Best Commanders Tier List in Rise of Kingdoms (with Talents)

best commanders in rise of kingdoms tier list

If you’re lost what commander you should level up and take to the route to max out in Rise of Kingdoms I hope this guide here will help you, including my recommendations in what order you should stuff their level trees and what commanders they work best with as secondary commander.

Up to date with version 1.0.43 (March 2021)

The Best Commanders & What Talents To Level

I have totally reworked the table with some feedback from you that I got.

Here are the most important changes you should know:

(1) Filter

You can use the filter on top to filter for the game modes you want to see the best commanders for but also search directly for a certain commander.

(2) Game Mode Ranking

The total ranking is shown and when you click on the small “+” at the end of the line you will see the ranking for a commander for open field, defense, rallying or Sunset Canyon as well as short annotations.

(3) Ranking Changes

I have ⬆︎ and ⬇︎ in the rankings to show you how a commander changed recently, this helps you identify trends so you don’t invest in a commander who is strong right now but is in a downward trend.

(4) Builds & Pairing Options

The button “Best Builds & Pairing” will take you to the page where you can find more detailed info about the different builds that you should use with that commander and also what secondary commanders make sense.

Important! This list should help you to also decide how to invest your Universal Sculptures. For that reason you will see the gathering commanders, except Joan, ranked poorly as you should NEVER invest Universal Sculptures into gathering commanders. Their plain performance on the battlefield is, on paper, better as shown in this tier list.

CommanderTierBuilds & PairingMore InfoDefenseBarbariansOpen FieldRallyingCanyonInfo

S+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎A+ASA+SShe can do fine countering Attila/Takeda but the downside is you need all archer troops to really get her rolling great. Theodora is more effective for that.Legendary9.15

Yi Seong-Gye
S+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎ASA+A+S++Yi-Seong Gye is the best commander for me right now. He’s really overpowered commander in Rise of Kingdoms and that’s because you can use him extremely well either on defending your city or also for rallies with a full archer army. His AoE is crazy and prevents getting swarmed really effective and you can’t be wrong using him.Legendary9.1

SBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎D+SSS-SWhat makes Ramesses so strong is that he can simply kill the healing of whatever you’re hitting with him and this is really strong in many situations, even though it might sound less powerful on paper. He will be great in almost every part of Rise of Kingdoms, except defending.Legendary8.55

Guan Yu
⬆︎ SBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+ASS-SLegendary8.55

A+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎B-CSSA+Takeda isn’t that strong when looking at him in general but he has great use in countering Wu Zetian and this makes Takeda one very useful commander in the current meta, primarily for rallying. Please mind that the strength for rallying only applies when paired with Attila as the primary commander.Legendary8.4

A+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎B-CSSAAttila is actually a beast when it comes to rallying anything along with Takeda. This is where he really shines, especially with conquering Wu Zetain who is defending a lot in the current meta. Please mind that the strength for rallying only applies when paired with Takeda as a secondary commander.Legendary8.3

Nebuchad nezzar
A+ℹ︎DB+SSSThe first real conquering archery commander with a devastating active skill is built to attack garrisons and cities.Legendary8.3

Charles Martel
A+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎A+C+A+ASLooking at Charles Martel you can say he is actually a great defensive commander with also a good shield absorption plus a really strong counter-attack. Also really viable in the open field as well.Legendary8.3

A+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+SA+A+ADespite the fact that Edward of Woodstock has quite a high rage requirement he works insanely well on countering infantry units as well as skill damage bonus that you can use with many other commanders to pair up a really viable combo for rallies or open field actions as well as defending flag/fort.Legendary8.2

Harald Sigurdsson
Aℹ︎DB+SA+SA super hard-hitting direct damage skill and quite versatile in using him for PvP, Conquering or open field hunting.Legendary8

ABest Builds & Pairingℹ︎D+CS++A+SAlexander is for me one of the strongest commanders in Rise of Kingdoms right now with his shield and actually all of his talents in the talent tree translate directly on the battlefield very well, especially his skill that will boost attack when there’s no skill active but gives bonus defense when there is.Legendary7.95

ABest Builds & Pairingℹ︎A-S++A+B-SRichard did extremely well in the past but with the current meta he has been falling some spots down here in the tier list, still making him an excellent choice to use. It’s crazy how well you can use him for city defense or also defending flag or fort but also on the open field.Legendary7.95

ABest Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+CA+A+SLeonidas is actually a really strong one as well with great AoE and rage speed up. Although Leonidas is in the lower range of the S-Tier, rallying objectives and open field is something you will enjoy with himLegendary7.8

ABest Builds & Pairingℹ︎CC+SA+A+Saladin is extremely helpful when you see someone defending with Richard (what happens a lot). Well, not only the fact that Saladin can counter the healing of Richard makes him that strong on it’s own but it’s a huge factor in the current meta and one of the only options to overcome this whole Richard defending setups right now.Legendary7.75

Aℹ︎D+CSA+SWilliam makes a massive difference on the battlefield with his defense and rage boost and if you make his buff work on all marches you really get it rolling. So, taking him to rallies, in the open field and also Sunset Canyon makes absolute sense. Not that effective for hitting cities and rather for swarming things down.Legendary7.65

B+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎A+DA+BSContantine is an evergreen commander on the list and his damage reduction buff is simply super useful in Canyon and also the open field that he will always be higher on the list and a solid long-term investment in Rise of Kingdoms. Also a solid pick for city defense as well.Legendary7.5

Chandra gupta
B+ℹ︎D+CA+A+AReally effective in hitting cities and strongholds with his buff and a solid choice here with versatile use whenever you want to hit a city or stronghold. Still, Attile/Takeda combo is stronger for that, no doubt.Legendary7.3

⬇︎ B+ℹ︎DCA+A+A+Cyrus is a full-blown archery commander and has skills that make him a beast when it comes do dealing skill damage and buffing troop damage. You need to use a full archer army with him, but that’s fine for the use cases you will use him.Legendary7.3

B+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+DAA+A+Mehmed is a solid commander if you want to conquer cities but other than that there’s not much use for him as there are better commanders in the above section. Nothing special but also not bad is the best way to describe him.Legendary7.2


El Cid
BBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎B+CAB+B+El Cid is a very good commander in Rise of Kingdoms but the reason why I don’t have him higher in the list is how his skills are arranged. His 2nd skill is really strong but only has a 10% chance to get activated and his Out of Control is really far away when you first start using him. I like his power but it can be squishy in many situations to really get the proccs needed and that could end in a fail if it’s a close battle.Legendary6.75

BBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+SAB-B+Minamoto is a full blood nuker with crazy damage output and helpful for many situations like open-field combat or hunting down barbarians. He is, and I don’t think that one player here will disagree, also the easiest and cheapest legendary commander in Rise of Kingdoms to unlock and also to max out and a great choice to use.Legendary6.75

BBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+CBA+AIf you manage to stack Tomyris’ poison skill she will wreck insanely. I recommend pairing her with Edward so both of them will work perfectly on that and will give you such a high output of DPS that she needs to be here in the S-Tier section for sure.Legendary6.7

Genghis Khan
⬇︎ BBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎CC+AB+AGenghis Khan has the lowest rage requirement below 1,000 and a massive damage factor plus the chance of 30% to cast that skill again makes him stand out a lot. This makes him a top choice for open field or also rallies and you will not regret having him, I can promise you that.Legendary6.6

C+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+DB+AB+The special thing about Frederick is that he’s a leadership commander with a skill tree and this means he is your best choice to build a huge mixed army for one march, also due to his fresh recruit skill. You can also pair him up with different commanders that use leadership but also with a commander that nukes like Minamoto. Great option and a strong composition on the open field or far rallies.Legendary6.4

Cao Cao
C+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+SAC+B+Cao Cao is a great commander if you’re hunting players or Barbarians because his Mobility tree is working great for that, but he’s not exactly the best primary commander for anything else. Still, if you use a cavalry army and need a good secondary commander he is a great choice.Legendary6.35

Julius Caesar
C+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎CDB+A-AJulius Caesar has his benefits in the early stages of the game and that’s the reason why I wanted to mention him here but the more you come to the later stages of the game the less bang he has, unfortunately.Legendary6.25

Hannibal Barca
C+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎CBBA-B+Hannibal Barca’s leading and conquering skill he is great to work with mixed armies for open field or rallies. Especially in situations in KvK where you will be running low on troops at some point this is the leadership commander that will put you back on track. In cases like that you should have him available and that’s the reason why he’s on the A-Tier section. If his heal skill would work in all situations he would be ranked higher but it only works for attacking cities, that’s the reason why I have him in this spot here.Legendary6.15

Lu Bu

CBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎DA+AD+SAethelflaed deals area damage and can run the support tree which makes her a really great option for doing almost anything, except defense and rallying things and cities.Legendary5.95


Cℹ︎DCSDA+Don’t get me wrong, Mulan is a great secondary commander with an insane buff in her active skill and is super versatile to use with any unit and commander. But in the sake of getting her as primary commander there are many other commanders you should go after before that.Legendary5.8

Wu Zetian
CBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎S-DC+BDWu Zetian is a really good garrison defender commander and also her skills are on point – but the reason why she isn’t higher on this list is the reason that her support talent tree is not exactly on point and it feels like you need to “waste” several points there. Still, working really great as a secondary commander and is no waste to use at all.Legendary5.8

Sun Tzu
⬆︎ CBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎AC+B+E+ASun Tzu’s area damage is simply great and very useful in Sunset Canyon but also useful when defending your city or doing anything else. Away from that, you can pair him up with almost any other commander for almost anything so having him is a great choice in the long run.Epic5.75

Cℹ︎S+A+DDA+Theodora is, when it comes to city defense, a replacement for Yi Seong Gye but not really useful in any other part of Rise of Kingdoms. Also really effective in defending against Attila/Takeda attacks with her counter.Legendary5.7

D+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎DCCA+BCharlemagne is more like a niche role but he can shine in rallying so he deserves this place here in the tier list. He can also be a great secondary commander for the stronger rally commanders so keep him on your list but don’t make him your priority right now.Legendary5.35

Joan of Arc
⬆︎ D+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎DDADA+Joan of Arc is actually a really nice commander when fully rocking her support tree and she will boost the whole army and when you pair her up with a commander that can benefit from that, she will rock the party.Epic5.1

D+ℹ︎SCDDCOne of the strongest healing factors in Rise of Kingdoms and excellent commander for defending garrisons and cities with great support. Unfortunately, only effective in defending.Legendary4.6

Yi Sun-Sin
E+ℹ︎SDDDDAmazing city defense commander with an amazing troop buff that works on all of your troops. Other than that not really useful and for that reason that low on the tier listLegendary4.4

Kusunoki Masashige
E+Best Builds & Pairingℹ︎BCCDBKusunoki deals nice damage and is not only a nice commander for city defense, he’s also a nice addition to many other commanders as a secondary commander and a nice option in the early game.Epic4.3

EBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎DACE+BWhat makes Keira strong is her 4th skill that really skyrockets skill damage taken and makes her pretty much one of the strongest epic commanders in Rise of Kingdoms.Epic3.95

Eulji Mundeok
EBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+DDDC+Eulji Mundeok is a quite decent addition for defending your city, viable to use against barbarians and in the Sunset Canyon (lacking AoE here) but still useful to have.Epic3.6

EBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎C+CCE+DPelagius is a nice defending commander that can also help you in Sunset Canyon and is viable in the earlier stages of the game.Epic3.55

EBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎EDC+DCBaibars is great with cavalry and effective in the open field hunting down other armies effectively with his speed and his buffs/debuffs effectively. You could also use him with his 3rd skill to swarm cities.Epic3.5

⬆︎ FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎EECD+C+Osman does deal really solid damage so using him for rally, attacking cities or also Sunset Canyon. If you’re F2P this is interesting but overall the legendary commanders above are stronger.Epic3.35

FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎E-B+CECBelisarius can be built to be really fast which gives him advantages in the open field and also with his debuff you can use him against Barbarians well. Sunset Canyon can also be a good option for him.Epic3.2

FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎CDCE-DIn the beginning of the game you can use him to defend your city or also in the open field, later he will become less important.Epic3.05

FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎EB+DEDBoudica is an extremely effective commander smashing barbarians and that makes her a very solid pick for newer players, other than that she is not that strong.Epic2.9

Scipio Africanus
⬆︎ FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎EEDDC+Soemwhat alright to use in the open field, Sunset Canyon or rally but more if you’re F2P or in the early stages of Rise of KingdomsEpic2.9

FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎FB+FFFHis extra experience makes him useful in the beginning to level your other commanders and hunt Barbarians, but other than that he is simply useless.Epic1.6

FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎FEFFFLegendary1.2

FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎FEF+FF+Legendary1.6


FBest Builds & Pairingℹ︎FEF+FFLegendary1.2

Eℹ︎C+A+C+C+C+Diaochan is a pure PvE commander and also great for hunting barbarians for EXP but not versatile in any PvP situation. Also, you can easily use her as secondary commander as she doesn#t have any favorite troop type.Epic3.5

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