Probably dumb question - Will the UI get any more character to it?

That bothers me that they say it’s a “Community Council” decision. Do we have any idea who’s on this “council” that can corroborate this? It seems like if it’s such a divisive change that it wouldn’t have been something the “council” unanimously agreed on. Sounds to me like the CC is just a scape goat for decisions that are unpopular more than anything.

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I’ve seen quite few people with CC badge commenting in some posts , maybe check the forums before throwing random theories like that.

but have any of them taken claim to requesting the current UI? If so I won’t question their legitimacy or anything. I just am genuinely curious why they want this lifeless UI.

Yes look at post number 17 on this thread , it’s from a CC member

If you’re talking about Darkness, their post is actually supporting my side… so that isn’t someone who supported the icon change. Everyone on here has the “Insider” tag but me so im not sure how you’re seeing who is a CC member.

as a UI / UX Designer, can’t agree more. AoE4’s UI is definitely hard to read, notice and lacks uniqueness and visual clarity. All icons almost look the same if you need to quickly select something in the heat of the battle. It’s not intuitive as a UI should be.

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I’m on the council. As I understand my NDA, the devs are allowed to represent what we discussed behind closed doors but I am not entitled to discuss it or refute it. If they said that the council decided on the icons, then I would be extremely curious to read that statement with my own eyes and see if that is truly what they are saying.

However, I can say that I personally do not like the icons as shown in publicly revealed info. They make me sad.

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Makes me appreciate AoEIIIDE’s art design of cards and age ups (especially the African ones) and even the player and unit icons all the more. The art for AoEIIIDE is the best in the series by far. AoEIV’s just looks bland, lazy and lifeless.

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I just want to say thank you for disclosing your position. And I completely understand being under NDA. I’m glad that it’s not just me who is disappointed in the chosen UI design though.

Big agree here, big agree!

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I agree that it would be better to have unique UI theme for every Civ.

Also the icons of the upgrades could be more interesting.

Disagree here completely. I found Age3’s UI to be cluttered, hard to decipher and excessively dark

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This is a cool word, had to google it, thanks buddy

Pretty sure he referred to this:
Age up with African Royals civ
Which, I agree, looks great.

I see people praise Craig Mullin for the concept art of AOE4. But thats honestly sth you never see ingame, is it? AOE3 on the other hand uses that art in some places and it looks great.
Let that man redesign the icons ^^

The graphic style heavily leans on those concept arts and thus are very much influenced by that artist.

On the topic of UI, I prefer the current iteration.
It’s a matter of taste of course, but given that they never gave players a choice in older games to not have the UI look like wood or paper, I would wager that the UI stays as it is and isn’t subject to change.

Why do we have to always rely on mods on something that has been done for previous iterations? AoE 2 has one of the best aesthetics when it comes to civ HUD, also the modding capability for AOE 4 are to be released next year not at launch.

Unlike mods, official creations don’t usually break every patch too.

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17 days to go and people have criticised the design of the UI for some time now. Anything not critical to the success of the game (in the developers’ opinion) will just remain as it is. If any critical things could not be addressed in the remaining days until launch, we would hear from the community managers with assurances that such issues will be addressed.

I would like more civ orientated UIs but it appears very likely that this would be a lot of work with so few days to go and does not fall within the above category. Therefore mods are relied upon to accommodate.

Happy to eat my words if all these things are magically possible in this timeframe but I would prefer focus being put on key functionality such as hotkeys, replay system etc. The UI is not the best it can be right now but it functions.

PS: I would include the proposed rework of the UI as part of the key functionality in the recent thread on this topic.

Game industry has evolved a lot since 90s and 00s and have developed into a more efficient and “matured” one. Not being cynical, but it has its pros and cons.

One thing developers seems to have realized is that minor visual details are not deal breakers. They may be praised when the game succeeds, or used as the “reason why xxx fails” when it fails. But most people are not going to utterly hate the game if it does not have something like a faction-specific UI.

Especially in present days, it is probably a higher priority to get the game released in a mediocre but acceptable state ASAP, rather than polishing it to some level of perfection. If the game sold well and then there are some details requested by a lot of players, they may consider adding them some time later. Modern business cannot risk investing too much into a game whose success is not guaranteed, and minor details might be the least important factor.

Take Total War for example. The Warhammer series might be the peak of its popularity, with great gameplay and the newly-introduced epic hero/monster combat animations. However details like reloading of firearms or armour upgrades (which were already there back in Medieval 2) were still non-existent.

Of course it would be a better game with both the new mechanics and the nice minor details from previous installments. Do people complain about that? Afaik a lot. But most players are not going to boycott the game just because there is no reloading animation etc.

What’s more, if the game succeeds in the first place, there will be an active modding community that voluntarily does all these aesthetic improvements, which is more customizable.

Good or bad? Not sure. It’s not a good news for us players at the first glance, but are we benefiting in the long run from a more stable game industry? Who knows.

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What kind of weird logic is this? They jeopardized the success themselves… Nobody put a gun against their heads and forced them to release an AOE game in a half baked state.

So we should accept being sold an unfinished product for full price now and then hope for patches? How naive! Why would I shoot myself in the foot like that as a customer?

“Let our peasant userbase fix it themselves”… “mhkay sir. So we include modding access and tools at launch?” … “What!? Hell no!”

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That’s what they are commonly doing nowadays. This is simply my observation and I’m not defending it.