Adam Isgreen about AOE 4 graphic style

AoE4 does look very similar to this games

Stronghold: Warlords

And The Settlers

And its kind of odd, why Microsoft hired Relic as company that can make this, Dawn of War 2 very realist looking game with dirt and blood. To make a clean and colourful game.


Agreed. Age of Empires IV is an RTS game not a city builder or simulation game. The unit models need to be scaled up higher compared to buildings than what is real world scale because being able to easily identify, select and target units at the appropriate default zoom level for an RTS game is critically important. While the pre-alpha gameplay trailer shows all the great details of units up close, players will be mostly playing the game at a zoom level much further out. Real world scale at the appropriate zoom level for an RTS game is not optimal for direct unit control.

Trailer Gameplay Zoom Level

More Realistic RTS Gameplay Zoom Level


What are you talking about? @GrimStingray833


@Huge5000RTSFan Chess is cartoony also. OMG! I have been playing a cartoon for past 19 years!!

Assumption: RTS are board games.
Fact: Yes they are. I can’t think of any rts where units and objects are drawn to scale.
Opinion: Please play rts/board game for gameplay and strategy (like chess) and not for Crysis graphics.


You’re arguing about the importance of gameplay and yet you’re comparing sequential games like board games, to simultaneous/dynamic games like RTS.
Putting that aside, most people would agree that the way something looks is a crucial factor for most video games in order to be enjoyable (made to be played on-screen, in a complex graphical environment, not on-table).
And although I agree that the unit scales can’t always be realistic, the analogy of a RTS video game with a board game seems very out of place.

  1. Yeah…so I am comparing the same genre, so nothing is out of place. Both are strategy games and require your " simultaneous/dynamic " moves. Then you will say “wait! I can’t move my units when the enemy is moving!” Yeah, you have made all of the moves in your head before you made your move and then you will recalculate when the enemy makes it turns. Just like in the “on-screen” (real-time) strategy games. Thus, it is dynamic. Then you will argue how time management matters to RTS, well you couldn’t be more wrong. We have board games with time moves too, like in chess, if your turn gets to 0, you lose. And so on, my fingers hurt to explain what modern chess looks like. I am trying to get the point across that game which gets played for hundreds of years, in both physical, and your “on-screen” medium has been a cartoon, but people play it for what it offers. The analogy is what we call that in our english language.

  2. At least I am comparing RTS to its origin, the chess, we have people here who are comparing an unknown game that is in pre-alpha state with saturated graphics and bright colors to Pixar movies and freemium phones games just because the graphics look “CARTOONY” and it is hurting their sentiments that they are grown-ups and can’t play “CARTOONY” games now.

  3. Yes, looks matter, but looks are not everything. You eventually have to move on to the core materials look tries to convey. You have seen the product, you have argued that product, although for very minority, doesn’t look good, now move on to other topics. I am seeing same “cartoony” comments and “cartoony” threads since the day game has been announced.

  4. LOL, I wish we had that Reddit upvote and downvote feature, I would downvote every single “cartoony” bait thread.

  5. By the way, you or anyone elser forgot to point out any thing negative from the 2 picture where I compare the height of crops with human. And then where I mentioned the advantage of tree not being to the scale or archers walking on the walls . You will need to make up a lot of stuff to counter those arguments. Relic artistic direction is working, and we know it. We are just b***hurt because game looks colourful.

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You do not understand the difference between the two kinds. Simultaneous games are games where both players move simultaneously, or if they do not move simultaneously, the later players are unaware of the earlier players’ actions, this is the “fog of war” in an RTS. When chess specifically is a sequential game with perfect information, a game that each player is perfectly informed of all the moves that have previously made by the other player. They are different kinds no matter if you have made the moves in your head by guessing what your enemy will do. You can’t make up things on this one. Your point was that an RTS is the same with a board game which you called fact. You call it fact, I call it bad analogy. You play chess for what it offers, video games offer many things, one gives more weight to gameplay than graphics and vice versa. And now "my fingers hurt to explain what modern game theory looks like"
No wonder why you turn so fast so defensive when you write in such a distasteful way. e.g.

Arrogance and sarcasm are not going to give you right. Not everyone will agree with everyone and if you are that tired at hearing people talk about the graphics maybe you should leave this topic in peace since that’s what it is about.

On top of that, you are contradicting yourself when you have already expressed your utter disagreement with the lack of blood in the game, which is pretty much the most trivial graphical detail, unless you like spilling blood on your chess board as well.

I didn’t forget anything, the crops look fine by me, what would you like me to say about them? I don’t make things up just to back up my self-righteous opinion and call it fact. I agreed with a part you said and disagreed with another.


Aghhhh…really, you read my lips now. Did you find anything where I have criticised or loved the graphics in my profile yet? I didn’t express anything about graphics apart from I think it serves nothing in any game except action games maybe (if I had, I think i would have said I think the graphics are ok nonetheless, you can check on it, i don’t remember half the time what i say, and I don’t know how you got my past comments, so not gonna waste my time on that).

Edit: I found out that I have said graphics look excellent in past, once, but I still want the blood in the game. That is a common sense.

Yes, I am mad about the blood, AOE 2 DE has it as a toggle, and that got there because good folks had to mod it in AOE 2. I am pissed because someone has to mod it again for AOE 4, can’t we have in the game to begin with? I am not an ignorant buffoon who is blind. This was a lazy move, so I called them out, I am not contradicting to anything I have said (again you can check my comments).

Did you read the keyword else, spelled it wrong with my fat fingers obviously, I forgot who said it, and didn’t bother to check, I edited that towards the end you can check the edits. I apologise, since it wasn’t directed to you, you.

Now to this----

Edit: Enemy moves when playing board games can also be thought of as the fog of war. I am on the side of gameplay having more weight than the graphics.
You made good points, I agree to all. I have no counter to that. Well done :slight_smile: But read this again!

and then this:

I meant in plain english, if you infer, that object scaling, graphics are all there to serve a purpose to make the playing field clear. Graphics is there to serve the gameplay.


let’s take a look at an actual AAA Strategy game, Total War: Rome II from 2013
Man this looks light years ahead of the presentation of AoE4.

-realistic models
-you see blood due to combat on the units
-really nice kill animations

My first impression of AoE4, it does kind of look outdated.
What if there would be in same time Medieval 3 Total War?


Total war has choreographic animations and pre-set engagements regarding animations, you cant pull your soldiers away, you cant produce 1 unit but a squad. Are you trolling us dude? You have not seen any animation work of units in the game yet regarding combat and as someone else mentioned the ‘no blood and gore’ comment does not meant that there wont be blood.

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I did hear such argument “wait till you actually play the game” a lot,
just look around, shouldn’t a game so big like AoE have much more people interested ?


It has people interesting, you are just hating it too much to see. Just go play something else for the time being. PC gaming subreddits and gaming sites are very excited in majority, not sure where you see that people are not interested lol

I am just realistic for the current situation. There is merely a handful of interested people online and even there, majority does disapprove the direction AoE4 does go ahead.

I do see them rather to repeat mistakes of AoE online and other projects they did work on.
Sure from “functionality” stand point it is going to be a good project. But is AoE4 really what people wanted from AoE after 20 years of waiting?

-if it is technically possible to make graphics way better, people are going to see current graphics as inferior
-people have a very clear vision how a sequel should be approached, I don’t see it happening by AoE4.


Lol you’re just throwing dust and naming it ‘‘Majority does disapprove’’. You have 0 evidence of that. Refer to reddit that has more people and the trailer comments from microsoft and IGN videos that have 1+ mil views. Your view is obviously false.

lets compare how much people did google it,Age%20of%20Empires%204,C%26C,Starcraft

lets look at the survey with merely 1.465 people who did check it.

Also from that survey Bright and realistic (Age ofEmpires 1/2/3, Total War) was voted 85,6%
Cartoony did get only 1,6%.

So maybe people are right, they are not doing the game a favour by keeping the current graphics?


I’m talking about the relationship between the height and width of the models if you read again. The crops are ridiculous, the area they occupy, the extension, is minimal compared to the height of the crop, do you understand?

I didn’t Remember that survey. That’s interesting to see how developers are going far from what has been voted

Thats good, since AOE4 does not look cartoony. You’re just a hater at this point.


Thanks a lot for proving that people are excited and devs are supporting the majority of fans with their want which is bright and colourful graphics (i don’t care for the graphics so don’t come at me and I didn’t take part in that survery either, i only give a ■■■■ for the core gameplay and missing blood in the game). And now this—>

No hable espaneol. Yes, I showed on top how crops are to the scaled. So you want crops to occupy entire castle lot? Give me a break. That will be ridiculous. It looks to occupy similar area of farms in other age games. Plus it is relic, their idea of resource gathering is resource point (lol), so it could be a hard concept to implement for them.

There is also this survey, after trailer release.

As we can see, from that Survey 33% don’t like the Art Style.
Its very clear there are quite many people who don’t like it.

We had for 2 years basically zero info’s and now we don’t even see them make official surveys.
The question is, why is a game created without to check if people are actually like what they see?

And I see their entire approach like this cartoon.

If you are creating a game, shouldn’t you em, like interact and communicate with community?

even Paid review sides, who were paid to say nice stuff about AoE4, do speak openly AoE4 does have a cartoon look. Like Rock Paper Shotgun and gamestar

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