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The Zapotec is a Native American tribe in Age of Empires III that replaces the Aztecs in The WarChiefs expansion. Like all natives, they can be allied with by building a Trading Post at their Trading Post site.


Zapotec lightning warrior portrait aoe3de updated.png Zapotec Lightning Warrior: Zapotec warrior armed with a shield and a sword.


Zapotec technologies focus on increasing an ally's economy and bolstering their hand infantry.

Age Technology Cost Effect
Age I tech tree aoe3.png
Zapotec Cloud People.png Zapotec Cloud People 225 food,
225 coin
Ships 100 wood for every 2 minutes the game has passed, up to 30 minutes
Zapotec Cult of the Dead.png Zapotec Cult of the Dead 200 wood,
200 coin
Melee infantry get +20% attack
Zapotec Food of the Gods.png Zapotec Food of the Gods 175 wood,
175 coin
Settlers, Coureurs des Bois, Settler Wagons, and Villagers gather food 10% faster

In-game dialogue[]

Zapotec units speaks the Diidxazá (also known as the Isthmus/Juchitán Zapotec) language.

  • Select 1 Nayshina
  • Select 2 Ya - Yes
  • Move 1 Ya - Yes
  • Move 2 Yanna - Now
  • Attack 1 Ricaa saa! - Fight!


The Zapotec, a Mesoamerican people who developed an advanced civilization, inhabited cities as well as towns, their homes built from stones and mortar. They had an early written language system, which perhaps influenced other Mesoamerican writing systems developed by the Aztec, Maya, and Mixtec.

The Zapotec lived in the Oaxaca region of modern Mexico, with a marvelous capital city of Monte Alban. They were advanced both socially and militarily - indeed, they managed to maintain their autonomy from the larger Aztec empire. They held out from the Spanish invaders until the mid sixteenth century.

The name “Zapotec” was given them by their rivals to the north, the Aztec. However, their creation tales spoke of their origins from supernatural beings from above, hence their native name Be’ena Za’a, or “people of the clouds.”