Age of Empires Series Wiki

Powerful anti-building siege weapon with long range. Must be packed to move, unpacked to attack. Cannot attack enemies at close range. Can attack ground and destroy trees.
Age of Empires II description

The Trebuchet is a long-range siege unit in Age of Empires II that can be trained at the Castle once the Imperial Age is reached. It is the most powerful siege weapon with the longest base range and attack of all the units in the game. Its ability to take out buildings from a distance is unparalleled.

The weapon reappears in Age of Empires IV as the Counterweight Trebuchet.


Trebuchet attackanim aoe2de

A Trebuchet attacking a Castle.

The Trebuchet is slow and defenseless against most units but excels at destroying any building within its path. Its most notable role is safely destroying enemy Castles, as the only other units that can do so are the Bombard Cannon and Cannon Galleon. Trebuchets with Siege Engineers have 17 range, a value that is only matched by Turkish Elite Cannon Galleons with Artillery. Tatar Trebuchets with Timurid Siegecraft have an even longer range of 19. Its poor mobility also makes it a relatively poor choice for destroying a player's base when compared to the much more mobile Siege Ram and Bombard Cannon. Briton Trebuchets with Warwolf can wreak havoc on enemy units, such as massed archers, due to their Area of Effect damage.

It has the highest attack of any unit in the game, allowing it to one-shot almost every unit in the game, notably enemy siege units, such as Mangonels and Trebuchets. Note, however, that rams have high enough pierce armor to shrug off a Trebuchet shot. However, due to the Trebuchet's low accuracy at range, they are very unreliable at doing so. Additionally, Trebuchets have a rate of fire of 10, five times that of most normal units, significantly decreasing their effective damage output.

The Trebuchet is unique for its pack/unpack mechanic. It can only maneuver around in its packed form, during which it cannot attack. Conversely, when unpacked, it can attack but not move. It must spend about 11.1 seconds to pack or unpack, during which it is unable to either attack or move. However, the packing/unpacking process can be canceled instantly if necessary to move to a safer location or continue attacking. When playing as the Japanese, Kataparuto gives Trebuchets a shorter pack/unpack time of only around 2.8 seconds.

It can target, attack and remove trees to allow free passage. Onagers, however, perform this task better and all the trees in the area of their splash damage are destroyed.

It is imperative to guard Trebuchets with a standing army if they are used offensively. Like all siege units, they may be repaired and the presence of some Villagers nearby may greatly prolong their combat ability. Using the "Attack Ground" option is an important skill to master when using the Trebuchet, as commanding them to directly attack a unit causes any AI target to automatically flee, and a human player will also be able to dodge if they are paying attention. However, the low accuracy makes this much less useful than for the Mangonel line or Bombard Cannons.

When facing enemy Trebuchets, Bombard Cannons work best due to their long range allowing them to take them out without having to worry about the units guarding the Trebuchet. Onagers are also viable, but their shorter range hinders them in this. cavalry and fast infantry units work well due to their high speed and good damage, though they must watch out for any units used to defend the Trebuchets. Archer units are ineffective against Trebuchets, due to the latter's high pierce armor and hit points. Mangudai can also be used effectively to counter Trebuchets due to their attack bonus. Infantry and rams can be useful if no other units are at the player's disposal, but are less desirable due to their lack of speed. This allows the enemy to respond to the situation more effectively by simply unpacking the Trebuchets and/or retaliating with an army of their own.

Further statistics[]

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Buildings, archer units
Weak vs. Melee units (especially Magyar Huszars and Elite Eagle Warriors), rams, Bombard Cannons, Mangudai, Onagers
Attack SiegeEngineersDE Siege Engineers (+20% attack against buildings)
ChemistryDE Chemistry (+1)
UniqueTechImperialDE Warwolf (gives blast damage in a 0.5 tile radius, Britons only)
UniqueTechImperialDE Counterweights (+15% attack, Saracens only)
Range SiegeEngineersDE Siege Engineers (+1)
UniqueTechImperialDE Timurid Siegecraft (+2, Tatars only)
Accuracy UniqueTechImperialDE Warwolf (increases accuracy against units to 100%, Britons only)
Armor UniqueTechCastle-DE Ironclad (+4 Armoricon aoe2demelee/ +0 Range-armoricon aoe2depierce, Teutons only)
Conversion resistance Devotion icon AoE2DE Devotion (+1 min, +1 max)
FaithDE Faith (+4 min, +4 max)
HeresyDE Heresy (die upon getting converted)
UniqueTechCastle-DE First Crusade (+4 min, +4 max) (Sicilians only)
Attack speed UniqueTechImperialDE Kataparuto (+33%, Japanese only)
Creation speed ConscriptionDE Conscription (+33%)
UniqueTechCastle-DE Kasbah (+25%, Berbers and allies only)
Other UniqueTechImperialDE Kataparuto (pack/unpack 4x faster, Japanese only)

Civilizations bonuses[]

Team bonuses[]


AoE2-DLCicon-0 The Age of Kings[]

  • If a Trebuchet finishes packing before its projectile lands, the projectile does 1 damage.
  • If a Trebuchet is destroyed before its projectile lands, the projectile does no damage.

AoE2-DLCicon-1 The Conquerors[]

AoE2-DLCicon-2 The Forgotten[]

AoE2-DLCicon-3 The African Kingdoms[]

AoEIIDE icon Definitive Edition[]

AoE2Icon-LordsWest Lords of the West[]

AoE2Icon-DynastiesIndia Dynasties of India[]


There are three heroes in the game with the appearance of a Trebuchet. They are all owned by the Britons in the campaigns. Historically, Bad Neighbor and the basis for God's Own Sling were French.


Trebuchet launch
The most powerful of the Middle Age nongunpowder[sic] siege engines was the trebuchet. This was a large catapult-like weapon with a long throwing arm and missile bag suspended by ropes. When released the arm swung up and the bag was brought up and forward. Centrifugal force acting on the suspended bag increased the range and height achieved by the released missile. Stones fired by the Trebuchet plunged down on their target and did great damage to the tops and roofs of walls, towers, and other structures. Trebuchets were expensive and complicated machines, requiring specialists to build and operate. They could only be moved in parts and required assembly before use. Edward I of England refused the surrender of Stirling Castle in Scotland on one occasion so that he could watch his most recently acquired Trebuchet in action.
The Age of Kings manual


  • The Trebuchet is the only unit that, like buildings, catches fire when damaged.
  • Although Trebuchets in their packed version feature an attack as shown in the infobox, giving an attack order against an enemy unit or structure will immediately cause them to unpack. This was done at the release of the Definitive Edition to make sure that the projectile deals the required damage even after getting packed or destroyed. Even before the release of the Definitive Edition, hero Trebuchets had this property.
  • Before Definitive Edition, the Trebuchet's projectile only deals 1 damage (the damage stated in the packed state) if it hits its target and the Trebuchet itself is already destroyed or in its packed form. This last instance is very common with Japanese Trebuchets with Kataparuto researched, or if the cheat code "aegis" has been used which makes them instantly pack even while their projectiles are still in flight.
  • At 16, Trebuchets have the longest base range of all units or buildings in the game. With Siege Engineers, they get 17 range, a value that is only matched by Turkish Elite Cannon Galleons. Tatar Trebuchets with both Siege Engineers and Timurid Siegecraft have 19 range, the longest of all non-campaign units and buildings. Also, since Line of Sight is capped at a value of 20, Trebuchets with at least Siege Engineers have the highest range reasonably possible, as having any more would require external Line of Sight on targets to attack.
  • The Trebuchet has become a meme within and outside the Age of Empires II community, most likely due to its known long range, and damage, with a common catchphrase being "firing a 90 kg payload over 300 meters".
  • Trebuchets are one of three military land units that do not make the usual military sound when created, the others being the Camel Rider line and the Flaming Camel.
  • Despite Trebuchets being considered buildings in many ways, they do not have 80% accuracy against each other.



  1. Meaning their accuracy against units is raised from 15% to 50%.
Units in Age of Empires II
CivilianMaleVillDE Villager · Tradecart aoe2DE Trade Cart · FishingShipDE Fishing Ship · Trade cog aoe2DE Trade Cog · King eu aoe2DE King
ReligiousMonk aoe2DE Monk
InfantryMilitiaDE Militia · Manatarms aoe2DE Man-at-Arms · Longswordsman aoe2DE Long Swordsman · Twohanded aoe2DE Two-Handed Swordsman · Champion aoe2DE Champion
Spearman aoe2DE Spearman · Aoe2-infantry-2-pikeman Pikeman · Halberdier aoe2DE Halberdier
Eaglescout aoe2DE Eagle Scout · Eaglewarrior aoe2DE Eagle Warrior · EliteEaglewarrior aoe2DE Elite Eagle Warrior
ArcherArcher aoe2DE Archer · Crossbowman aoe2DE Crossbowman · Arbalester aoe2DE Arbalester
Skirmisher aoe2DE Skirmisher · Elite skirmisher aoe2DE Elite Skirmisher
Hand cannoneer aoe2DE Hand Cannoneer
Cavalryarcher aoe2DE Cavalry Archer · Heavycavalryarcher aoe2de Heavy Cavalry Archer
Aoe2de DOI elephant archer icon Elephant Archer · ElephantArcherIcon-DE Elite Elephant Archer
CavalryScoutcavalry aoe2DE Scout Cavalry · Lightcavalry aoe2DE Light Cavalry · Hussar aoe2DE Hussar
Knight aoe2DE Knight · Cavalier aoe2DE Cavalier · Paladin aoe2DE Paladin
Camelrider aoe2DE Camel Rider · Aoe2 heavycamelriderDE Heavy Camel Rider
Battle elephant aoe2DE Battle Elephant · Elite battle elephant aoe2DE Elite Battle Elephant
Steppelancericon Steppe Lancer · Elitesteppelancericon Elite Steppe Lancer
Xolotlicon Xolotl Warrior
AoE2DE Armored Elephant icon Armored Elephant · AoE2DE Siege Elephant icon Siege Elephant
SiegeBattering ram aoe2DE Battering Ram · Capped ram aoe2DE Capped Ram · Siege ram aoe2DE Siege Ram
Mangonel aoe2DE Mangonel · Onager aoe2DE Onager · Siege onager aoe2DE Siege Onager
Scorpion aoe2DE Scorpion · Heavyscorpion aoe2DE Heavy Scorpion
Bombard cannon aoe2DE Bombard Cannon
Trebuchet aoe2DE Trebuchet
Petard aoe2DE Petard
Siegetower aoe2DE Siege Tower
War shipTransportship aoe2DE Transport Ship
Galley aoe2DE Galley · War galley aoe2DE War Galley · Galleon aoe2DE Galleon
Fire galley aoe2DE Fire Galley · Fireship aoe2DE Fire Ship · Fastfireship aoe2DE Fast Fire Ship
Demoraft aoe2DE Demolition Raft · Demoship aoe2DE Demolition Ship · Heavydemoship aoe2de Heavy Demolition Ship
Cannon galleon aoe2DE Cannon Galleon · Elite cannon galleon aoe2de Elite Cannon Galleon
AoE2 Dromon Dromon
ReligiousMissionaryIcon-DE Missionary · AoE2 WarriorPriest Warrior Priest
InfantryBerserkIcon-DE Berserk · Aoe2de Chakram Chakram Thrower · CondottieroIcon-DE Condottiero · Aoe2-icon-flemish-militia Flemish Militia · GbetoIcon-DE Gbeto · Aoe2de Ghulam Ghulam · HuskarlIcon-DE Huskarl · JaguarWarriorIcon-DE Jaguar Warrior · KamayukIcon-DE Kamayuk · Karambitwarrioricon-DE Karambit Warrior · AoE2 DE Legionary new icon Legionary · Aoe2-icon--obuch Obuch · SamuraiIcon-DE Samurai · Aoe2-icon-serjeant Serjeant · Shotelwarrioricon-DE Shotel Warrior · TeutonicKnightIcon-DE Teutonic Knight · ThrowingAxemanIcon-DE Throwing Axeman · Aoe2de Urumi Urumi Swordsman · AoE2 WarriorPriest Warrior Priest · WoadRaiderIcon-DE Woad Raider
ArcherArambaiicon-DE Arambai · CamelArcherIcon-DE Camel Archer · ChukoNuIcon-DE Chu Ko Nu · AoE2 CompositeBowman Composite Bowman · ConquistadorIcon-DE Conquistador · GenitourIcon-DE Genitour · GenoeseCrossbowmanIcon-DE Genoese Crossbowman · Imperialskirmishericon-DE Imperial Skirmisher · JanissaryIcon-DE Janissary · Kipchakicon Kipchak · LongbowmanIcon-DE Longbowman · MangudaiIcon-DE Mangudai · PlumedArcherIcon-DE Plumed Archer · Aoe2de ratha ranged Ranged Ratha · Rattanarchericon-DE Rattan Archer · SlingerIcon-DE Slinger · WarWagonIcon-DE War Wagon
CavalryBallistaelephanticon-DE Ballista Elephant · BoyarIcon-DE Boyar · Aoe2de camel scout Camel Scout · CataphractIcon-DE Cataphract · Aoe2de roman unique centurion icon Centurion · Aoe2-icon-coustillier Coustillier · Flaming camel icon Flaming Camel · ImperialCamelRiderIcon-DE Imperial Camel Rider · Keshikicon Keshik · Konnikicon Konnik · Leitisicon Leitis · MagyarHuszarIcon-DE Magyar Huszar · MamelukeIcon-DE Mameluke · AoE2 Monaspa Monaspa · Aoe2de ratha melee Melee Ratha · AoE2 Savar Savar · Aoe2de shrivamsha rider Shrivamsha Rider · TarkanIcon-DE Tarkan · WarElephantIcon-DE War Elephant · Aoe2-icon-winged-hussar Winged Hussar
SiegeAoe2-icon--houfnice Houfnice · Aoe2-icon-hussite-wagon Hussite Wagon · OrganGunIcon-DE Organ Gun
War shipCaravelIcon-DE Caravel · LongboatIcon-DE Longboat · Aoe2de Thirisadai Thirisadai · TurtleShipIcon-DE Turtle Ship