|Unit Information||Game Strategies||History|
To gain the benefits of a rare resource, a Merchant needs to deploy next to it, thereby turning itself into a small 'building' (it remains a unit, though, and takes damage like the mobile Merchant unit). Only one Merchant unit per nation is allowed to harvest a particular resource location. However, each nation may deploy its own Merchant next to a resource. Sending Merchants to rare resources located in friendly/allied territory is a common strategy.
The Merchant unit may also pack itself again and move on to another resource. This might be useful, if the current resource lands in enemy territory and the Merchant unit starts to take attrition damage from it. Note that the Smelter upgrade Forage prevents attrition damage in enemy territory while deployed for Merchants, since they are not moving.
- Nubian Merchants are 10% cheaper to create and have 50% more hit points. They also get a 50% bonus on the basic gather rate, if they harvest a resource within their nations borders. Prior to version 03.02.12.0800, Nubian Merchants were 50% cheaper to create.
- Chinese Merchants are created instantly.
- The Dutch (Thrones & Patriots) have a unique Merchant unit called Armed Merchant. It is equipped with a light weapon to provide basic defense against raiding attacks. When attacking while deployed, it temporarily ceases providing the bonuses of the rare resource. The Dutch also start with two free Armed Merchants.