Not updating the campaigns before Free To Play was a missed opportunity

Now you can play the first campaign on AoE3DE for free but there is one issue.

The civilisations from the first campaign (Blood, Ice and Steel) are based on the civilisations of vanilla AoE3.
Neither Malta nor the US existed as playable civilisations, but now they do.
It is strange having a completely different Malta and USA in the campaign compared to the actual game.
That will likely also be confusing to new players especially considering that the Maltese civilisation was basically build after the campaign with a lot of campaign references in it (for example Grand Master face looks like Alain Magnan or the Commandery, Depot and Fixed Gun are references to things you do in the campaign).

The enemy civilisations like the Ottomans have changed a lot in recent patches while the campaign basically just sends in waves of Janissary with some Sipahi and Great Bombards here and there.
No Deli, Azap, or Humbaraci.

It’s not a good way to advertise the game.

I talked about that in the Campaign civilisations update thread a year ago but that was before the recent big updated to civilisations like the Ottomans or Russians.


an actually good point

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The campaign enemies usually follow a fixed script, it won’t change its army composition to counter yours.

Plus the campaigns may be balanced around the old civs and changing the civs might make them too easy.

I think it’s easy to change the civs but it might be too much work to maintain the same difficulty which is probably why they don’t touch the campaigns.


I remember seeing enemies in the first campaign build saloons/taverns after TWC.

I think it’s fine if old campaigns are not touched much. Civs are more complicated than AOE2 so you cannot simply swap them, and AOE3 seems to not have many campaign design staff.

But they should release new campaigns with the “modern” civs.


If they ever put money ans resource into making campaigns, they should just create new historical campaign tbh. For every civ groups. Revamping old campaign is just not worth it.


Afaik there was some bug in the code that made all AI prioritize saloons over anything else.

I remember TWC AI regardless of civ always made renegado after reaching Age 2.

Yes and spies as well.

What difficulty? They are boringly easy

Depends on the mission.
A lot of it is AI and that AI already uses the new things added to the game.

They don’t touch the campaigns when they do changes to the main game so the difficulty already changes with many balance patches.

Yeah which is kinda stupid.
Another reason why they should rework the original campaign.

It’s not as easy but you don’t have to change that many missions.
It’s just stupid when you fight the Mexicans as the US and none of the units on either side are from the Mexican or US civ.

But why then make those old none updated campaigns free to play instead of the new Historical Battle one?

Also updating the old campaign would obviously take a lot less work then making a new one.
It’s only tweaking the balance of the missions and finding all the things that have to be replaced.
No new story, no new assets, no new voice lines, etc.

For an experienced player yes, but you gotta remember that they are likely the first thing any new player will encounter.
They are basically the tutorial.

Maybe it would be nice if they added a very hard version as a challenge for experienced players though.


Actually, reworking the campaigns would be the best way to promote dlc civs if they want new players to buy them.


I might be wrong but I feel like they are not touching old campaigns because of old spaghetti code. Even with DE release they focused on new historical battles which are like mini campaigns, rather than work on old ones.
That’s why so many things in campaigns get broken with every patch.

Probably just making new stuff with new game code would be easier, relatively.

Incidentally, if anyone wants to try how the first two scenarios of the campaign might work “updated”, this would be my take on them:

Just copy those files to C:\Users\ (Your user)\Games\Age of Empires 3 DE\ (bucn of numbers)\Scenario

I recommend playing on Hard :smiley: It is still a work in progress, specially the second one, as I haven’t disabled the age up to industrial, but I wil finish them

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I’ve got to say. If I tried a trial version, what motivates me to buy the full game is the sp content, not the ability to play ranked.

That part has been largely ignored for AOE3 for long. With the current business model I think adding and improving campaigns should be profitable.


A guy made a survey in reddit and most players were SP players.

For Age 3 DE, I would rather have many historical battles than one historical campaign.

Maybe one day in the future they will find that they have added too many historical battles with the same theme (eg Napoleon), and feel it would be more convenient to organize them into groups, and re-invent the concept of campaigns.

By century or by geographical location

It is because the civs of the campaigns are not those of the multiplayer, but are custom civs for those campaigns…

Act 1 Blood: They are not Malta but are Knights of Saint John (based on Spanish, create Hoop throwers and Lancers)

Act 2 Ice: They are John Black’s Mercenaries (based on Germans, they create Uhlans and War Wagons)

Act 3 Acero: They are the United States (based on the British, they create Rockets and Manor)…the Mexican civ are Spanish because the campaign takes place in 1817, when Mexico was New Spain…

I agree with this, the civs that do not appear in the campaigns are the Portuguese (they appear in Cristobal Da Gama’s Expedition and the Battle of the Three Kings) and the Dutch (they appear in the third Art of War mission)…and then the DE civs (Incas,Swedes,Italians and Maltese) (Mexicans,United States,Ethiopians and Hausa have historical battles)…

The historical battle of Algiers is free to play…

One more difficulty perhaps…

Maybe one day they will do it I don’t know…

They redid the Shadow campaign and they made it kind of meh, they changed the first missions against the Lakotas, to end up fighting with the Reno Gang…

Upload it to the mod search engine…

Or do a Napoleonic campaign like the RoN TaP campaign…

You would just have bonus cards and then a constant trickle of food, wood and coins with each turn…

Sure, like AoE 2 DE…

You may have had this impression from Breakout, which sends units based on triggers.
In Into the Caves, they train only Janissaries and Abus Gunners, which might have been due to scripts.
In The Ottoman Fort, however, the Ottoman AI does make use of its extended roster.

Many changes are quite achievable to make with just the map editor. SPC civs should be able to be modded the same way other civs are. It’s just their decks which would likely make things more difficult.
The things that tend to break in the campaigns are related to wide sweeping changes to some civs and AI. This is an argument in favor of actually playtesting and updating the campaigns.

Knights of St. John could be made to include Maltese voicelines, at the very least. Currently, all of their units but the Rodelero and Lancer use British voicelines. I would also give them Order Galleys available instead of Caravels (except when they get them from spawns during PIRATES!). Commanderies Fixed Guns, Sentinels, Hospitallers, and Depots are out of the question, though. Hospitals are debatable.

John Black’s Mercenaries are probably the least problematic of them. Perhaps they could get the Saloon or Tavern to hire more mercenaries directly. No outlaws, though.

United States would require the biggest overhaul and the most card replacements. Most cavalry and infantry, save for the Hussar, should be replaced with their US counterparts. There is no reason for them to have Pikemen available, so they would get State Militia instead (for some reason they lack Age 2 anti-infantry as they are now). Would probably also replace the Church with a Meeting House. No State Capitol nor Federal Age-ups, though.

There’s no sense in making the Mexican army attack with Lancers and Rodeleros, and there were already Mexican rebellions in 1817.

Another thing that needs addressing is that all of the SPC civ Church cards are called Royal Decree to Claim the New World, which is the name of the Spanish.

By the way, updating the campaigns is not a novel concept for Age of Empires. AoE2DE regularly updates and retrofits new content into their campaign scenarios.

Yeah, maybe someday when they finish with the dlcs, they can do a big campaign update:

  1. St John Knights with Maltese voices

  2. John Black’s Mercenaries with Tavern

  3. USA SP civ overhauled with USA units, buildings and cards and Mexicans SP civ with Mexican units like Chinaco and Insurgente replacing Lancer and Rodelero

This is more easy because AoE 2 civs don’t have cards and have only one UU…

Y’all’re forgetting Incas are also in Steel. That’d be another civ to be replaced by the skirmish version. :laughing:

And the Historical Campaigns also never got reworked after represented civs became fully playable. You don’t play Battle of New Orleans as the Skirmish US for example.