Age 3 Is Now as Slow & Boring as Age 4 - Turtling and FF'ing the New Norm

I’ll just say it. The devs have ruined this game permanently. The Devs have changed the gameplay dynamics to reward camping and have nerfed every rush/ native civ making them unplayable.

Over the last 2 years, this has been happening. A slow downward descent to make Age 3 gameplay similar to Age 4 (aka Age 2.5), where farming and camping are the norm, not a last resort because resources on the map have been depleted. Compounding the matter the Devs introduced new civs and new build orders to legacy civs which made aging up too easy and too fast.

For example 2 years ago you hardly ever saw naked FF’s, now they are expected. 2 years ago you could with near certainty predict Lakota, Haudenosaunee, Inca, etc would rush. Now I hardly see anyone using these civs because they were so harshly nerfed. And those that do use those civs will hardly ever rush instead they FF because the Devs have ensured your chances of success with a rush tactic are next to 0. That’s because 2 years ago you could put up a standing army faster and had cards that enabled you to be a real threat early on. This is no longer the case.

I don’t know about most of you older players, but I’m tired of multi-hour-long games that are based on farm economy alone. I miss the excitement of setting up a rush or defending one. I’m annoyed that 2 years ago early aggression was rewarded because your enemy will be forced to deal with your troops and therefore have to slow down the age up. NOW that is the antithesis of the case. If you dare that tactic these days -with the exception of the ottmans or Indians - you’ll find your enemy has already aged up and is prepared to repeal you, or worse you’ll be playing a civ like malta or dutch which all but ensures ANY rush will be repealed with ease. Within minutes of aging up Dutch, Italians, Spanish, Ottomans, etc, players are already walling up and preparing to farm till the end of time.

P.S 11/16/2022 This commenter summed it up better than I did so I wanted to leave his comment



I don’t care that your analytics tell you that younger children prefer to camp, farm, and spam units. I don’t care that you’re trying to entice new players to the RTS genre. You’ve botched a game that HAD at one time a level of sophistication, complexity, and nuance reducing it to a mindless turtling sit-and-spam fest for an hour plus. I hate what you’re doing to this game. I’m just about done playing it these days. I’ve reduced my gameplay to about once a week instead of the old 6 times a-week routine. I have 0 hope that you’ll change anything back to the way they were, so I’m left with the sad realization that I’m just going to have to put the game away and go be a functioning adult IRL. Please know that you took away a hobby that I really enjoyed, and I’m pissed as a result. I hope the money is worth it.


I much prefer ff. Bum rushing every game is just not fun, unless it is only once in awhile. Also talk about mindless spamming, that is all rushing is, who can just spam a big force early game. Also I have not played any multi hour games, except a 2v2v2 with my brother months ago, and one 40 minute treaty this past weekend. Otherwise games have been ending before the 40 minute mark. The devs are doing a pretty good job overall. Especially on a game this old


I am a great big fan of this game and I’ve been playing for a while but I do think that PvP games lasting only till Age 2 was a waste of this game’s potential.

A lot of civs have cool things in later ages and if all games are to finish with one push, what’s the point of Industrial age, factories, etc etc.


Hadn’t they already made a thread like this in the past?


I’m really happy that devs made these changes. AoE III Vanilla Supremacy was pretty much always the same, Rush at 8-10 minutes and GG. You could never turtle because you were punished for that, now this changed. You have much more room for different strategies.

To be honest, you shouldn’t be mad because rounds can go up to 30 minutes or more in Supremacy, its a civ builder RTS man.


Ridiculous post, the game is better than ever and all strategies are viable. If naked FF’s are now the norm then people would be rushing to counter that but it’s not the case. In the recent tournament I don’t think a single mill was made from quarter finals onwards IIRC.


Now the rush tactics are still available, you can try the chief rush of Haudenothoni


eu simplesmente parei de jogar jogos ranqueados por que sempre são os mesmos caras com as mesmas estratégias chatas com torres e muros e fortes

I would say a good thing because on the old aoe3 it was due to the map with little hunting.

1 Like

“Rush at 8-10 minutes and GG” had been out of meta for SEVERAL years since EP comes out. Semi-FF builds were the popular meta those days, but other strategies work too. DE has over nerfed aggressive builds (look at the funny Aztec age ii shipments), and too many players are going industrial directly: do you designers think this should be what the game look like?


It seems India is not rushing as much lately. Not sure what’s changed but I that dynamic has really caught my eye. The last two game against India I have rushed them, and won.

1 Like

More late game cards and the kani mata buff probably.

Obviously the game should only have 2 ages and 3 units: musk, pike and hussar. Why have fortress and industrial at all if all games should end at 10 min in age 2? I say scrap all the things that are not from the second age, just leave those three units and the game won’t be boring and slow anymore!


1 Like

Obviously the game should only have 2 ages and 3 units: musk, pike and hussar. Why have fortress and industrial at all if all games should end at 10 min in age 2? I say scrap all the things that are not from the second age, just leave those three units and the game won’t be boring and slow anymore!


1 Like

if we want age 2 games, add low hunts/low res maps back into the game and see how that feels like once again

Honestly, the strategy you want to implement depends on many factors:

  • Civilization you have against.
  • Map.
  • The opposing strategy.
  • Treasures.
  • Adaptation, not everything will always go the way you want so you will have to adapt to the condition you are in.
    Every strategy is practicable even the rush only that you do not have to lose all the units you have done (resources invested in the rush) without doing damage at this point you are at a disadvantage, reduced to a very minimum but it does not mean that you have lost.
    It is simply easier and more favorable to do a ff / fi than to master a good rush and recover economy and maintain constant pressure right away against your opponent so everyone chooses the simpler option then some civilizations are more performing in 3 ages than the 2 ages and they will go in 3 but this is one of their characteristics and game mechanics you don’t have to change.

You would be forced to stay in 2 when you have 2 hunts very far and you can’t get them close to your TC or maps with 2/3 hunts per player and it ends there, this incites to play aggressively to limit the opposing map and slow down the gaher of opponent resources and therefore have a great advantage. It would not be bad but some civilizations would no longer have the way to play certain match ups while now there is always a second alternative. I remember that grunt won a game on sonora playing from the beginning with the berries he had in base because he didn’t even have 1 animal near his tower center.

1 Like

there was a long period in EP where russia & india was very dominant due to these factors, especially during the thar desert days.

Though on some level I would not characterise those play style as aggressive, it was very controlling and often even more campy with russian blockhouse and indian forts just becoming a very hard thing to break

I really wonder if we are playing a same game these years. Fortress builds have dominated AOE3 for some years, and now you are telling me there’re only musk hussar?

1 Like

I would say that currently the maps are ok some should be more revised than others for team members because some have few mines and some civilizations are less favorable than others for this factor but all in all it is ok you can rush how you can do boom how can you do ff it is up to the player to make these choices.