[Poll] Is Naval Gameplay really a MUST for you?

That’s a question for which the devs didn’t have a confident answer as they said. Water gameplay was not seen a lot in their statistics but their council offered them a great reaffirmation as they called it, that naval has to be there.

What I want to ask is if naval is really a must for most people, no matter the cost.

Because of course that’s all resources, money and time that were spent to design a whole separate field of warfare inside the game that could otherwise have gone into other aspects of it.

Sometimes it may be better to focus on one only kind of warfare and make it great rather than having two separate ones that are mediocre or even bad.

We heard Adam Isgreen saying that they will keep improving the naval aspect to look good on release, and if it doesn’t he said, then they will keep improving it. Indirectly admitting that it doesn’t look good right now, they know it and they know it may not be on point even on release.

I am very curious to know how the forum feels about naval:

  • Would you rather have naval gameplay even if it means that less attention will be paid to the rest of the game and some things will have to be sacrificed?

  • Would you have preferred it if naval gameplay was removed completely and all the resources, money, time and energy that was put to it, to have been distributed into the rest the game, to make it better, deeper, more interesting and well polished?

  • Naval gameplay is a MUST, I want it there no matter what it takes
  • Naval gameplay is NOT a MUST and I’d be OK without it but only if the rest of the game offered great compensation
  • I don’t care about naval / I dislike it

0 voters


It would be very boring if it weren’t there. While most gaming and micromanaging occurs on land, boats and games with water maps are fun. If it is almost not used in the previous games, it is because it lacks some type of addition that makes it more attractive. In addition, navigation and naval conflicts have been a crucial part of history and the economy even today.


It certainly offers some extra things, but the question arises, how well crafted is it?
If its presence offers more trouble than good, cut features, dull land fighting, generic or unpolished units and stuff, I would rather go without it, at least on launch.
They actually mentioned that it was one of the possible scenarios to add water later on as an expansion/DLC.
But yes, that’s the kind of discussion that I’m interested in. Someone could argue that there are very good strategy games out there without naval that focus only on land. Or that naval is not as important in the Middle Ages. It certainly is not as important as for example in aoe3’s setting that’s all about exploration and colonization.
Middle ages were more about conquering and fighting on land than giving naval battles.

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Well, the developers say they have worked a lot on this. I hope that both the combat and the economy well on land and sea are interesting and not monotonous. In age of empires 3 the ships are not as obsolete as in previous games, once you have monitors ironically you dominate the land.

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I am not sure what you are asking us, but obviously AoE games have docks and ships. Removing that entire side of the game would be horribly misguided.


OP is probably an mayan player who doesn’t like their navy getting smacked by Viking longboats

jk jk


water combat doesn’t need to be good to be essential. it’s mostly needs to provide an additional arena to spend resources on

when players are splitting their resources between multiple areas, then the matches are way more balanced because it’s almost impossible for one player (or one team) to win in both places. that increases the chances for things like lead changes to happen instead of having games just get decided by the first skirmish

historically, land maps have not resulted in these kinds of games very often. they’re okay for producing stalemates where nobody can get a lead, but not for actually getting back-and-forth swings.

maps with water have had more build order variety too, which is important for the replayability of the game


Imo, good naval would include men on ships. This would allow you to board enemy ships, scuttle them or capture them, amphibious invasions with men jumping off the boats or walking down a ramp.


Water and naval gives a special dynamic on some maps and makes the game more interesting, it’s not really a must, but it does make gameplay more interesting because there is variation on your strategy depending on if the map has water or not.

ButFrom the perspective of the other age games it is a must because a sequel should carry over all the good things from the old game and maybe add new things on top of it, hopefully we get new naval mechanics in aoe4.

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I’m not sure if I would call it essential, all the people that I know very rarely play on that field and interestingly they are players from both aoe2 and aoe3.
But I get the importance that it may have for some given that it was present in every past game. I enjoy it occasionally too.
What I’m saying is would you rather have a mediocre gameplay on both arenas just to add a second one? I’d rather wait for water to get added in an expansion or DLC -if at all- rather than dumping down the rest of the game for it. One deep and great field is still better than two mediocre ones.
And it really didn’t look good. I’m not surprised given that Relic has never before worked with naval gameplay in their games. It’s a new thing for them.

That would be great indeed. That’s another field or ‘arena’ or whatever one would like to call it that would actually offer deep, interesting and meaningful gameplay mechanics. It wouldn’t be just a meh place to throw resources in -which is how it feels for many people in aoe2 at least-. But of course that would require a looot more work and time to get developped than just making some static ship models that do not even look like they float on water.
I think this idea must have been mentioned somewhere in the thread about the siege engine crews.

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this guy wants us to pay for water dlc bruh



i’d rather have close games + strategy + mediocre combat rather than lopsided games + limited strategy + slightly better combat

but you’re presenting a false choice as if the game cannot do both, so it’s kind of pointless to talk about it


It wouldn’t have to have limited strategy, that’s just how you are used to think of it. Games like coh2 or sc2 for example are still rich in strategy.
​Cutting down a mediocre naval gameplay could mean adding more strategic possibilities and features for the land gameplay.

No studio has infinite resources, it’s always a trade off between features. That shouldn’t even be questioned right now, something was stinking ever since they showed the first trailer without naval at all. Then they showed just a teaser in the fan preview -still nothing about naval-. Then admitted that naval needs improvement.

You prefer having this aspect no matter if it’s shallow or it means that something else has to get cut off the game. That’s really fine, I guess many feel like that, that’s what I’m trying to see here.

Water is both important and unimportant. It’s ok if we never see it in actual games but at the same time it feels really weird (i’d even say wrong) not to be able to build ports and boats.

It’s a bit contradictory but idk it’s just how i feel about it.


I know, on one hand it feels important because it has always been there and people are really used to it, it’s a given.
But how important is it really? I always felt that it was never designed in any past aoe game as well as land was, it just felt like a sideline. And what was presented recently looked very very mediocre, pretty much like aoe2 in better graphics.

I answered that it is a must, even though I don’t personally care for it.

Reason: I want the game to succeed, so I want them to make decisions that help the game to have a more positive reception. I think no small amount of people would have complained loudly had they not included it.


That holds some truth I guess, are you working in marketing? :smiley: Sounds like a smart business decision, although not necessarily the best one for the game’s quality.

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Yeah, as for the game’s quality, I think it would be better without it. They could put the time and resources towards other things.

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a main pillar of the gameplay missing from the game? that would be VERY bad for the quality.

No water units would mean no water maps(noone would design a map where you cant play on huge parts of it), which means less exciting scenarios, impossible to make world maps (or some campaigns, for that matter), and the games would be MUCH more boring and streamlined.
The gameplay would be stale.