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|Unique unit||3 Man Chariot|
|Culture group||Mid Eastern|
|Production Emphasis||Offensive land units, Trade|
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The Hittites have only appeared as a playable civ in the Conquests expansion of Civilization III. This may be due to their similarities with other Middle Eastern civilizations such as the Babylonians or Sumerians. In its heyday, the Hittite Empire fought the Egyptians to a standstill. They are led by Mursilis.
Compared to other great kingdoms of the Middle East, little is known of Hatti, and what is known is often derived from sources in other contemporary kingdoms (such as Egypt). The Hatti, or Hittite, Empire was one of the great powers of Mesopotamia, rivaling Babylon and Egypt in military strength and influence. The first Hittites probably came from somewhere in the Caucasus or Russia, but settled in central Turkey and later in Syria, areas whose plentiful natural resources, particularly metals, would prove crucial to the power of Hatti. Early Hittite kings focused on consolidating their power in their chosen region, but Mursilis I proved more ambitious, opting to strike out and execute audacious raids against mighty Babylon. He had great success, and indeed was able to undermine and destroy the ruling Amorite dynasty in Babylon -- the family from which most great Babylonian kings (including Hammurabi) came.
When Mursilis was assassinated, a bloody struggle for the kingship followed; the eventual victor, Telipinus, formed his own legal code which helped mitigate later power plays. After that, the Hittite Empire fought brief wars with its neighbors, until the time for a reckoning with Egypt came. The famed battle of Kadesh, in 1299 BC, is one of the most well-known Bronze Age battles. The Pharaoh Ramses II moved into Palestine with a large army of chariots and infantry, to be met by a Hittite force of equal size (yet also composed partly of three-man chariots, a much larger variant of the first wheeled fighting vehicles, which permitted the riders to fight hand-to-hand as well as at a distance). The Hittites were able to surprise the Egyptians near dusk, and only a dramatic force march by the Pharaoh's reserves prevented the total destruction of the Egyptian army. The Hittites were forced to retreat, but given the casualties they suffered, the Egyptians were unable to capitalize on the Hittite retreat and Ramses' overall objective, Egyptian control of Palestine and Syria, was not achieved.
The Hittites are also suspected by archaeologists to be the first smelters of iron. During Hittite primacy, around 1250 BC, the Iron Age began in Turkey, with the Hittites able to remove impurities from iron to finally produce a metal strong enough to use for weapons. The technique caught on very quickly, adding to the Hittites'already substantial wealth. They were not able to exploit this advantage for long, though, as the other regional kingdoms could not afford to allow Hatti a monopoly on iron weapons.
The end of the Hittite Empire came around 1100 BC, when mass migrations from Europe and the Caucasus caused the Empire to dissolve into dozens of small, semi-autonomous city-states. These city-states, in turn, were easily absorbed by upstart Assyria, which itself would dominate the Middle East for centuries thereafter.
In Civilization III: Conquests, the Hittites are considered an expansionist and commercial civilization. They start the game with Pottery and the Alphabet, and build the Three-Man Chariot instead of the Standard Chariot.
Unique Unit: 3-Man ChariotEdit
The Hittites were perhaps most famous for waging fast, deadly warfare with their powerful heavy war chariots. The Three-Man Chariot was an improvement over other contemporary chariots in close combat, because it sacrificed speed for stability and "elbow room" with which to fight. At the battle of Kadesh, the Hittites used three-man chariots to closely engage the Egyptian forces; this almost routed the entire Egyptian host.
Hittite Three-Man Chariots take the place of normal chariots. They move quickly and will withdraw from combat if they are losing (unless fighting another fast unit). Like other chariot units, they are wheeled and may not enter Mountains, Volcano, Jungle or Marsh terrain unless following a road. A Hittite city must have Horses in its Strategic Resources box to build a three-man chariot.
Attack: 2 (Chariot has 1) Defense: 2 (Chariot has 1) Moves: 2 Shield Cost: 30 (Chariot has 20)
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