Why the Indians are the strongest Civilization and why the Chinese should be Removed

Currently, the Indians are the strongest civilization in Dynasties of India, simply because the Indian civilization has actually been removed! If you consider the Indians as a civilization in Dynasties of India, they’d have all the bonuses combined of all the Indian civilizations, and steamroll any other civilization.

Correspondingly, it might make sense to do the same thing to the Chinese, as a way to address political issues. We cannot have the Tibetans as a faction in AOE, simply because you could now have the Tibetans fighting the Chinese, and the Chinese censors would nix sales in China proper. Same goes for the Uighurs, both ethnicities, if I recall, having sacked the Tang Dynasty capital in the past.

Consequently, the Dynasties of India approach might actually be appropriate as a way to remove the Chinese faction from the game, and possibly introduce traditional enemies of China into AOE2 without offending Chinese censors. It would also present a fairer and more interesting depiction of the Chinese, who are often shoehorned into mid-late game fast tech strats.

Since splitting China into different regional civilizations would affront Chinese censors, the obvious way to do this would be to divide the Chinese civilization into different dynasties, namely the Tang, Song, and Ming of AOE4, with the current Chinese civilization being reworked into the Ming civilization. To complete the trifecta, it would also be meaningful to add the Jurchens in, who eventually toppled the Ming and established the Qing Dynasty.

The Chu Ko Nu would also be repurposed as a regional unit, as opposed to a unique unit, since the Chu Ko Nu is both ancient and relatively useless (a civilian home defense weapon).

The rough outline of the Tang / Song / Ming / Jurchen civs I’d have in mind would be:

Tang Dynasty, cavalry and infantry-oriented civilization with military bonuses with early power peak.

Unique Units: Jian Swordsman, an infantry unit with bonuses against other infantry, but not fast like the Jaguar Warrior.

Reductions to cavalry production costs, cavalry production time.

Song Dynasty, economically-oriented archer civilization peaking before the current Chinese civilization.

Unique Units:

Shen Pi Nu, a crossbowman that ignores pierce armor, but has a relatively high reload time.
River Junk, a transport ship that allows units inside to fire out.

Reductions to villager production time, reductions to villager cost. AOE1 Shang redux. Alternately, let them build a second town center in Feudal Age; i.e, they’re turtle Cumans with walls.

Ming Dynasty, economically-oriented archer civilization, basically, the current Chinese civilization.

Unique Units:

Changdao Arquebusier, a halberdier that can change into a hand cannoneer.
War Cart, a siege weapon that allows archers inside to fire out, possibly with a melee attack against cavalry.

Jurchens, militarily-oriented cavalry and artillery civilization, that only comes into its own during the Imperial Age. Intended to counter the Ming Dynasty.

Unique Units:

Manchurian Knight, a slightly slower knight that can transform into a cavalry archer with bonuses against infantry. Intended to depict the Manchu mastery of anti-infantry horse archery, as well as their heavy cavalry.

Shenwei Cannon, a horse-mobile bombard cannon that is intended to be strong against infantry and archers. Has to deploy in order to fire, like a Trebuchet.

Basically, having multiple Chinese civs help deal with complaints about the monochromatic nature of China in AOE games, by allowing different strategies to be viable; i.e, early-game aggression with the Tang, economic play with emphasis on navy with the Song Dynasty, old-style Chinese fast tech with the Ming, and late-game dominance with the Jurchens, if they can ever survive to that point.

Moreover, this also opens up opportunities for introducing other civilizations related to China, such as the Tibetans or Uighurs, but also enables the addition of more obscure (and subsumed civilizations) such as the Bai people (Dali civilization).

Tibetans I already have in mind; i.e, a cavalry-based civilization that has strong healing ability, or a very strong raiding civilization that falls apart in pitched battle.

Uighurs and Bai are more of a mystery.

Jurchen people lived in northeast of China, later known as Manchuria, before the 18th century. The Jurchens were renamed Manchus in 1635 by Hong Taiji.

Where is the sense in you presenting the same civilization twice?

India is not one people or one country during the middle ages.Using that as a base to remove chinese is a horrible idea.


That’s actually contentious depending on nationalist myth (I assume Jai Hind folks might be offended by splitting India into different civilizations), just as much as you can make an anti-national argument for adding multiple Chinese civilizations.

The culture and character of Chinese civilization, while retaining a core (just as much as Hinduism and the resulting religious and philosophical divergences presented an Indian civilizational core), varied tremendously throughout Chinese history. The Tang were notoriously cosmopolitan aside their militarism (which eventually ate them up, which helps model a civilization that is weak in Imperial Age), the Song nationalistic (as they were beset by stronger barbarian powers) and innovative, the Ming were despotic, commercial, militaristic, and innovative, while the Qing were arch-conservative and militaristic.

As far as including the Jurchens, the Jurchens weren’t, say, like the Scots, a people who were absorbed by the United Kingdom and sometimes seeking to reassert their own nationhood, but rather an infamous enemy to various Chinese dynasties.

The Song Dynasty hero Yue Fei was a hero simply because he wanted to retake the Northern Song territories, which were conquered by the Jurchens, and its people subject to a serfdom, and Yue Fei fought the Jurchens to the extent of craving to eat the flesh of the Jurchens.

Likewise, for the Ming Dynasty, the Jurchens were at times alternately ####### (during the early part of the end of the Ming) and the mortal enemy of all Chinese people (after the fall of the Ming, during the Ming insurgency, and during the later stages of the Qing Dynasty).

The queue haircut associated with the Chinese during the 19th century was a Jurchen / Manchu imposition, not the traditional hairstyle of the Chinese, and Han Chinese were ordered to adopt the Jurchen haircut on the pain of death.


Put another way, if you want a Tibetan civilization that starts with raiding, and proceeds into Monk-heavy armies, the best way is to avoid the scenario of Chinese censors complaining about Tibetans fighting the Chinese (because the Tibetans are Chinese, according to them) is to get rid of the Chinese and do the historically accurate “Tibetans defeat the Tang, the Ming don’t do that well, the Jurchens (Qing) crush the Tibetans” as they did historically.

There’s also the Rome argument; i.e, Rome and Byzantium would interact, which is weird for the AOE2 era as the Romans fell apart rather early. With different Chinese dynasties (+ the Jurchens, who only became Manchus at the end of the AOE2 era), you could simply have the differing dynasties being “restoration movements” during a time of division, or the remnants of a dynasty facing the replacement dynasty.

A further argument might be, what’s the point in representing the same civilization 30202 times? There’s more than a dozen European civilizations, which can vaguely be considered all heirs of Greece and Rome. From the argument given, why not simply have a single Western civilization with knights, monks, and be done with it? Instead, we depict various European or Western cultures under differing civilizations.

The onerous aspect of this proposal might be that it’d be weird to have the same core civilization depicted over time, but, as I’ve stated before, Chinese culture was quite different in different time spans, and moreover, the Chinese neared their pre-modern technological apex during the Song.

From this set-up, would it be reasonable to have the Chinese be able to build castles and multiple TCs during the Feudal Age and build Imperial Age units during the Castle Age, since the Song were so technologically advanced? How about give the Chinese Bombard Cannons and Siege Engineers, making them utterly unstoppable?

Moreover, the progression seen in AOE2, from the Dark Ages (early Middle ages) to the Imperial Age (Renaissance), is actually seen repeatedly in Chinese history as the decline of dynasties results in what effectively amounts to civilization being reset to the Dark Ages (a period of disunity), before the dynasty comes to full blossom. It’s actually reasonable on this basis to model Chinese civilizations as being able to hit their own Imperial, to various extents, but with differing limitations on their peak imperial strength, with the strength peak being roughly in order of Tang < Song < Ming < Jurchens, as well as each civilization having its own strategic character (Jurchens focus on keeping their opponent off balance until they can reach Imperial, then start rocking the enemy with superior units, Ming are fast castle, the Song focus on economy, the Tang focus on rushes and disruption).

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