Balance Between Team and 1v

In terms of making a great RTS, everyone knows that good balance between factions/civilizations is critical. One thing interesting I’ve found in RTS I’ve played, is some civilizations are top tier in 1v, and much lower tier in team, and vice versa. Example: Spain in AOE3 is a great 1v civ and not as strong in team.

What ideas do people have for balancing civilizations in 1v1 AND in team games? A post on here last year spoke to how different home city cards between team and 1v could help balance it out - but assuming we don’t have a card system, what other ideas do people have?

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  • The team cards/bonus are a good option for balance (only team cards).

  • More/less ressources in the start at game.

  • Options availables with specific factions.

they already stated there won’t be card system


AoE is the most fun when played in teams.
I hope they have 2v2 in mind when balancing and designing the game.
It’s a lot harder and it’s basically impossible to prevent some combinations of civilisations to be better than others though.

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I guess they should balance the factions for 1v1, which also helps with the competitive part of it. And consequently use team bonusses to adjust a civilisations balance in teams.

Coming here from AoE2, it is funny how opposite it is from AoE2

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I agree. AoE2 seems relatively well balanced. I would say that most picks are mainly down to personal play style. Thats not to say that some don’t stand out above others. Its just that you can still win with any against any civ.

No, I was specifically talking about Spanish. Weak in 1vs1 and strong in team games.

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Are you saying you want a strong 1v1 civ to be equally strong in team match?

In AOE2 Spanish are strong 1v1 but don’t provide much benefit to teams.

The team bonus is alone of the best. Also in 1vs1, they can go for their gold heavy units, viz Paladins and Elite Conquistadors. Sometimes supported by Bombard Cannons.

As I understand the basic concept of AoE4, it is based on strongly asymmetric gameplay. The British suggest a stationary faction with few strong units, Mongols a mobile faction with many but weak units. Another faction probably lies in between. All nations will be assigned to one of these two/three concepts with slightly modified nuances. In addition, there will be the announced special abilities like the eagle of the Mongols as further differentiation. This asymmetry makes balancing the nations a very big challenge even in 1v1. In team games, strengths and weaknesses of asymmetrical factions will quickly multiply in many situations. The focus will certainly be on 1v1.
I’ve been thinking about this for some time, but I don’t see a way to ensure balancing in 1v1 and team games without major compromises.
Really curious to see what Relic comes up with on this issue.

– If anyone ‘specific’ reads it –
I want to become an AoE4 tester - who should I contact? : )

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signing up as an age insider, but aoe4 ain’t in beta testing right now so i suggest you to wait

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When i see balanced i dont think it as every civ being equally as good as every other civ. I think of it no single civ being seen as the only civ you can play. There will be some civs that do particularly well in comparison to others, but that civ should never dominate every civ

I agree, generally there will be favorable matchups. Of things like the map pool can help with this regard as well. I kind of like the AOE 2 DE system where you see the map and then pick you civ, I think it helps alot compared to starcraft 2, there are some maps that are just awful for certain races and there are times I would rather go my secondary race than my the one I would normally main.

In general I like how it encourages players to play more than one civ, I think it’s something that has been really refreshing about this series. For example if I wanted to learn Chinese I could pick them when I got Fortress or Arena, because I know I’m safer from rushes so I can take my turn to properly learn them. However if I’m on Arabia I could pick a civ I’m familiar with like Britons or Franks.