The Wokou Pirate is an Asian outlaw unit in Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties, trained from the Saloon or Monastery.

Overview Edit

The Wokou Pirate is an outlaw unit armed with a sword, similar to the Pirate. It requires less population than most outlaws, but also costs a lot of Coin. Though not as strong against cavalry as Pikemen or other Hand Infantry units, it has a unique bonus against Villagers, making them neat for harassing an enemy's economy.

Like other outlaws, Wokou Pirates are best utilized in the Colonial Age, their use diminished as the game progresses. Their anti-villager bonus provide a unique niche among other Hand Infantry, but are less cost-efficient raiders than cavalry.

History Edit

"The term "wokou" is a combination of the Chinese word “wo,” referring to Japanese, and "kou,” meaning bandit or invasion.

Beginning in the thirteenth century, no group of sailors was as feared or as mighty as the plundering wokou pirates, a clan of Japanese raiders and smugglers who terrified the Chinese and Korean coasts. The first attacks occurred in 1223, triggering immediate calls for the Kamakura shogunate of Japan to corral these scoundrels and prevent further attacks on the Korean coast. In 1227, as a show of strength, the shogun had ninety suspected wokou pirates decapitated before the visiting Korean envoy.

During the Mongol invasions of the mid-thirteenth century, wokou attacks fell in number, most likely due to a heightened military preparedness on the part of both the Japanese and Korean governments. But this did not last. In the late fourteenth century, as central authority in Japan weakened, the wokou took full advantage, even branching out to initiate attacks along the coast of China. They profited highly from a severe trade embargo forced on Japan by the Qin and then Ming Dynasties of China, reaping rewards as black markets flourished. The wokou experienced periods of rise and decline, even attacking China with a makeshift fleet in 1419, but they ultimately became obsolete.

At its peak, the wokou culture was enough to threaten even the most powerful Asian rulers, and to appeal to the most ordinary of citizenry. Many men left behind their lives to seek fortunes at sea. Chinese merchants, militiamen, smugglers, Korean pirates, Portuguese sailors, traders, and even missionaries joined up with the notorious wokou pirates.

Smuggler Edit

The Smuggler is a treasure guardian with high hit points but relatively low melee damage. He can be dealt easily using artillery or anti-infantry units, but can be quite hard to beat in melee combat, so in early game, it is recommended to convert or snipe as many Smugglers as possible.

History Edit

"For centuries, smugglers have worked within the laws of all nations to exploit scarcity and produce a profit. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, restrictive economic policies of mercantilism encouraged smuggling in France, the Spanish colonies, and North America. When the British attempted to fight the practice by enforcing the Navigation Acts, they contributed to the growing resentment that exploded into the American Revolution. During the Prohibition era in the United States, smuggling flourished across the continent.

Today, with the existence of widespread commercial privacy and active black markets, smuggling is more common than ever. Smugglers worldwide often traffic in luxury articles, stolen art, electronic devices, and software.

Gallery Edit