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Topic Subject: MY Guide to the Dutch
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posted 02-10-06 09:55 PM EDT (US)   
The Dutch: A guide to Booming and Turtling

The Dutch are probably the most unique civilization in Age of Empires 3. They are also the least used civilization other than Russian and The Portuguese. In this guide, I will try to get more people to play with the Dutch and appreciate their true power. All of the strategies in here can really be used at any HC level, but some will be changed according to level. This is the 1st time I have ever written a guide, and some peopleís guides that I look at to give me ideas are TGE (TheGoodEvil), and Ceres629. I hope more people will want to play as the Dutch after they read this guide.

If you are playing as the Dutch, there are several things you have to look out for. 1st of all, Cuirassiers! These are really hard for any civilization to counter, and they will completely destroy a Dutch army. If you think Ruyters can defeat them, you will have to have them outnumbered 4:1. Also, a good German FF mercenary rush will absolutely KILL dutch unless you can FF and get mercenaries out yourself, but you will still be outnumbered. Second, ALWAYS use envoys. You can make 3 of these things for only 225 food, and it is essentially spies, because nothing attacks them. You can see what your enemy has, find the best spot to send some cavalry to raid villagers, etc.

The Dutch are probably the best turtling civilization in the game and one of the best boomers when you get to level 25. This is because inside your thick shell of walls, towers, and cannon, you can have 8 banks constantly pumping out coin. If you are lvl 25, you can get the tulip speculation card, which makes your banks produce coin even faster! This means you donít have to worry too much about miners. Sure, itís a good idea to always have some miners, but if your enemy has control of all the gold mines, you will still have a steady income of gold. Most enemies assume that once your mines are take, a Dutch player cannot survive. I have seen MANY opponents think ďhmm, Iím playing a Dutch player, better tower up all of the mines,Ē and send parts of his army to defend mines etc. However, all you have to do is wall in 8 banks and 2 factories, and you will be good to go, probably getting even more gold than him.

Essential Concepts for Turtling with Dutch:
Try not to have to build walls around trade routes, because it will leave a hole in your wall. If you are forced to, have a cannon ready to kill everything that comes through the hole in 1 shot, and have some towers etc ready just incase. You donít want your fort to be too big, but also not too small. If it is too big, people will be attacking you from all sides and it will be hard to defend. If it is too small, you will be very cramped, with not much room for mills etc, and if someone gets mortars too close, all of your buildings could fall with just a few shots. I usually only have a 1 layer wall, but if the game is getting past 1 hour, I will make a second layer for insurance. You have to raid in the Colonial age with 10 skirmishers. If you can kill maybe only 4-5 villagers, it will deal a tremendous blow to his economy because that is essentially 400-500 food he has wasted.

The Strategy: A Dutch Boom
Recommended Home City Level: 25
Cards needed:
700 gold
700 wood
4 villagers
3 villagers
Bank of Amsterdam/Rotterdam- DO NOT send these under any circumstances until you are in the Industrial age. It is a waste of a shipment earlier on because it is just 1 extra bank, and you will probably not need that little extra gold then. Send the Unique Church card 1st.
Both Factories
Tulip Speculation
Unique Church Card
2 Heavy Cannon
1000 gold/1000 wood.

The Strategy:
Start out by sending 3 villagers over to the closest mine. Send the rest to the crates in the order gold, wood and then last food cratesÖmicromanage the villagers. Then send 3 more to the mine for a total of 6 at the mine, and the last one chases hunts closer to the TC. All villagers produced go straight to hunts. Have one of your mines make a house at some point, but NEVER have any idle TC time. Send the 3 villager card as your 1st shipment.

Once you have 17 villagers total with the 3 villager card, age up. During the age up, I move 2 miners to wood and 2 food gatherers to wood. Pick the 500 wood politician to age up. Once you get to colonial, send the 4 villager card straight away if your opponent is NOT rushing. All villagers go straight to wood now, and transfer the 2 miners from before back to gold. Get a barracks up ASAP and make 10 skirmishers. 3rd Shipment should be 700 wood. If the enemy is rushing, I would advise having 1 age 2 military shipment, but the best thing to do is NOT TO USE DUTCH AGAINST OTTOMAN RUSHERS. There are hardly any ways to defend against this. Anyway, by about 10 minutes you should have about 26 villagers- 10 on food, 6 on gold, and 10 on wood. You should also build a bank ASAP with the wood you get from the 700 wood shipment. Once you get your 10 skirmishers, head over to the enemy town. Try to find villagers further away from the TC with your explorer during the transition to the colonial age, such as hunters. 1 volley from 10 skirmishers will kill 1 villager. Unless it is French of course. If the enemy has troops, bump and run back to your base.

As soon as you get 1200 food and 1000 gold, you should advance to fortress age. During the transition, make lots of skirmishers. The more the better! By fortress age you should have 20 skirmishers and 2 banks. The politician to age up fast should be used. You should hit fortress around 12 minutes, with 25-30 villagers and 2 banks. Keep on making villagers in fortress, sending them to food and wood. Start your wall now. Look for natural things to use as walls that canít be destroyed, such as cliffs or native villages. Make banks each time you can. 4th shipment should be 700 gold (this should be way before fortress age). Once you get to fortress, you have a choice. If your enemy is booming, you could get up a fort, or you could continue your boom with the 1000 wood card. Once hunts within a reasonable distance from your TC are gone, come back and build mills. With the 1000 wood you can build 2 mills, and another barracks. Once you get your fort up, (which I like to do 1st card in fortress, start making LOTS AND LOTS of Ruyters. Get an artillery foundry up ASAP, and send the 1000 gold shipment. You should have 4 banks by now (about 15-20 minutes). Make 5 falconets, 20 skirmishers, and 20 Ruyters. Then go and attack the enemy. This force is very strong. If the enemy is heavy on infantry, the cannon will destroy them. If the enemy has cavalry such as hussars or lancers, the Ruyters will kill them. If the enemy has cannon, Ruyters slaughter cannon. You should be able to hurt his economy pretty badly with this force. During this time, you should send the Unique church techs card and make a church. Keep on pumping out villagers until you are at the 50 limit, which I usually hit around 20-25 minutes. I have 20 on food, 20 on wood, and 10 on gold. Research coffee trade ASAP and get the other 2 banks up. You should be in a nice walled fort with 2 barracks, 2 mills, 1 stable, 1 fort, 1 artillery foundry, 1 church, 50 villagers, and army attacking the enemy, and be making more army. Get to industrial as fast as you can, I usually get there around 20 minutes. Once you are there, research mercantilism. This should give you 2 shipments, send the 2 factories over. Set one to food and one to wood. Make more and more Ruyters, Falconets, Skirmishers, Halberdiers, and Culverins. It really depends on what the enemy is doing to decide what you will make. You should have a LOT of extra gold by now, if your ally needs some, by all means give it to him. This will give him more troops, and give you a higher chance of winning. The last cards you send are up to you. I advise having your choice of military and mercenary cards in there other than the ones I listed above. You should really have won the game by 30 minutes. Not many players can defeat a force of Ruyters, skirmishers, and falconets. Also have some skirmisher combat cards. The advanced arsenal card is also very helpful for skirmishers, aim is to have lots of VERY STRONG (at least guard strength) at the fortress age with only veteran skirmishers. Basically, you HAVE to have your base well defended, you HAVE to always raid your enemies villagers, and you HAVE to not only rely on this build order. This will only take you so far. Also, if there is ANY water on the map, CONTROL IS VITAL! Monitors will crush your economy by killing your banks. If you can control it, fishing ships will be getting you even more resources, monitors will be destroying his base, and with all the wood you will have coming in, it will be easy to afford ships.

Make your own decisions judging by what kind of player you are playing. A rusher is hard to defend against, maybe build a wall a little early, but the skirmishers should be enough of a defense. A boomer can be raided constantly. Someone massing cavalry will lose to your Ruyters, which are cheap and take up only 1 population space. Someone with lots of infantry will lose to your cannon, and someone with artillery will lose to your culverins. Once the Dutch have their fortress with walls and lots of banks, they are an UNSTOPPABLE ECONOMIC POWERHOUSE! You can mass falconets (O.K., not mass but make 10-15 or so) which are really unstoppable because Ruyters will MOW down any cavalry like hussars heading towards you. You will NEVER be short on gold. Again, this is my 1st guide, so donít criticize me too much.

Proud Author of the Guide to Booming/Turtling with the Dutch:,28760,0,10

Back to Age of Empires III after about 6 months off!

[This message has been edited by Battle Master (edited 02-14-2006 @ 08:56 AM).]

posted 02-10-06 10:20 PM EDT (US)     1 / 40  
posted 02-11-06 00:03 AM EDT (US)     2 / 40  
Nice job friend. I personally like to have a certain even number of villagers rather than having whatever. ex) 20 villies on food/gold and 10 on wood. Anyways, good guide battle master.
posted 02-11-06 01:20 AM EDT (US)     3 / 40  
Nice guide, but I would do the following

1. Break that 500 word paragraph up a bit, a little hard on the eyes..heh

2. Build banks a bit sooner, of course this depends on the map

posted 02-11-06 08:44 AM EDT (US)     4 / 40  
thanks guys...did you really count the words?lol
and i may post some more strategies soon

Proud Author of the Guide to Booming/Turtling with the Dutch:,28760,0,10

Back to Age of Empires III after about 6 months off!

[This message has been edited by Battle Master (edited 02-11-2006 @ 01:11 PM).]

posted 02-11-06 01:30 PM EDT (US)     5 / 40  
What kind of age up times are you getting with you 17 vil start? I think thats too slow myself, against people who don't have an early harrass card I guess its okay, but I wouldn't advise it against Russia/German or anyone who is likely to use the Hussar card.

I am kind of biased because lately I have been doing an 11 vil start with Russia, first card Cossack and hit.. and if your still in discovery thats a long time to pick of villagers.

posted 02-11-06 01:49 PM EDT (US)     6 / 40  
17 vills with the Dutch are fine, they start with 7 and you could hit about 5 min with 17 vills.

Anyways, good job, the only thing I disagreed with was not producing Heavy Cannon, those IMO are too good of an offer to pass up. Maybe it's a bit different with the dutch though, as 8 banks and 50 vills doesn't add up to 99 vills...I'd still at least set one of them to produce Heavy Cannon

posted 02-11-06 02:46 PM EDT (US)     7 / 40  
yes, i said it depends on game- heavy cannon if you want .
anyway, for earl, i usually hit colonial around 4:30 to 5 mins, fort around 12-14 mins, and industrial around 20 mins. HeAVY cannon are very good, but you cant only win with them.

Proud Author of the Guide to Booming/Turtling with the Dutch:,28760,0,10

Back to Age of Empires III after about 6 months off!

posted 02-11-06 03:08 PM EDT (US)     8 / 40  
nice guide, maybe i will pick dutch soon....

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posted 02-11-06 06:07 PM EDT (US)     9 / 40  

Proud Author of the Guide to Booming/Turtling with the Dutch:,28760,0,10

Back to Age of Empires III after about 6 months off!

posted 02-11-06 07:32 PM EDT (US)     10 / 40  
actually skirms will pwn his jannisaries so just micro, its not very hard to stop abus from destrying your tc
posted 02-11-06 10:13 PM EDT (US)     11 / 40  
16 Vils are a lot safer than 17 Vils.
posted 02-11-06 10:41 PM EDT (US)     12 / 40  
Definately a good guide for anyone wanting to play dutch and struggling with their eco, I know i sure am.

It seems to be a very strong solid boom, but it is a 12 minute fortress time really safe enough?

I mean most people FF against dutch and they are gonna start entering you base at almost 11 minutes. I guess if you can raid well enough with those 10 skirms you can slow them though.

As brits I find 10:30 to be the absolute latest to hit fortress against a good FF'r otherwise I can't get my cannons and stuff out in time. I'm not sure about dutch but it just seems a bit risky with a 12min fortress, but then i don't really play dutch so i wouldn't really know too well.

[This message has been edited by Ceres629 (edited 02-11-2006 @ 10:42 PM).]

posted 02-11-06 11:23 PM EDT (US)     13 / 40  
12 minutes wont hurt much if your already walled in with skirmishers behind the walls. Just need to produce falcs, culverin asap in fortress.

Its actually possible to do a decent job rushing otto with dutch but you have to age alot earlier and send 3 hussars card and already have skirms ready really fast.
If that can be accomplished the only way an otto player can survive is building a seige shop first and sending the 5 jan card to coincide with the first abus guns.
If you can micro the 5 jans with skirms before he gets abus out your in good shape since he has to build a barracks yet to make more. the 3 hussars can hit the unprotected abus.
You have to age up at around 4 mins or less to have skirms and hussars in his base before hes ready.

Vs french ruyters still are the best counter and do well if you havent let them age to imp and get the final upgrade.
You can set ruyters in groups of 20-30 and micro each cur. They will drop in one volley. You do need at least 3 ruyter to 1 cur. Start raiding french in early fortress with ruyters and microing the curs and they will never make it to age 5.

I also never make heavy cannons from factory. As nice as they are dutch really only usually need falcs or at times culverins. Upgraded falcs are good enough to decimate any infantry counter to the ruyters if you have enough and the ruyters are enough to protect the falcs. At times you do need culverins though.

The dutch's biggest weakness is early colonial indian rushes but its one of those things that dutch can also do so if you know your opponent is going to indian rush then you have to do it also basically. 2nd biggest weakness is vs Spanish either in a colonial fight or vs a ff. Both are losing sides. 3rd is obviously an early otto jan/abus rush. You cant micro the jans if they are behind the abus and you cant kill the abus with hussars as long as he has jans close.

posted 02-12-06 12:50 PM EDT (US)     14 / 40  
Thank- you Osheal! You said what I was gonna say. Yes, in age 2 you are defended because of skirmishers and a wall, factories are BETTER making other things than cannon, but remember: IT depends on the map you are playing. And you shouldn't die to an ottoman because age 2 skirmishers can easily drop jannisaries.

Proud Author of the Guide to Booming/Turtling with the Dutch:,28760,0,10

Back to Age of Empires III after about 6 months off!

posted 02-12-06 02:46 PM EDT (US)     15 / 40  


The dutch's biggest weakness is early colonial indian rushes but its one of those things that dutch can also do so if you know your opponent is going to indian rush then you have to do it also basically. 2nd biggest weakness is vs Spanish either in a colonial fight or vs a ff. Both are losing sides. 3rd is obviously an early otto jan/abus rush. You cant micro the jans if they are behind the abus and you cant kill the abus with hussars as long as he has jans close.

Dutch indian rushes are very,very substandard.They are among the worst for doing it.I feel more confdent doing a British native rush over dutch

posted 02-12-06 03:03 PM EDT (US)     16 / 40  
All you want to do is harass the villagers with 10 skirmishers because they can kill 1 vil with 1 volley. Booming is key.

Proud Author of the Guide to Booming/Turtling with the Dutch:,28760,0,10

Back to Age of Empires III after about 6 months off!

posted 02-12-06 03:57 PM EDT (US)     17 / 40  
I rushed as Dutch and found it very succesful.Aggresive style of play usually is more beneficial
posted 02-12-06 04:01 PM EDT (US)     18 / 40  
lol i by no means said that dutch were as good at indian rushing as some other civs. French are probably the best IMO. Being that dutch have little to no counter for some indian rushes though its sometimes best to attempt and indian rush just to limit the indian rush of the opponent. In fact, it may be about all a dutch player can do against something like a nootka club rush.
posted 02-12-06 04:27 PM EDT (US)     19 / 40  
Against a nootka club rush I would use 5 skirms to kill 15 of them,wouldnt you?
posted 02-12-06 10:56 PM EDT (US)     20 / 40  
Your welcome to try...Clubs move faster than muskets thus harder to micro and my 10 skirms couldnt kill a single club in one volley. In fact you cant kill 15 clubs with 10 skirms before they drop you barracks even if they arent running down your skirms.
posted 02-13-06 06:14 AM EDT (US)     21 / 40  
1 volley from 10skirms DOES kill a clubman in colonial.And it should take them 20 seconds to kill your barracks,so you shouldve killed 6 of them before they even tried attacking your skirmishers.Then just hit and run like you would with hussars and theyre dead.
posted 02-13-06 11:12 AM EDT (US)     22 / 40  
Nice stuff BM. Although I play team games and rarely 1v1 here are a few ideas:

1. Try 5 villies on gold instead of 6, rest on food. Still gives constant villie production and minimal TC idle time prior to hitting the colonial age up. 17 is the number I use also.

2. Once in age 2 a few things I have worked on WRT cards.

a. Wait on making banks and send the 8 pike card to protect my gold miners/hunters depending on distance to TC. Depends on if you are facing a early cav civ like Germans, Russians etc. All villies on gold (2 mines going) and food, make the 10 skirms for defense and rush to Fortress using wood via shipments.

b. During transition to colonial send all to wood to get a TP then back to food/gold.

c. 2 tower card first and full turtle (walls, skirm, early bank, culv or 2) with scouting only, no raiding to get to fortress ASAP. Have to send a few wood choppers in my experience for this one.

My goal is to go mass ruyters / falcs, which I have found to be a tough combo for the opponent to handle, hence getting a decent fortress time and forgoing the early skirm advantage. As you may have guessed I have issues with not driving the fight and being agressive early to disrupt others gameplans but tough to do with the Dutch. Any advise on this front welcome.

So the decision to boom (with some D) or turtle comes from scouting and judging if I am going to have somebody in my #$@% right away or not.

I can say one thing I have found to be true. If someone lets you get mass ruyters and falcs they are in for a long (or short) game. Getting there is the issue.

posted 02-13-06 02:15 PM EDT (US)     23 / 40  
A German FF would destroy this strategy. OMFG last night I played Iamgrunt 2 times and holy shit he convinced me that the Dutch would never hold a candle to Spain or Germany equal skill opponents. Granted he is 3 times the player I am but I hung with him in score but he used his fast shipments to overcome me.

If I was someone that wanted to win dont play the Dutch. Banks cost to many resources early so any civ that has a fast start will beat you as their ROI is waaaaaayyyy faster then yours.

However once you get to Industrial with the Dutch its pretty much gg. Though no good player will ever let you get there.

Holes in this strategy (Its a good strat against anyone but French, Spain, or Germany.)

here are some tips for the FF civs:

1) Take the 3 vills then the 300 wood. Build a bank while aging to colonial. Early I mine 300 gold que 5 vills total then everyone on food. I can age with little idle TC time around 4:00

2) Getting the bank will get you another shipment as soon as you age so you dont really lose a shipment. Take the 500 wood and build another bank. Send the 700 wood then the 700 gold. Your goal is to get 2 banks up ASAP put almost all of your vills on food and get to Fortress with a streaming supply of gold.

3) Dont worry about a rush. Seriously I havent been rushed by a high level German, Spanish, or French player (when Dutch) in weeks. I dont count native maps as rushing you should see it coming on those maps.

4) When you get to fortress its wide Open. If you feel your way earlier then your opponent send Hackapells they can wreak havoc on a FF economy. If its the same time send the BR's. Spam skirms like crazy in Fortress and just build an army as fast as possible using cards. The 10 ryuter card PWNS germany and Spain. If you think a Ryuter/Falconet combo is tough try the BR/Falconet combo.

5) DEFEND THE TRADE POSTS. Never let these guys spam these things. If you see them doing it then send the 3 Hussar card they are great at killing explorers with ease. You can use your explorer but against spain the Dogs will murder you.

Alcohol, the cause and solution to all of lifes problems

Homer J

posted 02-13-06 03:46 PM EDT (US)     24 / 40  

So you go 2 banks prior to fortress. I go back and forth on this but never thought about the shipment speed increase due to bank exp. Do you grab a TP also?

When grunt hit you with the mercs did you fight off the initial raid but it hurt the economy enough to give him the edge?

Any chances to raid enough to get more D out?

The whole power projection thing with the Dutch is my biggest problem and I have seen it done effectively before.

Hitting your opponent enough to keep them off thier gameplan is easier said than done with the Dutch it seems.

posted 02-14-06 01:48 AM EDT (US)     25 / 40  
I played dutch a lot and this strat imo isn't to my taste. First 700 gold card you don't really need and people on wood don't even bother until 10 minute mark. I use the 600 and 700 wood cards combined with the 500 from aging, this is enough wood for a few banks barracks and houses.

Dutch crave gold so it would be far more efficient to have heaps mining gold than have some on gold some on wood as wood is painfully slow to gather.

Fort i dont use them much really, down to personal preferance that one but i would rather beef up my skirms.

I think i usually got to fortress bout 9 or 10 mins preety regualr without much thought to it, as long as you dont have many people on wood you should age up alright relying on wood shipments.

Also religious freedom, i love this card, in industrial max your pop then research the 30 musketeers, ownage!!

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