Little changes that would be awesome to include (please)

I’m new here, but not new to aoe2. I’ve thought hard about small things to make life easier while not destroying the game we love. This is my wish list of stuff. small things that add some quality of life in the spirit of DE. Tell me what you think; if you like this please bump or comment so devs at least get a look at this.

  • Please put status bar on monks while recharging (the white bar) but gone (no bar) when they fully charge that way it’s easier to figure out which monks cannot convert. (could be always on while needing recharge or only on hover)

  • The preferred map has destroyed the options of map from many to two. (and generally Arabia since its the most popular) Part of the reason for having a map pool was diversity. But now I’m forced to pick a preferred map -> The reason for this is game theory. If I don’t pick a preferred map, my opponent gets theirs 100% of the time; i don’t want my oppo to have an advantage so i pick a map. Thus Arabia. ergo no map pool.

To fix this game theory problem, simply go back to random selection add in two additional hidden ‘maps’, one is my preferred map, one is my oppo preferred map. The dice is rolled if it lands on a regular map, play that. if it lands on a preferred map option play that, if a preferred map wasn’t mentioned pick a random map. This way we still get diversity and I’m not harshly penalized for not picking and we aren’t gamed theory’d into one of two maps. (mine or oppo)

  • Add the option to auto queue the first vill at the beginning of the game (or allow queueing before game timer start). Lag sometimes costs up to 5 game seconds of idle time… easy feature to handle and makes everything run more smoothly;

  • Put sheep on the inside of gate in arena. Honestly, I don’t know why this isn’t a thing, but if you get an unlucky build it’s possible that the enemy scout can steal your sheep before you can get them.


Does anyone have any thoughts about these?

If this isn’t done already, it really should be. I think you’re right, and with the current system I get my preferred map more often when I ban Arabia and co, but I’m not 100 percent certain yet.

The other proposals would be mildly convenient :slight_smile:

well the monk one would be really cool sometimes i’ll have 15 monks on arena and it’s hard to keep track which ones need to rest.


I just use my scout to scout the outside first. Meanwhile two sheeps are scouting most of the inside. This way your enemy has almost no change to steal your sheeps on Arena.

How about Mayans? They start with 4 vills and need to do loom first. Having a vill queued up is bad.

Good point with the Mayan’s! Instead of asking for an auto-queue to start, having the last few seconds of load-screen time respond to hotkeys (by buffering the load-screen with a hidden pause mechanic) would be a better solution. (maybe even during a countdown timer from 5)

To your point about sheep, it is true meta is to send out your scout, but if your enemy also sends theirs out on a tiny map the enemy can get to the far set before your scout can reach both sets in some cases. Many new maps simply put the sheep next to the TC, i think this is a reasonable solution for this map. In the case of hideout, there is enough distance to ensure you always get your sheep; but not always on arena.

That’s exactly right, it’s a poorly thought through mechanic.

Your strategy isn’t just to pick what you want, but to consider what your opponent wants and ban those! And to prefer maybe your second favorite map because opponent might likely ban your favorite! Terrible incentive design.

Current problems including that:

  1. People can just force quit the game when a map is found that’s not the map they like —> no penalty. My friend went 10 maps in a row his preferred map using this technique.
  2. People can ban popular preferred maps to force their preferred --> Ban Arabia and get your preferred all the time
  3. You have to preferred map, otherwise you always get opponent’s one. (The problem you explained)

Not sure good solutions are available. I’m happy they are tinkering with it constantly; we’ll find something good.

One option is to make preferred map just like random civ — only affects if both choose.

Beyond that it’s tricky. Optimally you’d need a preference hierarchy from each player (that’s without bans). Once you add bans the strategy tree needs to consider the opponents bans.

I have always wondered why the game just don’t “choose” the monks that are available for converting. If I understand correctly, as it is currently, I could have a group of monks and one of them just finished converting so is not available. However, if I mouse-select or group-select all monks and try to convert, then nobody converts because one isn’t available. Is that correct? If so, then my thought is that the game could be set to ignore the “useless” monk and employ the faith of the monks that are actually available to convert. In this way there would be less visual impact (i.e. no “faith-health bars”) and you need not worry about trying to NOT select a monk that is resting.
I hope that made sense. :slight_smile: Regardless, even if I’m out to lunch on that, I agree that it would be at the very least helpful to be able to see which monks can be used for unit conversion.

I always scout outside my wall first for sheep to mitigate this.

It seems likely that no matter why system ultimately is used, people are going to find a workaround. It’s like trying to keep ahead of hackers who write viruses and trojans. If the game is 100% arbitrary, then people won’t like that. If it’s a total free-for-all, people won’t like that. If it’s a hybrid, then people won’t like that, either.
I have no clue what system might be best overall, but at the end of it, someone is going to “drop” if they don’t get a map they like. Seems like a no-win situation for developers.

Chinese start with what, 5 or 6 villagers and reduced food so this wouldn’t work for them either. The first thing I do is queue up Loom.:slight_smile:

No, if one is available you can order the group to do it and all monks who can convert will try to convert your chosen target. This is actually how I check whether (any of my) monks have faith.

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A very good solution to the game theory problem is outlined in the OP:

In other words: with 50% chance we get my preferred map (if possible), and with 50% chance we get my opponents preferred map (if possible). Otherwise (if the preferred map of the preferred player is banned, or the preferred player didn’t pick a map), pick a random non-banned map.

For team games it would be trickier, but I don’t think we’re talking about team games here.

Good to know - thank you for the information it’s much appreciated.

It makes no mention of bans. What if my pref is banned by opponent? We are back at square one.

You talk about bans by “(if possible)”. But if only one is possible then what? We have this situation again that I need to consider my opponents bans and preferences in my selection which leads to the whole game theoretic mess.

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If your preferred map is banned, it is the same as if you didn’t pick a preferred map, and you play a randomly selected non-banned map.

The only game theory issue arises if there are 2 maps you want to play and both of them have a high chance of getting banned. This issue could be solved by allowing players to make as many maps preferred as they want.

I’ll spell the modified system out in case it isn’t obvious enough:

  • both players ban up to 3 (out of 7) maps
  • both players can ‘prefer’ up to 7 (out of 7) maps
  • there is now a coinflip
  • with ‘heads’ you play one of the non-banned maps which were preferred by player 1, if there are no such maps you pay a random non-banned map.
  • with ‘tails’ you play one of the non-banned maps which were preferred by player 2, if there are no such maps you pay a random non-banned map.

I don’t think anyone can actually get a noticeable advantage by playing mind-games with this system, and thus the perverse incentive to play such mindgames is removed.

Wtf is stopping someone from being the same as your stoopid “friend” and just keep Alt-F4ing until they get the golden Marsh they wanted?

This doesn’t fix the problem which is human nature and being selfish and /or too lazy to play unranked.

Im Mr placebo i ONLY want to play arabia. I will alt f4 unless i get arabia. Because i religiously believe we should have unlimited bans.

Your solution doesn’t even remotely solve this.

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Does everyone think the devs are idiots? They intentionally limit the number of bans and preferences to encourage map variety. What is so difficult to understand?

Yall think they put limited bans because they didn’t realise some people actually want more?

“oh you know what Richard, if we added more bans people could control more specifically which maps they get”

“wow Sadam i NEVER thought of that, thank goodness for that guy on the forum recommending it, i would have never thought of that”

That’s not at all the problem I was trying to solve. Read the OP. Obviously alt-F4ing should be punished.

This discussion was specific to 1v1s. Where we currently get 3 bans. Obviously this wouldn’t work for team games. My whole post should have made it obvious I was talking about 1v1s (player1 & player2, both, coinflip etc)
You think that in the 1v1 pool we should have less bans?

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Kudos for a mature response. As we’re all aware, there will never be a perfect system and there will always be exploits or workarounds. However, I do believe we can improve things by having conversations to brainstorm ideas, and I applaud you for attempting to do just that.
Cheers everyone and stay safe!