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Russia (ETW Faction)

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Russia (ETW Faction)
Russia FlagETW.png
Name: Russia
From Game: Empire: Total War
Culture: European

The Russian Empire is one of the 11 playable nations in Empire: Total War's Grand Campaign. It is also a major faction in the game.


Monarchy Republic

“Muscovy”, as its rulers have previously called it, is a sleeping giant, with age-old traditions and ways of doing things. Here, the feudal way of life has become so entrenched that the serfs are as tied to the land as cattle, and with almost as few rights. It is a vast, deeply conservative and religious country: Mother Russia and the Orthodox Church are the two pillars of national belief. The Tsar may be the father of his people, but by tradition and practice he is a stern parent. Ivan the Terrible was well named, and he has not been the only ruler with an iron will. Russia needs a strong hand controlling the “Third Rome”, the true home of Christianity (according to the Orthodox Church) after the fall of Byzantium.

Now, however, Russia is changing, awakening. It is beginning to look outwards, towards the best that the rest of the world has to offer in terms of ideas, culture and might. These things must be introduced carefully, to avoid the ills of free-thinking that beset some Western nations. When Russia does fully realise its strength, however, it will be formidable indeed. It has boundless resources to draw upon, and the steadfast courage of its people to bolster its armies. It can be a formidable foe, and a difficult one for an enemy to attack. One thing that Russia does have is endless space, and the lack of apparently defensible frontiers actually becomes a defence in itself. Invaders can be lured deep into the steppes, and left to the mercies of “General Winter” and Russia’s endless, empty lands.

To the west lies the wealth of Europe and access to the wider world through a port on the Baltic. That the troublesome Swedes are in the way is a bonus, for they will have to be crushed! To the south, there are fellow Slavs and Orthodox Christians in the Balkans to be incorporated into a Greater Russian empire. The infidel Turks have lands and wealth aplenty too, but possibly the strength to defend them.

And beyond, there is a wider world awaiting conquest by the sons of the Mother Russia.


Russia has very poor line infantry, featuring below average accuracy, reload times, morale, and defense. However, they do possess unusually good offensive melee statistics. Russia also has above-average equivalents of militia, the Cossack Infantry. Russia's equivalents of light cavalry and light infantry are available from the beginning and could give it an advantage in the earlier battles.

Russia's most defining characteristic in its unit roster is its ability to train Hand Mortar units, powerful alternatives to grenadiers with the ability to hurl grenades at a considerable distance.

Starting Position

At the beginning of the game, the Orthodox Russian Empire owns a grand total of nine huge regions. However, most of them are not very populous. The Russian capital lies in Moscow. Russia's possessions are all located in the European theater and the empire doesn't own any colonies in the American or Indian theater.

Russia shares a very long border with the powerful kingdoms of Sweden and Poland. Furthermore, the country borders the Ottoman protectorate on the Crimea and the kingdom of Georgia in the Caucasus. Russia's relations with both Sweden and the Ottomans are notoriously bad so a war might break out sooner or later. Russia does not have any protectorates to begin with.

Russia's very strong starting position is tempered by its poor unit quality. Sweden, in particular, possess excellent line infantry and very large cavalry regiments; an unchecked Sweden will be able to field armies much superior to those of Russia.

Many of Russia's regions would benefit very greatly from tax exemption in the early game, as they make next to no money and villages will not develop there for a great while otherwise.

Victory Conditions

Short Campaign

Capture and hold 20 regions by the end of the year 1750, including: Crimea, Poland, Chechenya-Dagestan, Muscovy, Belarus & Volhynia, Lithuania, Estonia & Livonia, Ingria, Georgia, and Sweden.

Long Campaign

Capture and hold 30 regions by the end of the year 1799 including: Crimea, Poland, Chechenya-Dagestan, Muscovy, Belarus & Volhynia, Lithuania, Estonia & Livonia, Ingria, Georgia, Sweden, Persia, and Rumelia.

World Domination

Capture and hold 40 regions by the end of the year 1799, including: Ingria and Muscovy.

Basics at start

  • Protectorates – None
  • AlliesPoland-Lithuania, Denmark
  • Trade PartnersPoland-Lithuania
  • EnemiesOttoman Empire, Crimean Khanate, Barbary States, Pirates
  • Religion – Orthodox
  • Government – Absolute Monarchy
  • Ruler – Pyotr I (Tsar)
  • Population – 4,480,845
  • Prosperity – Moderate
  • Prestige – Weak
  • Treasury – 7500
  • Technology - None
  • Missionaries – Stephan Yavorsky (Muscovy)
  • Rakes – Ivan Nikitin (Muscovy), Yegor Kissin (Belarus & Volbynia)
  • Gentlemen – Ivan Motorin (Muscovy)

Europe Theatre

Moscow, Muscovy
  • Starting Buildings – Barracks, Governor’s Mansion, Cannon Foundry
  • Infrastructure - Basic Roads
  • Population – 1,563,284
  • Wealth – 4325
  • Religion – Orthodox 100.0%
  • Starting Towns/PortsTula Farmland (Peasant Farms), Lovat Farmland (Peasant Farms), Orel Mines (Iron Mines), Mordovia Farmland (Not Developed), Borovichi Forests (Logging Camp), Nizhny Novgorod (School), Bryansk (Craft Workshops Smiths), Yaroslavl (Coaching Inn), Rybinsk (Craft Workshops Weavers), Veliky Novgorod (Craft Workshops Weavers)
  • Later Villages/PortsVishniy Volochek (Village), Pereslavl-Rayazansky (Village), Smolensk (Village)
Kiev, Ukraine
  • Starting Buildings – Army Encampment, Cannon Foundry, Governor’s Residence
  • Infrastructure - Basic Roads
  • Population – 717,496
  • Wealth – 1750
  • Religion – Orthodox 100.0%
  • Starting Towns/PortsMyrhorod Farmland (Peasant Farms), Ostor Farmland (Peasant Farms), Belgorod Mines (Not Developed), Kharkov (Craft Worshops Smiths)
  • Later Villages/PortsPoltava (Village)
Arkhangelsk, Arkhangelsk
  • Starting Buildings – Magistrate
  • Infrastructure – Not Developed
  • Population – 832,690
  • Wealth – 1454
  • Religion – Orthodox 90.0%, Animism 10.0%
  • Starting Towns/PortsVytegra Forests (Logging Camps), Kotlas Trapper Post (Fur Trader), Kamenka Trapper Post (Fur Trader), Zavolzksh Forests (Logging Camp)
  • Later Villages/Ports – None
Cherkassk, Don Voisko
  • Starting Building – Magistrate
  • Infrastructure – Not Developed
  • Population – 216,920
  • Wealth – 125
  • Religion – Orthodox 50.0%, Islam 50.0%
  • Starting Towns/PortsKrasnodar Farmland (Not Developed), Armavir Farmland (Not Developed)
  • Later Villages/PortsStavropol (Village), Maikop (Village)
Kazan, Tatariya
  • Starting Building – Magistrate
  • Infrastructure – Not Developed
  • Population – 945,736
  • Wealth – 682
  • Religion – Orthodox 40.0%, Islam 40.0%, Animism 20.0%,
  • Starting Towns/PortsBolgar Trapper Post (Fur Trader), Pensa Farmland (Not Developed), Donzek Mines (Not Developed), Rasskasovo Farmland (Peasant Farms)
  • Later Villages/PortsSaratov (Village), Tsaritsyn (Village), Asov (Village), Vorenezh (Village)
Astrakhan, Astrakhan
  • Starting Buildings – Magistrate
  • Infrastructure – Not Developed
  • Population – 53,557
  • Wealth – 250
  • Religion – Orthodox 70.0%, Islam 30.0%
  • Starting Towns/PortsBalakovo Farmland (Not Developed)
  • Later Villages/PortsSamara (Village)
Ust-Sysolsk, Komi
  • Starting Buildings – Magistrate
  • Infrastructure – Not Developed
  • Population – 71,357
  • Wealth – 0
  • Religion – Orthodox 25.0%, Animism 75.0%
  • Starting Towns/Ports – None
  • Later Villages/PortsPerm (Village)
Ufa, Bashkiria
  • Starting Buildings – Magistrate
  • Infrastructure – Not Developed
  • Population – 26,287
  • Wealth – 157
  • Religion – Orthodox 70.0%, Animism 30.0%
  • Starting Towns/PortsOrsk Farmland (Not Developed), Tolyatti Farmland (Not Developed), Avzyan Trapper Post (Fur Trader)
  • Later Villages/PortsOrenburg (Village)
Petrovskaya Sloboda, Karelia
  • Starting Buildings – Magistrate
  • Infrastructure – Not Developed
  • Population
  • Wealth
  • Religion
  • Starting Towns/Ports
  • Later Villages/Ports






While Russia is reforming at a fast rate, the empire's army still can't compete with that of other major powers. Since its troops aren't really disciplined nor well-trained, the country's strength lies in the sheer size of its army. Quantity over quality has become Russia's motto. As a result, the empire fields many weak but cheap units, ranging from line infantry to cossack infantry. Therefore, a Russian commander has to utilize his numerical advantage in order to compensate for the lack of quality. While Russia's units might not be able to withstand more experienced and reliable soldiers, their sheer numbers may well overwhelm more advanced armies. That way, Russia can overcome its technological disadvantages and might well be able to compete with Europe's modern forces.

Special Units

Russia fields several unique units. Amongst them there are the poleax-armed Gorodskiye Streltsy, the Viborniye Streltsy cavalry, two types of cossack cavlry, the ranged cossack infantry and the Hand Mortar Company. While the Gorodskiye Streltsy are used as melee support in early Russian armies, they become obsolete in the later stages. They also have poor militia-level morale. The cossack infantry are similar to line infantry, except cheaper and having poorer stats. Viborniye Streltsy are the mounted counterparts of the Gorodskiye Streltsy, armed with sabres. They are comparable to Provincial cavalry. The Hand Mortar Company is an interesting unit, as the men in the unit carry large blunderbuss-type launchers, which they can use to launch grenades with the same range as a musket.

Empire: Total War | Factions | Playable Factions:
Austria | France | Great Britain | Marathas | Ottoman Empire | Poland-Lithuania | Prussia | Russia | Spain | Sweden | United Provinces | United States* *Must complete Road to Independence to unlock United States
Non-playable Factions:
Barbary States | Bavaria | Cherokee Nations | Courland | Crimean Khanate | Dagestan | Denmark | Genoa | Georgia | Hannover | Huron Confederacy | Inuit Nations | Iroquois Confederacy | Italian States | Knights of St. John | Morocco | Mughal Empire | Mysore | Plains Nations | Portugal | Pueblo Nations | Persia | Pirates | Savoy | Venice | Westphalia | Wurttemberg
Protectorate Factions:
Barbary States | Courland | Crimean Khanate | Louisiana | New Spain | Saxony | Thirteen Colonies
Emergent Factions:
Afghanistan | Gran Colombia | Greece | Hessen | Hungary | Ireland | Mamelukes | Mexico | Naples & Sicily | Norway | Punjab | Quebec | Scotland | United States
Cancelled Factions:
Khanate of Khiva | Tuscany | Mecklenburg | Schleswig-Holstein | Swiss Confederation
Tutorial Factions:
Virginia Colonists | Powahatan Confederacy
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