Trying to like it

I’m a total noob in aoe3:DE.
I played A LOT of mythology and aoe2 from dial-up era until now, but never really got into aoe3
I don’t know what to say… it feels like the game is intentionally overcomplicated.

From my brief experience playing the first campaign I was looking for a blacksmith to upgrade my units, but there’s none (at least for that civ/campaign). All I could do was rank up my military but I don’t even know what is happening, like… I have no idea how much damage, armor, range, area or anything a unit have or the bonus they have against other units.

For comparison sake, let’s take a look at the archer from aoe2
30 hit points, 4 damage, 0/0 armor and 4 range (and that’s basically it) and if I attack someone with 2 pierce armor, the archer will deal 2 damage (kinda obvious) and to one shot a knight with 2 pierce armor and 100 hp I would need 50 archers, quick maths

Now let’s take a look at crossbowman:
100 hp, 16 or 7 or 8 attack with like 6 different multipliers for each unit, 16 range, 20% resist (???) some xp, 8 different damage upgrades that increase % instead of flat damage like I have to be a math genius to know how many shots i need before and after upgrading 5% of my attack as melee against a hussar that may or may not have hp upgrades while dealing 0.75% of damage, like why?

Why not just remove every bad aspect that scares a new player and just leave the crossbowman with range only attack and pierce armor for all units like in aoe2?

I have so many complains about this game that I don’t even know where to start. It seems like microsoft tried to make something different and scuffed the whole game just to be more realistic, like “look, this archer is using a sword now when the enemy is close and his damage drops because his sword is bad mmmkay”, similar to games that added fall damage. It was cool back in 1990, but now it’s just irrelevant.

I started the second campaign and found a blacksmith at my base. I moused over one of the upgrades and I kid you not, there was a whole bible written explaining what the upgrade does and 95% of that bible was totally irrelevant. You could simply change to “all infantry and ranged infantry units receive 10% more hit points”
And that works for all upgrades, like the mill:
“Settlers gather +15% food faster from bushes or something”
“Settlers gather +15% food faster from the farms”
“Settlers gather +15% food faster from herdable animals”
Just make settlers gather food 15% faster and be gone with all that text

TL,DR: Less is more, make the game simpler and I’d suggest reduce everything to at least 50% (unit costs, damage, hp, work rate)

Archer hp? 50. Cost? 20f 20w, damage? 8 bing bang boom
But why reduce everything by 50%?
I’m glad you asked, random player. I honestly dont know, but it feels weird to hold more than 100 resources just to create a settler. Every basic thing should be under 100 of each resource because of reasons.
I hope someone makes a mod similar to aoe2 for this game

Try doing a quick math to calculate how many spearmen you need to take down a knight, from all the information you can see.

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AoE II has a lot of hidden bonusses. AoE III doesnt. Also the AoE III combat system is way more invanced and eay more strategic than AoE II. Making it more simple is bad as its perfectly fine as it is.

10 base damage *2 against cav isnt that hard to use math on is it? Than look at other units resistance (same as armor basically) and done. It are the exact same steps.

While there are many valid criticisms for AOE3DE, I think the general criticisms you make towards AOE3 are bad because it seems like you want it to be a new version of AOE2. Here’s is my retort to your complaints:

  • The full stats - HP, attack, range, multipliers vs unit types, speed, rate of fire - are written on the UI. You might have missed this option.
  • “20% range resist” is much less scary or complicated to a new player than x pierce armor x melee armor x siege armor (hidden?). I am saying this from experience from when I picked up both of these games in 2011-2012 pretty much one after the other.
  • Arsenal functions as a blacksmith replacement (although the upgrades are less straight forward).
  • Unfortunately the campaign uses fake civs and thus will give you a false sense of understanding the civilization, this is a valid point.
  • Unit upgrades are in percentages because one archer might have 16 base attack while another can have 25 or 35 or whatever. This way both are boosted equally from the same upgrade and the unit scaling remains consistent throughout the game.
  • Part of the game’s design is that unit counters are much more effective than in AOE2 thus you will find “light infantry” type of units having negative multipliers vs “heavy cavalry”. I think this was intended to promote micro and unit compositions… Idk, but that’s just part of the design and from experience I can say it works well.
  • “Remove every bad aspect” basically means “make it more like aoe2” right? Well DE is supposed to be the same game with updates, not a completely different game. What would be the point of remastering AOE3 and completely changing the mechanics to appease the people that didn’t even play it and scare away everyone that did play it!? At the same time stealing the spotlight away from the actual successor AOE4 by trying to do the same function.
  • There is a text for each upgrade that tells what it does in 1 sentence. It is up to you if you want to read the actual details. For example the mill upgrade only upgrades mills/farms. The farm upgrade upgrades mills/farms and hunts. This is an important distinction, because the main food income in competitive play throughout the game is hunts.
  • Why do you want to have lesser numbers? Are you scared of something? Everything is simpler when it’s based off a hundred. Every 1 population is about 100 res. Unit costs 200 res? Ez - takes 2 population.
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This isn’t AoE2, which is pretty much where the rest of your gripes fall flat. AoE3 is intended to be a fair bit more complicated than AoE2 - the intention being that the audience grew older and thus were capable of handling more.

Like other RTS games, it just takes some repetition getting used to the units. Unit counters now mean something, far more than they did in AoM.

Build Arsenal

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Tell me how many arbalester you need to defeat 25 plummed archer. Hurry man, this isn’t genius math!!