Do people feel the time period of the game is actually “narrower”?

I remember the devs stating some time earlier that aoe4 is going to cover a wider time period than before…and I do not really feel like that.

I’m mainly talking about aesthetics. Yes from Tang to Ming dynasty is a quite large time span, but that’s just a name and buff that can be easily renamed to something else. If you look at the overall appearance of units etc. they look much more focused on a smaller time period than aoe2.

For example when I first saw the concepts of early man at arms or early knights, I was expecting some round or kite shields or greathelms like in aoe2, but they turn out to be the same late medieval guy with late medieval armour/shield but with poorer equipments. Then they upgrade into the same late medieval guy with better armour, then golden armour. The entire design is late medieval. They probably extend it a little further into early Renaissance with more varieties of gunpowder, but a large part of middle ages is neglected.

And there actually are those Norman or high medieval unit models in the campaigns. Why not add them to skirmish?

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i think this question is asked better in the AOE 4 forum :wink:

oh nvm got fixed.

I’m moving it to the right forum.

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But that was in 2019.

I think they simply changed their mind.

I have no idea why English MAA have Heater Shields in Dark and Feudal Age. Horse man for example actually use Kite Shields.
It would help readability a lot if you could directly see if the MAA is on Dark Age (Round Shield), Feudal Age (Kite Shield) or Castle Age (Heater Shield) level.
Same applies to HRE but only Feudal and Castle Age of course.


This seems like quite a weird thing for them to say. I assume they mean in comparison to AoE2… but that just isn’t true. From the start and end dates given in the civ descriptions, we can see that the time period for AoE4 is 750–1644, so 894 years. Meanwhile, the AoE2 time period is (based on campaign scenarios) 394–1598, so 1204 years. I’m pretty sure 1204 > 894.

I agree about the aesthetics, although the only aspect I have enough knowledge to give much comment on is the English architecture. After the Dark Age, it feels like there was no real attempt to think about the chronology of it or the way the details should change as you age up. For example, the Feudal Age is supposed to be “Anglo-Norman” (i.e. starting c. 1066), but the Council Hall and Abbey of Kings both have perpendicular gothic windows (a style that didn’t exist until the 14th century) and almost every other building suddenly has a slate roof (not very common in medieval England except in the few areas with slate available nearby). Considering the effort they went to with the way the language changes through the ages, it seems odd to me that the architecture didn’t get similar treatment.

(Don’t even get me started on the orientation of the churches – I’m pretty sure I’m the only person who cares about that…)

That’s precisely what the dynasties in the game are. The landmarks are all Ming (and later) dynasty buildings. The dynastic bonuses don’t reflect the underlying period and the normal buildings of the civilisation are squarely fictional, but summa summarum present various elements which did not exist before Ming.
So the civ is really Ming Dynasty (1368-1600) much like the Abbasid Dynasty/Chalifate or Delhi Sulatanate focus on a shorter time period.

Many Mongol landmarks are 18th century pieces. All of Chinese buildings should also be oriented according to the geomantic principles of feng shui. Did I mention the cannon portholes on the (not a) barbican are pointed at where your walls should be? And it has Art Deco decorations on it added to the real building in the 20th century, all a landmark for the first age-up… you’d wish for some Gothic windows instead! I guess at least the Delhi and Abbasids can make a case that it’s pretty hard to orient oneself towards Mekka on a randomly generated map.

AoE4 really doesn’t put an effort to depict accurate architecture or the historical architectural progression between eras. I think it would be fair to say it’s best to describe it as the rural to “metropolitan” building progression like in most AoE games.

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