Mercenaries are specialist units in Age of Empires III.
There are two types of Mercenaries:
In the Colonial Age, only outlaw units are available for training. Outlaws are like Mercenaries, they are improved versions of units, but unlike Mercenaries they are the improved version of a very basic units. They usually cost more Population but less Coins compared to Mercenaries.
Mercenaries can be shipped from the Home City, trained in the Saloon or trained from a Spanish Galleon (with a card shipment). Unlike standard unit shipments (such as military units and Villagers), mercenaries cost large amounts of Coin (usually ~100 Coin per unit), 1000 Coin for Fortress Age shipments of a large squad, and 2000 for Industrial Age shipments of small armies of varied units. The mercenaries themselves are tougher versions of their normal counterparts. They usually cost more Coins but less Population compared to Outlaws.
Examples of mercenaries include Swiss Pikemen, which have greatly increased HP and 22 attack compared to the normal 8, and Hackapells, which do not have a significant survivability bonus compared to normal cavalry but the 121 attack (compared to the normal Hussar's 36 in the Fortress Age, when you can get them) tends to make up for this somewhat. Also, although not technically a mercenary, the shipments provided by the 'Church Upgrade' cards function similarly to mercenaries, such as Kalmucks (Dragoons) for the Russians and L'Armée D'Imperial (27 Grenadiers by the Industrial Age) shipments for the French, as you pay a load of resources and can only order them once, although this doesn't use up a shipment card. When a player constructs a Saloon, the mercenaries they train will vary depending on the map and are randomly available every game.
NOTE: Mercenaries are not available in the demo version.
|Pirate||Powerful Hand Infantry||Pikeman|
|Comanchero||Powerful Ranged Cavalry||Dragoon|
|Wokou Pirate||Powerful Hand Infantry||Pikeman|
|Black Rider||Powerful Gunpower Ranged Cavalry||Dragoon|
|Landsknecht||Powerful Hand Infantry||Halberdier|
|Hackapell||High Attack, Low Hitpoint Cavalry||Uhlan|
|Scottish Highlander||Powerful Musketeer||Musketeer|
|Li'l Bombard||Powerful Artilary||Great Bombard|
|Swiss Pikeman||Powerful Pikeman||Pikeman|
|Mameluke||High Hitpoint, Low Attack Cavalry||Hussar|
|Barbary Corsair||Powerful Hand Infantry||Pikeman|
|Blind Monk||Powerful Archer||Crossbowman|
|Manchu Horse Archer||Powerful Horse Archer||Horse Archer|
|Ronin||Powerful Hand Infantry||Samurai|
|Jat Lancer*||Powerful Lancer||Lancer|
|Iron Troop*||Powerful Archer||Crossbowman|
|Yojimbo Cavalry Archer*||Powerful Horse Archer||Horse Archer|
( * ) Requires the Atonement Cards