Cuirassier Icon
First appearanceAge of Empires III
Melee cavalry
Cost150 foodIcon food
150 coinIcon coin
AgeAges fortress Fortress Age
Base hit points500
Pop. use3
Line of Sight15
Resists20% vs. Ranged
Melee damage30
Area of Effect2
Siege damage30
Siege range6
Rate of Fire1.5 / 3.0 (Siege)
Train time60 seconds
XP created10
XP killed20
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The Cuirassier is a heavy cavalry unit unique to the French in Age of Empires III. It can be upgraded to Royal Guard status.

Overview Edit

The Cuirassier is one of the strongest cavalry units.

They can only attack in melee combat, but deal splash damage, which makes them extremely effective against large armies but are still vulnerable to heavy infantry and ranged cavalry in certain situations. If combined with Imperial Voltigeurs, they form a deadly combo which is often used by French players and very hard to counter if properly managed. They are also very efficient at defeating enemy artillery, due to their AoE attack.

Compared to the Hussar, the mainline cavalry of most other civilizations, Cuirassiers have relatively high hit points, nearing that of a Spahi and behind a Mameluke. Their relatively high health allows them to tank heavy infantry, and to a lesser extent, enemy cavalry (excluding Imperial War Wagons, who can kill them in a few hits). However, Cuirassiers' attacks do AoE damage, surpassing Hussars in almost any situation and makes them a good, cheap method to deal with clumped groups of enemies, although Falconets and Heavy Cannons are better suited for this task.

Massing a large amount of Cuirassiers can be extremely expensive, due to their very high upkeep costs. However, this can be easily remedied because of the Coureur des Bois, who have a very fast gathering rate. If this is not enough, players can set one Factory to produce Food and Coin while having Coureurs collecting food and coin from their respective sources. In addition, a large amount of population will be needed when massing them, as they each one covers 3 slots, preventing the player from making any support units if they have a relatively large number of Coureurs gathering resources.

Counterplay Edit

As most French players usually carry a mix of Gendarmes and Voltigeurs as their army composition, they can be very hard to counter as heavy infantry will be disposed of quickly from the Gendarmes' AoE attacks and the Voltigeurs' bonus damage against heavy infantry. However, German armies are the greatest threat because of their powerful anti-cavalry units. Doppelsolders, while being heavy infantry (and therefore weak to Voltigeurs), can deal a lot of damage and their AoE attacks ensure that nearby enemies will get hurt also, like the Gendarmes' attacks. War Wagons make it worse as they can deal up to 250 damage per hit against melee cavalry and literally punch through groups of Gendarmes with little effort.

Spanish Heavy Cannons being bolstered by unction are also an effective counter, as three cannons acquired by means of The General and two Heavy Cannon card focus firing (or overlapping the edges of their AoE to better spread it over a large area) can drop clusters of Cuirassiers every six seconds (the time it takes for the cannons to fire again) when protected by blocks of Spanish Pikemen or Musketeers (similarly being augmented by the unction aura). Highlanders are a more costly option, but due to their 40% melee resistance, they ignore almost half of a cuirassiers damage making them an expensive but effective meat shield. A pair of Spanish Monitors augmented by unction can drop their long-range shots on an army of Gendarmes and kill them outright every time the ability cools down (1488 damage). With the Admiralty card from the Home City a third Monitor can be constructed to take out any support units.

Upgrades Edit


  • Cavalry Cuirass increases hit points by 10%
  • Pillage adds a 25% bonus to siege damage against buildings

Gendarme Cuirassier Edit

Gendarme Cuirassier is an upgrade of the Cuirassier in the Industrial Age. It increases attack and hit points.

  • Hit Points: 700
  • Melee Attack: 42
  • Siege Attack: 42
  • Guardian Attack: 42
  • Cost: 1000 woodResources wood and 1000 coinIcon coin

Imperial Gendarme Edit

Imperial Gendarmes is an upgrade of the Gendarme Cuirassier in the Imperial Age. It further increases attack and hit points.

  • Hit Points: 1000
  • Melee Attack: 57
  • Siege Attack: 57
  • Guardian Attack: 57
  • Cost: 1500 woodResources wood and 1500 coinIcon coin

Shipments Edit

This is a list of shipments that benefit Cuirassiers in any way.

History Edit

"Several nations fielded these heavy cavalry units in differing numbers and armaments. Early cuirassiers resembled medieval knights, but eventually only wore a breastplate and backplate for armor. In time, cuirassiers evolved into other cavalry such as hussars, dragoons, and lancers. The breastplate, or cuirass, gave these mounted soldiers their name. Napoleon favored cuirassiers and had over dozen regiments of them. They were used to crash into the ranks of enemy soldiers, hacking and stabbing their way through lines of infantry and more poorly armed and armored cavalry.

Horses and men both had to be big to carry the weight of their namesake armor, and these big men and their imposing mounts were given the nickname "big brothers." They carried straight-bladed swords that killed with stabbing thrusts and primitive pistols with a range and rate of fire that was so poor the cuirassiers might have been just as well off without them.

Gallery Edit