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The Lion and the Demon is the sixth and final scenario of the Saladin campaign in Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings. It is based on the Siege of Acre (August 28, 1189 – July 12, 1191) during the Third Crusade.


The City of Acre. Nearly twenty-one years have I ridden with Saladin...

When word of the Saracen victory at Jerusalem reached Europe, another Crusade was launched. The kings of the three most powerful nations in Europe - England, France, and the Holy Roman Empire - embarked for the Holy Land with hundreds of thousands of troops.

Saladin knows that his most dangerous opponent is Richard the Lionhearted of England, a brilliant tactician who learned the art of war fighting against his own father.

He builds colossal fortresses and fights always from the front lines - the ideal of a romantic warrior.

Richard's army has come ashore near Acre. Much of Saladin's army is trapped in the city, while two monstrous English trebuchets pound at Acre's walls. If Richard can defeat our army here, then he can walk into Jerusalem unopposed.

Saladin knows that this is the climax of his jihad. All the Crusader states have fallen. If the Saracens can hold onto Acre, then the Europeans will be forced to return home.

If Acre falls, then the centuries-long nightmare of eternal war, raid, and counterraid, begin again. All Saladin's victories will be for nothing.

Scenario instructions[]

Starting conditions[]


  • Construct a Wonder and defend it.


  1. Saladin is restricted to a population limit of 100.
  2. When you are ready to build the Wonder, you can delete some of your Houses to make room for it.
  3. Attacking one of your enemies early can benefit you later on, but be careful venturing outside Acre's walls.
  4. Managing a large city can be confusing. It might prove helpful to rebuild military buildings where you can easily find them.

  • Managing a large city can be confusing. It might prove helpful to rebuild military buildings where you can easily find them.
  • When you are ready to build the Wonder, you can delete some of your houses to make room for it.
  • Attacking one of your enemies early can benefit you later on, but be careful venturing outside Acre's walls.

  • Scouts (Definitive Edition)[]

    • Saladin (1, Green) controls Acre a well fortified city on the coast, which is currently surrounded by the crusader armies.
    • The Genoese (6, Cyan), Franks (2, Blue), and the Knights Templar (5, Yellow) camp to the north. The Genoese will construct warships, while the Franks will train Knights, Hand Cannoneers and Bombard Cannons. The Knights Templar will send in Teutonic Knights and rams.
    • To the east, Richard the Lionheart (4, Red) and Jerusalem (3, Grey) have taken their positions. The English will for the most part rely on their feared Longbowmen, while Jerusalem will send Light Cavalry and swordsmen into battle.



    • Player (Saracens AoE2 Saracens): The player starts with a fortified city in the center of the map.




    Broom icon This section may need to be cleaned up to reach a higher standard of quality. This may include editing to correct spelling and grammar, and rewriting sections to ensure they are clear and concise.

    To win, the player must build and defend a Wonder. Alternatively, the player can win by defeating all enemies on the map.

    1. Assign Villagers, Fishing Ships to work.
    2. Garrison Archers of the Eyes into The Accursed Tower, The Tower of Flies, Castles and/or Keeps. (recommended The Accursed Tower, Keeps, Castles, then The Accursed Tower).
    3. Leave Siege Onagers in the city, behind Walls, Gates. Try to keep them alive.
    4. Move Mamelukes, Heavy Cavalry Archers outside Acre, kill any siege units, hit, run. Move to base if needed. Enemies can't attack without siege units.
    5. Try not to spend resources on anything but Elite Mamelukes, Plate Barding Armor, Blast Furnace, Bracer, Conscription.
    6. Create 40 or 60 Elite Mamelukes.
    7. Research Galleons, Chemistry.
    8. Create 10 Galleons or construct Keep(s) and/or Castle(s) at west Walls, near The Tower of Flies to kill Genoese warships.
    9. Divide 40 or 60 Mamelukes into 2 groups of 20 or 30 Elite Mamelukes. 1 group defends north. Other defends west. Elite Mamelukes can survive outside Acre city, kill anything. Still, pay attention, micromanage them.
    10. Kill Franks, Knights Templar's siege units whenever possible. Their Siege Workshops are exposed from Castles.
    11. When Persian Outpost sends 5 Elite War Elephants, all Enemies will attack with full force. It can be too hard to kill everything before enemies chase your army into base. If you attacked Franks, Knights Templar's siege units, you can focus on Richard's and Jerusalem's siege units. Use Siege Onagers to kill Knights Templar's Capped Rams.
    12. Construct 1 Gate in the eastern walls near water for Lumberjacks to get to new Trees if you run out of Trees in your base. Your Mameluke army should be big and strong enough to protect Lumberjacks, or you can wall off the area.
    13. The player can construct a Trade Cog and trade with the Persian Outpost if they cannot safely mine the outside Gold Mines. However, the player should defeat or largely destroy the Genoese navy first before trading.
    14. Defeat all enemies, or construct a Wonder at a good place and defend it. Do not let the enemies destroy the Wonder. The enemies' attacks will be weak.

    Alternate strategy - Kill them before they stand[]

    1. Assign Fishing Ships to fish.
    2. Assign Villagers to cut wood.
    3. Use one Villager to wall off the gap between the shore and the cliff at its western-most end.
    4. Start to build 4 Trebuchets.
    5. Move the entire army outside and march northeast. Ignore the Frankish Barracks and go to the Knight Templar.
    6. Station the army in defensive mode just away from the Frankish Barracks and a Templar Stable in the region.
    7. Bring the Trebuchets to the army as they are created.
    8. Create around 10-12 Fishing Ships to gather fish.
    9. Create and assign four Villagers to gather gold.
    10. Create 4 Mamelukes and set gather point at the army.
    11. Build a Monastery and create 2 Monks. send them to the army.
    12. The Frankish Bombard Cannons will now move towards the base. Kill them with army.
    13. Use the Trebuchets to level the Templar, Franks, and Genoese in that order. Use the army to protect the Trebuchets.
    14. Finish their Villagers with the Cavalry Archers. They will resign.
    15. Keep building Mamelukes and station six at camp and send the rest to the army.
    16. Once the Geneose are finished, build a Town Center near the Gold Mine in their camp. Mine gold from that location.
    17. Richard and Jerusalem will keep attacking in small groups, which is manageable. Complete the technologies, build an army, and finish them one by one. Richard uses siege weapons and archers, so the Hussar is a good option against them to protect the Trebuchets.
    18. Jerusalem sends camel units. Mamelukes will take care of them.
    19. Defeat all the enemies.

    Easy victory[]

    Note: This strategy no longer works in the Definitive Edition, as the outlying islands are too small for a Wonder.

    Another path to victory is to use the small island, stocked full of gold, in the sea just west of Acre, which is just big enough to build the Wonder. First create a Transport Ship and use your 4 Galleons to find the island and set them to "no attack stance", only attack if the Genoese attacks you. Then create 6 new villagers.

    Once you have 15 villagers sail with them to the island. There, forget about the attacks in the city and create a Mining Camp to deplete the 2 gold reserves in the south. Now you should have enough space to build the Wonder and win.

    Variation of easy victory strategy[]

    Although the outlying islands are no longer large enough to contain a Wonder, it is large enough to contain a Castle. Hence, the player can safely build a Dock on it, for the purpose of trading with the Persians. For some reason, enemy ships will heavily focus on the Castle and/or towers, and largely ignore the Trade Cogs.

    The main difficulty is resource management, especially for wood. The wood can be obtained by secretly unloading a large number of Villagers on one of the coastal areas, quickly building a Market, and buying the wood needed. Warning: the player needs to quickly re-load the Villagers onto the Transport Ships, for the enemy AIs will quickly converge onto the area and kill all units and buildings built there.

    Once enough resources are accumulated, the player should research Spies and/or build as many Houses as possible on the island. Then, the player should spam ships, especially (Elite) Cannon Galleons, and wreak as much havoc onto the enemy bases as possible. Once a beachhead is secured, the player should quickly build military buildings such as Stables and Archery Ranges, spam units as quickly as possible, first for defense, and then for sweeping down south.

    This will also grant the player the achievement "Offense is the Best Defense".


    The first year of my freedom...

    The fighting is over. The fire has gone out of Richard's lust for conquest. The two respected adversaries started speaking, finally, of peace.

    War is not gentle with men's health. Richard fell ill with a fever. Because he respected his enemy, Saladin sent Richard fruit and mountain snow to comfort him. Soon enough, Richard boarded a ship headed back to England. The Third Crusade is over.

    The final treaty was signed on September 2, 1192. By its terms, Jerusalem remains in Saracen hands, but Christian pilgrims are to be allowed to visit all the holy places, freely and safely. It seems a fitting compromise to a war that has been fought over religion and land.

    The war is over, but I do not think I shall ever see Normandy again. I want to see the steel foundries in Damascus and the gardens of the Caliph in Baghdad. I have never seen the mighty Krak des Chevalliers, now-fallen fortress of the Knights Templar (Hospitaller in the Definitive Edition). The Holy Land has many wondrous sights, and I can spend a lifetime here.

    It is peace in the Holy Land... for the moment. Sadly, in a land so small, home to so many different cultures, birthplace of three of the world's great religions, I suspect that blood may one day stain the sand again.


    • In the Definitive Edition, the "Offense is the Best Defense" achievement can be earned by defeating all enemies instead of building the Wonder.
    • In the original or HD Edition, the player can build the Wonder on an island west on the map, making the player's gameplay much easier than building it in Acre. This is no longer the case in the Definitive Edition, as the previous spot is covered by rocks. The island doesn't actually exist in reality, in any case.
    • In the co-op campaign mode, the second player will have a base to the south where the Persian Outpost is located, and will be played as Persians.
    • The usage of gunpowder units amongst both the Franks and their Genoese allies is anachronistic, as gunpowder had not reached the Holy Land at the time. It would not be until the battle of Ain Jalut, set decades later and in the 13th century, that gunpowder would first be used in the Levant. It is likely that the Franks and Genoese were given access to gunpowder for the sake of making it more challenging to defend the Wonder.

    Historical comparison[]

    • Like The Battle of Falkirk, The Emperor Sleeping, and Broken Spears, this is a final scenario representing a decisive defeat of the playable faction, and the player is asked to change history by winning it. In real life, Acre fell to the Crusaders, the garrison was slaughtered, and the city became the new capital of the Kingdom of Jerusalem until it fell to the Mamelukes in 1291.
      • After the battle, Richard the Lionheart took the coastal cities as far south as Jaffa and defeated Saladin there and at Arsuf, but could not advance on Jerusalem. Then they signed the peace treaty described in the outro.
      • The narrator shares his desire to visit the "fallen Templar fortress" of Krak des Chevaliers. The Krak was actually controlled by the Hospitallers and it remained in their hands until 1271. In the Definitive Edition, the fortress is correctly attributed to the Hospitallers, but is still erroneously described as fallen.
    • The battle operated as a "siege within a siege", with the Crusaders besieging Acre by land and sea, and Saladin's main army attacking the Crusaders from behind in order to relieve the trapped garrison. This format was not used because the developers found it too reminiscent of the Alesia scenario in the Ave Caesar campaign of Age of Empires: The Rise of Rome, even though the player would have the opposite role in this scenario.
    • The siege was started by the disgraced king consort of Jerusalem, Guy of Lusignan, after he was denied entry in Tyre (the only Crusader city to successfully resist Saladin) by Conrad of Montferrat. Lusignan was slowly joined by ships and Crusaders from France, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, and Cilician Armenia, as well as Knights Templar, Hospitaller, and the reluctant Montferrat.
      • Of these, the only factions represented are Jerusalem (for Lusignan, not the city which was controlled by Saladin), and the Knights Templar, who were badly beaten in a Saracen assault and lost their Grand Master.
    • The three royal armies mentioned in the intro arrived at a later phase. The first was the remains of Frederick Barbarossa's German and Hungarian army, led by his son the Duke Frederick VI of Swabia, and after he died, by Duke Leopold V of Austria. They are not represented in the scenario (even though Austria's banner was raised over the conquered city), but Teutons are still featured as the Knights Templar.
    • Finally, the Crusaders were joined by the armies of Richard the Lionheart and Philip II of France, and a Genoese fleet (represented respectively by "Richard", "Franks", and "Genoese"). Of these, the most powerful was actually Philip II, who was also the owner of Bad Neighbor and God's Own Sling (or God's Stone Thrower), not Richard (although Richard built two other Trebuchets for his own use). Richard only became de facto leader of the Crusaders in the aftermath of the siege, due to:
      • The death of Queen Sybilla of Jerusalem (Lusignan's wife) and her succession by her sister Isabella, who married Montferrat. Montferrat retired to Tyre instead of accompanying Richard south.
      • The German army leaving after Richard and Philip refused to treat Leopold as their equal and tore down his flag from the ramparts of Acre.
      • Philip II leaving to sort out the inheritance of his vassal Philip I of Flanders, who had died in the siege.
    • Genoa is an Italian city. Because the Italians were not included until The Forgotten, they are represented by the Byzantines. In the Definitive Edition, the Genoese are properly represented by the Italians.


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