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This article is about the unit in Age of Empires II. For the unit in Age of Empires, see Long Swordsman (Age of Empires).

Stronger than Man-at-Arms. Cheap and quick to create.
Age of Empires II description

The Long Swordsman is an infantry unit in Age of Empires II that can be trained at the Barracks once the Castle Age is reached.

Overview and tactics[]

Longsword walkanim aoe2.gif

Like all members of the Militia line, the Long Swordsman's main advantage does not lie in individual strength but their ease of creation and general cheapness in terms of creation cost.

Long Swordsmen are the basic infantry units in the Castle Age. They are moderately strong, being able to defeat all standard Castle Age units but the Knight and Cavalry Archer in one on one combat. Like all basic infantry, Long Swordsmen also have an attack bonus versus standard buildings, which added to a high melee attack, gives them a use in raiding. They are weak against almost all archers, heavy cavalry, Mangonels (if they are unable to close the distance), and vulnerable to Scorpions and Monks, but good against Pikemen, Light Cavalry, Camel Riders, Skirmishers, Eagle Warriors, and Rams.

However, because of their general weakness to ranged units (and buildings) and low mobility (unlike cavalry), Long Swordsmen see little use outside as a counter to trash units, Camel Riders, and Eagle Warriors. And although they are cheap in gold, they cost a substantial amount of food, which is not worth it due to their low durability and slowness. One thing to be considered is that two Long Swordsmen can beat one full health Knight, being very favorable. However, in general situations, the player is much better producing Pikemen as a counter, mass producing Crossbowmen, or using the food economy to boom or get to the Imperial Age.

A special case for the use of Long Swordsmen would be playing against Goths, as an archer civilization with no access to strong Knights. Then, it would be a good move to mass Long Swordsmen, due to having relatively good trades with Huskarls, and because of their subsequent upgrades of Two-Handed Swordsman and Champion, both faring even better against Elite Huskarls.

Further statistics[]

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Skirmishers, Camel Riders, Eagle Warriors, buildings, Light Cavalry, Pikemen
Weak vs. Archers, Scorpions, Cataphracts, Jaguar Warriors, Boyars, Conquistadors, Janissaries, Slingers, Teutonic Knights
Attack Forging aoe2de.png Forging (+1)
IronCastingDE.png Iron Casting (+1)
BlastFurnaceDE.png Blast Furnace (+2)
ArsonDE.png Arson (+2 attack against standard buildings)
Unique-tech-imperial.jpg Garland Wars (+4, Aztecs only)
Unique-tech-imperial.jpg Druzhina (Slavs only, gives trample damage)
CastleAgeUnique.png Chieftains (Vikings only, gives +5 attack against cavalry and +4 against camels)
Armor ScaleMailArmorDE.png Scale Mail Armor (+1/+1)
ChainMailArmorDE.png Chain Mail Armor (+1/+1)
PlateMailArmorDE.png Plate Mail Armor (+1/+2)
UniqueTechImperial-DE.png Bagains (+5 melee armor, Bulgarians only)
Speed SquiresDE.png Squires (+10%)
Sight TrackingDE.png Tracking (+2)
Conversion defense FaithDE.png Faith
HeresyDE.png Heresy
Creation speed ConscriptionDE.png Conscription (+33%)
Unique-tech-imperial.jpg Perfusion (+100%, Goths only)
Train cost Unique-tech-imperial.jpg Forced Levy (Malay only, changes gold cost to extra food cost)
Suplliesicon.png Supplies (-15 food)
Upgrades Tw-handed-swordsman-researc.jpg Two-Handed Swordsman

Civilization bonuses[]

  • Aztecs: Long Swordsmen are created 11% faster.
  • Bulgarians: Militia-line upgrades (except Champion) are free. Blacksmith upgrades that benefit Long Swordsmen cost -50% food.
  • Burmese: Long Swordsmen have +2/+3 attack in the Castle/Imperial Age. Researching Faith is 50% cheaper.
  • Celts: Long Swordsmen move 15% faster. Long Swordsmen can convert herdables even if enemy units are next to them.
  • Chinese: Technologies that benefit Long Swordsmen are 15%/20% cheaper in the Castle/Imperial Age.
  • Goths: Long Swordsmen are 30%/35% cheaper in the Castle/Imperial Age, and have +2/+3 attack against standard buildings in the Castle/Imperial Age.
  • Japanese: Long Swordsmen attack 33% faster.
  • Magyars: Forging, Iron Casting, and Blast Furnace are free.
  • Malians: Long Swordsmen have +2/+3 pierce armor in the Castle/Imperial Age.
  • Portuguese: Long Swordsmen cost -20% gold. Upgrades that benefit Long Swordsmen are researched 30% faster.
  • Sicilians: Long Swordsmen absorb 50% of all incoming bonus damage.
  • Slavs: Supplies is free.
  • Spanish: Blacksmith upgrades that benefit Long Swordsmen cost no gold.
  • Tatars: Long Swordsmen deal +25% bonus damage from a cliff or an elevation.
  • Teutons: Long Swordsmen have +1 armor in the Castle Age and +2 in the Imperial Age.
  • Vietnamese: Conscription is free.
  • Vikings: Long Swordsmen have +20% HP.

Team bonuses[]


The Age of Kings[]

  • Long Swordsmen have 55 HP.
  • Long Swordsmen have +2 attack against standard buildings.
  • Long Swordsmen have 0/0 armor.
  • Goths: Long Swordsmen are 15%/25% cheaper in the Castle/Imperial Age and have an extra +1 attack against standard buildings.
  • Vikings: Long Swordsmen have +15%/+20% HP in the Castle/Imperial Age.

The Conquerors[]

The Forgotten[]

The African Kingdoms[]

  • Arson technology introduced.
  • Vikings: With patch 4.8, the technology Chieftains affects Long Swordsmen. It gives Long Swordsmen +2 attack against camels.

Rise of the Rajas[]

Definitive Edition[]

Dawn of the Dukes[]


  • The Long Swordsman is one of only four upgraded forms of military units (the other three being the Man-at-Arms, the War Galley, and the Capped Ram) to be available to all civilizations.
  • The Militia line is the only unit line in the game with more than three stages.
  • The Malay is the only civilization to have the Militia line (except the Champion) as trash unit (once the Forced Levy is researched).
  • Despite being called 'Long Swordsman', the Long Swordsman does not use a Longsword, as a Longsword in reality is a two-handed sword, not one handed (the type of sword the Two-Handed Swordsman and Champion use in game). The type of sword the 'Long Swordsman' actually appears to be using is an Arming Sword, which was the typical one handed, double edged, medieval sword.


The weapon of choice for noble warriors was the long sword. Being skilled with a sword was a social distinction because good swords were expensive and difficult to make. Men-at-arms of lower classes trained with shorter and less expensive weapons. Long swords were reserved for the nobility. The ceremony of becoming a knight involved being dubbed with a long sword by the new knight's lord.