Arabia is the reason why we love AOE2

I played AOE2 for long time, and I kind of became addicted to the game back in the days. This includes playing, studying and following tournments. And obviously I was super excited for the release of DE. But after playing for quite some time the ranked matches, I was noticing that I was no longer enjoying the game as much as before. And the reason became clear recently.

I was not having fun playing maps like hill fort, bog islands and mega random, even if I was having victories. I was only enjoying playing/watching arabia and arabia-type maps, like serengeti. At first I thought it was only my taste and that it was not a general community opnion.

But after watching some streams from other players, I was noticing that they were doing something that never thought about. When the ranked pool drafted one of thouse “bad” maps that I have mencioned, they instantly alt+F4 the game, so that they do not have to play them.

I after that, I started doing that as well 11, like a protest for having these type of maps. (Edit: this is a somehow polemic point, so to make it more clear I will repeat something that I’ve said in the replied: “And the alt f4 option I dont think is a sign of immaturity, but more a sign of dissatisfaction, cause many players are doing it and they are not happy doing it, they are not trying to take advantage of anything, they just want to have a good time, I don’t blame them.” And also this statement: “About the alt + F4, I agree is not health for the game, but if even the most respected aoe players are using this resource, maybe something is wrong with the game, not with the players.”)

So, the point I am trying to make is, AOE is being played for more than 20 years, and althought it is only one game, there are hundreds of “games” inside this single game. Each map is, in my opinion, one type of game and you have a different experience in each of thouse maps. But the game that really have survived all thouse years is ARABIA.

If you have played a lot of AOE, you probably have notice ocassionally there are some “boring” games, and when this happens is because of two reasons: the game is too messy or the game is stuck in a never ending battle, some people call it stale-mated game.

But I’ve never see this happens in Arabia. Other maps are or too messy or too stale-mated, but Arabia has the perfect balance that makes the game enjoable and interesting everytime.

I know is interresing for publicity to sell a game that has loads of map types and you can play in either land or islands. But in practice, when you play in a multiplayers level, you actually do not have that much fun with all this complexity.

Players want a game that they know what is going on and at the same time there is room for creative strategy and styles. And Arabia suits this very well, Arabia is the core that makes Age of Empires 2 a fun multiplayer game, And from the people that I have talked with, this is the general community opnion, but I will post it here, so I know the others opinion…

I wouldn’t mind if the ranked queue was only Arabia, in fact, I would be very prouded 11. (Edit: guys, although I would not mind, I don’t think that’s the best solution 11, some people are getting me wrong. But maybe the simplest way to make it workout for everybody is to give unlimited bans option).

Hope I can get some feedback from you guys and that this get to the devs.

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STOP the alt F4 please. You are making my game less enjoyable.

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They even made Arabia boring. The devs were so terrified of giving someone a bad map that DE Arabia is a flat, ultra-wallable hellscape where people dr fc all day long. Bring back the dirty ara with ponds and hills and difficult decisions.

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I fully agree alt F4-ing is bad to the game. I hope the introduce some punishment system for those players. Pretty annoying. First early quit is free, second quit will add some 5 minutes to the queueing time, third will add 1 minutes, 4th will had 30 minutes, 5th 1 hour, 6th 2 hours, … I really want such system for early leavers.

Adding some Arabia only queue is pretty terrible. It is a blessing to the game we are freed from one map only players. Arabia only, Black forest only, Nomad only, … It is great that we see much more variaty in the maps.

The idea of an Arabia queue only is already discussed in other threads. For example:

I dont feel the need to start this discussion again in another thread.

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You’re right, I think most of us have realised by now just how bad most other maps are and the reason why Arabia got to be the number one map in the first place.

I didn’t use to alt-f4 out of courtesy but I just can’t bear another MegaRandom or Bog Island. Chances are I’m doing you a favor by shutting the game down anyway cause most of my opponents will hate playing that map just as much as me. I don’t feel the slightest bit guilty and to those wanting to punish Arabia-players I can only laugh and say enjoy your dead game because people will stop playing ranked at that point.

Luckily I heard Hera say the devs were contemplating changing things in the right direction but we’ll have to see what happens.

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About the alt + F4, I agree is not health for the game, but if even the most respected aoe players are using this resource, maybe something is wrong with the game, not with the players.

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I think they should punish themselves first after those terrible maps but I’d agree if only good maps were in the pool. I don’t play ranked anymore because of horrible maps

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I respect your opinion @WoodsierCorn696, but I don’t like the idea to force players to play something they don’t want to.
I saw the post you’ve mentioned, but I disagree with the random civ suggestion. Someone also suggested ranked lobby, but I find it better the ranked queue system, much more practical.
The maps are too different from each other, and forcing someone do do something they don’t want to do is illogical.

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Unpopular opinion (?) but honestly, as a casual player, I despise Arabia. I personally prefer the wacky maps like Megarandom more because they force you to do different things every time. I personally prefer to build up to Imperial Age fights which is a strategy I can honestly only pull off against AI but it’s way more fun to me than some stressful Archer/Scout micro in feudal.

Arabia seems me to be a Flush into a Castle Age strategy which depends on your civ. Also there are some civs which are heavily disadvantaged compared to others on Arabia. I would tendencially not pick Portuguese as an example.

Even if you’re a big fan of open maps, there are plenty others official ones which are also very fun to play but get barely picked like Kilimanjaro, Serengeti, Acropolis to name a few. Arabia is overrated because it’s basically the “generic land map” everyone who played the original game played at least for 10 years.

The pros just want to play what they’re used to and they tendencially do not pick water maps either but that just leaves us with a few strategies like Flush, Krush, Trush, Scrush into your civ specific endgame.
Yes, water battle could be improved but honestly, they’ve already tried that with African Kingdoms and the early game is already way more interesting than it was before.

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Yeah, but the example that I’m giving is multiplayer not casual, and in Arabia games you can also go for this strategy of booming and playing only in imperial, as in megarandom for instance you can also go for a more aggressive strategy, so I this that you said, I don’t think it has to do with the map, more with the level.

But even if you are a begginner and play with other of your own level, and both can’t handle economy and military at the same time, you guys can have a pretty normal game in arabia.

I don’t bother with MP anyway. It’s not an enjoyable way to play this game for me. I’ve tried it out and had some fun moments in Black forest matches but honestly, and this might sound weird for MP enthusiasts, if they’d scrap the MP function for me it wouldn’t matter that much. I still have plenty campaigns to complete (again).

Yes, the issue of map types does not have too much impact in single player compared to multiplayer.

I love AoE II and i hate Arabia.

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Are you a frequent mp player? @SageWinner42320

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yup. It just lacks uniqueness. All the map is the same. I’m more of a fan of designs in which the ground varies more across the map like Golden Pit, Bog Islands, and all the “special maps”.

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Yeah @SageWinner42320, but the issue is not the design, is wether it is more fun to play or not. I agree that at first glass it seems a good idea to have big range of maps, but at practice it just does not work to make the game enjoyble at multiplayer.

Ive played about 4 matches a day since the last map rotation and never had bog island once… :joy: So whenever people complain about it im liike “i wish i could at least play it once”

@whoever was complaining about Arabia being boring, I’ve had a pretty wide variety of arabia maps. . Ones that were almost impossible to wall in time for a flush, ones with ponds, ones with huge hills (they all have some hills don’t they?)

Ive also had terribly boring stalemate matches on arabia… Arabia generally favours aggressive factions over boomers like turks or porto, which leads to some pretty boring match ups with only meta pics maya, briton, aztec, frank, over and over…

I would hate an Arabia only option and i think alt F4 players should be banned from ranked for periods of a time.

If you want to be so immature as alt f4 “just because it’s not arabia” then go play in the unranked lobbies…

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golden pit: straight fc all the time, just a monoton sh.t

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I respect your point, an arabia only option maybe too much, but at least unlimited bans I think would make it good for everybody.

And the alt f4 option I dont think is a sign of immaturity, but more a sign of dissatisfaction, cause many players are doing it and they are not happy doing it, they are not trying to take advantage of anything, they just want to have a good time, I don’t blame them.

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Most times I spectate pros playing Arabia, it seems me to be very similar each game. I might not know all the finesses but the first 15 minutes are pretty similar each time.

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