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A Cavalry Archer Civilization known for their ability to put consistent offensive pressure on their enemies during all ages. Here I am going to go over some of the basic advantages and some more in-depth strategy on how the Mongols can get the upper hand on their opponents, as well as how to rush effectively with the Mongols and hit your opponent where it hurts.
The Dark Age
Nomad – Take your three villagers and have them walk towards each other. On water maps, prefer them to walk inland. On land maps, it is usually best to stick to the corners(this is because the Mongols are weak in navy). You are looking for Berries, and Gold. Though, often i may hover down near a few Deer camps, or Boar. As the Mongols will gather them quickly. Always look for things to hunt. And always hunt what you see.
Normal – Take your three villagers and build one house with each (hotkeys are A+Q). Queue Villagers in Town Center(hotkeys Shift+A). Your goal is to keep constant villager production. Either by collecting Berries, Sheep, Fish, Deer, or Boar – you must manage your food so the Town Center is constantly working and remember hunting is your fastest source of food. You may need to use manual drop-offs to keep the production flowing. Usually 6-9 food collectors will keep your TC constantly working, but this depends on the civilization and your method of gathering. If you have found Boar to hunt, especially multiple Boar, you will have no problem keeping your score in 1st early on. When you are above 10 villagers, start sending a few on the nearby trees(no more than 4 or 5). Create a Mill if you have not already, and start building farms. Whatever original source of food you had should now be depleted. It is time to build farms. I do not recommend fishing boats as Mongols prefer to stay dry, and usually lose Naval battles and fishing ships will lack protection. At some point before your first 25 villagers, research Loom. This is important as losing a single villager to a fail Boar or a Wolf, is a huge setback in the long term. When you are around 25-30 villagers, you will need to stop producing villagers and advance to the next age. Build a barracks before the advancement finishes if you plan to Crush(Scout Cavalry Rush), and assure you have around 500 wood saved up.
The Feudal Age
The Mongols have a very fun Feudal Age. They are hard to hit and easy to hit others. Continue queuing Villagers and start sending 2 or 3 villagers at a time to build mining camps near Gold and Stone(you can send more but you MUST have a lot of farms). This is important because it will give you vision of the surroundings and a consistent flow of income, without pulling significant amount of villagers off of wood or food. If you plan to Scrush, build 2 Stables immediately after advancing(You can build 3 if you have the extra wood for a much faster production time). Also toss up a Blacksmith, the upgrades will be very important for your rush’s maximum efficiency. By this time you should have at least a dozen farms, if not more. Queue Scouts until you have 9 Scouts. (This is why 3 Stables will make much faster production). Separate them into control groups of 3’s. IMPORTANT: Set the attack stance of your Scouts to ‘defensive’, this way they will not chase. When you have found your opponent you are looking specifically for their lumber camp. If their lumber camp is too close to their Town Center, search for Mine’s and Mills/Farms that are in safe range. If nothing else, hang around and prevent your enemy villagers from gathering resources. Eventually they will attempt to build Pikemen, Which you may or may not be able to overpower with your Scouts. Continue building your economy. Build multiple lumber mills. Build a Market and Que a couple trade carts(you can worry about 20+ later, just a few for now is fine). This is where you set yourself up for a great booming Castle Age. If you are rushed here, pump out Scouts and a few Militia to defend yourself. When the Mongols are setting up for a Rush, it can very quickly turn into a great defense. Remember to research all of your technologies. These are simple things you cannot forget or belittle. The no-rush Feudal is all about spreading your economy. Branch out and snag those Gold mines and Stone mines. And always throw up a few cheap Watch Towers to give you vision between you and your enemy. Before advancing, decide how you would like to attack. We are now 20+ minutes into the came, and if you did not rush, you will need to pressure them eventually. Mongols cannot turtle.
The Castle Age
You are now in the Castle age. Your economy is booming. Immediately create extra Town Centers and start pumping out villagers. By this time you need 100+ villagers and counting. A popular Mongol Castle age attack is the Cavalry Archer. build around a dozen of them and hit your opponents resources. Cavalry Archers can pick off Pikemen if macro-ed properly. They are fast and can get away easily if in a sticky situation. The second option i recommend is building around 8-12 Knights. Knights will make quick work of almost any unit you will encounter this early on in the game. They are fast and can hit resources hard, or demolish a small platoon your enemies are attempting to put together. Continue expanding your base and branching out to further mine’s, build many military buildings, 4-10 of each. Do this so an army can be created in a very short time span. If you still have not attacked at this point, you are thinking about late-game. Consider putting up walls soon, be steady watching your opponents moves. If they build pikemen, you build Champions. If they build horses, you mix Hussars with Mameluke’s. If they build Archers, you build Elite Spearchunkers. You must be studying their every move. In a multiplayer game, you should have 20-40 trade carts running and be focusing on researching every technology. Focus your economy, and be ready for an attack. Build forward castles and prepare for late-game.
The Imperial Age
Welcome to late-game.Never abandon your farms and remember to keep all of your villagers busy. Never leave your villagers idle and constantly check for them just in case. You economy cannot fall off here or you will be outproduced. You should be pumping out troops according to your enemy, and always remember to mix Mangudai into your army, no matter what your enemy is using. Mangudai have incredible attack speed and damage, and the bonus to Siege comes in handy more often than most would think! Expect the enemies to build Halberds. Remember, Mongols have Champions – use them if the enemy builds Halberds or you will have a terrible time winning a fight. an ideal army for Mongols late game is Hussars+Champions+Mangudai, and some Siege also. If you believe your enemy has not built walls or has openings/gaps, build 20-30 Hussars and sneak into their base and hit their lumber camps. They will cry. Your base should be walled in at this point. Keep your trade-route secure, and look for ways to hit your opponents trade-routes. The Mongols do not have the strongest units in the game by far, and you must look for ways to outproduce or outplay your opponents. Look for hills to shoot arrows from. Hit groups of infantry with Mangonel’s. Kite enemies with your Cav Archers and Mangudai. Mongols do not win by brute force very often.