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Gooback/French crossbow/pike rush tactic

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This is a very commonly used strategy that the French can do in Age of Empires III. It involves creating a large mass of Crossbowmen and Pikemen very quickly, and out massing your opponent.

The cards that you NEED for this tactic are as follows:

Discovery Age:

3 Coureur des Bois

Colonial Age:


700 Wood

8 X-bows

Cards that you SHOULD also have:

Colonial Age:

700 Food

700 Coin

600 Wood

3 Hussars

Fortress Age:

2 Falconets (high priority)

3 Cuirassiers

1000 Coin

8 Skirmishers

How the strategy is executed:

Discovery Age:

- Set 4 CDB to start gathering food crates (put 2 on each crate for better efficiency) and immediately queue your first villager

- Send 1 CDB to start herding your first hunt (shoot at them so that they run towards your town centre)

- Do not gather a coin crate if you have one, gather all food and 1 wood crate

- Have your explorer explore and gather treasures

- Build 1 house, all villagers go to hunts

- Keep building CDB until you have 11, and send the 3 CDB shipment as soon as a shipment arrives

- age up with 14 CDB as soon as you have 800 food, should be right after the last CDB is done building, age up with 400 wood


- Send 6 CDB to wood, 2 of them at your forward base position

- Queue a settler so you don't waste any TC time

- Build a market, and research the wood upgrade, and the food upgrade, if you don't have enough coin for it, set 2 CDB to coin until you have enough

Colonial Age:

- Immediately build a barracks with your 2 forward CDB

- DO NOT stop building villagers

- Have 2 CDB near your town centre start to gather the crates of 400 wood from age up

- First card should be 700 wood or 4 CDB (700 wood is a stronger rush, 4 CDB gives you a better eco)

- When the 2 CDB finish building the first rax, build a second

- Immediately queue 5 x-bow

- Alot new villagers to food and wood as needed

- Keep building new houses as needed, and keep pumping out x-bows and pikes from your forwards barracks. If they have a lot of cav, build more pikes, if they don't build less pikes

- 3rd card should be 8 x-bow

- Attack around 7 - 8 minutes with your army, should be at least 35 units depending on when you attack

Options: You now have several options. If the enemy is fighting back well, keep building x-bows and pikes as needed, next card should be 700 wood or 4 CDB depending on what you haven't sent yet. If they didn't take the initial attack well, keep harrasing him with your army, but don't full on attack. If they keep fighting back well, stay in colonial for a bit. The 700 food and 600 wood shipment should allow you to keep effectively producing x-bow and pikes from 2 barracks. Ship in 700 coin and age to fortress where you can send the 2 falc shipment or some other fortress shipment, and finish them off in fortress.

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