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This article is about the naval vessel in Age of Empires II. For the ship in Age of Empires, see Trade Boat. For the land trade unit, see Trade Cart.

Used to trade with other players by sea.
Age of Empires II description

The Trade Cog is a small civilian naval vessel in Age of Empires II that can be trained at the Dock once the Feudal Age is reached.


Trade Cogs are used to trade and generate gold by traveling between two Docks. Trade Cogs do not actually engage in the exchanging of resources between two civilizations. Empty Trade Cogs travel to another player's Dock empty-handed and return with gold. They receive their gold from the Docks of other players and deposit them at the Docks of their owners. The amount of gold gained depends on the distance from one Dock to another. The farther away the Dock is, the more gold the Trade Cogs generate.

Trade Cogs may engage in trade with allied, neutral, and enemy civilizations. However, trading with enemy civilizations is ill-advised unless the enemy has resigned, since the Trade Cogs are likely to be slaughtered upon reaching the enemy Dock.

In order to generate at least one gold, the two Docks used for trade need to be at least 5 tiles away. The maximum amount gained per trip is 513, if both Docks are placed in the very edges of a LudiKRIS map.

Trade is an extremely important element in late games due to the limited amount of gold available from mines on most maps. Therefore, trade routes are a primary target for attacks and should be guarded accordingly.

Trade is also possible on the land between Markets with Trade Carts.

Comparison to the Trade Cart[]

The Trade Cog is faster (1.32 to 1) and benefits from Careening, Shipwright, and Dry Dock. However, Docks at the same distance do generate about 25% less gold than Markets, so that the gold gathering rate for a single Trade Cart is comparable to that of a single Trade Cog. However, as Trade Cogs are more prone to bump into each other and usually move along the shoreline, they quickly become less efficient than Trade Carts when more of them share a trade route. Because of this, Trade Carts are almost always preferable.

In The African Kingdoms, the amount of gold earned per trip has been increased to offset this, making Trade Cogs more viable. It depends on the map and available water and land trade lines whether they should be preferred to Trade Carts. They are more efficient if single units are considered, but are also more affected by a congested trade route. The fact that they will always return to a particular Dock (closest to 100 tiles distance) means that additional Docks placed for warship production can disrupt a trade route, while there is no such reason to place extra Markets. Also, the Trade Cart is usually safer, as its routes can be accordingly protected by defensive structures or even the player's bases, while the water is more open, making the routes vulnerable to enemy warships.

Further statistics[]

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Nothing
Weak vs. Everything
Gold generation CastleAgeUnique.png Grand Trunk Road (+10%, Hindustanis only)
Armor CareeningDE.png Careening (+0/+1)
CastleAgeUnique.png Carrack (+1/+1, Portuguese only)
Speed DryDockDE.png Dry Dock (+15%)
CaravanDE.png Caravan (+50%)
Conversion defense FaithDE.png Faith
HeresyDE.png Heresy
Creation speed ShipwrightDE.png Shipwright (+54%)
Train cost ShipwrightDE.png Shipwright (-20% wood)
Unique-tech-imperial.jpg Silk Road (-50%, Italians only)

Civilization bonuses[]

  • Bengalis: Trade Cogs regenerate 15 HP per minute.
  • Berbers: Trade Cogs move 10% faster.
  • Burgundians: Caravan can be researched in the Feudal Age and costs -50% food.
  • Burmese: Researching Faith is 50% cheaper.
  • Celts: Trade Cogs can convert herdables even if enemy units are next to them.
  • Chinese: Technologies that benefit Trade Cogs are 15%/20% cheaper in the Castle/Imperial Age.
  • Italians: Researching Careening, Dry Dock, and Shipwright is 33% cheaper.
  • Persians: Trade Cogs are created 10%/15%/20% faster in the Feudal/Castle/Imperial Age. Careening is researched 15%/20% faster in the Castle/Imperial Age. Researching Dry Dock is 20% faster.
  • Portuguese: Trade Cogs cost -20% gold. Trade Cogs have +10% HP.

Team bonuses[]


The Age of Kings[]

The Conquerors[]

The Forgotten[]

  • Trade Cogs generate +10% gold.

The African Kingdoms[]

  • Trade Cogs generate +30% gold.
  • The collision radius of Trade Cogs is reduced, resulting in less blockage on trade routes.
  • Portuguese: Trade Cogs cost -15% gold.
  • A team containing Spanish: With patch 4.8, Trade Cogs generate +25% gold.

Definitive Edition[]

  • Dry Dock no longer reduces gold per trip for Trade Cogs.
  • Portuguese: With update 39284, Trade Cogs cost -20% gold.

Dynasties of India[]

  • With update 61321, siege units and ships are now resistant to armor-ignoring attacks similarly to buildings.


  • Berber Trade Cogs with Caravan and Dry Dock researched are the fastest unit in the game, moving at the speed of 2.5047.


The demands of trade along the northern coasts of Europe led to the development of new types of ships with wide beams, deep drafts, square sails, stern rudders, and large cargo space. Ships of this new design were called cogs and they dominated Middle Age sea commerce from the Baltic Sea to the Western Mediterranean. Because these ships could not be drawn up on a beach easily, ports required piers extending out into water sufficiently deep to keep the cogs afloat. The Far Eastern equivalent to the trade cog was the Chinese junk, a much more advanced ship not surpassed in the West for many centuries.