My review on African DLC

Before anything, I want to thank the continued support of the game. I hope that the DLC is selling and the numbers are doing well so we can have more content and support in the future, That said, this is my personal review:

  • First of all, I understand the new DLC format vs. the traditional xpack. Smaller content for smaller price means that it’s possible that more people will be able to buy it, but I fear that we will get this model over the franchise. If the money/content ratio it’s fine, I don’t mind, but I fear that kind of games that have a large quantity of DLCs for small content. But that also means continued support, so I have mixed opinions on this.

- The content of African DLC: as I said before, I feel fine with the money/content ratio, but I would have paid slighlty more for 1 civ more and 2-3 new historical battles. Mainly because I feel that Africa seems a forgotten continent that it’s not very explored in videogames, and I like to learn and see about that, and I feel that once a thematic DLC/xpack have been released, places tend to not be revisited. To be honest, if numbers go well and Microsoft wants to continue the support, I feel like a Morocco/Italy would be possible (but that is speculation terrain).

  • Design: I think that the civs shows that there are passionate people that have spend a lot of time modding the game (good to see you here Tilanus!). The designs are very interesting in gameplay, there’re a lot of cultural diversity on the civs and new roles have been explored. The bad side is that 1) there are mechanics and stats that have to be tuned down (but this is naturally a thing that can happen) and 2) feature creep (it deserves it’s own point)

  • Feature creep: starting from Sweden and Incas, mostly European civs seems lacklusting. Since xpacks, and specially the DE civs, seems to have a lot of bonuses and flexibility, where Euro civs seems more one-sided (maybe because I’m not a MP pro and I main Russia). I understand that new civs have to be interesting to sell them, and it would be very controversial to change established metas from Euro civs, but I just wanted to point it. For example, I feel that the Influence tokens are just a better designed Export.

  • Historical scenarios were nice and well designed, they point more to the traditional AoE II style rather than AoE III. Because they are fewer, and they try to show important battles that have only one scenario to start and finish, I understand that other kinds of missions that are not “Build and Destroy” are left out, but I miss some of the older styles scenarios, like the Warchiefs ones. As I said, I loved to see new places and learn history from thoose lands. I struggled a little to win (hard), but nothing very difficult.

But then we step to the bad side and problems:

  • Seems that a lot of translation were half done (and it’s recurrent that the quality of them is bad or are translated without the context), at least one text that I found isn’t finished (one of the new African heroes doesn’t have historical text) and other people are reporting others problems.

But my main complaint: sound

I love the effort to have native speakers to depict the language in a good way and respect the culture, but the quality between the recordings have a lot of disparity. I don’t know if they aren’t profesional voice actors, if their equipment it’s bad or it’s in the mixing process that something goes wrong. But hell, some of the voices seems from a mod quality level, and this goes back from the Lakota and Haudenosaunee new recordings (with only 2 voices sets). I understand the budget limitations, but that hits me.

Final conclusion: I don’t regret it to buy it, I would buy more DLCs, but take into consideration that things. I hope some of them will be fixed (and I know that they will, at least some of them)


-Right now: 6-6.5/10
-If voices and translations and other bugs are fixed: solid 7/10

Paying a little bit more (IDK if it would be reasonable, 12 euros?) with 3-4 more historical scenarios and 1 civ more (Moroccans have some work!): 8/10



I hope these will be fixed. I give solid 8. I like dlc and ı hope more civ will come near future.


Italy would’ve ruined this DLC. They did nothing in Africa, until the 20th century.


Every new civ doesn’t need to fit the arbitrary theme of the expansion. If they released an expansion called “Snow Peoples of Europe” that included Danes, Poles and Zulus I wouldn’t care. Well I would, because I don’t want Zulus in the game but you get my point.


would be pretty funny including zulus there lol.


I think old civs looking unidimensional is a matter of perspective. it is true that some aspects may require a bit of changing (like making special church upgrades available by default to research, with cost adjusted accordingly), but their game play is also very much figured out, and literally everyone just goes for the best optimal build. IMO, there is plenty of variation in the old civs game style, it’s just that people automatically follow youtube and just go for cookie cutter specs.

I do hope though that the devs will take a look at older civs and try to refresh them a bit with small changes here and there.

Overall I think the DLC is very much a 10 from a civilization design. Much to my surprise, only 1 unit seems blatantly OP (Javelin rider), and the civs seem balanced and fun to play. It is obvious a lot of work was put into this, and it has been in the making probably since before USA.

It could have used some more single player content, but then again, I doubt the other content would have been as good if resources were allocated to a new campaign.

By far the best DLC of any age of empires game so far.


I think they could rework things they already have, like livestock for example, which is almost always only used in treatises. They could implement dairy farming and be able to set up the corrals so that the cattle generate gold or food (Something like selling the milk or consuming it), is just an example. They could make politicians more attractive to use just like the states of American civilization by giving bonuses and unlockable upgrades. Perhaps a new type of building would not be bad like the university that was in the MOD Napoleonic Era.


Livestock being usable to Europeans would be nice. And I have thought before about the church upgrades, I 100% agree that they should be possible to research without sending a card (if it’s a balanced thing)

I fully agree that feature creep made European civs extremelly lackluster. They probably should’ve add some new cards, unique units and buildings for some of the duller civs like Portuguese, Spanish, French and Brittish. Compared to Sweden, they are very much flavourless.

I gotta say I really like how the European civs play still and I think the new Revolution options gave them plenty of variety. I know most of the revolutions aren’t competitively viable, but variety seldom is. With Dutch going South Africa for extra factory and huge immediate economy boost is nice, or swapping to getting free units from infinite town centers and cool new dragoons? Playing as Finland or Canada I also enjoy, with their combat-villagers.

I really like the DLC. I jumped straight into the Hausa historical battle and I was overjoyed at being completely overwhelmed by new decisions, having to pick and choose between all sorts of new stuff I had no idea how it was going to turn out :slight_smile: Excitement abound :slight_smile: