An excursion over Berries

As we all know lately there developed a meta of delaying the Mill placement, especially for Archer openers.

there are several reasons for that. I will just name the most obvious ones: Timings became super important, deer pushing standard, generally cleaner execution, but also a sneaky 10 % infrease in the efficiency of Farming, which allows for a smoother transition.

Effectively berries are the slowest form of food income. Not only due to the slow gather rate, but also due to the walking involved. Especially if you put a lot of vills on the same patch - as more than any other ressource they tend to block each other idle.

Ofc we could just increase the gather rate for Berries accordingly to the Farming efficiency increase. But I have a more sophisticated idea:

What about giving Vills a “boost” the more different Fodd income you have? We have Herables, Hunt, Fish, Berries and Farming. What about all Villagers work 2 % more efficient for each type of Food they are supplied with.
Yes, the idea is kinda stolen from Stronghold, but I think it’s really nice for AOE2 aswell. As it rewards players for diversifying their food supply. It’s just a very subtile boost, but one that rewards for buildig up a healthy eco instead of trying to sqeeze out every little bit for super “all or nothing” buildorders.
This is especially interesting for Hunt, as it then revards Players for first scouting their opponent before pushing in their deer. As they have that hunt longer and therefore a longer time the 2 % increase effect.
But also placing the Mill ealry and jsut put 2 vills on berries for a longer time would give a similar revard effect.

It’s not to “punish” the BO for timing optimizators. It’s just so there is a direct revard for setting up a more healthy, diversified food supply in contrast to be competitive with the current timing optimized meta.

But ofc just slightly increasing the Berry gather efficiency would already do a lot.