Which future pantheon do you prefer? Aztecs vs. Mayans

Aztecs or Mayans
  • Aztecs
  • Mayans
0 voters

I’m going to go with the Aztecs here. Feel free to share your own reasons for why you think the Aztecs or the Mayans would be a better fit.

While the Mayans boast a long history that stretches back to ancient times, I believe the Aztecs offer a unique and interesting narrative deeply intertwined with their predecessors, the Toltecs. This is one of the reasons why they would be a solid choice for a future pantheon.

One of the more compelling arguments for including the Mayans is their ancient history, which can be traced back closer to the Egyptians, Greeks, and Chinese in terms of time period. However, since AoM is a fictional game where these civilizations coexisted in the same period, the significance of the Mayans’ “more ancient” roots diminishes.

That being said, the Toltecs existed around 950–1168. This makes their culture slightly “younger” than the Norse or the Viking Age (800–1050), but they existed around the same time period.

So why the Aztecs over the Mayans?

Before we dive into that… In the fictional Age of Mythology game, the Atlanteans are seen as the ancestors of the Greeks.

In the real world, the Aztecs considered the Toltecs their intellectual and cultural predecessors. They were obsessed with Toltec culture. Ancient Aztec oral and pictographic traditions described the Toltec empire’s history, rulers, and exploits. Whether or not the Aztecs factually descended from the Toltecs remains a mystery, but the fact that the Aztecs entertained this idea bears more weight and significance than the Atlanteans being the ancestors of the Greeks by a mile.

The Toltecs and the Aztecs both worshipped Quetzalcoatl and Tlaloc. People might argue that Kukulkan and Chaac represent these gods, but Aztec and Mayan mythologies differ more than Greek and Roman mythologies. For example, there are no Mayan equivalents to Huitzilopochtli, Tezcatlipoca, or Xipe Totec. These are exclusively Aztec gods. Even if you find a Mayan god remotely similar, their backstories would be completely different.

But what about the controversial sacrifices, considering the game will likely be rated T for teens?

Both civilizations practiced sacrifices, although the Aztecs did so more frequently. However, both the Aztecs and the Mayans practiced other ways to please the gods, so saying the Aztecs only practiced sacrifices is factually wrong.

There could be a roundabout way to solve this problem in a more teen-friendly manner: In the Aztec pantheon introduction mission, the narrator or texts could say, “In order to gain favor from the Aztec gods, the player must send the villagers to the temples. Once the villagers have entered the temple, they stay there until the game/match/story has ended. The more villagers enter the temple, the stronger the favor generated. So there is a tradeoff.”

Give the fans what they want.

If I recall correctly, the Aztecs are the #1 most requested culture in Age of Mythology by a large margin. If the Mayans were equally popular, many fans would request them too, but that is not the case. Please give the majority of fans what they want: the Aztecs.

It’s subjective, but I think the Aztecs were just more gnarly and badass. And don’t get me started on their bestiary!

Historically Mayans might be more fitting for a game like AoM I guess, they are one of the most ancient Mesoamericans civs.

Aztecs may be cooler, but for the reason above I voted Mayans.


Because aztecs and mayans where the original first american civs in the AoE series and since then the aztecs where more often used like in AoE3, AoM retold would be the perfect opportunity to give the mayans now the ‘‘aztecs AoE3 treatment’’ they deserve because they are way more fitting in the rough timeline of AoM.


Ideally we would eventually have both in the game at some point but I also prefer the Mayan.

Maybe Mexica is the better word instead of Aztecs. The same way the Norse are not called Norwegians or something like that.


Valid point, Aztecs are already widely represented in AoE3 because they perfectly fit in AoE3’s timeline, on the other hand Mayans are relegated to being only a revolutionary option in AoE3.
Mayans are definitely the best choice, imo.


All good valid points, everyone.

And yes, I think Mexica would be a good suggestion as it is of Nahuatl origin.

I believe including the Mexica or Aztecs would also be more advantageous “business”-wise, as most fans prefer them. By giving fans what they want, you can reap the rewards in terms of revenue. More revenue means more updates. (While this may not be the current case here, on other website(s), the Aztecs are winning by a large margin).

1 Like

I’d love to see both Mayans and Aztecs in the game, no matter how they are called in the end.



There is a poster on a different website who brought up an interesting point regarding the Mayans.

[QUOTE]There are only 2 surviving stories from the Ancient Mayans, their creation myth and the legend of the hero twins. Their myth units would be very limited: Zipacna, Seven Macaw, Chimalmat, Cabrakan, Camazotz, are the only known significant mythical creatures, and some of them act more like Titans than myth units. I love the Mayan architecture more than the Aztec’s. But there are more stories and artifacts from the Aztec empire. The Spanish Friar Bernardino de Sahagún, actually communicated with the natives while writing the Florentine Codex, as a result we know the Aztec custom’s more closely. Their diet, ritual’s, customs, superstition is very well documented. They have 5-6 nightmare creatures, multiple nature spirits, various mythical snake creatures, underworld monsters, evil spirits and cosmic threats.

Aztec’s themselves may be medieval but some of the Aztec cities were actually quite ancient. City of Teotihuacán for example flourished 1 CE to 500 CE. City was later re-discovered by the Aztecs.[/QUOTE]

Camazotz would be an awesome titan to see but Cabrakan is actually a god. He wouldn’t fit as a mythical unit. The Mayans do lack the numbers when it comes to mythical units. I believe the pantheons in AoM all have at least 10 or more mythical units. Do the Mayans even have that many mythical units to begin with?



They could give some of their myth units a made-up treatment and base them on gods, titans or whatever.

Egyptians in-game have a lot of made-up myth units: wadjet was a serpentine goddess, petsuchos was the reincarnation of the god sobek, avengers are made up, anubites and minions probably have no references in Egyptian mythology and are taken from the movie “The Mummy” and so on…

The lack of numerous stories is not a problem either, in my opinion, because you’d just need to base their campaign around 1 or max 2 myths and no more.


I voted for Aztecs but I guess they don’t want to bother with a sacrifice mechanic

Well regarding the number of myth units I wouldn’t be so serious about it.
Look at some of the current civs e.g.:

  • Egypt: Scorpian, Leviathan
  • Greek: Manticore

etc. What I mean is they already filled spots with new fitting but not accurate myth units so why not for mayans too?


Aztecs seems more detailed.

It is unfortunate that some of these units are made up or borrowed from other mythological cultures. I think in a perfect world or perhaps Age of Mythology 2, some of these borrowed units should be returned in favor of their own homegrown mythical units. Take the Egyptians as example. They have so many mythical units to choose from especially from the Book of the Dead. And by many I mean like dozens!

But this trend of borrowing from others or making up of other units should be halted and stopped dead in its tracks. It should die with the Greeks, the Egyptians, and the Atlanteans. I think the Norse was okay if I recalled correctly.

Borrowing other units should NEVER happen ever again. However, completely making up of new units because of lack of references should absolutely be the last resort.

This is one of the reasons why the Aztecs / Mexica pantheon is so attractive.

Even though I would love to see aztecs in game (and mayans too), given how little care devs give to native american civs in general across all games I expect the new pantheon to be from the old world.
I mean, we have cero in Age 1, 3 of 45 in Age 2, 4 of 24 in Age 3 and again 0 of 16 in Age 4.
And even with these little representation we get mayans, aztecs and incas using the same architecture style like they are all the same.
Back to the topic, I vote for aztecs because I believe they have more historic info to hold on

I’d would prefer Aztecs. We simply have much more information on their mythology, culture and religious practice. The devs will have lot more to work with from the perspective of designing an entire faction. Plus I’m a bigger fan of Aztec cosmology. I want to reign destruction on my enemies with the wrath of Xipe Totec

1 Like

Mayans also engaged in sacrifices like all meso american civs. They could make a mechanic where every unit Aztec/Maya military units kill add favor.

1 Like

If we got the Aztecs, the favor system would likely be around sacrificing captured units, and for the Mayans, maybe some sort of sacrificing your own units, since the Mayans put themselves through pain, and if I remember correctly, bloodletting. Honestly, I’d rather not have to sacrifice my own units, 11

I vote Maya too. They need exposure in the franchise relative to the Aztecs.

1 Like

In my opinion, Retold is the perfect opportunity to promote more obscure mythologies, such as the mayan one. They have many interesting elements which could be incorporated to the civ, such as the cosmic tree (or tree of life), the Hero twins, the ball game (pok-a-tok), Xibalba, etc…

Pok-a-tok should be the way for Mayans to gain favor; It was closely related to religion and sacrifices. You’d assign human units or heroes to the ball game (the stronger the unit, the more favors it generates). Maybe even some humanoid myth units, why couldn’t they play too? XD

Even Camazotz can be considered as a god, depending on the source. But we know he had an army of giant bats, so they could be Camazotz’s myth unit. Either Zipacna or Cabrakan could be titans. Mayans don’t really have many good potential myth units unfortunately, so most would have to be made up, but I understand why many don’t want that.