First naval unit of the game, used to wrest control of the seas.
- Common abilities:
- Cannot Enter Deep Ocean (except when controlled by the Polynesians).
The Trireme is the first naval unit available to civilizations in the game. It depends on a combination of sails and oars to move, which gives it a decent speed, but makes it very unstable in open seas, and thus unable to traverse ocean tiles. It is a melee unit with a modest Melee Combat Strength and thus only usable against other sea vessels, or in the utmost case to attack coastal cities.
The Trireme is useful for clearing barbarian ships out of home waters and also for early sea exploration along the coast. Also, it could help at attacking and capturing enemy cities, but don't rely entirely on them - they're vulnerable against the city's ranged attacks, and any archer units firing at them from the ground.
The trireme was a warship used by ancient navies in the Mediterranean. Although equipped with a sail, under combat it was powered by three rows of oars. When powered by trained and motivated oarsmen, it was surprisingly quick and agile. Triremes were generally equipped with a sharp beak (ram) at the prow, and the primary tactic was to attempt to ram and sink the enemy ship. Some triremes also carried archers for ranged combat, while others carried lots of infantry. Those vessels would come alongside an enemy ship and the infantry would board and attempt to capture her. Triremes remained important military vessels until they were made obsolete by cannon and advances in ship construction and sail-rigging.
During the Peloponnesian War, Greek triremes carried ten marines and four or five archers each.