[NEWS]: Age of Empires IV - Patch 9.2.628 - DISCUSSION TOPIC

NEWS: 1-30-2024: THE LATE JANUARY PATCH WAS RELEASED!


By GoldenArmorX

The patch 9.2628 was finally released. There are many changes in balance and also in the meta. But first the link of the news:


1).- NEW TEMPORARY EVENT: YEAR OF THE DRAGON


Following the theme of previous years with the year of the rabbit, now comes the " Year of the Dragon ". For my part, I’m going to love being able to choose many banners with a Chinese dragon theme. This time the event includes being able to complete “Multiple games” for a single prize.


2).- BIGGEST SPRINGALD NERF: +70 BONUS ATTACK–> +60 BONUS (Update:“Corrected”)


A drastic change to springald, and I dare say that at the same level as Season 1:

His extra attack against ships and siege units dropped from 70 to 60!, but his attack speed rose from 4 shoots/s to 3 shoots/s, making him more deadly against light armored units, and above all, ranged units.

UPDATE: Originally, the official message says that the bonus change for 30 70 to 30 60, so is was confuse, but apparently the change is from 70 to 60, and not 70 to 30 how i thought. However, the range armour or every Siege unit except rams and springalds improve by +10. So Springalds now need more shoots to destroy a mangonel (2 → 3) and a bombard (4 → 5), and even more if the enemy upgrade Siege Works (bombard+SW: 5 → 7 shoots).

With the new improvement in attack speed, Will the Springalds now be a good counter for the English Lonbowman and archers? Only time will tell, hehe

Note: *About Season 1 Springald*

For those who were not there at that time: The springald had a huge attack (60), so much so that people amassed armies of it like scorpions of Aoe 2, which even destroyed armies of Knights. It was a mess at the time, and its role was changed to anti-siege in Season 2:


3).- JOAN D’ARC CIV NERFED


I can’t believe it”. Unexpected for everyone, the new civ variant has a new nerf, so players who had Main Joan D’Arc have to prepare:

  • Reduction of most HP and attack Stats of Joan at 2nd, 3rd and 4th Level
  • Joan no longer gets extra experience for wolves.
  • Unique technology “Companion Equipment” increases its price (175->500), goes to the Blacksmith and now also increases Joan stats (to balance the nerfing in feudal in Late Castle Age).

Perhaps the wolves nerf is related to certain maps having more wolves than others, making the way this unit gains experience a little unfair, but who knows. Players will have to take better care of Juana, perhaps the rank build will become more popular at the moment.


4).- NEW TECHNOLOGIES FOR JAPANESE IN RELIGIOUS BUILDINGS:

  • “AND REMAKE OF THE EQUALITY TEMPLE”

Considering its differences with the cultures of the continent, as well as a way to balance the strong Shinto Priest and the little used Buddhist Monks, a rematch of the religious Japanese build was made:

  • Pity: (“Did the samurai have a code of compassion? Nope! Well, it’s gone”)
  • Tithe Barn: (“*Shintoists generally did not venerate the remains of the dead (relics), why would they have a technology that increased money for venerating relics? Also, the Japanese Shugo, which is in What the economic bonus of the Town Centers is based on is that the temples and residents “Do not pay taxes to the King”, so technically the Tithe Barn did not exist. Well, history lovers: now in the game it no longer exists *”)
  • Healing herbs: In theory, they did have them, but it has been updated to a “Better” version.

Well now the new technologies:

  • Shinto Shrine:
    • Shinto Rituals: Increases the Shinto Priest’s healing rate by +60%, health by +40, and move speed by +15%.
    • Gion Festival: All buildings gain +2 Line of Sight. Every 3 minutes all economic units heal for 100% of their max health over 3 seconds.
    • Bunrei: Increases the maximum number of Yorishiro by +2. Immediately spawns 2 Yorishiro at the Floating Gate.

*Buddhist Temple:

  • Zen: Buddhist Monks generate +25 gold every 60 seconds.
  • Nehan**:** Upgrades Buddhist Conversion to Nehan Conversion, which has 25% shorter cooldown and additional improves nearby allied units’ movement speed by +25% when cast.1
  • Five Mountain Ministries: Buddhist Temples automatically cast Sohai’s Sutra on a nearby enemy every 6 seconds.

I would include the history section but it would make the note longer. Maybe for your own personal topic, but hey, it will be on another topic. What do you think? Will Buddhist monks be a new broken mechanic? The most serious changes are that these monks no longer receive “extra HP”, nor extra healing, they are now professional debbufers

Now, about the fact that they are unique new RELIGIOUS technologies: “This is interesting”, because if a culture like Japan can change their Blacksmith, Mill and Religious technologies from the base, the same thing would happens if Aztecs, Incas or Mapuches appears in the game in a distant or near future?

  • “It may be a dream for the moment, but it is a beautiful dream.”

5).- BAD NEWS FOR RAM RUSHERS: " RAMS NERFEDS, FOR ALL CIVS "


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“Ram Rush, we will miss you”. That’s right friends, The battering rams have been nerfed:

  • HP 420 → 340
  • Melee Vulnerability: (NEW) Ram takes 20% more melee damage
  • Cost: 250w → 200w
  • Cheirosyphon (Byzantines): HP 350 → 280.
  • “Wandering Town”(Rus) Ram damage increase, reduced: 50% → 25%

It is curious that as recommended by some users (myself included) it was done like in AoE2 and a bonus was given to the melee units against the battering rams. I remember that in AoE2 they made it more complex by making them have -4 melee armor (Note: Actually, in Aoe2, all aoe2 units with 0 attack and 0 defense have 10000 attack and 10000 base defense, but it appears as 0 to balance better with negative armor and armor reduction, because the game with negative values is bugged. In practice the battering ram has 9996 melee armor, and that is why it counts as -4)

Back to AoE IV: “Are units that take or negate percentage damage the new tendency?”

  • Since its debut with the Sipahi and Jannisaries, and the additions of the Shaolin monks, and JoanDArc LV4, everything seems to indicate that percentage armor is the NEW TENDENCY, and will be a trend for new units and concepts of future civs.

6).- ZHU XI AND AYYUBIDS NERFED


As several users predicted, several civ variants were nerfed, but only in specific aspects.

1.- On Zhu Xi’s side, the meditation pavilion now generates less resources (Food 100% → 75%, +Gold+Stone 100% → 86.6%), and less area (9-> 8 tiles). Springs produce only 10% faster. “Cloud of Terror” (IV).- Area reduced, but base attack increased.

2.- On the Ayubid side, the improvement of fast castle and fast feudal was nerfed a little (Time -40% → -20%s).


7).- BYZANTINES RECEIVE MANY BUFFS


  • Gran Winery now has mill improvements, making it more practical for economic boom.
  • Cheaper Cistern (300s → 250s), faster to build, and with better initial boost (5/10/15/20/25 → 10/14/18/22/26%)
  • Cistern of the First Hill Landmark, plus initial canteens (1->3), totals (10->20), and production ratio (45s->30s)
  • Limitanei damage reduction nerf: 50% ->40%
  • NERFING “Dialectius” Bonus: Research speeds 50/100/150/200/250% → 30/60/90/120/150% (Note: Yes it was very broken).

8).- BUGS FIXED: MANY BUGS


Since it is a large list, I will only summarize the ones that I remember and that also happened to me at some point in FFA:

  • 1.- “Shaolin Monk could not collect relics” (CORRECTED): Unexpected but it happened a lot, either they could not deposit them in the monastery, or they simply could not collect them. In theory they say they fixed it, it would have to be tested, but hey, thank goodness they bothered to fix it, there was a ranked game in which this bug bothered me.

  • 2.- “Onna Musha, bannerman aura was not working” (FIXED).- Now it works, players who wanted to test Japanese with all their real strength, it’s your time.

  • 3.- “Area Skills affected garrisoned units” (FIXED).- Yes, apparently if you used Joan D’Arc’s Area Damage skill next to a Town Center with garrisoned Villagers, and used it 4 Sometimes, it killed all the villagers inside, because it affected garrisoned units. Also Dervishes healed units inside Keeps at the same time, so if you garrisoned 20, it healed them at the same time. Well NOW NO MORE.

  • 4.- “Prelates inspired enemy ships” (CORRECTED).- This… I never tried it, but apparently it was a bug. In fact, I didn’t know that prelates could inspire ships, I’m going to try it now in my marine games with HRE hehehehe. UPDATE: I tested and now Prelates can’t inspire your own military ships, so the bug was only for enemy ships, how weird… well whatever, the next:

  • 5.- “Floating Gate stop to produce Yorishiros” (CORRECTED).- Curiously, this happened to me in multiplayer. I didn’t realize how it activated, but I counted and I only had 1 Yorishiro. Apparently the effect is activated if your population is 200/200, so if you did a castle rush that took your population to the maximum, the bug made this Landmark completely useless.

  • 6.- **"Killing units sheltered in Keeps or Town Centers ruined their Limit counter (FIXED).- This happened to me recently in an FFA, I played Chinese and suddenly my officer counter became 26/ 4. That made no sense. Apparently if they die in certain circumstances, such as on a transport ship or while there is a queue of units, the number of units when they die is miscounted and you can’t produce more.


9).- OTHER CHANGES



  • “Mali and Shinobi Buff”.- Additional Town Centers NO LONGER DETECT INVISIBLE UNITS, So shinobis and Musofadis will be able to attack extra enemy secondary Town Centers with greater sagacity.

  • “Town Center Nerf, Garrisoning nerf:” It gets worse: Town Center only deals 6 damage with additional villagers, reducing its effectiveness as a defensive building even further.

  • The HRE: No significant changes in sight, only one Bug fixed (NOoooo): I guess we will have to wait for the season change for new units and unique technologies, but the fact that they didn’t give it anything extra of balance, indicates that the solution that the devs would propose cannot be simply fixed with a patch between seasons. I remain optimistic.

  • Buff to Order of the Dragon, improved villager collection rate (25 ->28%), improved Guilded Landsknecht with more HP, bugs fixed, etc.

  • With the Springald, “The Culverin” get a reduction in its bonus attacks aggainst siege(110 → 60), so it won´t oneshot Mangonels or another springalds anymores, but get a bonus attacks speed from 4 to 3. ¿Nerf or occult Buff aggainst ranged units and infantry? “Maybe Both, but is only my opinion”.

  • Like a minor detail: Japanese Handcannoner change its name to “Handcannoner Ashigaru” ¿Hint to a possible Ashigaru Muskeeter or Arquebusier in a future Season? jeje.

Well… that and other changes, enough to discuss them all on my own, but that’s exactly what this topic is for. Leave your comments about what could be improved, what news is the best and how the metagame can change with this patch.

I am happy that they said that more surprises are expected in the future:


5 Likes

Overall I like the changes.

As japanese player I want to test the new playstyle that the rework of buddhist landmark brings to them. More focused in the use of religious units. Also is a good notice they already fixed onna musha, now the unit is worth.

The only thing I don’t undestand is the siege rework, I think this change would negatively affect team matches, but we will see.

4 Likes

I have a question about JD’s move speed. Move speed is used to be stated as 0.xx/1.xx. How come in this patch notes JD’s speed is stated as 5.5?

  • Tier 2 Archer Jeanne d’Arc move speed increased from 5 to 5.5.

From test, it is now 1.38, on par with Woman-at-Arm form. With equal HP as WAA, but lower armor, it’s easier to kill than WAA, making it useless.

I think this civ is official dead now. Thanks Relics!

This is a first good step!
Like in aoe3, EVERYTHING should be done through percent-based resistencaes.
All the struggles of balancing siege weapons, archers, heavy units like maa/knights through dmg, flat resistances and exceptions would be gone in one single patch.
The Devs would have to, for once, invest a little more time for a single patch, which in the longer run would make everything easier and WAY more balanced.

All that in - and out, every single damn patch will stop.
If they just bring up a CLEAN percent-based system ONCE.
Adjusting a flat (!!!) value of one unit ##### with the whole game.
Hence the game will never be balanced well and with the growing number of upgrades, civs and units it’s gonna become worse only.

The flat dmg/armor system is a very outdated idea from the late 1990s and has to be replaced by a percent-based system.

1 Like

They should have repatch the mounted samurai and horseman aesthetic. I mean ditch the shields and transfer the naginata to the horseman plus correct the katana the blade should be facing in front not in reverse. Geez cant they noticde it?!

1 Like

I like this for the most part. However, the Nest of Bees still isn’t making a sound when launching projectiles.

1 Like

I thought the patch was good overall.

I just didn’t really like the change in siege weapons. The Springald have more DPS against common units than some units. In addition, the damage reduction against siege weapons, buffs Mangonels and the Ottomans’ great bombard.

The buff of the Japanese and the Byzantines is also a bit of concern, but let’s see in practice what it will be like.

2 Likes

Think they missed the mark with Byzantines. The changes to them are mediocre. Cisterns need to cost even less to justify the defenseless expansion, of which Byzantine has no tools to actually defend with. Aquaducts need to take less time to build. Oil needs to be generated from all foods as to not punish players for collecting sheep/deer over berries, and to bridge the oil drought gap in Feudal-Castle. Cisterns need to have some actual valid mechanics and not just “lol 20% more production speed” type of stuff. Remove research time and cost from Contracts–hell, I’d say remove the Mercenary Camp altogether. Make Stable have the Eastern Contract, Archery Range have the Western Contract and Barracks have the Silk Road Contract.

That, or let us “trade” resources at the Mercenary Camp for Oil (like market already does).

Varangians need to be stronger in Castle and weaker in Imperial. Make their Berserking less punishing, only decrease Ranged or Melee armour or allow us to cancel Berserking. Cataphract’s trample is still awful. Both Varangians and Cataphracts need to have their cost reevaluated–it is clear to me that their cost is artificially inflated simply to justify the absurdity of Mercenary spam. Tune back Mercenaries and adjust their cost.

The Limitanei nerf is a mistake and clearly only happened because people are bickering at them over it. The Cistern of the First Hill needs a complete redesign, healing individual units at a set ticket system is just inflexible and bad. Literally make it either unlock tier 5 Cisterns immediately or to unlock a healing aura around Cisterns as a mode. Golden Horn should probably be tuned back even more. Hippodrome is just so boring, I can’t believe they made a Feudal Age landmark that only makes Horsemen.

Change Palatine School to reduce the cost of those units instead of producing a random amount of them. RNG needs to be gone from this type of civilization, the map generation is bad enough as is in making it difficult to expand with Cisterns. Remove the RNG from Trade Posts, and tie certain Unique Units to contracts.

All in all, Byzantines feels like a complete mess of a civilization that lacks coherence and seems underbaked, which is a stark contrast to Japanese who has received multiple reworks already. I do feel there is some weird bias going on here and frankly, I am disappointed in seem them give Byzantines so little attention. Mediocre, is all I can say. Here is a bonus image showcasing the beauty that is the broken Limitanei Castle Age texture.