The Huns. One of every player’s favorite civilization to play at one point of time in Age of Empires 2, although this civilization is also quite strong in competitive play, particularly on open maps. Huns are known to be a highly flexible civilization due to its ability to be flexible with melee or range options, and are also quite an effective civilization at using mobility effectively to disarm an opponent that requires all their army in a particular place to be effective (like Britons for instance).
- Do not require houses, but begin with -100 wood.
- Cavalry Archers cost reduced by 10% in Castle Age and 20% in Imperial Age.
- Trebuchets 30% more accurate.
- Stables work 20% faster.
- Tarkan (anti-archer cavalry)
- Marauders – Create Tarkans from the stable
- Atheism – Relic and Wonder victories take 100 extra years; Spies/Treason cost reduced by 50%.
Huns are a civilization that should always be played on the front foot, choosing the pace of the game and acting and reacting to reactions of their opponents. Huns are a civilization that should generally never have any issue being the one to be aggressive; the lack of requiring houses allows faster up-times to Feudal Age and also allows fluid transitions because it is easier to place a stable or an archery range and easier to continue placing farms as wood is more accessible.
Huns can open with any typical rush, however the meta is to open scouts into archers, then transition to crossbows and then Cavalry Archers. Sometimes, it is wise to transition to a scout & skirmisher build instead, particularly if the opponent is playing a civilization that their only real Castle Age option is Crossbowmen, as the skirmishers counter the spearmen also. If this is the case, it may be worthwhile maintaining skirmisher upgrades and production until a successful Tarkan transition is possible.
Where Huns struggle is in closed maps like Arena or Black Forest as these usually encourage fast castle builds with the potential to boom, and this is the opposite of the way the Huns should be played. With Huns, you will often have an aggression advantage, being able to pull off 20 population scout rushes that wound your opponent while they are walling.
Huns also are somewhat lackluster when it comes to trash-wars. While they receive hussar with faster-producing stables and halberdiers, their halberdiers and their elite skirmishers are missing the final armor upgrade. Another difficulty in trash-wars that Huns face is that they do not receive champions or supplies, which can be critical to countering an opponent’s trash.
Huns often struggle against meso civilizations and Goths. If as Huns you make Cavalry Archers, these can be dealt with by Huskarls or Eagle Warriors which have such high pierce armor. If you make cavalry, any of the meso civilizations can deal with it, either with monks or pikes if Aztecs, Kamayuks or Halberdiers if Incas, or Halberdiers or Plumed Archers if Mayans. Goths can field cheap halberdiers for days on end also. The trick with these match-ups is to make the kill on the enemy early, even sometimes going 1 town-center all in when necessary, especially with Goths, as their economy should not be as good as your own.