Each of the following races is not included in Age of Wonders III as a race that can build cities and expand in the same way as the other starting races, but they inhabit dwellings which can be absorbed into one's empire. The dwelling can then produce some of the units of the race that inhabits it, some of which can be very powerful and game changing.
Each of the minor races has their race name as a passive ability with the exception of the Archon Revenants. Their classification is Undead, but also get the Dedicated to Evil ability, which is not listed as deriving from the Undead ability.
All of the units listed have the classification of the minor race, but not all of them are accessible in the dwellings inhabited by that race. Any unit with ** following it cannot be produced from a dwelling.
- 1 Dragons
- 2 Giants
- 3 Fey
- 4 Archon Revenants
- 5 Naga
"The Dragons are an ancient race of powerful, reptilian creatures. Born into this world during its creation, the Dragons are said to have shaped the world for the other races to inhabit. Each Dragon type to emerge represented one element; ranging from metals and gems to fire and frost. The Giants came next, shaping the lands in finer detail, often changing what the Dragons had formed. This is thought to be the source of the fierce animosity between the two races. All Dragons can fly and possess powerful magical abilities and immunities, combining breath attacks with powerful claws."
The dragons still hold many of the dwellings they carved out in the dawn of creation and they are as intelligent and articulate as any other race, though they are also more primal and predictable too. They are born of the elements and their appearance reflects that, with the types of dragon being very different from eachother.
You can find their homes among ancient volcanoes, often with a few dragons standing guard in their dwelling and a few wvyerns wandering their territory. They will defend themselves from attack but may be open to diplomatic approaches. If you befriend them they will grant you quests from time to time with large rewards, although the quests themselves are often great tasks requiring a number of armies.
If you conquer them or win their alligence through diplomacy then you will be able to produce your own elemental fury breathing lizards. Firstly theres wyverns that can fly and have good resistances and statistics but they arn't something to write home about. Then after a few upgrades that cost a lot of gold, and many turns, you can produce your own dragons. These are the true powerhouses of the elements, with massive resistances and abilities that rival a lot of the most powerful spells in the game. They are very expensive to produce though, so you'll be lucky to get a few of these over the course of an entire game.
Dragons Inherent Traits
Dragons Racial Units
- Fire Wyvern
- Frost Wyvern
- Gold Wyvern
- Obsidian Wyvern**
- Bone Wyvern**
- Fire Dragon
- Frost Dragon
- Gold Dragon
- Obsidian Dragon**
- Bone Dragon**
"According to ancient scripture, the Giant kin helped the Allfather form the continents, with Fire Giants directing the flow of molten rock, the Rock Giants shaping the solidified rock and the Storm Giants giving the lands their final polish through erosion. The Titans were the masters of the Giants and they oversaw the work of their kin, until the Giants rebelled. Now, Giants are rarely seen, and they keep mostly to themselves. They can sometimes be rallied behind a cause though, often with devastating results."
Giants are one of the oldest races in the world, and this shows in their appearance as they are much more primal than other races and much more linked into the elements themselves.
They live in secluded keeps for the most part, often near a node or other structure dedicated to the elements. They are, for the most part, friendly to their neighbours unless roused, in which case they are a dangerous threat. Giants can be hard to kill due to their massive defensive stats and inherent resistances, as well as their strong abilities, but it can be done after a long seige due to their comparatively low production scores.
If you conquer or befriend a giant's keep then they will swear alligence to your cause and you can then produce your own giants. The most common is the stone giant with their massive pick-axe and ability to throw large boulders. They are a walking, living seige weapon and can fill this role very well. Then you have frost and fire giants, which are much more focused on combat than seige warfare with devastating abilities and dangerous weapons.
Their keeps are often enchanted with powerful magics that give their troops defensive bonuses, and do not have walls, so bear this in mind before rolling up to their front door with a ram or other seige weapon as they'll likely stomp right through it in order to get to your troops.
Giants Inherent Traits
Giants Racial Units
"Fey are supernatural beings with a close connection to nature. As caretakers of the woods they favor deep forests and often shun the other races. However, due to their playfulness, curiosity and carefree nature, the strongly individual Fey can be found all over Athla supporting a wide variety of different causes. All Fey are highly magical and possess unique magic abilities."
The fey are a fickle group that don't reside fully in the real world, they are a highly magical people found deep in the rugged parts of the forests of the world, far from civilisation.
They are for the most part more fragile than the other races and this carries across in their troops as most of them are more about misdirection and disables more than real damage. They can be used on the front lines but a full army of any of their units is asking for some serious area of effect damage to wipe them out.
They are not always friendly to their neighbours and not all of them are good or neutral but for the most part they are a good dwelling to befriend at the start of games as they give simple quests that are easily completed using few units. If met during the mid or late game they are most likely under the control of somebody or easily conquered using tier three units and above. It always pays to be careful though, if the Fairies are allowed to hit you with a Fairy Fire without having to move, you will take a ton of damage!
Fey Inherent Traits
Fey Racial Units
"Archon Revenants are corruptions of the glorious and noble Archon. In life, the Archon were a race of enlightened men. Outwardly very similar to humans, their inner peace and nature resembled that of the elves. Always helping humanity, their most fervent goal was fighting and obliterating the undead, who they saw as their ultimate nemesis. They eventually left, leaving behind tombs of warriors in large necropoles. By some cruel twist of fate, they eventually rose from their resting places as undead themselves. Nothing like their former selves, these Archon Revenants are soulless beings intend on spreading death and destruction."
People who played the previous two Age of Wonders games might remember the Archons, these are all that remains of their civilisations as their time has long passed. The dead they stored in these structures have since risen against their former philosophies they had in life, and now seek nothing more than to spread the undead plague across the world.
They do retain a certain amount of intelligence, if only guile and instinct. They can be reasoned with when they are in their Necropoles, assumedly because they have now become the focus of their powers and is where they are strongest.
Their troops are hardy and resistant to blight and frost but are let down by their lack of regeneration and significant spirit weaknesses. Their true strength lies in their power cohesion, a group of Revenants backed up by a Archon Caster is a dangerous force for all but the most prepared, they make good filler units due to their lower costs and the Archon Titan is a dangerous foe for any normal unit to face. Their later units, the Wraiths, are some of the strongest units in the game.
Archon Revenant Inherent Traits
Archon Revenant Racial Units
"The Naga are an ancient race of powerful, reptilian creatures. They tend to hide in their swamps and only come out when provoked or hired in mercenary armies. Ruled by Matriarchs, they have a strictly organized society, so much so that the different roles and duties have started influencing their appearance. All Naga are strong melee fighters, with the slightly dimwitted Glutton the strongest of them all. The Matriarch possesses powerful magical abilities to control her subjects and neutralize enemy threats."
Unlike many of the dwellings, the Naga have units that fill similar roles to those of units from the regular races, such as Infantry and Pikeman. However, in addition to their greater strength than conventional units of these types, Naga have two distinctive features. Their ability to swim can confer a strategic advantage, but more important is their strong self-healing powers. Any opponent fighting naga will want to ensure that they focus fire and finish off their targets quickly, since a naga on the verge of death can bounce back quickly through Slip Away and Regrowth, and dispersed packets of minor damage (as the AI is inclined to dish out with ranged attacks in the opening round of a tactical battle) may be negated by Regrowth entirely. The Glutton is an exception, as it is too big to simply Slip Away and must feed on weaker units in order to heal - combined with its Gas Breath, this makes the Glutton quite powerful against groups of lower-tier enemies, but less well suited to enemies closer to its own size.
Lacking ranged attacks of their own, the naga breed Reed Serpents to fulfill this role, allowing non-Archdruids with a naga lair the opportunity to attempt to cultivate their own King Reed Serpents. As a melee-based support unit, the Naga Matriarch can benefit from support upgrades from a variety of classes, allowing for a range of possible tactics. Between the Taunt ability of Gluttons and the Charm ability of Matriarchs, a well-developed naga lair offers multiple opportunities to seize control of troops from an opposing commander.
With generally good resistances and protection against Blight and Fire, naga are generally more vulnerable to physical than nonphysical attacks, although heavy frost damage can also give them pause. This is particularly obvious in their top unit, the Glutton, with the unusual combination of a tier one-level Defense attribute and a high Resistance attribute. Combined with a high health, this makes the Glutton extremely resilient against foes that rely on nonphysical damage types - however, a Glutton can be brought down quickly through a concerted effort by numerous conventional archers or strong melee troops, particularly if they make good use of flanking.
Naga Inherent Traits
- Likes: Dense Vegetation and Wetlands
- Hates: Arctic