Unable to join game. Error: unknown error

every time i try joining a public game i keep getting this error. private and friends only games work fine. i scored around 1200 on the online benchmark, dont know if that matters or not. i tried restarting my router and that didnt help either. please help

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My friend and I are having the same issue with any game at all, can’t join public or our own private games.

The error I get is that the lobby doesn’t exist.
It’s almost like it adds me to the lobby, changing the number of players from 5 to 6.
Therefore the game is full and removed from the lobby list.
And now it tries to ‘join’ me in the lobby, which isn’t in the list any more.

I have the same issue. The game has more bugs than it had in beta…

Got the same issue. Can’t play online with friends. This needs a fix

Same problem here. I bough it on Steam few days ago with 2 friends and i’m the only one who can’t join AND see any lobby.

I tried another PC but same result, then since i’ve the XGP, i tried to play with the Win10 edition and it’s even worse because i can’t even see my connection quality on the lobby brower.

I think it’s a modem problem that might be too old because despite the change of pc nothing change…

I’m sick of those unfinished games

I had the same problem and I think I found the solution (two players one from Steam, other one from XBox Live).

You need to have exactly the same version (numbers on main screen & you should see the same games in Multiplayer mode). If versions are different you will see different games and can’t join to play together even if you are invited.

How to update - steam does it automatically (or google how to do it) / Xbox Live -> open Microsoft Store and check for updates -> click it several times until you see update for Age of Empires - you need to still click download).

To install game on Windows from Xbox Live you need to update to newest version of Windows 10. You don’t have to it when installing from Steam but to join games without problems you anyway need to do it (go to windows updated and install all updates).

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I have a similar problem. I usually play on my desktop but my RX580 was dead a couple of days so now i am using my Microsoft surface pro 3 for the short term to play AOE2 (Yes very low settings to make it okay to play multi). Anyway i am able to get into the multiplayer servers lobby to see which matches to play but when i try to enter any server i get the message " Unable to join game, Error: server error"

I turned off my firewall and etc and still get this issue. My game is updated.

I am playing through steam which i presume is not an issue.

Can anyone suggest anything that i might have missed?


Have the same problem im xbox live login and got it from MS Store any solution ?

is their any solution for this or not??
kindly confirm me

same problem here, :frowning:

this is because you are playing with different versions. All players must have the same version to play multiplayer. Go the the msft store, on the right upper side there is an arrow pointing down in which are shown all the required updates…

The uknown error is because you are playing with different versions. All players must have the same version to play multiplayer. Go the the msft store, on the right upper side there is an arrow pointing down in which are shown all the required updates. You can see your current version on the main menu of EOE

I don’t think that is the reason. If I create the game my friends can enter, if another person creates the game I get the error. I have no clue of what is the problem but we already verified the version.

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My friend and I have the same issue, except we can join public games, but not the ones we create. Since we use the same network, we also tried the LAN server, but it still says “unable to join” :cry:

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Same problem, in our case we send invitations to each other but nobody receives them. We can join public games but not the ones we create. Any solution for this? Its really annoying!!

Played one time successfully with my 12 year old a handful of nights ago after buying and downloading the AOE DE Bundle.

Next time was a bit of fumble trying to get our comps to connect over our lan but we did it. Time after that was worse but eventually it worked. Now it’s just a hair yanking headache for the last two hours!

Usually it’s one of several problems:

Problem 1 – Either the lan game I’m hosing shows up on his screen but when he goes to join it takes him to another game from somebody else on the internet. A lot of times you can see random players in the lobby while selecting what’s supposed to be my game. NEEDS FIXED!

Problem 2 – When we get the game to load, he has no control over his own players, villagers etc, until I finally give up and leave after the first few minutes of realizing once again we’re not going to be able to just play and enjoy the game. Usually once I leave he can start controlling them, and yes we’re on our own colors. (I usually choose green and he chooses pink so we’re both bright on the map)

And tonight that’s been the major problem for us. The game loads (finally after getting through the first problem and mess a bunch of times) he can’t control his villagers and get them to do what he wants.

Problem 3 – It just makes the ‘boom’ or ‘tribal drum’ sound effect when he selects my game and clicks ‘join game’ but nothing happens.

Problem 4 – It looks like he’s about to join successfully and then gives us the “Unable to join: Unknown error” message.

I’ve gone into firewall and have permitted the following ports on both computers just like this site said to:

TCP 8888

TCP 3478

UDP 3478

TCP 5222

UDP 5222

I love this game and was a fan of it back in the old school days. I love the updates. I love that there’s now 500 pop limit and bigger maps with tons of civs to choose from. Unfortunately we can’t just simply play the effing thing and instead have to run around online teaching ourselves how to become tech gurus in hopes of getting this ■■■■ thing to work while losing a lot of game time we were looking forward to. (Tonight we couldn’t even get the ■■■■ things to work together after a few hours and just gave up and here I am writing this instead of playing with my kid before going back to work tomorrow)

To say I am frustrated is an understatement, as each time we’ve played it’s gone from semi-successful, to bad, to frustrating, to worse! I’m sitting here cussing out the game in front of my kid instead of us having fun.

I’d love to give this game a positive review, but with inconsistent problems like this, I’m afraid when asked again I’m only going to be able to give it one star and say, “It’d be an amazing game if we could get the ■■■■ thing to work for us so we could play with our families at home”.

I’ve paid for two copies of AOE DE Bunble to my two accounts in hopes of playing with our kid. Right now it feels like I just threw $60 down the drain and added lot of wasted time and hair yanking frustration to my last few nights this week. It really should not be this G** d****d difficult!

And also, ‘Lan’ needs to be completely separated from Wan too, not just as a drop down option with everything else. Perhaps that’d help clear up the issue of random games from all over the internet coming up but there’s still all kinds of problems when simply trying to play Lan or even Wan.

If I offered people the choice of driving their own cars or riding the bus, I wouldn’t say “Okay anybody who wants to drive their own cars needs to go sit and wait on the bus before they can get in their car”. They’re two totally different things and they need to be separated from the initial selections. In fact we shouldn’t even need to be online for ‘multiplayer services’ to host our own in-home lan games, let alone having to join in the same lobbies to go down and select ‘lan’ at the bottom of some drop box. To me that’s just poor game design and bad engineering.

Come on guys, don’t make such an amazing game and bring it back with such incredible upgrades and then drop the ball when it comes to the side of getting things to work simply for us. Please, get these exceptionally frustrating issues and bugs taken care of for us. Don’t leave us a game that looks so amazing to play and that we pay for only to not be able to do something as simple as hosting a smooth lan game with our families or friends!

The game is amazing. These issues, especially for 2020 when this came out last year is ridiculous!


HI Guys,

hopefully i have a fix for you, i struggled for ages opening ports etc for local LAN and I couldn’t figure out why, came across something random that got me thinking.

Install Direct Play (installed by going to “turn windows features on or off” and expanding legacy components) on all computers. the old game supports it and i think still needs it.

Here when you start the game (if you are on steam version) dont sign into xbox live as i think it does weird stuff even when playing LAN, then you should be able to create one and play.

As soon as i created a game, it popped up on my wifes local lan games list and connected straight away.

my wife and I played successfully. i did save regularly because a different bug occasionally had my wife disconnect, but only a couple of times in the game that lasted about 2 hours

hope this helps

I was having the issue where my friends could join my lobby but I could not join theirs. We are all on the same network and have the same version of the game. I accidentally noticed that the Cross-Play setting was turned OFF in my game settings. I enabled it, and now I can join their lobbies.

I sign into Xbox Live while my friends do not. This has not affected the error - but since I enabled the Cross-Play setting I can now join their lobbies instead of them only joining mine.