Ayyubids as a name is great. Someone's legacy and an obscure order isn't

As with the issue of the chicken and the egg, how can I judge whatever the chinese civilization is meant to be without seeing it? This is what most people regurgitate upon seeing any criticism of these names.

Yet the names still don’t fit. From all the cultures, dynasties, nations and peoples you could find in China, how does one land on the concept of someone’s legacy? it is such a non-naming convention that even though it is more historical than the absolutely terrible “Empire of Jade”, it still does not fit the game well enough.

I’ve recommended some ideas in the past. Like, using one of the existing Dynasties, because if you think about it, does the individual bonuses of extra speed and unlocking the Fire Lancer actually represent the Yuan Dynasty? Not really. They could not do them each justice, because the Chinese civilization is meant to represent four Dynasties, and despite keeping it simple with each bonus, it is still the most complicated civilization in the game.

So–since I don’t know whatever the new variant is meant to be, let me take a shot in the dark and suggest, if Zhu Xhi actually has anything to do with this civilization, why not use the civilization he lived in, such as the Song Dynasty? if the civilization has anything to do with the person, this would allow you to portray an important period and identity of China with greater detail. Alternatively, there are plenty of other entities that could be used. For instance, I enjoy the idea of the Jin Dynasty who are featured in the campaign. Despite them not being mainland han chinese, it would still be cool to see them as a variant as it is just an opportunity to represent something that would not exist in the game otherwise.

As for the Order of the Dragon, while it is real, is barely an entity equal to a kingdom, empire or nation. There were in fact actual Kingdoms within the HRE, like the Kingdom of Bohemia (which we will never actually see in game, let’s be honest). Now I don’t know if this is what would fit the variant, since I don’t know about the civilization’s mechanics, but again; there are legitimate options for you, developers, to pick from. Do these variants justice, as you did for the Ayyubids.

The Ayyubid rename was a great success. Even folks who are against variants can accept them for being basically like AoE2 civilizations, in terms of reused assets and representing an actual civilization–this is inoffensive at worst. Let’s keep doing that instead of trying to reinvent the wheel.

I’ve already made two threads on Jeanne D’Arc which are still active. My thoughts remain the same with her; rename it. However, I want this post to focus on the two upcoming civilizations that may yet still see a proper rename. Fingers crossed.


The story with the Ayyubids really turned out to be a happy ending. The community can celebrate the victory. But…


Maybe they could have added the variants as landmarks for example lets say in real life jeanne was lived in the middle of that timeline so in game there should be a landmark which gives jeanne and… no ignore me its not working

Zhu Xi legacy… …legacy my ass. Zhu xi is not even a significant character in Chinese history during that period. He was more known as a writer, a calligrapher…than a politician… all he did was writing poems. How does he represent a historical period of China? I don’t understand anything of this move by aoe4 developers. I was prompted to buy the DLC after seeing the Japan and Byzantine civs before knowing there are variant civs. As a Chinese person I can’t get over that a Chinese civ is named like that. So I decided not to buy it. Well done devs.


The Chinese variant could be called something like Neo-Confucianist Chinese? In another thread a chinese user said that Neo-Confucianism is also referred to as Daoism, so also Daoist Chinese, which is shorter.

I doubt the Order of the Dragon can be renamed keeping the same spirit. It has a very specific concept as its base, like JdA. Unless, you find a statal entity within the HRE that was renowned for having only elite soldiers.

It was founded by a Bohemian royal who became King to the Kingdoms of Hungary and Croatia. He was not the emperor of the HRE until 30 years later, and these kingdoms would remain simply allies–so we are already talking about an order and entity that exists outside of the HRE, made by a royal of the Kingdom of Bohemia, which was in the HRE. If they are fine with that, then I don’t see why both the Kingdoms of Croatia and Hungary could not also be on the roster of possible names. Again, there are plenty of ways of renaming these civilizations more appropriately than an aristocratic order.

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Were the kingdoms of Croatia, Hungary or Bohemia famous for deploying mostly if not only elite units?

Considering that the founder I mentioned above made the Order of the Dragon, I would think any of these three nations would likely be the source of where he would raise his armies. Being an aristocratic order, I would also guess there would be a lot of exchanges between the members. And being an order, he seems to have raised members from many other nations as well. Either way, here is a list. As far as relevance to the order goes, it checks out.


Let’s take the Kingdom of Croatia, for instance.

Would an HRE variant with these elements:

  • Very expensive and powerful military units

  • all german-speaking units

  • german architecture and landmarks

decently represent that kingdom? I don’t think so.

I agree with the sentiment as both Hungary and Croatia were outside the HRE at the time. But, as mentioned above; so was the Order of the Dragon, it was founded before its founder became emperor of the HRE, so your question can almost be addressed in reverse; how appropriate is it to feature purely german architecture, german language and german landmarks to represent the Order of the Dragon? an order which took its people from all over the continent, an order who held no representative architecture, an order which is not well known for success.

This is why I still think Kingdom of Bohemia is a better fit. It is likely there it held the most sway during its inception as its creator was a royal of said nation, and the Kingdom of Bohemia existed within the actual HRE and can at least be suggested to have featured said things you mentioned, albeit not to the fullest extent.

The fundamental issue with variant civilizations is simply that they are attempting to create a civilization with fewer resources, so any civilization that happens to be chosen as a variant is likely to be underrepresented.

However, that is one way to look at it. Another is that, civilizations which may otherwise never be featured, can at least be somewhat represented in a way that actually follows this game’s formula. Furthermore, it is infinitely better than naming these variants after random concepts, groups or individuals.

Why Croatia? There were a lot of different VARIANTS. And any one is better than the Order of the Dragon.

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He used Croatia as an example because it was listed under the nations involved with the Order of the Dragon. This is because its founder Sigmund was the Kingdom of Croatia. But, as with my comment above, it does present its own issues of course. However, I would argue that representing the Order of the Dragon is just as problematic as representing the Kingdom of Croatia.

But, as with your picture, there are indeed better options than either. The HRE held many Kingdoms and “civilizations” that could be better featured and would fit the AoE formula better.

Kingdom of Bohemia these are Slavs. They cannot possibly be an variant for the Germanic civilization.

I think the true meaning of your sentence is lost in the language of it. Think about it for a second. Is the HRE really a “Germanic” civilization? The answer is yes and no. It featured many cultures and many peoples, but you are correct in that it is Germanic in almost every way despite that.

Is it then bad to feature a “variant” civilization of that group? Again, being an Empire, the HRE represented many people. I would argue ignoring their existence within the HRE just because the Empire itself is “Germanic” is kind of a bad reason, because these Slavs played a large role in it despite not being its main group. I think it is also important to remember that this would be represented in the game as for example, “Kingdom of Bohemia” and not “HRE VARIANT - Bohemians”. Just like the Ayyubids who do differ from the Abbasids.

However, there are also other variants you could choose if the threshhold is to only pick a variant of the exact same cultural group of the original civilization. Like in your comment, there are multiple examples to pick from. I don’t hold the opinion that they need to share cultural ethnic heritage and that it is more important to represent the actual civilization rather than simply the culture and ethnicity of the ruling class. That is why I’m also for a potential Jin variant, who were Manchurians rather than Han chinese.

Honestly, I’d rather they misrepresent the Order of the Dragon than the Kingdom of Bohemia. I would take name inconsistency over misrepresentation (of a people/state entity).

Bohemians appear in AoE 2 and they don’t speak German or have central European architecture. They would fall so short in AoE 4 when compared to that. And I’m sure Czech user would hate it.

Teutonic Order?
House of Luxembourg?
Margraviate of Brandenburg?
You can come up with a lot of good variants.

AoE2 also falls for this trap however. In allowing the Byzantines to speak Latin instead of Greek for example. AoE4’s voicelines and languages have definitely made it hard for the developers, as there is a lot more effort put into representing different time periods and more voicelines recorded. So cutting that part out entirely is definitely the point of variants, unfortunately–and I just think that has to be accepted. The Ayyubids already fall for this, and considering that Jeanne D’Arc is not some immortal deity, I’m willing to bet her civilization does not only use one set of architecture and voicelines from one time period alone. Isn’t that also misrepresentative?

So as far as AoE2 goes, they specifically went out of their way to make the Bohemians. I personally don’t think they will ever go out of their way to fully represent them in AoE4, so I think this opportunity is better taken than missed. But, let me be clear and say that it doesn’t have to be the Bohemians. My point is just that there are better options that are more valid than this order.

It would be fair to feature people inside the HRE but not germanify them, IMO.

I was writing about the possibility of the Welsh as a English variant, somewhere, recently. I stated that the only major issue would be speech. I wouldn’t take the Welsh if they were talking english. I’d call for a renaming that would indicate a english faction. Or a new dedicated voice over.

Yeah but in the Byzantines case that’s how it was from the beginning and they never felt like fixing it. More attention to language was given to the later additions.

Yes but since hystorical accuracy is nowhere to be found in this variant, I don’t mind. :laughing:

I think that with the concept the variant is, no other name would cut it. We should accept the name discrepancy (Order among Civilizations).

Also, I clearly see that our opinions diverge, but that’s fine! We got our own preferences.

That’s funny! I love it! :laughing:

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Agree with the OP. Aside from the Ayyubids, the other variant civ names are weirdly themed. I think the devs missed an opportunity in implementing actual variants in the existing civs. Just my two cents, I think the following naming convention might be better:

Jeanne d’Arc → Burgundians: Unlike Jeanne, the Burgundians were an actual dynasty that operated independently from the French authorities, even though they were technically French vasals. However, that would mean throwing aways the hero mechanism of the “Jeanne” civ…

Zhu Xi → Jin (the Jurchen one): I am not sure why Zhu Xi is consider important enough to get his own legacy. However, the Jin were definitely a power house around that time. It is funny how the Jurchens have so little representation in the AOE series, especially given that the Jin and Song arguably started the first gunpowder arms race.

Order of the Dragon → Teutonic Order: The Order of the Dragon is quite small to really be considered as a civ. In comparison, the Teutonic Order is significantly larger, and did quite a bit of territorial expansion into Eastern Europe. Given that they operated somewhat independently from HRE, they should work as a German variant civ.

Summarily, it seems that there are more valid candidates for variant civs. So, the current convention on variant civs just seems weird.