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Age of Empires 4 Rus Civilization Guide

Age of Empires IV's Rus civilization can be one of the strongest in the game.
Age of Empires IV's Rus civilization can be one of the strongest in the game. / Photo courtesy of Relic Entertainment/Xbox Game Studios

Age of Empires IV's Rus civilization is one of the most powerful in the game, regularly topping tier lists comparing the eight options in the game. That's true in large part because of their impeccable early game. Here's how to pilot the Rus to ranked triumph.

Age of Empires 4 Rus Civilization Guide

The Rus strategy is built around its powerful economy, the keystone of which is the Hunting Cabin. Hunting Cabins replace Mills as food drop-off locations, but double as gold generators based on the quantity of trees standing nearby at the time of construction. Chopping down those trees once the Cabin is established won't affect gold generation.

The Rus also benefit from gold bounties acquired when hunting wild animals, putting a special emphasis on hunting over farming or gathering. These bounties not only provide instant gold injections, they also build toward civilization-wide buffs to food gathering speeds and Hunting Cabin gold generation. As hunting steps in as the main food source for the Rus, they can focus on generating maximum gold with Hunting Cabins rather than placing them near berry bushes.

With the Rus, you'll want to rush to the highest possible Bounty as quickly as possible, thereby ensuring the most yield from your Hunting Cabins over the course of the game.

The Rus are also extremely adept at gathering wood and putting it to good use. Their Fortified Palisaes and Wooden Fortresses are the keys to protecting your wood supply lines and harvesting them more quickly, as Wooden Fortresses buff wood gathering around them.

When it comes time for the killing blow, the Rus rely on their Streltsy, a unique gunpowder infantry unit that grows more powerful the longer it stays stationary. Combining these ranged menaces with a strong cavalry and a few of the Rus' unique Warrior Monks will result in a devastating offensive most enemies will struggle to overcome.

Rus Landmarks

  • Kremlin (Age II) – Defensive Landmark. Acts as a Wooden Fortress that comes with Arrowslits, Castle Turret, and Castle Watch technologies.
  • The Golden Gate (Age II) – Economic Landmark. Allows the exchange of resources at a favorable rate. Generates an additional exchange every minute.
  • High Trade House (Age III) – Economic Landmark. Generates Gold like a Hunting Cabin with the value increased by 200%. Spawns deer every 60 seconds. Villagers can drop off Food at this building.
  • Abbey of the Trinity (Age III) – Religious Landmark. Acts as a Monastery. Can produce Warrior Monks at half the cost and contains unique religious technologies.
  • Spasskaya Tower (Age IV) – Defensive Landmark. Acts as a Keep with all weapon emplacements already in place and with increased health.
  • High Armory (Age IV) – Military Landmark. Decrease the cost of siege engines in nearby Siege Workshops by 20%. Contains unique siege engine technologies.

Rus Unique Units

  • Lodya Transport Ship: Can be garrisoned by any unit. Allows garrisoned units to be transport across water. The Lodya can be converted to any other type of ship.
  • Lodya Fishing Boat: Small boat that gathers Food from either Deep Water Fish or Shoreline Fish. Does not require a Dock to drop off gathered Food. Can be converted to any other type of ship.
  • Lodya Trade Ship: Generates gold when assigned to a trade route with a Coastal Trade Post or a Market near the shore. Once assigned to trade, will make repeated trips between its home Dock and the trade target. Can be converted to any other type of ship.
  • Lodya Attack Ship: Crewed with Archers. Can be converted to any other type of ship.
  • Lodya Demolition Ship: Explodes when killed, damaging any units in the area, and setting fire to ships and structure. Can be converted to any other type of ship.
  • Streltsky: Most powerful ranged infantry with reasonable melee capabilities. Increased rate of fire while stationary.
  • Warrior Monk: Military-minded support unit that improves combat capabilities of nearby units after it attacks. Can pick up relics, convert enemy units and capture Sacred Sites.

Rus Unique Technologies

  • Clinker Construction: Increases the health of Lodya Attack Ships by 200.
  • Cedar Hulls: Increase the health of Lodya Attack Ships by 200 and their ranged armor by 1.
  • Castle Turret: Increase the damage of arrows fired from this Wooden Fortress by 2.
  • Castle Watch: Increases the sight range of this Wooden Fortress by 6 tiles.
  • Mounted Precision: Increase the weapon range of Horse Archers by 2.
  • Double Time: Streltsy gain the Double Time ability, which increases their movement speed by 30% and speeds up their Static Deployment time by 50% for 10 seconds.
  • Boyar's Fortitude: Increase the health of Rus cavalry by 20.
  • Knight Sabers: Increase the melee damage of Knights by 4.
  • Improved Blessing: Improve the damage ranted by Saint's Blessing by 1.
  • Saint's Reach: Increase the range of Saint's Blessing by 3 tiles.
  • Blessing Duration: Increase the duration of Saint's Blessing by 10 seconds.
  • Wandering Town: Ram damage increased by 100%.
  • Siege Crew Training: Setup and teardown speed of Trebuchets and Mangonels is instant.
  • Fine Tuned Guns: Reduce the reload time of Bombards by 25%.
  • Banded Arms: Increase the range of Springalds by 1.5 tiles.