The Spanish are a Western European civilization featured in the Age of Empires II: The Conquerors expansion situated in modern-day Spain. They are an offensive civilization with a strong navy and specialize in cavalry and gunpowder units.
The Spanish were best known for exploring much of the world across the Atlantic and for being among the first Europeans to establish colonies along the Caribbean and the Americas. They were also known for defeating powerful Amerindian empires of the New World and introducing Christianity to the region as a result of their powerful navy and superior weaponry. To reflect this achievement, Spanish gunpowder units fire faster and their Cannon Galleons fire more accurately with a Ballistics-like effect and the cannonballs travels faster (Ballistics research not required). As a result, the Spanish navy is the most versatile in the game, as they have access to all naval units and technologies.Their superior weaponry and metallurgy is represented by the fact that their Blacksmith technologies requires no gold. In addition, they can train more than one unique unit, namely the Conquistador and the Missionary which are all mounted units. The Conquistador is nothing more than a mounted hand cannoneer with higher hit points and speed. However, it has lower attack and range. The Missionary is essentially a mounted Monk and is the only unique monk in the entire game, produced at the Monastery. The Missionary has lower range and cannot pick up relics, however. To reflect their widespread religious activity in the Americas, Inquisition allows their Monks and Missionaries to convert faster. They also have access to all technologies at the Monastery. As a result, the Spanish land forces feature a standard mix of infantry and cavalry units with all such units available, except for Eagle Warriors and Camels. The Spanish unique technology Supremacy drastically increases the combat skill of their villagers, giving Spanish players the opportunity to use villagers to perform combat duties. However, Spanish siege weapons are somewhat lacking, missing both the Siege Onager and Heavy Scorpion and are the only civilization to be missing the Crossbowman upgrade, meaning that the Spanish have to rely on fast firing Bombard Cannons as their siege support and Conquistadors and Hand Cannoneers as their anti-infantry ranged support. As a result of their overseas conquest and their successful search for riches, the Spanish team bonus increases productivity of all allied trade units.
They are featured heavily throughout the El Cid campaign as the player civilization, although some of the scenarios featured the Saracen civilization as the one used by the player. They are also the main opponents in the Montezuma campaign, warring against the Aztec and Maya and they are also played in the Battle of Lepanto scenario.
Gameplay wise, the Spanish will struggle against civilizations with strong camels (i.e. Saracens' Camels and Mamelukes) that can counter their Paladins, and civilizations with strong counters to their Conquistadors (i.e. Berbers' Genitours, and Italian Geneose Crossbowmen and Condottieros). Conversely, they are a formidable foe to the Aztecs, Vikings , and the Teutons, as the former two lack the Halberdier upgrade to deal with the Spanish Paladins, while the Teutons' Teutonic Knights slow movement speed are incredibly vulnerable to Conquistador high mobility and anti-infantry ranged attack and the Spanish cavalry is far superior to the Teuton's. The Spanish strong monk bonuses (the mounted Missionary and Inquisition unique tech) makes the Spanish an ideal civilization to punish civilizations that lack Heresy, especially civilizations that heavily depend on expensive units (such as the Persians, Slavs, Indians, and Koreans).