Get ready to experience history from the unique perspectives of some of Africa’s most famous rulers: Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition – The African Royals is available RIGHT NOW!

We’re bringing a new continent to Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition, adding two brand-new civilizations and their magnificent kingdoms: the Ethiopians and the Hausa of Africa! Gain new Alliances with every Age and use your Influence to hire units and research technologies. In addition, experience 3 all-new Historical Battles15 new African maps5 new Indigenous African Civilizations to ally with, and play your way through several new Achievements!

Overview

With the two new civilizations—the Ethiopians and Hausa—construct a Palace to recruit Mercenaries, Alliance units, Imported Artillery, or the new Gatling Camel! Build a Granary to lure huntables and boost your food gathering, or a Livestock Market to trade Sanga and Zebu Cattle for wood or coin. Be crafty with your herd, as market prices will only rise and become profitable slowly over time, or go all-in with a legendary Royal Banquet, securing a generous amount of Influence for your allies!

UNIQUE HERO ABILITIES

  • The Hausa  Emir and Ethiopian  Ras
  • African heroes share the Chaos ability, which briefly causes Treasure Guardians to turn on each other; the effect lasts longer on stronger guardians (based on Kill XP)
  • African heroes have a “Fealty Aura” where their stats are improved by each nearby allied unit
  • Players can obtain additional Heroes from various cards and technologies

LIVESTOCK AND TRADING

Livestock can be exchanged at the market for wood or coin, similar to how other resources are sold. The Livestock Market offers better prices over time—as is indicated by a percentage in the building’s UI—but does have a cap! Thus, it is MUCH more beneficial to sell fattened animals once they have reached their limits! When an animal is exchanged, the player receives the indicated percentage of the animal’s fattened food total as wood or coin. This exchange causes the percentage to drop, but it recovers over time.

  • Example: Cattle containing 400f sold at 50% would yield 200 resources
  • Example: Cattle containing 500f sold at 80% would yield 400 resources

The best exchange is always visible as an icon on the HUD; a ctrl+click on it will authorize that sale from anywhere on the map. Keep in mind, livestock  ALSO trickles Influence over time, with fully fattened animals generating it faster. There will always be a trade-off between selling, keeping, and eating your animals, so make sure you balance it well for your army to flourish!

SHARED BUILDINGS

  • Livestock Market: Functions as a market and livestock pen, can exchange animals for resources
  • Palace: A large defensive building with a ranged attack; features powerful elite units and trains all unlocked military units as well as Mercenaries; all units/techs cost Influence here
  • Port: Is a dock that always features a mercenary warship and can gain access to European naval vessels
  • Hut: Supports 10 population as usual; different militia can be levied using Influence cost
  • Field: Two villagers may gather food or coin from it; costs nothing but takes a long time to sow
  • Granary: Has a gather aura which boosts Villager food & field gather rates; attracts nearby huntables
  • War Camp: Trains all African military units (no ranged attack)
  • Watch Tower: An Outpost that can train Outlaws (not mercenaries)
  • Town Center: Trains villagers, unlocked wagons, and ages up
  • Walls/Gate: Defensive barriers

SHARED NAVAL UNITS

  • Fishing Canoe (I): Naval economic unit; gains a ranged attack from an upgrade
  • Battle Canoe (II): Larger vessel which can train Units and levy militia
  • Cannon Boat (III): Medium-sized boat with a single cannon on-board; has a long-ranged attack ability similar to monitors but functions more like a broadside attack (improved dmg, longer range)
  • Xebec (III): Powerful Mercenary Warship with a broadside attack costing Influence in the Hausa Port; comparable to a Frigate with greater speed and range; fires faster when closer to the target
  • War Dhow (III): Powerful Mercenary Warship with a broadside attack costing Influence in the Ethiopian Port; comparable to a Frigate with more hitpoints and attack

Ethiopians

Make the “Roof of Africa” your home with Palaces and Mountain Monasteries, while Shotel Warriors break the enemy lines and your mortars rain explosive shots on enemy units and buildings alike. Train the mighty Oromo Warriors to cut down enemy cavalry charges, Neftenyas to take potshots at opposing infantry, or use any of the Alliances at your disposal to orchestrate the perfect strategy for your playstyle.

Unique Units

  • Gascenya (II): Agile ranged infantry armed with javelins, spear, and shield. Takes on the role of Musketeers; attacks faster the closer it is to the target
  • Shotel Warrior (II): Shock infantry that attacks quickly by duel-wielding curved swords
  • Neftenya (III): Powerful, expensive Skirmisher with high hitpoints
  • Oromo Warrior (III): Powerful 3 population heavy ranged cavalry that shoots faster the closer they are to a target; has a powerful melee attack. Great at countering light infantry
  • Javelin Rider (II): Ranged cavalry. Good against hand cavalry, particularly in melee
  • Sebastopol Mortar (IV): Gargantuan mortar which annihilates units and buildings; slow and expensive
  • Abun (I): Ethiopian Bishop who can heal friendly units from range, even whilst they’re fighting or gathering; may also gather at the Mountain Monastery like a Villager

Hausa

Build a flourishing Hausa Kingdom with inspiring Griots, lucrative Livestock trades and influential Universities, then guard your possessions with Maigadi Guards and Imported Cannons. Or, get ahead of your adversary early by razing their empire with a mix of resourceful Fulani Archers, fast Raiders, and imposing Lifidi Knights.

Unique Units

  • Lifidi Knight (III): Powerful Heavy Cavalry with exceptional HP but lower damage; has dual resistances
  • Raider (II): Mobile Hand Cavalry with decent siege damage. Good against Light Infantry and Villagers
  • Fulani Archer (II): Foot Archer armed with a short bow for a fast attack. Good against Heavy Infantry and Ranged Cavalry. Can gather Livestock
  • Maigadi (II): Powerful Heavy Ranged Infantry with a deadly melee attack
  • Javelin Rider (II): Ranged Cavalry. Good against Hand Cavalry, particularly in melee
  • Griot (I): Inspiring musician and storyteller who can increase the work rate of buildings and speed of nearby units. Uses instruments to intimidate enemies which slows their attack speed

Unique Age-Ups

Both new African civilizations advance by forging an alliance with a potential ally. The Ethiopians and Hausa both have unique alliances available to them. Alliances offer technologies, buildings, and unique units such as the Arsenal Wagon or Camel Rider to complement your expanding African forces, creating a strong and unique royal army!

Here’s a look at some of the new Indigenous Alliances:

Five New Indigenous Alliances

AKAN

The Akan (meaning “enlightened”) are indigenous people of West Africa. Inhabiting a region fruitful in both produce and gold, they enjoyed immense wealth throughout the late medieval and early modern periods. For all its benefits, this opulence attracted the avarice of European explorers and adventurers, particularly the Portuguese, British, and Dutch.

  • Akan Ankobia: The Ankobia is a powerful Akan musketeer. Ankobia inflict splash damage at range and counter cavalry in melee.
  • Akan Tufohen: The Tufohen is a powerful chieftain who attacks primarily with a pistol, but will also deploy his deadly Akrafena sword and shield in battle. He is especially effective against cavalry and gains strength when accompanied by Native warriors. The Tufohen can also heal and construct certain buildings.

BERBER

The Berbers, or Amazigh (meaning “free people”) are among the indigenous inhabitants of much of North and Northwest Africa. These diverse regions gave rise to several ways of life: some Amazigh were sedentary agriculturalists or urban residents, while many others were pastoralists. All enjoyed the benefits of living near or on the vibrant trade routes spanning the northern part of the African continent.

  • Berber Camel Rider: The Camel Rider is a powerful light hand cavalry unit of the Berber that excels at fighting other cavalry units.
  • Berber Nomad: Nomads gather slower from Mills, Estates, or any other agricultural building, but they exceed other Villagers’ gather rates from all-natural resources. Nomads can also gather resources from crates.
  • Berber Salt Camel: The Salt Camel is a Berber unit that is capable of discovering (creating) a Salt Mine, a rich but slow-gathering source of coin.
  • Berber Sultan: The Sultan is a powerful Berber heavy cavalry hero unit. He heals, gains strength when accompanied by Outlaws and Mercenaries, and can train Barbary Corsair and Zenata Rider mercenary units. The Sultan can also construct certain buildings.

SOMALI

The Somalis (etymology uncertain) are among the indigenous inhabitants of the Horn of East Africa, which juts out between the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean. During the early modern period, the region was ruled by a series of sultanates, all of which derived their power from two principal usages of water: land irrigation and maritime trade. While the arid climate on the mainland made a consistent water supply crucial for agriculture and sustenance, the nearby seas played host to some of the most lively trade networks in world history. The port of Berbera, for example, was a crucial conduit of supplies to and from the mainland.

  • Somali Issa Warrior: The Issa Warrior is a powerful Somali heavy infantry unit who wields a javelin. Issa Warriors attack closer targets faster but can also counter cavalry at range.
  • Somali Darood Militia: The Darood Militia is a powerful Somali ranged infantry unit who wields a heavy musket. Darood Militia are best used against artillery and ships.

SUDANESE

The Sudanese are a large collection of people-groups – the most numerous of which are Sudanese Arabs – indigenous to modern-day Sudan. During the early modern period, this region was ruled primarily by two sultanates: Darfur (17th-20th centuries) and Sennar (16th-19th centuries). Both of these profited immensely off the bustling trade networks running along the Nile and its tributaries as well as – infamously – the slave trade running along them.

  • Sudanese Dervish: The Dervish is a powerful but fragile Sudanese ranged infantry unit who also hurls a throwing knife at short range. Dervishes attack ranged units faster when they are within a certain distance.

YORUBA

The Yoruba are a people-group indigenous to West Africa, especially modern-day Nigeria. Their homeland combines vast coasts, powerful rivers, fertile lands, thick jungles, and vast savannahs. As such, the Yoruba developed several means of subsistence, but by the early modern period, they were primarily sedentary. Remarkably large and bustling urban centers developed and served as foci of local and royal power.

  • Yoruba Oyo Legionary: The Oyo Legionary is a powerful Yoruba heavy infantry unit who wields a javelin. Oyo Legionaries attack closer targets faster, carry shields for protection against ranged attacks, and are effective against cavalry units.
  • Yoruba Eso Rider: The Eso Rider is a powerful Yoruba heavy cavalry unit who wields a lance. Eso Riders lose hit points over time, but attack targets faster as their hit points dip. Their ranged and melee armor lend a degree of durability that makes them deadly even when heavily damaged.

Influence

With this expansion comes a brand new gameplay feature and resource: Influence! Influence is spent primarily at the Palace on Native Warriors, Mercenaries, and unlockable units from Age-Ups. Two technologies are unlocked each Age, depending on which African Alliance (Politician) you choose. There is a variety of ways in which you can obtain this extremely valuable resource:

INFLUENCE GAIN

  • Trading Posts: Resource toggle
  • Native Settlements: Can trickle Influence
  • Shipments and Crates
  • Owning large herds of Cattle: Livestock trickle Influence; fattened animals trickle faster
  •  University: Unique Hausa Building that trickles XP or Influence under the Sphere of Influence aura. Trickles fastest when near a Town Center, Trading Post, and Palace
  •  Mountain Monastery: Unique Ethiopian building which Villagers and Abuns can be tasked to gather coin and Influence. This building is constructed on coin mines
  • Age-Up Alliances: Offer unique technologies which often enable new ways to generate Influence

Hausa University

Ethiopian Mountain Monastery

 

Home City Customizations

Ethiopian Customizations

Marketplace

  • Marketplace (Original): The original version of the Marketplace.
  • Marketplace (Green, Yellow, and Red): The Marketplace with green, yellow and red stalls.

Palace

  • Ethiopian Buntings: Display Buntings on this building.
  • Daytime Lighting: The city with the sun shining brightly.
  • Evening Lighting: An evening in the city.
  • Evening Rain Lighting: An evening in the rain.

Monastery

  • Ethiopian Buntings: Display buntings on this building.
  • Ancient Relic: An old relic presented by an Ethiopian priest.
  • Medieval Relic: An old relic presented by an Ethiopian priest.
  • Mythological Relic: An old relic presented by an Ethiopian priest.
  • Monastery (Stone): The stone version of the Monastery.
  • Monastery (Green, Yellow, and Pink): The Monastery with a green, yellow, and pink finish.

Royal Library

  • Library (Beige): The beige version of the library with light brown brickwork.
  • Library (White): The white version of the Library with red brickwork.

Waterplace

  • Ethiopian Buntings: Display buntings on this building.
  • Timkat Festival: The city is celebrating Timkat.

Hausa Customizations

Marketplace

  • Hausa’s Finest Cattle: A herd of cattle roaming the city.
  • Durbar Festival – Crowds: The people of Hausa celebrating the Durbar Festival in the market, palace, and workshop.

Palace

  • Daytime Lighting: The city with the sun shining brightly.
  • Dusk Lighting: The city at dusk.
  • Evening Lighting: The city at night.
  • Sandstorm: The city during a sandstorm.
  • Durbar Festival – Military Parade: A parade held for the Durbar Festival.
  • Palace (Original): The original version of the Palace.
  • Palace (Ornamented): The Palace with ornamented patterns on the walls and columns.

Great Mosque

  • Durbar Festival – Buntings: Display Durbar Festival buntings in the market, great mosque and palace.
  • Great Mosque (Turquoise and White): The turquoise and white version of the Mosque.
  • Great Mosque (Gold and Beige): The gold and beige version of the Mosque.

Workshops

  • Loaded Camel Train: A cameller loading his cargo.
  • Workshop (Orange): The orange version of the Workshop.
  • Workshop (Maroon): The maroon version of the Workshop.

Waterplace

  • Waterplace (White): The white version of the Waterplace with grey roof tiles.
  • Waterplace (Maroon): The maroon version of the Waterplace with golden roof tiles.

Historical Battles

The Battle of the Three Kings

Sebastian of Portugal, a young and jealous king, has launched an invasion into Morocco under the pretense of a crusade. The Saadis, however, are not impressed and gather their army to meet the invaders. The Iberians may have superior technology, mercenaries, and the help of a local puppet sultan, but the sultan’s forces are fighting to protect their homes.

Fall of the Hausa

Exiled from the Hausa city-state of Gobir for criticizing the greed and immorality of the city’s elites, the scholar, writer, and military leader Usman dan Fodio united Fulani nomads, Hausa peasants, and escaped slaves to spark a revolution on West Africa’s Sahel.

The Era of the Princes

For over a century, Ethiopia struggled as local warlords vied for power in the declining old empire. There seemed to be no way out of the conflict until a man named Kassa Hailu stepped in. Kassa, a veteran of the Ethiopian-Egyptian wars, could no longer bear to watch as his country was torn asunder. He would fight the warlords and gift the loot to the impoverished Ethiopian peasants.

15 New African Maps

ATLAS

Teams are divided by a mountain range with only one or two passes – perfect for the Treaty game mode

DARFUR

Arid open sands where players may contest the trade route in the southwest, or gold mines in the northeast.

GOLD COAST

A mineral-rich coastal region with large gold mines as the only source of coin.

GREAT RIFT

Battle in an expansive, bountiful valley featuring a winding river and short trade route.

HIGHLANDS

Battle atop a mountain with many narrow paths.

 

HORN

Home of the Somalis, this peninsular region features several trade routes and settlements.

LAKE CHAD

Players overlook a bountiful lake that changes features depending on the season.

 

NIGER DELTA

Teams begin near each other, separated by a delta with limited narrow crossings.

 

NIGER RIVER

Players each begin with an extra Town Center wagon and must expand across the river where there are resources aplenty.

NILE VALLEY

Teams begin on an easily defendable plateau, but must control the floodplains below to gather resources.

PEPPER COAST

Begin with extra resource crates in an exceptionally bountiful region. Beware: your opponents are always near.

SAVANNA

Battle over two watering holes on the great plains of Africa.

SUDD

Wetlands bisected by a short trade route.

TASSILI

Fight for map control around central oases deep in the Sahara.

TRIPOLITANIA

Teams begin on a defendable plateau, but must control the trade route and Mediterranean Sea to get the upper hand.

New Achievements

Achievement Name Achievement Condition Points
Well Studied Build a University near a Town Center, Palace, and Trading Post. 10
Holy Mountains Earn 10,000 Coin from Mountain Monasteries on Mines. 20
Raiding Party Deploy ‘8 Lifidi Knights’ from your shipments as the Hausa. 5
Big Bombardment Deploy ‘2 Sebastopol Mortars’ from your shipments as the Ethiopians. 5
Safari Collect 10 Treasures on African maps. 15
Influencer Spend 10,000 Influence playing as the Hausa or the Ethiopians. 20
Cash Cow Gain 500 Coin from a single sale at the Livestock Market. 15
Hausa Victory Win a game as the Hausa. 5
Ethiopian Victory Win a game as the Ethiopians. 5
Ruler of the Seven Kingdoms Pick each Hausa Alliance once. 25
King of Kings Pick each Ethiopian Alliance once. 25

Available Today

Experience all this and more with the launch of The African Royals for Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition available TODAY. Purchase this civilization expansion for only $9.99 on the Microsoft Store or Steam.