Military traditions represent the accumulated practices and expertise of a country's military and reward nations that keep a particularly experienced or well-trained army. They give various military-related bonuses and modifiers as well as unlock new unit abilities, unique combat tactics, and special unit types, often promoting the use of different unit compositions and strategies. Each tradition tree begins with a starting bonus that branches into three separate paths, each linear and typically based on the traditions of a particular culture or nation that uses the tree. One military tradition costs 100 Military Experience and requires that the nation has already adopted all the previous traditions in its path; however, it is possible to freely choose between the different paths when selecting the next military tradition at no extra cost. Adopting the seventh tradition in a particular path will unlock the final path bonus at no extra cost.
Military tradition types
There are seven different military traditions in the world, each typically tied one or more culture groups. Each country starts with a predefined military tradition which cannot be changed except through a few special events.
- Main article: Barbarian traditions
The Barbarian traditions encompass the fighting styles of the peoples of Hispania, Gaul, Britannia, and Germania, among others. They mostly relied on large formations of lightly armored infantry equipped with spears or swords, supported by nimble chariot formations or light cavalry, and made extensive use of ambush tactics, especially in forests.
- Main article: Greek traditions
The Greek traditions cover the tactics of the peoples of the hellenistic empires and the eastern Mediterranean Sea.
- Main article: Indian traditions
The Indian traditions highlight the strengths of the Mauryan kingdom and its neighbors, using large formations of Indian war elephants to smash through the enemy, supported by fast moving archers and chariots who can maneuver around the dispersed troops. They also used complex formations such as the legendary Blooming Lotus, or Padma Vyuha.
- Main article: Italic traditions
The italic traditions represent the focus on heavily armored and disciplined infantry found in the Etruscan, Roman and other Latin states. They came to favor the sword over the spear, and relied on quickly closing ground with and dispersing less well equipped infantry using strict formations, such as the Triplex Acies, with supporting light cavalry and skirmishers.
Levantine and Arabian Traditions
- Main article: Levantine and Arabian traditions
The Levantine and Arabian traditions concentrate on the strong naval presence of the Phoenician cities and the use of phalanx tactics, light infantry, and camelry in the arid deserts of the Levant, Egypt, and Arabia. The Phoenicians were the most prominent traders of the Mediterranean, giving them unmatched experience with seafaring and ship building.
- Main article: North African traditions
The North African traditions concentrate on the strengths of the Phoenician merchant state of Carthage and the surrounding nations. The Carthaginians had a strong naval tradition built on centuries of Mediterranean trade, and made use of heavy infantry and African war elephants supported by light infantry and cavalry to smash through enemy formations.
- Main article: Persian traditions
The Persian traditions cover the tactics of the peoples of the Scythian steppe and satellites of the former Achaemenid empire. Life on and around the steppe has forged these peoples into exquisite horsemen who, armed with a bow, can harry and surround their opponents from beyond their reach, while their infantry concentrates on whittling down the worn out formation.