The Zen Temple is a native Asian religious settlement featured in Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties. Like all natives, they can be allied with by building a Trading Post at their Trading Post site.

The Zen Temple is available on the Ceylon, Honshu, Silk Road and Yellow River maps.

Unit Edit

Sohei: Japanese warrior monks armed with a naginata, similar to the Naginata Rider. Good against cavalry and buildings, but inefficient and weak against ranged infantry. Up to 15 can be trained per settlement.

Upgrades Edit

Age Icon Improvement Cost Effect
Ages discovery
Meditation 350 wood, 350 coin Gives +1000 XP
Ages discovery
Master Lessons
Master Lessons 150 food, 150 coin Infantry get +10% melee attack
Ages discovery
Meritocracy 300 food, 300 coin Unit upgrades cost -20%
Ages fortress
Disciplined natives
Zen Discipline Training 200 wood, 150 coin Upgrades Sohei to Disciplined
Ages industrial
Honered natives
Zen Honor Training 400 wood, 300 coin Upgrades Sohei to Honored

Usefulness Edit

  • Meritocracy can be used by all civilizations, but civilizations with many Royal Guard units or just many units, such as the Spanish and the French benefit the most due to the large cost of upgrading for Royal Guard units.
  • Master Lessons greatly depends on how much hand infantry the civilization possesses. For instance, the Aztecs can get much use of this, having four standard hand infantry units, while the Ottomans can only upgrade mercenaries and native warriors, having no standard hand infantry.
  • Meditation is good for any civilization, granting 1,000 experience for a lesser price per experience than Mercantilism and Bullionism. This is especially useful in Treaty games, where experience is hard to get for European and Asian civilizations.

History Edit

"This Holy Site is identical to a Native Trade Site. Allying with Natives allows a player to train special Native units, usually warriors, and also grants access to a group of improvements to that tribe. Native units do not cost any population spaces, but can only be built in limited numbers.

Zen is a school of Buddhism that seeks a form of enlightenment achieved by the Buddha, a title that began with the very first Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama, an Indian prince who abandoned his life of luxury to pursue an ascetic life. The goal of Zen is to eventually reach enlightenment through the Four Noble Truths: existence is suffering; desire is its cause; the cessation of suffering is possible; and the way to accomplish this is to follow the Eightfold Path.

In the year 520 AD, a legendary Indian monk named Bodhidharma brought the teachings of Zen, then called Chan, to the Chinese. Chan Buddhists worked to see the world just as it is, with a mind free of thoughts or feelings. This perception was called “no-mind, or “wu-shin” in Chinese. Chan split into two separate schools, the Southern school, which believed in sudden enlightenment, and the Northern school, which believed in a more gradual process. Only the Northern school survived through the 8th century. By the 12th century, Zen had flourished in Japan, and by the 20th century it had gained adherents in the West.

Today, Zen Buddhism is practiced by millions of people around the world. The tenets remain the same, that the potential to reach enlightenment lies in every human being, but is blocked by ignorance. Only intense study, meditation, doing good deeds, conducting rites, and the worship of images will enable the breakthrough required to shed limited perceptions and achieve a spiritual awakening.

Gallery Edit