Only 2 unique units per civ?

Adam Isgreen and devs said that civs will be assymetric, that’s why AoE4 has only 8. So based on revealed info about civs on the page, there are only 2 unique units per civ and some monks has different abilities. So that means every other units are same? I was expecting unique design for every civ and it doesn’t look like assymetric.

Age of Empires IV – Age of Empires


Factions are actually played very differently, I cannot divulge all the details of the gameplay of each of them due to the NDA, but there is a unique gaming experience.


I think differences are great enough for game with potentially dozens of civs. Will be hard to balance as it is.


The chinese have six unique units.


Not really, a lot of civs will probably have different tech bonuses. Aoe 2 did this a lot where units would look the same (not a problem for this game) but their stats would be different based on techs specific to the civs (or lack thereof). Who would win? An english man-at-arms or a dehli sultanate one? Some of these questions can’t be answered until we actually try it them in game.

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Yeah, that is really low, unfortunately. I hope there will really be much more.


This is a new game. I would love to see different looking and acting units. AOE2 DE is already in a good state and it’s fun to play. No need to copy that, AOE2 still gets expansions and new civs which is great. But from a new game I like to experience new things.

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I wanted it to be more like AoE 3, where you have unique units for civ instead of same units with different skins… So it adds more strategy and diversity visually speaking. But well I think its to late…


Units being all asymetrical would be a nightmare to balance with 8 civs and incomings dlcs. Also it wouldn’t make sense in a medieval setting.

The civs play quite differently anyway, the units also look very different tho recognizable by their unit type.

Besides would it still be an AOE game without the pike/cav/archer trinity?


Just try project celeste which is age of empires online. It has many assymetric civs, gameplay is great. It’s graphics depends on person who likes it or not.


It doesn’t have to be all asymmetric, just like lots of modifications upon a base design

Different types of cav and archers would add more depth into the trinity without breaking it.


there is more asymmetry in the economies

don’t know which specific details are known info or not, but there are way more than 2 unique constructable things per civ

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Yeah, from the gameplay trailers you can tell most of the “unique” units are really reskins of the same unit, same as with the buildings. The bigger differences like others have said seem to be related to economy and age advancement mechanics.

So English and Chinese are not getting identical pikemen with the same uniform as in AoE II, but the difference is probably just visual (a reskin).


Indeed, the asymmetry they promised us and that “justifies” the few civs on release is feeling a bit scarce in what they have revealed so far imo. I’m especially concerned with the little variety of units I’ve seen in all the videos and trailers.


Another issue is that the unique techs are named so generically that they don’t seem very unique at all. The unique techs are posted on the website now.

Like, as an example, consider AoE2. Let us take the unique tech for the Koreans, Eupseong.

I could literally name it “Improved defensive buildings”.

Does it feel the same?


Right. I completely agree with the tech names. They are literally named by what the tech does, which in some cases is fine but if you do it for everything it comes up as lazy.

To add to your example, let’s take one, in English from AoE II: “Crop Rotation”. Let’s play a game and name it like techs in AoE IV: “Improved Farm Gathering Level 3”.

For the Rus we have such gems as “Blessing Duration”, “Siege Crew Training”, “Castle Turret”. Wanna take a guess at what they do? It’s again all in the name of simplicity I suppose, which is what’s bringing this game down IMO.

At least with something like “Crop Rotation” you have to understand the concept and make the connection about why rotating crops actually increase a harvest yield. It peaks your interest in understanding the relationship, so there’s a bit of history education involved.


Blessing duration is such a joke lol.


Civ design in AoE can be such a beautiful art. That players here do not know what we mean when we say things in AoE4 feel uninspired and repetitive is sad to my eyes. This franchise has be so much more than two unique units grafted onto a stale uniformity.


You cannot ask that the game have more asymmetric civilizations and that they have a greater number because it is totally unfeasible for balance and competitive.

There is no game that has many asymmetric civilizations and is a competitive success. Here are 3 options.

  • That there are 3-4 totally asymmetric civilizations and is Starcraft style (impossible this option being AoE).

  • That there are more than 20 civilizations and they are more symmetrical (it would be AoE 2.0).

  • That there is a middle ground of civilizations and they are not as symmetrical as AoE 2 or as asymmetric as SC and without becoming like AoE III either. (8-14 civs).

I sincerely think that the third option is the best without a doubt.


The basic existence of Age of Empires III and Age of Empires Online refute your entire premise.

I am glad the civ design in AoE4 appears something that will bring you joy. But please do not mistake a lack of imagination in civ design with historical accuracy.