Rise of Nations Wiki

There are six basic resources in Rise of Nations, which form the foundation upon which a nation builds itself and allows for the creation of units, buildings, and technologies. These resources are able to be gathered or earned by the player by using Citizens to harvest them (Food.png Food, Timber.png Timber, Metal.png Metal, and Oil.png Oil), using Caravans and increasing territory (Wealth.png Wealth), or using Scholars (Knowledge.png Knowledge).

Each of the basic resources (with the exception of Wealth.png Wealth) require a building and civilian units to gather/harvest them. Furthermore, there are buildings that can enhance the production rate of the civilian units. Additionally, sending Merchants to rare resources can also increase the gathering rate of the basic resources.

Resource Gathering unit Gathering building Enhancing Building
Food.png Food Citizen Farm Granary
Timber.png Timber Citizen Woodcutter's Camp Lumber Mill
Metal.png Metal Citizen Mine Smelter
Oil.png Oil Citizen Oil Well/Oil Platform Refinery
Wealth.png Wealth Caravan Market Temple
Knowledge.png Knowledge Scholar University University

For Food.png Food, Timber.png Timber, Metal.png Metal, and Oil.png Oil, a Citizen is needed at each gathering building in order to gather the resource. A Granary, Lumber Mill, or Smelter in a city increases the Food.png Food, Timber.png Timber, or Metal.png Metal production of Citizens in that particular city, respectively. Those buildings also have technologies that can further enhance the production of all Citizens in cities with those buildings. For Oil.png Oil, each Refinery increases the production of all Oil Wells and Oil Platforms on the map. For Wealth.png Wealth, a Market is needed to build Caravans, but it is gained largely by the Caravans and the amount of territory the player controls (through Taxation technologies researched at the Temple) and not the Market itself, though it provides a basic income of 10 Wealth.png Wealth. On sea maps, Fish can also be an important source of Wealth. For Knowledge.png Knowledge, the University produces Scholars (which reside in the University), has technologies to increase Scholar productivity, and also provides a basic income of 10 Knowledge.png Knowledge.

Metal.png Metal and Knowledge.png Knowledge become available once the nation reaches the Classical Age.png Classical Age. Oil.png Oil becomes available once the nation reaches the Industrial Age.png Industrial Age.

Despite the number of basic resources, each unit, building, technology, etc. requires at most 2 types of resources which makes resource usage more manageable. Additionally, different types of units and buildings require different resources, ensuring that with any resource mix, some unit or building can be made; the issue then is just a matter of whether or not that unit or building is well-suited for the task at hand.

Resource management[]

The following table summarizes which basic resources to use to increase other basic resources, in decreasing order of importance:

If you need... Use... To make...
Food.png Timber.png Farm, Fishermen, Granary and Agronomics technologies
Food.png Citizen (for Farms)
Metal.png Agronomics technologies
Wealth.png Granary
Timber.png Food.png Woodcutter's Camp, Citizen (for Woodcutter's Camps), Lumber Mill and Woodworking technologies
Metal.png Lumber Mill and Woodworking technologies
Metal.png Food.png Citizen (for Mines) and Metallurgy technologies
Timber.png Mine, Smelter and Metallurgy technologies
Wealth.png Smelter
Oil.png Timber.png Oil Well/Oil Platform and Refinery
Metal.png Oil Well/Oil Platform and Refinery
Food.png Citizen (for Oil Wells/Oil Platforms)
Wealth.png Timber.png Caravan, Fishermen, Market and Taxation technologies
Food.png Caravan and Taxation technologies
Knowledge.png Wealth.png Scholar and University
Timber.png University and University technologies

Additionally, you can deploy Merchants at the rare resources which provide the resource you're trying to get, or build the Wonder(s) which boost the production of a particular basic resource. You can also buy/sell different resources at the Market, converting them to/from Wealth.png Wealth. In an emergency, you can even raze your own buildings which give plunder in different basic resources. For example, Woodcutter's Camps require Food.png Food to build, but gives its plunder in Timber.png Timber. However, this is a very inefficient process, and not recommended for most situations. You can also request or trade resources (except Knowledge.png Knowledge) from other players.

Food.png Food[]

Main article: Food

Timber.png Timber[]

Main article: Timber

Metal.png Metal[]

Main article: Metal

Oil.png Oil[]

Main article: Oil

Wealth.png Wealth[]

Main article: Wealth

Knowledge.png Knowledge[]

Main article: Knowledge


A number of Wonders will also increase resource production.

Age.png Wonder Resource-related bonus Cost
Classical Age Large.png Pyramids.png
200 Food.png
200 Timber.png
200 Timber.png
200 Wealth.png
Hanging Gardens.png
Hanging Gardens
Increases your Knowledge.png Knowledge production by 50. 200 Food.png
200 Wealth.png
Gunpowder Age Large.png Porcelain Tower.png
Porcelain Tower
Increases your income from rare resources (in your territory) and Markets by 200%. 400 Wealth.png
400 Metal.png
Temple of Tikal.png
Temple of Tikal
400 Food.png
400 Timber.png
Enlightenment Age Large.png Angkor Wat.png
Angkor Wat
500 Timber.png
500 Wealth.png
Industrial Age Large.png Taj Mahal.png
Taj Mahal
600 Timber.png
600 Wealth.png
Modern Age Large.png Kremlin.png
Raises your Commerce Limit.png Commerce Limit for Food.png Food, Timber.png Timber, Metal.png Metal, and Oil.png Oil by 200. 700 Food.png
700 Metal.png
Eiffel Tower.png
Eiffel Tower
700 Timber.png
700 Metal.png
Information Age Large.png Supercollider.png
The cost to buy goods at the Market is never higher than 125 Wealth.png Wealth; the price to sell is never lower than 50 Wealth.png Wealth. 800 Food.png
800 Knowledge.png


  • Knowledge.png Knowledge is the only basic resource that cannot be bought or traded.
  • Food.png Food and Knowledge.png Knowledge are the only resources that are not dependent on the map (as they can be built by civilians whereas the other resources require forests, mountains, and oil patches).

See Also[]