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The Sumerians have early game advantages, with their increased Farm production making it more viable in the early game, and the increased villager HP makes it easier to hunt more dangerous animals, and defend against early game rushes or even perform their own rush without the need to train Clubmen. Late game, they come into their own with powerful units such as the Heavy Horse Archer, Heavy Catapult, Scythe Chariot, and Centurion. If the computer controls this civilization in the Iron Age with sufficient amount of surplus resources as in deathmatches, the entire army will consist of Heavy Horse Archers and Heavy Catapults.


Although the Sumerians are not as quick as their Assyrian, Yamato or Shang counterparts during the Stone Age, their economy becomes more advanced once Tool Age is reached with the construction of their first farm. With all the farm upgrades, a Sumerian Farm can supply up to 725 food (technologies improving farm output from the Market are not doubled by the civilization bonus) before needing to be rebuilt again. This allows more wood to be saved for other uses and reduces the need to micromanage farmers to rebuild their farms after expiring.



The Sumerians can also do a good fortress strategy, using their economy to make a high quality fort, complete with Ballista Towers and Fortified Walls. This, doubled with their catapult bonuses, can make them good for taking out forts as well as making them. For infantry, they have the Long Swordsman and Centurion, but are missing Metallurgy, Iron Shield, and Tower Shield. The Sumerians also get all Catapult upgrades. They do have the ability to train War Elephants, although these cannot be upgraded and have no bonuses, so there isn't much reason to use them considering their high cost and how easily they can be converted by enemy Priests.

AI behavior[]

When played by the computer, the Sumerians will produce Scouts in the Tool Age. Their Bronze Age army is typically quite limited, being made up of only a handful of Stone Throwers and sometimes a few Priests and Chariots/Chariot Archers. The AI will transition to mostly Horse Archers and Catapults during the Iron Age. Occasionally they will train swordsmen instead.

In random maps, the Sumerians are one of the weakest civilizations when controlled by the computer. This is due mainly to their inadequate military, making them similar to the Persian AI.

Strengths and weaknesses[]


  • Excellent choice on deathmatches.
  • Best if played from Bronze Age onward.
  • Excellent on land maps (all sizes).
  • Good for all types of strategies.


  • Not recommended on water maps.
  • Priests cannot be fully upgraded.
  • Cannot train elite cavalry (melee combat).
  • Not as quick to develop as some other civilizations on random maps.
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Strategies in Age of Empires
EmpiresIcon.png Age of EmpiresAssyrians · Babylonians · Choson · Egyptians · Greeks · Hittites · Minoans · Persians · Phoenicians · Shang · Sumerians · Yamato
RomeIcon.png The Rise of RomeCarthaginians · Macedonians · Palmyrans · Romans
Blitzkrieg · Boom · Castle drop · Containment · Indirect approach · Rush · Springboard · Trash pile · Turtle