Age of Empires Series Wiki

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Trash pile is a combat strategy in the Age of Empires series whereby a player strives to overwhelm an opponent by creating large numbers of trash units, i.e. units that do not cost any gold to create. The strategy is useful in responding to players who are attacking from a more advanced Age, particularly some of the harder AI players who may obtain extra resources first.

Trash units[]

Main article: Trash unit

A trash unit is a unit which does not require any gold to create. In Age of Empires, this refers to the Bowman, Axeman, Chariot, and Chariot Archer. In Age of Empires II, it generally refers to Pikemen, Light Cavalry, and Skirmishers. Whilst all these units have their advantages, in smaller numbers, they are vulnerable to higher quality units or to units they are not supposed to counter.

How to use[]

Age of Empires[]

In Age of Empires, the trash pile strategy works more efficiently. Enemy defenses are less developed than in later games, as towers are weaker and there is no equivalent to the Castle. The best recommended units for this strategy are the Bowman and Chariot. A player should first aim to maximize their population level quickly with lots of Houses, and then build several Archery Ranges and Stables together to facilitate mass production. An abundance of food and wood for example will allow the creation of up to 100 Bowmen very quickly. As they are most vulnerable to siege weapons, Chariots should be used as supporting cavalry.

With these numbers, the player will find that despite the poor attributes of the Bowman, spamming them in huge numbers will quickly eradicate incoming enemy units, especially infantry, and give cover accordingly to a smaller number of high quality units in coordinating defense. In offensive movements, sending hundreds of Bowmen and Chariots together into an opponent's town will obviously occur a high number of casualties, but nevertheless succeed quickly in wiping out the enemy Villagers and military very quickly. Be aware though that they will not succeed in taking out buildings and will be virtually useless against towers, so accompanying with siege weapons may help.

Age of Empires II[]

An offensive trash pile strategy in Age of Empires II is more challenging, since enemy Castles and garrisoning make a town better defended than the previous game. Spamming a well defended town with hundreds of Skirmishers and Spearman units will not end well. Therefore, for this strategy to work, the use of siege weapons, as well as drawing the enemy units out of the base, is essential. Defensively, a mass spamming of trash units with the overseeing of Castles and garrisoned towers remains an effective strategy.