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Heavily armed mercenary cavalry good with both a bow and a sword. Good against cavalry.
—In-game description

The Yojimbo is a Japanese mercenary ranged cavalry in Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties. It is an hybrid of Cavalry Archer and heavy cavalry (particularly to Cuirassiers) in some respects.


The Yojimbo can be trained at the Stable and Monastery with the Atonement Home City Card.

At first glance, the Yojimbo might seem as a superior version of the Yabusame, but in reality, it plays more like a highly improved, mercenary version of the Cavalry Archer. The Yabusame itself is more comparable to a Culverin, as it has a very high bonus versus artillery combined with a good range and strong ranged resistance (50% to be precise).

On the other hand, the Yojimbo is meant to be a shock unit, quickly destroying enemy cavalry and artillery with arrow volleys, and when enemy light cavalry or infantry arrive in the battlefield, going for the kill in melee combat, where they particular excel, as they have great melee armor, combined with a strong attack, but most important of all, area damage.

Not unlike Cuirassiers or other cavalry in Trample Mode, this makes them excellent against masses of weak units, such as Strelets or Otontin Slingers.

All in all, Yojimbos are spectacular mercenaries, but by no means should they replace Yabusames, as they are much more expensive, and not as cost effective against Artillery, while larger masses of Light Cavalry may wreak havoc on Yojimbo.


In the Japanese campaign, they are featured in the first scenario as woodcutters who were going to be executed for rebelling. When they are freed, they will make a remark about regaining their honor and join your forces.

Further statistics[]

As Yojimbo are unique to the Japanese, only technologies that they have access to are shown in the following table:

Unit strengths and weaknesses
Strong vs. Heavy cavalry, Shock Infantry, artillery
Weak vs. Heavy infantry, ranged infantry, light cavalry
Hit points Comanche Horse Breeding.png Comanche Horse Breeding (+10%)
Cree Tanning.png Cree Tanning (+5%)
Navajo Weaving.png Navajo Weaving (+5%)
Attack Ranged Cavalry Caracole.png Ranged Cavalry Caracole (+10%)
Carib Kasiri Beer.png Carib Kasiri Beer (+10%)
Carib Garifuna Drums.png Carib Garifuna Drums (+1.0x multiplier vs. villagers)
Seminole Bowyer.png Seminole Bowyer (+25%)
Tupi Poison Arrow Frogs.png Tupi Poison Arrow Frogs (+10%)
Yoga.png Yoga (+5%)
Range Ranged Cavalry Caracole.png Ranged Cavalry Caracole (+2)
Sight Town Watch.png Town Watch (+2)
Ranged Cavalry Caracole.png Ranged Cavalry Caracole (+2)
Speed Comanche Mustangs.png Comanche Mustangs (+10%)
Apache Endurance.png Apache Endurance (+5%)
Creation speed Mass Cavalry.png Mass Cavalry (-50%)
Cheyenne Horse Trading.png Cheyenne Horse Trading (-25%)
Inca Chaquis Messengers.png Quechuan Diet (-25%)
Train cost Mapuche Ad-mapu.png Mapuche Ad-mapu (-10% coin cost)

Home City Cards[]

As Yojimbo are unique to the Japanese, only their cards and other civilizations' TEAM cards are shown in the following tables:


The Asian Dynasties[]

Definitive Edition[]

  • Yojimbos are now properly tagged as archer and no longer as gunpowder cavalry.

In-game dialogue[]

Main article: Japanese (Age of Empires III)#In-game dialogue
  • は [Ha.] ("Yes."; a variant of hai (はい "Yes") pronounced with a short, strong breath; old-fashioned, typically said by fictional archaic characters, especially of the feudal ages, in response to the instructions or remarks of their superior person, with an attitude of respect toward that person)
  • ご命令を [Gomeirei o.] ("Your instructions?")
  • 御意(に) [Gyoi (ni).] ("At your will.")
  • はい! [Hai!] ("Yes!")
  • いざ [Iza.] ("Now.")
  • 直ちに [Tadachi ni.] ("Immediately.")
  • 仰せの通り(に) [Ōse no tōri (ni).] (Literally "As you say."; it means "In accordance with your will.")
  • いざゆかん! [Iza yukan!] ("Let's go now!")
  • 戦じゃ! [Ikusa ja!] ("Fight!")
  • や! [Ya!] (an interjection)


  • The Yojimbo is the only cavalry archer that have area of effect melee attack.
  • Before the Definitive Edition, the Yojimbo were classified as gunpowder unit, despite obviously using arrows. While they were normally not affected by this classification, it prevented them from benefiting from any archer-related native upgrades, such as the Carib Garifuna Drums. Since the the Definitive Edition, they are no longer tagged as gunpowder unit and are now tagged as archer, and therefore can benefit from archer-related native upgrades.
  • The Yojimbo bears physical resemblance to the fictional character Sanjuro from a 1961 Jidaigeki film with the same name.


A yojimbo is a bodyguard or security warrior often hired from the ranks of wandering ronin, or masterless samurai.