Imagine if AoE 1 DE played like AoE 2 DE

I have been a devoted fan of Age of Empires since it first came out almost 25 years ago. It sparked many of my passions and resulted in a lifelong obsession with Ancient History and taking a university major in Ancient History & Classics. I am thrilled with the continued success of AoE 2 and have thoroughly enjoyed AoE 4. Though I have enjoyed the DE remake of AoE 1, I am saddened by its lack of comparative success to AoE 2. Therefore, I would like to urge and plead for some sort of remake that closely follows the mechanics of AoE 2, which may always be the gold standard of the AoE franchise. I envision this as an add on to AoE DE or AoE 2 DE, rather than a whole new AoE installment.

I have done some work to propose ideas for how this would look, in hopes of sparking a vision for the developers of how this would work and how it could draw many of the AoE2 faithful back to the original, which is still the most nostalgic AoE game for me. The idea would be to take the best and most popular elements of all the AoE games and apply them to the original AoE, so it would not be reinventing the game, but creating the ultimate version of it.

Some initial changes to AoE DE would include:

herdable sheep/goats
-Eliminate academy and replace it with a spearman line at the barracks
-Rename the “Legion” unit so as to use the name for a Roman Unique Unit
-Move armor and attack upgrades to a new building called the Armory
-Move economic upgrades to the storage pit and granary
-Make the market building like it is in AoE 2 & 4, with a land trade unit (camel/donkey) called a Caravan
-Like AoE 4, place unique units at normal military buildings, while possibly adding a castle like building: fortress/stronghold
-Add Gates

Here is a list of the original AoE Civs (plus some new ones) with ideas for Unique Units, Unique Techs, and Wonders added (I have pictures of many suggestions but not able to add them):


-25% archer reload time
Villagers 10% faster
All Siege upgrades available in the Bronze Age

Unique Unit: Chariot Archer replacement – Heavy Chariot Archer

Unique Tech: Lamellar Armor: archer armor upgrade

Wonder: Ziggurat


Towers +60% hp
Stone miners 20% faster and carry +2 stone
Resource technologies cost -30%
Discount on all barracks units

Unique Unit: Walls/Gates are replaced with Median Walls/Ishtar Gates (Extra strong tall walls that only towers can fire over)

Unique Tech: Astronomy (Priests rejuvenate 30% faster)

Wonder: Hanging Gardens


Transports 25% faster
Fire Galleys +25% attack
Elephant units +25% hp
Camel Riders +15% hp
Start with +50 of each resource

Unique Unit: Numidian Cavalry (slightly faster cavalry with higher attack)

Unique Tech: a Trade upgrade


Infantry line as more hp
Towers +2 range
Priests cost -32%
Armory techs -40% cost


Gold miners 20% faster and carry +2 gold
Chariots +20% speed
Priests +3 range
Farms 20% cheaper

Unique Unit: Royal Chariot Archer (faster chariot archer that fires while moving)

Unique Tech: Nile Flood (Farming 33% faster)

Wonder: Great Pyramid


Town Centers 10% faster and +20% hp
Ships move 20% faster
+25% priest healing

Unique Unit: Hoplite (similar to Teutonic Knight)

Unique Tech: Philosophy (increase hoplite hitpoints), Marathon (+10% hoplite speed)

Wonder: Parthenon


Archer units +1 attack
Catapult line has +50% hp
Ships have extra range

Unique Unit: Chariot replacement – Heavy/Armored/Iron Chariot?

Unique Tech: Meshedi Bodyguards – Increases Chariot hp


All siege units 25% cheaper
All units 4x more resistant to conversion
Units with no range have +2 LOS

Unique Unit: Phalangist (1 range like kamayuk but stronger and more expensive)


Ships cost -30%
Composite bowmen +2 range
Farms have +60 food

Unique Unit: Ship Unit that fires volley of arrows (like Dragon Ship)

Unique Tech: Bull Jumping (faster non-mounted military units or faster attack rate?)

Wonder: Palace of Knossos


Trireme reload time -25%
Elephant units 25% faster
Hunters work 30% faster and carry +3 food

Unique Units: Chariot upgrade – Scythe Chariot (“trample” damage), Immortal (tough archer unit like Plumed Archer maybe with self-regeneration)

Unique Tech: Couriers - Cavalry 30% faster

Wonder: Palace of Darius in Susa


Elephant units cost -25%
Woodcutters 25% faster and carry +2 wood
Siege ships -25% reload time

Unique Unit: Explorer: Ship that can create villagers and scouts when beside land

Unique Tech: Tyrian Purple – Trade ships/Caravans bring twice as much gold


Buildings cost -10% (except walls, towers, & wonders)
Towers cost -40%
Swordsman attack 33% faster

Unique Unit: Legionary (fast attack rate and bonus against other Unique Units like Samurai)

Unique Tech: Tortoise Formation (higher pierce armor for Legionary), Roman Roads (faster infantry)

Wonder: Coliseum


Villagers cost only 40 food
Start game with -40 food
Walls have +60% hp

Unique Unit: Crossbowman

Unique Tech: Rice Paddy (Farming bonus)


Villagers have +15% hp
Catapult line has -30% reload time
Farms have +125 food
Spearman line +1/+2

Unique Unit: War Cart (tanky chariot archer, like Korean War Wagon)

Unique Tech: Cuneiform Record Keeping – all resources last 20% longer


Ships +20% hp
Villagers move 10% faster
Cavalry and horse archer units -15% cost

Here are some new civ ideas:


Passive gold income from market (On major trade route)
Collect food from sheep 50% faster (known herders)
Slingers do 40% more damage (famous left-handed Benjaminite slingers)

Unique Unit: Jewish Priest/Priest of Yahweh (Conversion & healing 30% more effective, increases attack of all its own units by 25% within LOS, like HRE Prelates in AoE 4)

Unique Tech:

Solomon’s Wisdom – trade ships/caravans travel twice as fast
Torah – double resistance to conversion

Wonder: Solomon’s Palace


Then maybe a Barbarians expansion:



I’ve been wanting this since always. I don’t expect microsoft to ever put money into it. The best we can hope for is a mod for AoE2.


On moddb is already a conversation mod that ports AOE 1 de to 2 de one of the devs mentioned already that they wanted keep AOE 1 de like AOE 1, what means that one of that change or remake is surely not planned.
AOE 1 de seems unsupported and abandoned, it’s almost 1 year since the last update, and the last update was also just after very long time since the update before, to make the people quiet. It’s sad but it is how it is.

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I’ve never played Age of Empires 1. Hence, I was surprised when I learnt that it has no Unique Units and no Fortress (Castle-like building). I think it’s better if they leave it like that.


I would love to see a aoe2 mod simulating aoe1, but still allowing gates, garnisoning, and getting sheeps.

However, I do not want to remove academy/hoplite line or moving upgrades around. I agree on using aoe2 trade mechanics. I am not sure for the unique units, I would rather remove the castle from the game mod (so no unique tech, no unique unit)

I think most of your ideas are good and well thought.

As someone already mentioned, it is possible to import aoe1 building into aoe2 mods.

If you plan to create such a mod, I’d gladly help, even though I do not have much experience in modding aside a few data mods.

You may be interested in the Romae ad Bellium mod. It’s highly developed, with a lot of good stuff, I’ve never used it, but I’ve been following the topic on here, I would advise checking it out.