So based on the information we have and words from the devs in various interviews we can confirm the following:
in AoE4 devs have said you will need fewer villagers to sustain an economy resulting in being able to field a larger army.
- Fewer villagers = assumption of higher gather rates = raiding is very important as villagers are very high value targets as a result of their higher economic impact.
Civ specific economic bonuses which allows for more gold to be available earlier rather than mining finite gold mines generated on the map, assuming gold is the driver to produce more advanced units similar to previous AoE games - the economic advantages of each Civ below would mean you should be able to pump out higher quality units in a greater quantity with better upgrades sooner than previous AoE games:
English - farms are cheaper and ALSO generate gold I assume this is to emulate Feudal England where Lords taxed/ got rent from peasants on their land who worked the fields:
It’s poorly written and even as a native English speaker I’m having to assume that the farms generate the gold rather than implying you need gold to feed your armies - hopefully someone in the know could clarify.
Chinese - they have a unique unit called the “Imperial Official” which is basically a glorified tax collector ( ) who collects gold from surrounding buildings.
Mongols - a building called the Ovoo mines stone for the mongols passively, while this building is active it seems to boost research and the production capabilities of the mongols, stone use with the mongols seems unique as they are nomadic and they can’t build walls resulting in a different way this resource is used - as side from boosting production speeds/ boosting research maybe it also supplements gold spend on higher tiered units?
Delhi Sultanate - All their research is free but requires Scholars (their unique monks) in order to speed up research and techology upgrades. As their research is free they have more resources for building up a large army/infastructure, units will probably be more expensive compared to other civs - their research/ technology upgrades may also be really slow without the use of Scholars compared to other civs OR a strength of the Delhi Sultanate is their ability to attain powerful upgrades quicker than other civs resulting in them being more “ready” for combat situations - fielding stronger armies not in terms of numbers but in terms of quality?.
In Summary the 4 revealed civs have unique ways of empowering their economy which should then let them produce powerful armies quicker, in turn would result in really intense conflicts that last (passive gold generation/ free tech means more gold for stronger units) - in AoE2 for example once the map is out of gold you would switch to producing units which only cost food/ wood (you could sell wood and food through the market but I am unsure how viable that is in AoE2) which in my opinion resulted in rather boring army compositions (in Aoe2 Light Cav, Skirmishers, Spearmen) - we shouldn’t see this in AoE4 at least not until much later in the game.
What are your thoughts? This is my initial synopsis based on the information that is available, curious to see what you all make of it.