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Light infantry with low hitpoints, but a long-ranged attack. Good against infantry.
—In-game description

The Wakina Rifle is a gunpowder ranged infantry in Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs that is unique to the Lakota and can be trained at the War Hut once the Fortress Age is reached.


The Wakina Rifle is a Skirmisher with relatively few hit points and a poor melee attack. However, it has a powerful ranged attack, albeit at slightly shorter range than other skirmishers, but still has 24 Line of Sight. They maintain the regular multipliers against heavy infantry and light cavalry, making it a critical part of a Lakotan army. Wakina Rifles are especially vulnerable to cavalry and artillery due to their very low hit points.

Despite the unfavourable comparison to European Skirmishers, Wakinas are more able to hit and run very effectively. With the Lakota War Chief's aura and/or the "Wind Runner" Home City Card, they become much more mobile than most other infantry, further increasing their potential to avoid taking damage.

Wakina Rifles should be combined with the Lakota's powerful cavalry units to get the most out of them. For example, they supplement the more expensive Rifle Riders against heavy infantry and allow them to focus on taking out heavy cavalry and artillery instead. Axe Riders or Tokala Soldiers can take down enemy skirmishers (as well as artillery). Wakina Rifles can then focus down any ranged cavalry and provide long-range support.

Wakina Rifles also have the advantage of being cheaper than most other ranged infantry (notably, 40 coin compared to the 65 for a European Skirmisher), which is useful due to the high expense of cavalry units. Wakina Rifles can be massed in large numbers using shipments (especially in the Industrial Age), allowing a player to field a huge number of them quite quickly. Unlike the other units from the War Hut, Club Warrior and the Cetan Bowman, the Wakina Rifle costs food and coin.


The Wakina Rifle starts at the Elite level, giving them +25% hit points and attack.

If made available at the Commerce Age with the "TEAM Early Skirmishers" card, Wakina Rifles will be automatically upgraded to Elite when the player reaches the Fortress Age.

Age Upgrade Cost Effect
Age IV tech tree aoe 3.png
Champion ranged infantry.png Champion Wakina Rifles 400 wood,
200 coin
Upgrades Wakina Rifles to Champion (+25% hit points and attack)
Imperial Age
Legendary ranged infantry.png Legendary Wakina Rifles 1,500 wood,
1,500 coin
Upgrades Wakina Rifles to Legendary (+50% hit points and attack); requires Champion Wakina Rifles

Campaign appearances[]

In the original The WarChiefs, the Wakina Rifle appears in Act I: Fire as Seneca and Mohawk soldiers. They later appear in Act II: Shadow as Sioux soldiers, especially in the first part of the scenario Turning Point, where they keep harassing Holme's Settlers.

Further statistics[]

As Wakina Rifles are unique to the Lakota, only technologies that they have access to are shown in the following table:

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Heavy infantry, light cavalry, Eagle Runner Knights
Weak vs. Heavy cavalry, Coyote Runners, artillery
Hit points Cree Tanning.png Cree Tanning (+5%)
Navajo Weaving.png Navajo Weaving (+5%)
Attack Gun Trade.png Gun Trade (+25%)
Counter Infantry Rifling.png Counter Infantry Rifling (+0.75x multiplier vs. heavy infantry)
Yoga.png Yoga (+5%)
Smokeless Powder.png Smokeless Powder (+30% siege attack)
Clenched Fist.png Clenched Fist (+30% melee attack)
Speed Inca Road-building.png Quechuan Mountaineering (+20%)
Apache Endurance.png Apache Endurance (+5%)
Creation speed War Drums.png War Drums (-25%)
Inca Chaquis Messengers.png Quechuan Diet (-25%)
Train cost Mapuche Ad-mapu.png Mapuche Ad-mapu (-10% coin cost)
Other Merritocracy.png Meritocracy (-20% upgrade cost)

Home City Cards[]

As Wakina Rifles are unique to the Lakota, only their cards and other civilizations' TEAM cards are shown in the following tables:


The WarChiefs[]

  • Wakina Rifles give 9 XP when trained or killed.

Definitive Edition[]


  • Wakina means "Thunderbird" in Lakota. The term refers to the animal and not to the sound. [1]


Sometimes the Sioux had to fight on foot. It is not always possible to run someone down with your horse. On these occasions, they fought tenaciously and well. In general, the Sioux were known for their keen accuracy with their rifles.


In other languages[]

Spanish: Rifle Wakina