Some suggestions to developers (and a few known bugs and balance issues)

Hello! I’m an AOE 2 medium level player with 8 years of experience. Firstly, thanks for the new AOE 4! This is really exelent game with new mechanics and new features, it has a good potential to become a new cybersport discipline.
But there are some moments that weren’t realized, and some of them are really critical. This is based on my experience and on pro-players opinion especially on my friend’s SalzZ_Vinchester (world top 10, and first AOE 4 tournament winner) opinion. Here it is:

-The greatest problem of the game is in hotkeys. This is really step back for the all series. On cybersport pro scene players need to be 100% effective and as fast as possible. We need to have every building hotkey at hand and change it as we want, without any “hotkey grid” like we have now. The best exemple is AOE 2 hotkeys, just port it please.

-First and the main balance problem is France water bonus - they have the Third Age war ship in the Second Age, so there is no any posibility to play with non-France civ against France. It has to be fixed.

-The second balance problem is pikes bonus vs cavalry, it is too small in first Ages, we have the same bonus as in AOE 2 but in AOE 4 heavy cavalry have 240 hp not 120.

-In-game stats. We really need it. The game without rating system - can’t be cybersport discipline.

-People can watch only 10 last saved demo. So, how should we watch the old demo or someone game? We need the access to all demo on the PC.

-The units don’t go to gather point if I garrison them and then ungarrison unlike AOE 2. They just stand behind the building. It’s uncomfortable and doesn’t make sense.

-There is no posibility to unjoin 1 unit from group when I press ctrl and click on units icon, unlike AOE 2. It is VERY necessary, for not clicking at every unit to set a task. With that posibillity I just can take a group of vills, click at stone, than unjoin 1 vill, click at wood, unjoin 2 vills and send other vills on food without pixel hunting, screen jumping and million clicks.

-There is no posibility to trade/send 500 resources at once with pressed shift. This mehanics also is the part of AOE 2. When you need to trade 20k of wood, you just can’t sit and click 200 times - your enemies wouldn’t wait you.

-There is exchange rate of resources in the market. In AOE 2 and AOE 3 it was displayed right on the resource button, and you just saw the rate in the moment and sell it, but now you should to place cursor on button and to read the small numbers. It’s almost impossible in fast tournament game. Better to place them right on buttons like it was always.

-Markers. There are 4 problems with markers:

1 . When you set a route for unit with pressed shift, you don’t see any flags like in AOE 2 and you don’t know where you sent your unit after 10 clicks.

2 . When you sent your unit in fog of war there is no any markers AT ALL. Pro-players make it very fast and without markers they don’t know if their order works.

3 . The hitboxes work very strange, I just can’t select the dead sheep or deer to check the food remains, and when I try to click on sheep I just don’t see the markers around unit or sheep, it is indistinguishable.

4 . The same with enemy units. When I click my units to attack the enemy. I just don’t see, what enemy unit I chose, the unit is blinking too faintly. There is also some circle around unit, but it is totally useless, because the circle doesn’t stay on moving unit, it stays on the groung behind unit, and also the circle animation confuse.

-There are some critical bugs. For exemple villager can’t build the last tile of wall - if I ordered the wall, the vills will build it from the start, but if I sent them to build any other tile, they just return to curent under construction tile. If I would click non-stop on needed tile, vill just stop and is doing nothing, then he return to curent tile. This bug can even loose the game for real.

-Also bug I saw today. I could’t attack the enemy units through my units. My archers was staying on the wall, and the enemy rams was under the wall, when I placed cursor on the rams through the archers models, I didn’t see the sword and couldn’t attack the rams. Potentially dangerous situation in multiplayer.

-Also I saw some problems with passfind a few times and the same problem I saw on the tournament yesterday. The player is fighting with group of enemy units, then he wants to fall back, he clicks back, but unit totally lost controll and went around the enemy units (and died). He even don’t react to orders at moment. Some kind of passfind issue or idk.

-If my units built a ram and then I want to build a new one, I can’t just select all group of units with a frame and make an order, becouse I also selecta ram and my infantry won’t be able to make ram becouse of it. The game just can’t ignore I selected the ram with the infantry. This is pixel hunting as well, I need to double click my infuntry without rams, to order ram, it doesn’t make sense, and it makes the players to play slower.

I hope I my post was more or less correct. English is not my native language. So I hope the game will be complete. We don’t need one more dead RTS like WC3 Reforged with 0.7 Metacritic rating. Your game is already much better, but for sure you can take the experience of legendary games like AOE 2, SC 2, WC 3 and improve your game. Thanks for your work!


The unit cannot be selected with the CTRL key
I want the production team to add this feature.


Click with ctrl is selecting all units on the screen as long as I remember. I would prefer as well, if it just select single unit.

Something that bothers me is when you reach tier IV and you need to have like 10 barracks/stables etc, taking a lot of space, it would be better if we have an upgrade for military’s units to produce 2x per military building, that can reduce the amount of military buildings at late game.

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Yesterday I saw one more bug. I order my army to attack enemy units and they started to set fire near houses instead. It’s the same as bug with walls. Units just don’t want to do what I need.

In the game there are buildings with function of castles and TC, but the game don’t see it like castles and TC, I can’t select TC and Palace with double click or use TC hotkey for Palace. For castles is the same. It should be fixed IMHO.

Hitboxes keep upsetting me.

Also I would like to see in stats how much gold players trade for the game.

Also it would be great if units could be healed in buildings. At least in castles.

I made a post on this and could not agree more. The lack of individual unit management in this game is what separates it from some of the greatest RTS’s for me.

It’s not fun clicking and dragging my mouse over a group of clumped villagers 4 or 5 times trying to get that perfect 8 for a granary farm.

I said it before and I’ll say it again - Age of Empires 2 had the perfect unit UI with the taskbar at the bottom and up to 60 units being shown. I could manage individual units, groups of units, or all of my units with click or a keyboard shortcut. I have no idea why Relic removed this feature, it just makes playing an RTS more punishing.

Yea, exactly! Not sure about full unit UI, but they 100% just could make the possibillity to unjoin 1 unit with CTRL like in AOE 2, this is the good way, to get 8 for farms, or to make other things easier.

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The main reason the UI in AoE 2 excelled was because it fulfilled several critical gameplay features for an RTS.

1) The ‘at a glance’ view of your units: The ‘at a glance’ concept is a critical one for RTS, ARPG and MOBA gameplay - it’s the concept of condensing critical information into one area so the player can quickly assess actions needed. The current UI for AoE 4 does not display health bars or individual units - again, this sounds incredibly minor, but processing information quickly is critical. You need to determine which type, of how many, and at what health, your unit are in a split second. The current UI achieves only half of this.

2) The multiple aspects unit Management: With an individual unit card UI in both StarCraft and AoE 2 you could select individual units, groups of units, damaged units, healthy units, aerial units and any other type of units and group it with any other type. The current UI severely limits my ability to quickly create split armies with units of the same group.

3) Player Satisfaction of Management: This point feeds into the first two, but it’s just as important. When you’re playing a MOBA or RTS your brain feeds itself Dopamine when you do something right quickly - when you build a ring of farms around a Polish Folwark in AoE 2 with exactly 8 villagers, then quickly assign the rest to woodcutting, you get a temporary rush because you managed your empire well. This is not present in AoE 4 - how many times have you had to click and drag, click and drag, click and drag, click and drag to get the perfect number of villagers assigned to a task because they clumped up so much? It’s frustrating because that time and limitation on unit management can be spent doing more important things, like micro’ing scouts, archers, etc.

Also note that many other ‘major’ RTS games that are popular have a condensed unit card UI (Starcraft 1 and 2, Supreme Commander, They Are Billions, etc). The formula works, stick with it.

Sorry for the long post… RTS design and game discussion is a passion of mine.


Btw, need to swap in castle tech panel and units panel. Players can’t order the units in castles with hotkeys.

TC can’t be focused on any unit, it shoot a ram. People just abuse it. I don’t understand is this a bug or genius decision of game designer like french Third Age ship. Saw today one streamer just closed the game after lose because of this.

I love the game but game needs a urgent patch.

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