Minor civilizations (also referred to as minor tribes, Natives, or Native allies) feature throughout campaign scenarios and random maps in Age of Empires III. All playable major civilizations can ally with a minor civilization by constructing Trading Posts at settlement sites. Each minor civilization typically offers three technologies to research and access to at least one unique military unit; trained in limited amounts with two unit upgrades.
Players retain access to the minor civilization's technologies and units for as long as the Trading Post is not destroyed. With both The WarChiefs and The Asian Dynasties expansions, a total of 22 minor civilizations exist.
Native units always cost a certain amount of wood, food, and/or coin, but never population. Instead, native units have a build limit which players can increase by allying with further settlements of the same minor civilization.
From The WarChiefs, players can build Native Embassies to train allied minor civilization units at locations beyond the Trading Post site.
All native units' hit points and damage can be upgraded first in Fortress Age by +25% for 200 wood and 150 coin and a second time by +40% in Industrial Age for 400 wood and 300 coin. The native unit upgrades from Age of Empires III and The WarChiefs are called Elite and Champion while in The Asian Dynasties they are called Disciplined and Honored. In the Imperial Age, players can improve hit points and damage again by researching Legendary Native Warriors in the Capitol for 1,500 food and 1,500 coin.
A wide array of Home City cards can boost native units.
Native mercenaries Edit
Most civilizations can send native allies from their Home City, which are technically mercenary shipments as they cost Coin. Furthermore, native units sent from Home City have their own build limit, an additional mercenary tag and they are treated by the game as different units. Because of that the visually identical native mercenaries and native units will not simultaneously select when double-clicking one of them. Military unit upgrades in the native settlement still affect both, native mercenaries and native units.
While Age of Empires III and The Warchiefs feature Native American settlements, the paradigma changes in The Asian Dynasties to religious communities or Holy Sites (as developer Big Huge Games labels them in the game manual).
Age of Empires III Edit
The Warchiefs Edit
The Asian Dynasties Edit
The Asian minor civilizations in Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties are, unlike the minor civilizations of Age of Empires III and The WarChiefs, based on religious movements instead of native tribes. With the exception of the Jesuits and Sufi, all native settlements are styled as temples. The minor civilizations are:
|Civilizations in Age of Empires III|
|European||British · Dutch · French · Germans · Ottomans · Portuguese · Russians · Spanish|
|Native American*||Aztecs · Iroquois · Sioux|
|Asian**||Chinese · Indians · Japanese|
|Native Americans||Apache* · Carib · Cherokee · Cheyenne* · Comanche · Cree · Huron* · Incas · Klamath* · Mapuche* · Maya · Navajo* · Nootka · Seminole · Tupi · Zapotec* (Former: Aztecs · Iroquois · Lakota)|
|Religious communities**||Bhakti Temple · Jesuit Mission · Shaolin Temple · Sufi Mosque · Udasi Temple · Zen Temple|
|Knights of St. John · John Black's Mercenaries · Circle of Ossus · Black Family Estate · United States|
|* = The Warchiefs ** = The Asian Dynasties|