Oppose the abuse of unique units

Note that the roof of this building is very interesting. The attic on the left is Chinese style, and the attic on the right is Muslim style, in the middle is the main body of Romanesque architecture,which means it is the intersection of Eastern and Western civilizations.

I oppose Byzantium having the characteristic siege weapons of other CIVs.

We are not yet sure which siege weapons it can produce. Currently, what can be confirmed is Nest of Bees (but I personally do not support generalizing feature units). So will Cannon from France and Ottoman Great Bombards, and even Japanese specialty artillery, be included?

Although AOE is not a game that completely restores history, is it too strange?I think the biggest improvement of AOE4 compared to 2 is its civilized characteristics, but now some mechanisms are clearly “reversing”.Allowing Byzantium to possess siege weapons from other CIVs not only undermines the distinctive features of other CIVs, but also goes against history.
In other words, the tradition of using mercenaries in Byzantium does not mean that they can completely ignore history, fabricate history, and give them weapons they have never come into contact with.
Byzantium had never hired a Chinese army.
Moreover, since it is possible to give Nest of Bees, which Byzantium had never encountered before, why cannot China also produce “Greek fire”? (Also known as the “Flame Thrower” of AOE3) At least the latter is an exact existence in history.

Japanese cannons for which details have not yet been released.


Yes it is strange and a bad gimmick of a “mechanic”.

It detracts from the few unique units that civilizations already have. It is also a lazy way to make “new” content, by literally reusing old mechanics and features in “new” civilizations. Mongol’s reworked landmark is a travesty and this entire mercenary mechanic is starting to appear too many times in the game.

It would have been better if this landmark was more like the Wynguard Palace, that unlocks entirely new units that suppousedly belong to other civilizations, rather than reusing the units already in the game. This would actually make that content new.

For instance, if I wanted to play with Nest of Bees, I’d play Chinese. Funnily enough, I am actually for regional units, but I don’t think a Nest of Bees should be regional, as it is quite unique and special. It’d make more sense for units like Horse Archers, Camels or Elephants. This also stacks the Byzantines in a way that is just kind of sad when comparing with existing civilizations, they have access to many new unique units as well as many unique units from other civilizations, whereas HRE only has a Prelate (barely even a unit at all) and a Landsknecht–and that is without mentioning the Order of the Dragon which will surely pretty much replace HRE altogether.

Sorry, but so much for the entire “AoE4 civilizations are super unique” crap they’ve tried to push. So far most civilizations play the exact same with eco bonuses making the only real difference, and mechanically, almost every “unique” unit is bog standard and boring. The Chinese are probably the civilization with the most interesting units, and all they basically do is splash damage. No wonder their units are being given out to an entire 2 other civilizations.

And as stated above, ironically, I think regional units are a great way to add more depth to separate civilizations. Like Culverins or Ribauldequins or most regional units in AoE2, the different technologies available to different civilizations create unique combinations. Of course, this comes at the cost of making those units standard, and I think that is somewhat necessary, as I think the roster of standard units is too low.

Imagine for example a Fire Lancer in a Mongol’s army could do vastly more Fire damage because of Kurultai and Additional Torches. Or if civilizations that used Horse Archers, actually had them, like Ottoman where you could combine them with Mehters for devastating effect. Camel Archers made by Malians would have Poisoned Arrows and Precision Training and so on.

Regional units like this adds the depth to the game that AoE4 has been lacking. It would make people actually consider doing something else than Spearman, Horseman and Archer. But, simply giving these units to one civilization or a super niche landmark is NOT the way to do it. Civilizations are meant to have new and unique features, and Landmarks are meant to be different–this reoccouring design is concerning as it waters down the uniqueness of units meant to be UNIQUE.

Unfortunately, someone at Relic’s offices LOVES this gimmick so hey, maybe in 3 years every unit will be available to everyone? Wouldn’t that be amazing??? :smiley: :nauseated_face:


This is ironic. The Chinese are positioned as a powerful gunpowder civilization in AOE4. If intuitively understood, the Chinese should be the only civilization in AOE4 to possess gunpowder weapons, which would be one of the characteristics of the Chinese in the game. However, after the game was released, it was found that almost every civilization possesses gunpowder weapons, and some even possess more advanced firearms and cannons than the Chinese. How can this powerful gunpowder weapon civilization be considered one of the characteristics of the Chinese? Because other civilizations have it. Nowadays, even the Nest of Bees, one of the distinctive weapons of the Chinese, can appear in the weapon vaults of the Byzantine and Mongolian people. So what is the Chinese in AOE4?

I agree with this part.

I think the quantities will be limited, like the mongol monument age 4.
And btw nobodies complaining about these mechanics allowing them to have chinese siege or russian knights ?
The whole story of the Eastern Roman Empire is about recruiting mercenaries to hold the frontiers, you can’t deny this part of gp. But it has to be a small part of the roster and don’t drown typical units we all want.

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And tell me, why must it be the exact same units as the other ones in the game? The fact is, they could’ve produced units that are meant to represent units from other regions or states, not literally copy-paste over UNIQUE units (making them NOT unique) and calling it a day.

The idea is swell. Execution is beyond terrible.

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Indeed, even using an existing model to create a new unit like Wyngguard is better than abusing characteristic units.

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Today, the meta is berkshire and no one use Wynguard. So they basically made new models that are useless atm.

But if you want some reasons :

  • for lisibility, because it’s an RTS and not a (total)wargame or something like that. Many skins of nest of bees could be very confusing for new players and low players. Even more with new civs coming.

  • to reduce modeling and time of development

  • maybe they will patch it later (like some units)

  • The gameplay is more important than the historic matter (or maybe of the same importance). I prefer many features on the Byzantin than new models of mercenaries.

  • They already made a great effort to have visual identity on each civ and i think it’s a lot of work, this is not an excuse to copy past every model but before improving that you need to keep the player base which is decreasing slowly; new content is basically the best weapon to counter that.

Let’s also keep in mind that unique techs for such units are probably not available to the byzantines.
I agree it is not a very attractive approach to copy&paste units into another civ, but to be fair, that is exactly what mercenary units would have been. Bought off military from other regions, they usually bring their own equipment so that part is accurate and has to be represented in some shape or form.


In the description of the civ, it is stated clearly that it hires mercenaries. This is one of the characteristics of Byzantines. It is historically accurate too.


I didn’t ask for skins. I said a different UNIT. The Nest of Bees being available to every god damn civilization does not make it an interesting or UNIQUE unit. The introduction of different units that represent mercenaries would not cost a lot, as it didn’t with the Wynguard or JaD’s units, you simply reuse the unused assets and put together something that represents that region.

Gameplay is important and this isn’t about historicity for me, it is about mechanic. It is a lazy, underdeveloped, uninteresting mechanic to just say “do what they do”, and remember, this is the second example of the developers using this gimmick to make “new content”. It isn’t new content when you’re reusing content.

You say you prefer mechanics over new models as if these teams are the same. Artists working on unit models are not going to detract from designers developing the mechanics, features and design for the civilization.

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So does many other cultures. There was no mercenary connection between the Byzantines and China, it is made up, as most things recently coming out of this studio is.

Like in my other comments, it being a mercenary civilization does not mean you should copy paste UNIQUE units. It entirely detracts from them existing as UNIQUE units at all.


China specifically is looking to be the most ruined civilization in the game with how far they’ve gone with being stripped of their uniqueness. Nest of Bees being available to THREE civilizations out of the real 12 ones, likely FOUR CIVILIZATIONS if featured by the ZXL/EoJ, which it very likely will be. Additionally, the Pyrotechnics nerf, gunpowder barely being featured as their civilization mechanic, nerfs from every angle because its “too strong”.

What is happening here is a lack of effort and bad decision making from the developers. That is the no-bullshit answer to what is going on, as much as people want to dress it up as issues with the management, higher ups, and players who know nothing about design or development ranting on about gameplay or popularity.


Listen, unique units can still be unique while not being exclusive. It’s two different things.

Also keep in mind that unique techs from the Chinese probably won’t be available for the mercenary unit.
The Chinese NoB still works differently or costs less, depending on whats the angle here.


The use of mercenaries by Byzantium in history does not mean that they can ignore history and take possession of Nest of Bees, or even gunpowder cannons that they are not good at.
And Byzantium had never hired a Chinese army.

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I bid you to read my original comment, because you are lacking critical information. I won’t repeat it here, but basically that I like regional units, and I think that they are what should harbour this ability to create new combinations through the usage of different technologies.

Not some randomly added mechanic that copy pastes critical units to a civilization’s personality, just because the developers could not be bothered to find a real way to make them more appealing, by for instance, making actual new content instead of copy pasting.

Remember. Instead of getting a Landmark that gives you some bonus, unlocks an ability, creates some environmental hazard or whatever, you are getting the ability to rip off China, just like the Mongols and just like Zhu Xi’s Legacy. If you’re not thinking beyond it being a “mechanic”, then you’re not seeing how they’re ripping you off here. This could have been a new and interesting mechanic, instead it is derivative and actively harms the appeal of other existing civilizations.

What is the setting that is based on history and suitable for the game?

For example, giving Byzantium the Nest of Bees is clearly not a good answer.

But if China had the “Greek fire”, there would be no problem, as China did acquire this technology and develop a similar weapon during the Song Dynasty, namely the “Flamethrower” of AOE3.
Or after China entered the Yuan Dynasty, FL with high damage torches could be unlocked.

In other words, the tradition of using mercenaries in Byzantium does not mean that they can completely ignore history, fabricate history, and give them weapons they have never come into contact with.

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Ottoman having Janissaries before China has Handcannoneers :smiley: :clown_face:

As much as I am annoyed by the developers actively targetting China and making these bad decisions repeatedly, I am more annoyed by how the mechanic works. These games should not be aiming to copy paste units, especially after so much effort went into AoE4 to make things feel unique and different. It looks like the Variant civilizations have opened the floodgates, because it apparently does not matter anymore who has access to what.

In which case, let’s see some Tower Elephants in the English variant of Scotland and Ireland (for maximum outrage), because who actually seemingly cares in this studio anymore.

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I appreciate that you are aware that you only speak for yourself.
As for me, I don’t see how mercenary units would make sense being unique as they are bought off military from other realms.
It just wouldn’t make sense.


From the different models of the building, it can be understood that the left part of the building has a Chinese design, the right part of the building is designed by the Sultans of Delhi, probably war elephants can be produced because war elephants are also a type of siege weapon because they can damage buildings and stone walls.

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We can’t put our finger on all units a civ does not have, because there would be no end.

I wouldn’t be able to figure what kind of technologies, craftsmen or personell the byzantinum hired or did come into contact with.
Hiring mercenary units is a core of the byzantenes and is reflected here, which is fine and dandy until we see some gameplay issues. In the end of the day, the game has to be fun above everything else.

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