Basically when DE was released. Right now I have the impression people wall less than one year ago because maps are more open. It’s still quite common, just harder to do, atm. But maybe after large tournaments where participants wall because of all the prize money on line the broader player base does so as well (just as everybody seems to do pre-mill drush ever since kotd).
Walling is popular because it’s the easiest way to keep the enemy at bay. Even in Starcraft 2 where cheese is more or less taken for granted, map design still favours early easy walling, especially for Terran and Protoss, a bit less so for Zerg.
Idk if dev wants to see people turning every single game into mini arena or not. But walling itself just offers such amazing defender advantage that using units to defend is a bit less common. Unfortunately, outside of walling, in AOE2, if you don’t build a wall of some kind, you just beg your opponent to kill your eco and drag ur units around like crazy. From this perspective, walling is kinda an unfortunate workaround to protect the player base from early raid or late game raid.
At this point, idk where should this go. Dev is certainly trying, but maybe it’s not in the right direction, or enough.
The game was already changing at Voobly. Build orders became much better. So getting an advance over your opponent became harder. So the game evolved in not loosing, instead of winning. In DE units behave different, there was less lag, … Also the map gens seems much more wallable. All together it made walling the preferred method in winning the game. Nowaday even the most open maps got walled by most players.
I still know about one game between TheViper and Yo with the no wall mod. So you cant wall easily. Yo was just able to still almost full wall an unwallable map with its buildings. It resulted in a win for Yo. That shows the power of walls.
The meta changed, there is no point on playing full feudal wars if your enemy is full walled, walling is more efficient than making early army in most games, because not everyone is going to fwd you and if that is the case you can build more walls and defensive towers inside, the only risk about walling is not having a good map and get all your resources in the front, otherwise walling has no weak spot, cause the impact in the economy is minimal and quickwalls the fornite thingy has ruined the game, even if you break in they will just quick wall their resources.
Yeah…removing palisade and stone wall still does not stop Yo from walling using buildings. Walling is probably the best (and maybe only) counter to most early to mid aggression. Maybe what needs to change is players mindset, instead of just nerfing walling, unless devs intentionally prevent people from using building as the way to build wall by introducing unbuildable gaps between buildings.