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Jinshin War is the seventh scenario of the Yamato, Empire of the Rising Sun campaign in Age of Empires: Definitive Edition, replacing A Friend in Need.

Scenario instructions[]


Ōtsu, 672 CE

Prince Ōama, your elder brother, Emperor Tenji, has passed from this world. Though he was a great man, his final act was a grave mistake: he named a son of a lowborn wife as Emperor. This will ruin the authority and legitimacy of the Emperor as a descendant of gods on both family lines. What will the Chinese Emperor think of Japan now that it is ruled by a man of low birth? You have no choice, Prince Ōama. You must depose your nephew and take the Chrysanthemum Throne of Japan.
—In-game section

Starting conditions[]


  • Destroy Emperor Kōbun's Government Center.
  • Protect Asuka Government Center.


  1. The Emperor gathers resources away from his main base, making the economy vulnerable to raids.
  2. Your allies at Asuka are under attack. Protect their villagers and buildings so that, in time, they will raise troops for their own defense.



  • Player (Yamato AoE Yamato): The player starts a walled settlement with some Cavalry units and Villagers in the Iron Age, at the west of map.


  • Emperor Kobun (Choson AoE Choson): The Emperor starts with a walled settlement in the north, along with a Town Center and some economical buildings outside. It starts raiding Asuka with some Stone Throwers and Horse Archers.


  • Asuka (Choson AoE Choson): The city of Asuka is a walled settlement, with towers and some Broad Swordsmen guarding it, along a Town Center, Villagers and the Government Center that the player have to protect.


Assign at least one Cavalry to guard the gold mine next to the town, and send the rest to assist the Asuka in the defense of theirs. Generate plenty of Villagers to build up the Yamato economy, especially for gold and food. Train about a dozen Cavalry and a couple of Stone Throwers. Send them east from your town towards Emperor Kobun's Town Center, and take it out. Assign some Villagers to gather the remaining gold here, and when it depletes, assign them to gather the gold at the map's center next. Building another Siege Workshop, Stable, and Temple near Emperor Kobun will provide convenient reinforcements, and a handful of Priests (one for conversion, others to heal him) should prove useful for countering his annoying mounted archers. Generate some Stone Throwers and take out a Guard Tower or two nearby. After that, destroy a section of the wall, and send the Stone Throwers and perhaps some Cavalry to the enemy Government Center.

Another quick strategy for this scenario (which works in the Definitive Edition) is just bringing the cavalry and Villagers and attacking the Government Center. The player might win in about 3 minutes.


After strengthening Imperial power, the Emperor Tenji resolved to designate an heir as he approached old age. His eldest son, Prince Ōtomo, was talented enough to succeed him, but the Emperor had sired him with a lowborn wife. This parentage and the lowly status of his maternal family would make Prince Ōtomo an unlikely heir to his father, as his political support was limited. Nevertheless, the Emperor decided that his son would succeed him and named him heir.

The Emperor did have a younger brother, Prince Ōama, who had the backing of some members of the Imperial court. The youngest son of Emperor Jomei and Empress Kōgyoku, Ōama's ancestry fulfilled expectations for an Emperor. In fact, until he decided on his son succeeding him, the Emperor Tenji had designated Ōama as crown prince.

In 670 CE, the Emperor fell ill and, fearing that Ōama would attempt to seize power, had his brother brought to him. The Emperor asked Ōama if he wished to succeed the throne. The prince stated he did not wish to become Emperor but would retire to a temple and become a monk. The Emperor was satisfied with this answer and Ōama retired to a temple.

In 672 CE, Emperor Tenji died and his son Ōtomo ascended the throne as Emperor Kōbun, Prince Ōama, despite his claim to his brother, had no intentions of giving up the chance to become Emperor and secretly raised an army. He then marched on the Emperor at his palace in Ōtsu. In the conflict, known as the Jinshin War, Ōama defeated his nephew, who committed seppuku (ritual suicide), and ascended the throne as Emperor Tenmu.
—In-game section


You have saved Imperial legitimacy by ascending the throne as Emperor Tenmu. You will continue the reforms of your uncle and brother, strengthening both Japan and the Imperial powers. To achieve these goals, you have found a ready ally in the very clan that assisted your brother in defeating the Soga years ago: the Nakatomi, now bearing the honorific clan name Fujiwara. Surely, they will be loyal friends of the Emperor for generations.
—In-game section


Your nephew is most forgiving of your treachery. He has even given you a position in his court. Report to him to begin your duties as Court Eunuch.
—In-game section


  • In comparison, of the original scenario, the map have been enlarged, and has more resources. Apart from cosmetic changes, the players' positions have been swapped from the human player to the yellow one.
  • The historical background was changed from a revolt of Kyushu against the player and their Hyuga allies of the standard edition, and from the Scilla invasion against the Paekche from the version that featured the Yamato invasion of Korea, to the Jinshin Wars.


  • Asuka is the name of a region, a city (where during some time the palace and capital of the Yamato was located), and a period, between the Kofun and Nara era.
  • The AI players still being the Choson is a possible leftover of the original scenario depicting the Korean peninsula Yamato invasion. It is the only map in the Definitive Edition where there are Choson players.
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If no shorthands are written, names in brackets represent campaigns and scenarios renamed and/or reworked in the Definitive Edition.