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Game Info[]

"A fast ranged unit highly effective on flat ground, but slowed significantly when entering rough terrain." — Civilopedia

  • Common abilities:
    • May Not Melee Attack
    • No Defensive Terrain Bonuses
    • Rough Terrain Penalty (Entering rough terrain consumes all Movement Movement.)

They are the first unit to require a strategic resource - Horses Horses.


"Chariot Archers are fast ranged units, deadly on open terrain. They are more powerful than the Archer and can move twice the distance on open terrain [4 MPs; allowing them to reach elements of the enemy army other units can't]. However, Chariot Archers suffer a movement penalty when entering forest, jungle, or hill tiles unless roads have been constructed in them." — Civilopedia

Note also:

  • With marsh, they suffer the normal movement penalty when moving through tiles rather than losing their resting MPs, since these are not considered to be rough terrain.
  • Despite information given in the Civilopedia (amongst required resources and appearance too), they are considered to be an Archery unit, not a mounted unit – and so are not abnormally vulnerable to the Spearmen-line of units.
  • Moreover, they're too bulky to use natural terrain defense, and unlike melee mounted units, cannot move after attacking!


A strong mobile alternative to the Composite Bowman, use the Chariot Archers to explore the world and deal with Barbarians. Against other civilizations, they're excellent at getting into privileged positions and raining fire on the enemy from afar, but stay out of melee range (or block them with your own zone of control) – they are weak in close combat!

There is one more important detail to remember: Chariot Archers and all three unique alternatives (Hunnic Horse Archers, Egyptian War Chariots, and Indian War Elephants) – are ranged units, and receive promotions as such. However, come the Medieval Era, they will all upgrade to Knights, which are regular mounted units with melee attacks! This means that all attack-oriented promotions the unit received will suddenly become useless, since it now attacks in melee, not from a distance! To circumvent this annoying fault, try to choose non-attacking promotions, such as March, which will remain useful after the unit changes its attack mode.

For the Mongolian and Arabian civilizations, the Chariot Archer is more future-proof as their replacements for the Knight, the Keshik and the Camel Archer respectively, are ranged mounted units as well, allowing them to make use of the inherited promotions specific to them until upgraded further to Cavalry.

Civilopedia entry[]

Before the invention of the stirrup, it was virtually impossible to fight from horseback. There was no way to brace oneself, and the slightest push could unhorse the warrior, with disastrous results. Horses first appeared on the battlefield pulling chariots. A chariot team usually consisted of one or two horses, a driver, and an archer. The chariots' mobility made them especially dangerous to infantry: they could rush within range, fire off a volley, then escape before the foot-bound soldiers could close with them. The greatest weakness of a chariot archer team was its inability to deal with difficult terrain. On open plains they were the kings of the ancient battlefield; in hills or woods they were at a significant disadvantage.

Unofficial custom card[]


Custom homemade card featuring the Chariot Archer.

See also[]

Civilization V Units [edit]
Civilian Archaeologist BNW-onlyCaravan BNW-onlyCargo Ship BNW-onlySettlerWork BoatWorker
Land military Anti-Aircraft GunAnti-Tank GunArcher (Atlatlist GodsKings5 clearBowman1Slinger1) • ArtilleryBazooka BNW-onlyCannonCatapult (BallistaSiege Tower BNW-only) • Cavalry (Berber Cavalry BNW-onlyComanche Riders BNW-onlyCossackHussar GodsKings5 clear) • Chariot Archer (Hand-Axe BNW-onlyHorse Archer GodsKings5 clearWar ChariotWar Elephant) • Composite Bowman GodsKings5 clearCrossbowman (Chu-Ko-NuLongbowman) • Gatling Gun GodsKings5 clearGiant Death RobotGreat War Infantry GodsKings5 clear (Foreign Legion) • Helicopter GunshipHorseman (African Forest Elephant GodsKings5 clearCataphract GodsKings5 clearCompanion Cavalry) • Infantry (Pracinha) • Knight (Camel ArcherConquistador1Keshik1Mandekalu CavalryNaresuan's Elephant) • Lancer (Hakkapeliitta GodsKings5 clearSipahiWinged Hussar BNW-only) • Landship GodsKings5 clearLongswordsman (Berserker1Samurai) • Machine Gun GodsKings5 clearMarine GodsKings5 clearMechanized InfantryModern ArmorMobile SAMMusketman (JanissaryMinutemanMusketeerTercio1) • ParatrooperPikeman (Impi BNW-onlyLandsknecht) • Rifleman (Carolean GodsKings5 clearMehal Sefari GodsKings5 clearNorwegian Ski Infantry1) • Rocket ArtilleryScout (Pathfinder BNW-only) • Spearman (Battering Ram GodsKings5 clearHopliteImmortalPictish Warrior GodsKings5 clear) • Swordsman (Kris Swordsman BNW-onlyLegionMohawk Warrior) • Tank (Panzer) • Trebuchet (Hwach'a1) • Warrior (BruteJaguarMaori Warrior1) • XCOM Squad BNW-only
Naval military BattleshipCaravel (Nau BNW-onlyTurtle Ship1) • CarrierDestroyerFrigate (Ship of the Line) • Galleass (Great Galleass BNW-only) • GalleyIroncladMissile CruiserNuclear SubmarinePrivateer GodsKings5 clear (Sea Beggar GodsKings5 clear) • SubmarineTrireme (Quinquereme GodsKings5 clearDromon GodsKings5 clear)
Aircraft Atomic BombBomber (B17) • Fighter (Zero) • Great War Bomber GodsKings5 clearGuided MissileJet FighterNuclear MissileStealth BomberTriplane GodsKings5 clear
Religious Inquisitor GodsKings5 clearMissionary GodsKings5 clear
See also Great PeopleSpaceship Parts
1 Requires a DLC

GodsKings5 clear Added in the Gods & Kings expansion pack.
BNW-only Added in the Brave New World expansion pack.