|Faction Overview||Strategic Overview||History|
- Strengths: The best cavalry in the entire game.
- Weaknesses: near-lack of Imperial Era units, very glaring weakness against gunpowder units, infantry selection dooms Mongols to using cavalry rushes — which can be easily anticipated. Mediocre navy.
Mongol national bonuses make them ideally suited for the offensive-minded player. By far, the traditional favorite units of rushers are ranged cavalry. Indeed this is where the Mongols shine, having a highly effective unique unit in this line at the Dark Age, lasting well into the Imperial Era. This means that they can take advantage of these awesome troops before many people can mount an adequate defence. At the beginning, Mongol cavalry archers - the Steppe Nomad and the Khorchin - are all one grade higher than other nations' cavalry archers or javelin cavalry. Although this bonus tapers off in the Imperial Era - Mongols do not get the Palace Gamekeeper because the Khorchin counts as one - there are other units that the Mongol arsenal can kick up, such as the Tarkhan medium cavalry upgrade, which makes for a fast but hard-hitting light cavalry unit, and the Noyan heavy horse archer - the closest Mongolia ever will get to having chivalric orders.
Mongol light cavalry and archers also suffer less from attrition which means they may be the only civilisation that is able to really make a successful rushing attack on the Russians (the Saracens and Moors have the same capabilities, though), to counteract their extra attrition, and keep them in check so that they don't enter the late game unscathed. When facing a civilisation besides the Russians, these more resilient troops will certainly be even more effective in a rushing attack, being able to linger much longer without suffering attrition and thus deal out much more destruction and disruption to their enemies.
Even better is that you will get up to three cavalry archers for free for every stable built. This can be of great use to facilitate a rushing attack. Timber is generally not too difficult to accumulate, so use that wood up and plop down as many stables as you can and take advantage of those free troops. Four or 5 stables can net you as many as 12 to 15 cavalry archers as a bonus. This should be a very adequate rushing force. You can go with less but in Rise of Nations, you generally need a bigger rushing force for them to be as effective as in other real-time strategy games. If the Rush fails, it's still not a big loss since those troops are free anyway, and may may have a psychological effect by forcing your opponent to play defensively, and neglect research and economy. That is, being knocked off their game plan, which is really what one hopes to do in these kinds of attacks. Even better of course if you manage to cripple their economy or force them to resign. But remember it is all about cost versus benefit: you get troops that cost you nothing, so use them to cause people some damage, and you can't really lose. Of course it doesn't mean you should squander that bonus either, because you need to meet a certain minimum of force in order to deal adequate damage.
You can of course try to bank the free troops till later in game, and use them as part of a combined arms force. However, one should be careful not to accumulate too many of them before the late ages: gunpowder factions such as Spain and the Turks are most adept at taking out ranged cavalry. However, if timed right, the resources you have saved from not having to pay for the cavalry archers can help you build a much bigger and formidable combined arms force where you can really deal some serious damage and bring victory home. The Baatur, being toughened light cavalry with extra bite, should be able to serve in this role, along with two other more powerful units recruitable from the Nobles' Court — the Noyan which is actually a "Chivalric" cavalry archer, and another cavalry archer unit, the Keshig Guard who can supplement your forces with a more powerful cavalry archer. The suicide soldier line, which is upgraded in the Castle Age to the conscript swordsman and finally becomes the Imperial Era armoured militiaman, is a "cheaper than cheap" unit with very poor attack, lower HP and almost no armour. It might then well be possible for Mongolia, with its food bonus, to create massive "human wave armies", but these troops without support are highly vulnerable to cavalry rushing and also do not move very fast. These units will not be as effective in dealing with the generally more resilient troops and buildings of the later ages, especially when faced with gunpowder.
The only threat so far to a Mongol player would be someone capable of pulling off an offensive rush with the intent to take cities. Serbia and Hungary are potential foils — Serbia possesses better infantry and can also can take cities faster as long as you are unable to fight back effectively, while Hungary's ability to expand everywhere with cheap cities also means that a Mongol player may find it difficult to take a Hungarian player down. Mongol unique units may seem impressive, but they are in fact very fragile, especially against heavy cavalry. In multiplayer team games, the Mongol player would be instrumental in using its fast, effective and free cavalry archers to keep opponents from developing their economy as well as you and your allies. A good ally would ideally be a civilisation that is strong on economics, particularly in timber or wealth production such as France and Armenia, or even the Holy Roman Empire. The Holy Roman Empire is known for its enhanced Timber production and should be able to feed a Mongol player with the resources to create a powerful army consisting of Mongolia's cavalry combined with siege machines and infantry.
- Offensive, expansive faction focused on cavalry, raiding and expansion.
- Tartar Sauced — Free cavalry archers can be used to harass your opponents. Create several small groups off horse archers, which can be used to raid different parts of your opponents' realm simultaneously.
- Hunny Money — Research Despotism, and then pair up your patriot with 10 or so Golden Horde archers and you can pick off enemy infantry and villagers for resources. In the case of Russia, destroy all Russian miners to interdict the creation of druzhinnik so that your rush will not be impeded by heavy cavalry.
- Golden Hoard — Your unique horse archers can easily kill off all infantry units. China and Japan rely heavily on infantry armies. Especially conscript infantry, which are weaker than most light infantry. Perhaps you can use that fragility to improve your economy?
- Wood, Could & Should — Ensure a steady supply of timber to create extra horse harcher-spawning stables and, in later ages, your hardened light cavalry units. A Mongol-HRE alliance is always good: the Mongol player can offer excess food in exchange for the HRE's timber to create their unique units. Further, the unit specialities of both factions complement each other very well.
- Manna From Heaven — With enough space, the Mongols can become quite an economic powerhouse: food can be translated into more villagers and cities that can power your expansion. Or more possibly, with wood, can be used to create keshigs — an extremely powerful medium-strength melee cavalry unit.
- Trigger Happy — Timber might be in short supply by the time you hit the Imperial Era, so gunpowder units might be your Number One choice for artillery as opposed to traditional siege weapons...they may not shoot as normal wood-based units might, but they hit just as hard, and train much faster than old-fashioned units do.
|Basic gameplay||Rise of Chivalry||Renovatio Europam|