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There are twelve races in Age of Wonders I. Each race has their own cities which produce their own units. Units of the same race often have similar abilities and stats. A hero's race determines some of their starting abilities and stats. Units and cities may respond in friendly or in hostile ways to leaders, depending on the race relations between them.

  • Azracs are desert nomads with powerful offensive abilities and innate fire resistance, but limited defense.
  • Dark Elves reside in darkness and rely on stealth and magic in combat. They have the best magic resistance in the game and innate night vision. Their archers are also stronger than the archers of other races.
  • Dwarves are fierce close-quarters fighters who are acclimated to the mountains and underground caves. They are also naturally resistant to poison, but move slightly slower than most typical humanoids.
  • Elves are forest-dwelling people with less physical strength, but tactical ability and swiftness. They are fairly resistant to magic and have no problem travelling through thick forests. Their archers are also stronger than the archers of other races.
  • Frostlings specialize in cold-based attacks, reflecting the nature of their arctic homeland. They naturally have cold resistance, if not cold immunity, and move slightly slower than most typical humanoids.
  • Goblins are not known for their proficiency in combat, instead the underground-dwelling people overwhelm their opponents with sheer numbers of troops. Goblin troops are very cheap to train, but are more frail than the other races, (the standard is 4hp instead of 5hp) and are weak to magic, although they also have resistance to poison.
  • Halflings reside in grassland areas. They move slightly slower than most typical humanoids. Most melee units are also trained to parry attacks.
  • Highmen are a magical race with supernatural abilities that make them particularly effective against the forces of evil. They move faster than normal units and have a variety of protections but are more expensive to train as a result.
  • Humans are adapted to many different climates and in combat rely on a balanced array of units, rather than magical abilities or protections.
  • Lizardmen are a reptilian race who live in swamps and are expert swimmers. They are strong close-range fighters, but are more vulnerable to magic attacks.
  • Orcs are slow but powerful warriors, both offensively and defensively. They have some of the most powerful melee fighters in the game.
  • Undead forces are highly resistant to many forms of damage except for holy attacks and they have the ability to regenerate all injuries very quickly.
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