Current state of competitive play and esports

Hello everyone!

Just wondering how you all feeling about the competitive landscape.

Both online community tournaments and off-line tournaments.

Your thoughts and what you would like to see more?
(Exhibition matches, Off-line tournaments, A Pro-League, small tournaments for mid level ranked players?)

Exhibition matches. Keep the level high.

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OK with both
As long as there are high quality matches

All those tournament options are great. However, balance and bugs need to be prioritized. Watching the pros exploit animation cancelling, spin-to-win mechanics, banning Mongols is not all that fun to watch.


I’m sure all the feedbacks is being taken under consideration. We must not forget that esports is a “live organism”. The games are always being patched from one event to the next.

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Tournaments must have rules to prevent the use of exploits and bugs etc that are just outright ridiculous.

Banning civ is also very questionable and very hard to discuss because it is nothing to do with the tournaments and their casters etc. The game really needs to fix the balancing issues and more so that no civ needs to be banned as we have only 8 of them :frowning:

The most important thing is that people don’t really enjoy watching the unbalanced games with missing features etc. Therefore, devs or anyone who are making decisions need to acknowledge that the game needs a lot to do and the community also need to let them know. Currently, AOE4 missed some crucial features of AOE2 and AOE3 that were amazing.

We have boring maps, with the same animals, woods, etc. There is no life and wildness like in AOE2 or AOE3 (AOE3 did it much better). And because these are missing, AOE4 is so boring to cast and talk about different things. In AOE2 and AOE3, T90 or Aussie would talk about all kinds of animal jokes, etc, and is so fun to watch. Anyway, I hope you got what I’m trying to say.

Lastly, I just want the game to get fixed and completed. Then the tournaments could do much better.



@IlVORTEXll I do enjoy watching how the pros exploit the game in creative ways over the course of multiple tournaments. Some of ridiculous strategies also sets how other players play the game, which is not as fun to play against. Remember the Mongol TC cart or infinite range spearman? Hilarious to watch, super frustrating to play against.

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Overall i like it. You guys are doing a good job.

What i would like is a little bit more exposure. A place where we can see upcoming tournaments qualifiers etc. And where can we follow them.

-Maybe presence at a Dreamhack.

-And more team tournaments. I liked those.

-P.S. I hope the Live tournament with 100k price money is a succes.

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dont look good imo

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I think there are too many full-meta-mirror-matches right now. Hill-and-Dale? HRE mirror. Boulder Bay? Rus mirror. etc. etc. It’s a yawnfest. I’d like to see quirky rules in tournaments which would encourage people to play off-meta, and utilise their creativity.

Some quick ideas:

  1. Random civ / Fan-vote civ picks / Pick your opponent’s civ
  2. Random map / Fan-vote map after civs have been picked
  3. No walls challenge / no siege challenge / no towers challenge etc.
  4. Start with more resources to encourage immediately combat
  5. Pick the landmarks your opponent must get, once you know which civ they’ll be using

So many other things could be tried to make things a little more interesting.

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I think amount wise its fine.
We got Genesis, Steel Series, Winter Championship, some small ones in between and Winner Stays on could count as a weekly Exhibition basicly. Now a huge one with N4C coming up and the Qualifier matches were already fun to watch. They should get even more spicy since Mlord/Beasty/Vortex are gone through and only 3 spots left.

“Problems” with seeing Matchup X vs Y or Mirrors are due to balance, but what people dont get is that there will always be Maps where certain Civs are just better than others. You wont get a 50/50 for each Civ on every Map.

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I’d like to see a game less plagued by bugs and poor balance. The bracing bug for Delhi and HRE was terrible and had severe effect on competitive. This is the 2nd time a patch came out which destroyed a faction in terms of competitive viablity.

This time the Chinese.
Not only is the Nest of Bees still bugged since stress test without any bugfixes, but Chinese still did not get any buffs to their garbage landmarks.
They still retain their -2 starting villaers and -100 starting food.

Chinese is the most nerfed civ when it comes to civ bonuses. Due to the removal of their bonus starting villagers the civ was already weak in Age 1 and 2 compared to other civs. The fact that the Nest of Bees continues to be a worse version than the Mangonel weakenes their Age 3. And now all they had, mass tech bonuses to siege in Age 4 has been nerfed to the ground aswell. Oh and don’t forget that sneaky IO nerf.

The devs keep the Chinese weak due to their terrible Landmarks. Some people think “but wait, you can build two landmarks” but where are you getting ressources for these?

Other civs like French/Delhi/English/Mongols/HRE/Rus simply get bonus ressources from their civ bonus? The Chinese don’t. It takes very long for an IO to pay for itself since its 150 food. Meanwhile Delhi and Abbasids have already gathered tons of bonus food compared to Chinese thanks to their buffed berries.

So Chinese are left without any special unit armored unit in Age 2, worse Siege in Age 3 and the weakest civ bonus in the entire game. No wonder they are trash tier. A big rework is in order and so are bugfixes. Landmarks need to receive some big buffs to compete with the rest.

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People are going off topic really fast, real hard.

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I think the amount of tourneys is really good. What I would like to see is organized statics being readily available from each tourney.

For example, right now nearly everyone is convinced Delhi is OP. But I’m pretty sure Delhi actually had a losing record in the N4C qualifiers. Turns out Delhi is quite vulnerable in early Feudal, but the meta hasn’t quite adapted to it yet. I think the situation is pretty similar to French, which everyone believed to be OP until Genesis showed otherwise and the meta adapted.

I’d also like to see maybe more participation in show matches or smaller weekly/bi-weekly tourneys. Some players (mainly those who don’t stream) we only get to see in competitive games one weekend every month or 2.

I think if you force a player to play random, that civ will play very meta.

I think future AoE4 tournaments should favor civ specialization to 2-3 at best and no bans (a middle way between SC2 and AoE2).

I don’t think game state is balanced enough for that right now. Maybe in 6 months or a year we can do that. I think what would happen is civ picks would be meta, nearly every game would be the same few civs, with the other civs rarely used at all. At least now we get to see every civ used (even China got used a bit during N4C qualifiers last weekend). Most civs are just too imbalanced across the variety of maps to restrict them that way.


I agree with your comment, but not with the term of 6 months. I think that a minimally decent balance (with its error margins as in all games) can be achieved sooner (2-3 months from now).

We won’t have minimally decent balance until water gets fully reworked, and that won’t be until after Spring Update, and probably not til after the bug fix patch that follows Spring Update.

Eliminating animation cancelling was a huge step forward, but I personally think it’s going to take 6 months to get 6-8 civs balanced across many different maps. There are still issues with repair rates and grossly imbalanced strengths at different times of the game. Until landmark selection rates are pretty balanced for every civ at every age, we won’t have enough compelling variety to restrict civ usage in tourneys. And there are a LOT of landmarks that need rework before that happens.

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If we count the spring patch and the next one, it will not be more than 3 months.

I agree that you have to make the most competitively balanced civs in almost all maps, but that will be a long time work, as long as they are viable, it goes well, that’s why I prefer that they use 2-3 civs instead of one or every civs.

Sometimes, I want to play game causally not aggressive and stressful way but can’t do it on main profile. I hope they add multiple profiles. I don’t wanna buy a 60$ game again (its already not worth it at its current state). I used to play csgo a lot. One account for playing at highest skill level and always working toward ranking up. While other account for playing in lower elo just enjoying the game and not over-stressing on everything. Experimenting different starts and not always caring too much about winning will make game much more enjoyable. You don’t always play a game just to end up being more stressful.