Age of Empires Series Wiki
Age of Empires Series Wiki
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This article is about the game mode in Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition. For other uses, see The Art of War.
The Art of War (Challenge Missions) allow you to practice your skills in a series of short challenges. In each challenge, you will strive to earn a medal and prove your worth to your friends and enemies.
—In-game description

Carl Von Clausewitz

The Art of War is a campaign in Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition. It is a series of short scenarios that serve as challenges to test the player's skills in both basic gameplay as well as advanced strategies such as resource collecting, collecting treasures after killing their respective guardians, economy booming, rushing, defending against constant attacks, and turtling, while also expanding on game mechanics such as unit counters and battle formations. All of the scenarios are narrated by Carl Von Clausewitz, a Prussian general and military theorist.

The name is taken from The Art of War, an ancient Chinese military treatise written by Sun Tzu during the 5th century BC, which explains the various aspects of warfare and its application to military tactics and strategies. The Art of War is a very influential work for over one and a half millenia since it was written; countless military leaders and thinkers took inspiration from the text, and some of its contents are even applied to civilian fields such as business, lifestyle, and more.


In each scenario, the player will obtain a medal (gold, silver, or bronze) depending on how fast they could complete the scenario (or based on the number of units they lose, in the case of the Land Battle and Naval Battle scenarios). 

The player plays as various civilizations in each scenario, and the player color is always blue.


  1. Early Economy (Lakota)
  2. Treasures (Ottomans)
  3. Home City Shipments ()
  4. Booming ()
  5. Build Orders ()
  6. Early Defense ()
  7. Early Offense ()
  8. Land Battle ()
  9. Naval Battle ()
  10. Artillery ()