Thx DE or hardware GG?

This is gonna be a small novella, but I hope someone can help!

Fare thee well, I am off to hunt trees and moonwalk in strange paths… is what I told my woman, when I booted up my PC yesterday to play Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition.

Last time I played was Monday 01/04-24 and I had no trouble at all.

But then yesterday, I wanted to play as I had scheduled a tournament match. Before I tried my luck in the melee however, I wanted to get in a couple of warm up games. Conveniently my opponent was playing team games at this time, so we decided to hit the ladder for a couple of games, before our match.

During the first game of this session, I experienced immense lag (red clock next to my display name), but I figured at first, that this was most likely a server issue as I saw most of our opponents had Asian characters for names.
Ok, so we queued up again. This time around the issue was still there. This is when I realized I was the one with the red clock next to my name, and after we won a very unenjoyable lagfest. We had some more people join us on our Discord voice channel and we tried a lobby.
Now things got real. We have played countless times before with no problems at all, but I seemed to cause lag for everyone. Clearly something was up with my game, PC or internet.

So I decided to first of all 13… but after checking my cables, plugging them in correctly everywhere and doing a Speedtest and downloading some files just to be sure, that I could not blame it on my ISP. Here are the results from a Speedtest I did just now:

Clearly the internet was not the problem. So I tried restarting Age of Empires and my computer countless times, deactivating mods and deleting saved and recorded games, but to no avail.

I made sure that AoE2DE wasn’t blocked by my anti-virus or firewall too.

Next up I used MalwareBytes to scan my PC for Malware and found nothing. I have seen people have experienced issues with the game and MalwareBytes in the past, but I only have the program running while scanning, so there should be no connection there.

Okay, what is the next step then? F- it. I reinstall the game. After uninstalling I downloaded the game in approximately 10 minutes, again confirming that my network connection could not be the source of my problems.

I still however had problems with my game after during all this. At one point my game seemed to be running smoothly and after postponing my scheduled match for 45 minutes, we decided to try and play it out.
The game runs smoothly for a couple of minutes and then goes into crazy LAG LAG LAG. The clock will turn yellow and then red. So after one game, I decided to forfeit and focus on getting the game to work again.

What more could I do? I scanned for viruses - found none, used Windows Diagnostics tool to check my hardware - no problems found and q-tipped the inside of my PC for dust on the components.

Still I have the same issue.

Now I got kind of frustrated that I could not find the source of the issue so I got desperate and cleared my cache in Firefox and deleted cookies and everything in hope of freeing up memory or something.

Next up I performed a clean installation of Nvidia and updated all my drivers, but nothing seemed to work.
So I went to bed, I had spent a good day trying to get the game working by now.

This morning I have the same issue.
My game runs smoothly for a few minutes while playing multiplayer and then turns into a slug of a lagfest, trying to play is hard when you are 100 actions ahead of the game.
The strange thing here is, that I can spectate a game with no issue or let the AI play a single player game while I am just doing nothing (in that game 1v1v1) but as soon as I start to try and play the game slows down and even switching scenes (e.g. creating a lobby, picking a civ) is slow as slug trying to outslow a sloth.

So the question is, is this a hardware issue or did the map pool update break my game, surely the map pool update did not cause a bug for some? Because that is the only thing that has changed since I played on Monday and then tried again yesterday Wednesday 03/04-24
I have noticed the game takes up a lot of GPU and memory, maybe a bit more than usual and my computer is using a good amount of memory just from the startup too, before launching any apps except my Firewall and Anti-virus. So does my PC need to get new ram or what the f is up here?

My pc specs:
|Processor|Intel(R) Core™ i5-10400F CPU @ 2.90GHz 2.90 GHz|
|Installed RAM|8.00 GB|
|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650|

I bought my PC in the Fall of 2021, so it is not that old.

TL;DR
I have issues from one day to another with the game with the only change being a new map pool wtf… is my hardware busted or has anyone experienced the same?

To whomever reads this and to those who will try and help; thank you in advance. I know this was a lot of text.

PS:
I wanted to upload more screencaps of task manager etc, but I can not as I am a new user, I can however upload them as comments if you would like to see them in order to help solve my problem.

Cheers
MadsKillz

Have you tried the PUP to see if your issue remains on a different patch?

I just tried to disable Anti-Alias UI and Anti-Alias Text, and that seems to actually have fixed my problem.

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Interesting! I’m glad you found the culprit

Well, it definitely helped. But not sure I quite fixed the problem. Maybe I will do a part two of my novel at some point.

Also I have not tried the PUP btw.

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