Wildlife/nature and set dressing in AoE4

How is the mostly non-interactive wildlife/gaia, and other set dressing elements in AoE4? Quantity, appearance, animations, etc.

Things like whales, dolphins, birds (hawks, eagles, owls, crows, etc.), frogs/toads, wolves, dragonflies, fireflies, butterflies, tigers, monkeys, and other climate-, biome-, time of day-, season-, and altitude-appropriate creatures.

Set dressing, mostly, but nice touches that help show an attention to detail or nice level of polish.

I’d classify things like tombstones, ruins, artifacts, broken down carts, boulders, waterfalls, mist rainbows, random wind gusts, falling leaves, tumbleweeds, dust or leaf kickups, dust devils, water waves/effects, and the like in a similar category that I’m curious if they included or will include?

Would be neat to see a flock of starlings or some small bird briefly swirl/dance in the sky once every few matches, on average (in a flocking to and fro way you see them do in real life)

At any rate, I just never saw much of this type of thing in Tech Stress… very little to none, actually, and wonder if the final game had anything added?

Did the eagle(?) that was shown in the original AoE4 announcement trailers years ago (revealing the map as it flew over) ever come to fruition in any set dressing or gameplay way (e.g., spy on enemies)?

Thanks! Just curious. I haven’t been able to watch many gameplay vids yet


Yes, the Mongol Khan can summon the eagle which acts to reveal the map location the Khan was at for an extended period of time.

Otherwise, there are very few set dressing pieces like you describe, certainly a lack of wild-life in general, although the look of the environment with plants / rocks etc is done well. I have yet to notice birds - which is surprising considering there have been birds since age 1.


Ahhh, thank you for confirming the eagle! Sounds nice. Sad to hear about wildlife and set dressing, though. I figured as much… but hope more of that stuff comes over time through game updates

A lot of people already asked for it over a year ago on this same forum… devs never get feedback and wont do anything, sorry

Yup, I know it was asked for… I was one of the ones asking and suggesting.

Meh, I don’t subscribe to the blatant and highly presumptious negativity. We’ll see what happens with the game over the coming months and years

If no set dressing flavor gets added or improved over the coming years, I’ll congratulate you on your impeccably accurate (or, rather, lucky) pessimism. Until then, it’s clear your comment is just negativity to be negative.

I realize you’re probably jaded about the game not meeting your expectations at launch and the lack of studio participation with the community for a few years, but conspiracy theories about the game’s post-launch future are pretty pointless for a while

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I didn’t pay too much attention while playing, but you gave me a good excuse to go back and watch some replays to check on the little details.

There’s definitely some things that are pretty
Butterflies will fly around berries

Broken down cart usually means a relic is there
also notice how the small rocks spread around a stone deposit

flower patches and some nice underwood…the sheep also roam around, unlike in aoe2. Trees and leaves will also move with the wind

Sound wise you would hear birds and frogs when hovering above forests, but no sign of any models for our avian and amphibian friends :frowning:

When it comes to the base building, paths, gardens and various decorations will dynamically spread around your base, and look more refined as you progress through the ages.

My real gripe here is the TC chickens not being animated at all…

When it comes to water, rivers flow like it should, and crossings are marked by those paths

As for fishes, they will jump about and seagulls fly over the spots

Here’s a look at what hills look like

Keep in mind that all map generations have 8 different biomes to choose from that will use different tree types and terrain variations. But those don’t change the types of animal so you’ll still find boar, deer and wolves on the asian subtropical biome haha

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To add more animals and have them be set to biomes would be nice. There were so many in AoE2.

^-- First off, welcome back to the forum! Looks like it’s been a while :smiley:

I appreciate the details with screenshots! Some nice observations there, and some great starts for the game! I hope to see even more wildlife and details added over time. The flower patches are a nice touch. And I just noticed the twigs under the berry bushes in your screenshot; sweet!

Darn! This is common in video games (too common, imo), and I hope devs can someday add animated models to actually emit the sounds at some point. I think Red Dead Redemption 2 might be the closest I’ve seen to having most wildlife sounds come from actual animals/creatures in the game that you can see, if I’m not mistaken. There have been a handful of times where I swear a creature sound is in a generic ambient audio track, but then I find the actual source – such as a a crow in a tree near me, or what have you.

That’s cool to see. Is a good start! I could use some random birds flying over the entire map, though… like AoE2, but with less linear/robotic paths. Same with butterflies, I’d like to see them in other places and not just over berry bushes. For example, over some of the flower patches that you pointed out might be cool :slight_smile: Dragonflies would be lovely to see near shallow water/brook or pond types of areas, or a meadow.

I see room for improvement with some of this, like butterflies. I see their animation isn’t very quick and ‘fluttery’… they’re pretty slow and deliberate. Would be nice if they danced and fluttered a bit more playfully with wings that flickered more; and this could be achieved without being overkill or distracting. Butterfly wings go a lot faster in real life than AoE4, as seen in this YouTube vid: “Fields of Butterflies and Flowers / Crickets, Bird Song,…”

I think you’ll like that this thread was created, then! Hopefully, chickens will get to move around someday :smiley:



Until the devs fix the town center frozen chicken and animate it, I’m just going to head canon that the chicken was beloved by all the villagers in my city and when it died of old age they had it stuffed and put on display to honor it’s memory.


:slight_smile: There is probably a sign hanging near the chicken in town commemmorating him