in the The Siege of Kazan scenario of the Empire to Superpower chapter. Although represented as a mounted unit similar to a Knight, he is described as an infantry leader.


  • AoE4 leader bonus gunpowder Gunpowder reload speed (Active): Rallies nearby allied gunpowder units to increase their reload speed for 15 seconds.


Ivan IV was born in 1530 and was the first leader of Russia to take the title Tsar. Despite Ivan's sometimes bloodthirsty acts the "Terrible" in his name is not reflective of meanness or evil, but conveyed that he was "formidable."

Indeed he was! He was outrageously wealthy and created laws that virtually enslaved the peasant class in Russia. He was known for acts of cruelty, including the slaughter of up to 40,000 non-military inhabitants of Novgorod and the accidental killing of his own son during an argument.

Because of the outrageousness of these acts some of Ivan's accomplishments are overlooked. During his early reign he was known as a reforming leader who created a standing army and revised the law code. It was only after the death of his wife that Ivan became progressively less balanced and more ruthless.
Age of Empires III history section


AI personalities in Age of Empires III
3Icon48px Age of Empires IIIQueen Elizabeth DE Queen Elizabeth · Maurice of Naussau DE Maurice of Nassau · Napoleon Bonaparte DE Napoleon Bonaparte · Fredrick the Great DE Frederick the Great · Suleiman DE Suleiman the Magnificent · Henry the Navigator DE Prince Henry the Navigator · Ivan the Terrible avatar DE Ivan the Terrible · Queen Isabella DE Queen Isabella
3WCIcon48px The WarChiefsCuauhtemoc DE Cuauhtemoc · Hiawatha DE Hiawatha · Chief Gall DE Chief Gall
3ADIcon48px The Asian DynastiesKangxi DE Kangxi Emperor · Akbar DE Akbar the Great · Tokugawa leyasu DE Tokugawa Ieyasu
Age3DE Icon Definitive EditionGustavus-adolphus-aoe3 Gustavus Adolphus · Huayna-capac-aoe3 Huayna Capac · George Washington avatar DE George Washington · Miguel Hidalgo avatar aoe3de Miguel Hidalgo
Age3DE Icon The African RoyalsQueen Amina avatar DE Queen Amina · Emperor Tewodros avatar DE Emperor Tewodros
Age3DE Icon Knights of the MediterraneanGiuseppe Garibaldi avatar DE Giuseppe Garibaldi · Jean Parisot avatar DE Jean Parisot
Campaign-only content in Age of Empires IV
The NormansDuke William · King Harold · King Henry I · Robert Curthose · King Louis VI · King Stephen · Willikin of the Weald · William Marshal
The Rise of MoscowPrince Dmitry · Ivan III · Ivan IV
The Hundred Years WarJean de Beaumanoir · Olivier Arrel · Guy de Rochefort · Geoffroy du Bois · Yves Charruel · Jeanne d'Arc
The Mongol EmpireGeneral Subutai · Genghis Khan · Mongke Khan · Baidar · Batu Khan · Liu Zheng · Ismail
The Sultans AscendTughtekin · Shirkuh · Saladin · Reynald of Châtillon (flagship) · Reynald of Châtillon · Shajar al-Durr · Baybars · Templar Grand Master · Hospitaller Grand Master · Teutonic Grand Master · Qutuz · Kitbuqa
Scout Ship · Danish Raider · Gilded Landsknecht · Huihui Pao · Dismounted Knight · German Mercenary · Knight Templar · Knight Hospitaller · Pirate · Pirate Archer · Spy · Turkic Horse Archer · The Beast · Teutonic Knight
Buildings and other
Arsenal · York Castle · Military Tent · Bureau Brothers' Workshop · Siege Camp · Acre Tower · Leader Tent · Treasure Chest · Stone Ruins
Heavy Sledge · Planned Extraction · Applied Masonry · Steel Barding · Elite Spear Tactics · Grapered Lances · Silk Bowstrings · Crannequins · Superior Transport Construction · Doused Armor · Corned Gunpowder · Chain Shot · Efficiency Training · Longbow Mastery · Musketeer Regiment · Scouting Falcon · Husbandry · Improved Blacksmith and Arsenal Technologies · Food Reserves · Setup Camp
AsianCivIcon-FatimidAoE4 Fatimid Caliphate · CivIcon-IlkhanateAoE4 Ilkhanate · CivIcon-MamlukSultanateAoE4 Mamluk Sultanate · Ayyubids AoE4 Saladin · CivIcon-SeljukEmpireAoE4 Seljuk Empire
EuropeanCivIcon-ASEAoE4 Anglo-Saxon England · CivIcon-AntiochAoE4 Antioch · CivIcon-CyprusAoE4 Cyprus · CivIcon-DanesAoE4 Danes · CivIcon-LithuaniaAoE4 Grand Duchy of Lithuania · CivIcon-JerusalemAoE4 Jerusalem · CivIcon-BohemiaAoE4 Kingdom of Bohemia · CivIcon-HungaryAoE4 Kingdom of Hungary · CivIcon-PolandAoE4 Kingdom of Poland · CivIcon-KnightsHospitallerAoE4 Knights Hospitaller · CivIcon-KnightsTemplarAoE4 Knights Templar · CivIcon-NormansAoE4 Normans · CivIcon-NovgorodAoE4 Novgorod Republic · CivIcon-TeutonicOrderAoE4 Teutonic Order
Classification of campaign-only civilizations is based on their base civilizations, not geographical locations.