Your thought about military gameplay

Hi guys
I created this poll to see what do you think about the battle mechanics shown until now.

  • Land warfare it’s fine but not the naval warfare
  • Naval warfare it’s fine but not the land warfare
  • I’m perplexed about both
  • I like both
  • We don’t have enough elements to judge

0 voters

Honestly, from what we have seen so far, I am perplexed by many aspects:

I noticed, that probably in AoE4, we lose several features:


  • In fact, the military stance of the units seems no longer to be present (aggressive, defensive, keep the position)
  • Contrary to what they say about readability as motivation for cartoon graphics, the recognition of the selected units, from that brown icon, seems to me to be more difficult than in previous versions of AoE (but perhaps an impression is right).
    Each military units have the same formation, which make me think that are useless. IF not for micromanagement (maybe even not for that, since that is not anymore present the splitted).




In general it seems that:
First line: special commands typical of the selected unit
Second line: commands, attack, abort, preside, and with “v” credo patrol
Third line: useless formations, how sad.

I would have liked the possibility to group for example a minimum troops of the same type required, to activate particular formations such as shieldwalls or other, giving certain types of bonuses (For example against arrows, but you lose mobility). It would have made ambushes even more nice, because maybe you don’t have time to activate a certain formation, or some other things)
From what they have shown it almost seems that the possibility of hiding only makes sense with large numbers of hidden troops, since it seems that units can disengage the enemy as if nothing had happened.

Other incoerences:
While military units cannot destroy anymore walls with their sword, they can now put fire on stone


(Maybe it would have been better to define a fire armor, or the stone buildings impossible to being attacked by units)
Rams that magically open not only gates, but also destroy walls:


Elephants: that can destroy stone buildings (I would have understood timber buildings, gates…but stone castles and stone walls…):


They have never shown archers who can set fire on buildings, or use fire arrows (maybe even to damage farms)

Unit types:
At least as regards the units, it seems that from the construction “barracks” will be substantially the same: with the usual two types: infantryman, spearman.


While the unique units shown so far appears to be a little more now:
English: Longbowman
Chinese: Jingdao, Fire Lancer; Nest of Bees, Chu ko Nu
Mongols: Hardened Khan, Mangudai (not sure)
And some of Abbasyd, and Delhi.
Siege weapons shown:
Trebuchets, rams, siege towers, ballista
Onagers / catapults, bombard, cannon (probably unique units of english civ)

So it seems that we won’t see neither ladders, nor diggers, nor other weapons (Unless as unique units)

Units can still pass on the debris of a building (maybe even just destroyed) ( well maybe this is too much lol)

Naval Warfare:

There is almost nothing to say, from what we have seen:

  • Ships can rotate deliberately
  • -Attacks will be based on fire arrows from the front, or if you have gunpowder, from the side.
    It honestly seems that naval battles are still based on “who spam more ships wins”


Honestly I would have preferred a more evolved battle mechanics from what were the typical mechanics of AoE (especially the 2).
In particular:
Land Warfare:

  • Unity stance (which was already present, but which no longer seems to be)
  • Possibility of using formations that give greater variety and possibility of strategy than the usual rock, paper, scissors; and less affected by exaggerated micromanagement.
  • Inconsistencies such as the possibility of setting fire to stone buildings for example
  • Few siege units (practically the same as AoE2), and with the same compromises that were adopted at that time (rams and elephants destroying stone walls)
    Naval Warfare:
  • There seems to be no improvement from what has been shown so far.
    No influence of weather and terrain on units and ships.

Things that I like:

  • Mongolian mounted archers are finally able to attack while running
  • The maps look quite large
  • The sounds of battle
  • Possibility of ambushes
  • Buildings that do not catch fire indefinitely, but lose health
  • Units on the walls
    I don’t say to be realistic at the level of Total War … but at least overcoming the compromises developed in the previous AoE, and implement a little more complex mechanichs… to rejuvenate AoE, the Definitive Editions are already present.

Shield wall is a must, it was so common in medieval battles. Also not just horsearchers should be able to attack while moving but melee cavarly as well and many more.


This is a well documented post but sadly as your poll shows, we don’t have enough gameplay content available to judge it. Which is crazy when we’re 4 months away from release and isn’t a good omen.


I like the crurrent state, it seems simple enough. of course we need more info.
Also I kinda dislike how ships work, BUT I like how their battle mechanics work, so I chose I lilke both.

Regarding “useess” formations- I think they are well chosen and strongly depend on context. Especially think about cavalry charges which are a thing now.

With spearman/bowmen behind something you would generally use line formation.
With a weak unit like a monk behind, you would maybe use the inverted triangle, more units at the front to tanks, at the back to support.
and open formation would be great against trample damage, or even charges, as this way, there atre holes for enemies to “overcharge” through.

just some spontaneous examples.
I personally think split micor was nice in age 2, but also very unrealistic.


Of course. But is not the only formation used. About the cavalry i’m wondering how…

Yes is not a good thing to don’t know so much. Anyway from just what we have seen it seems that military gameplay will be very similar to AoE2

Yeah…but it’s almost equal to AoE2 lol

Oh here it comes something funny. If it is as Aoe2, you won’t be able to do that, since that in a formation you cannot choose the position of a type of unit (has not been showed, so i don’t think will be present).

That’s true

Not clear.
Anyway Wedge formation was used to break the infantry lines.

Phalanx was used in middle age (swiss, landsknecht. Not all countries, but have a system to group for example ten units, and have a formation that deal huge damage by his front side, but takes huge damage if attacked by side would add a lot of depth.

Or also the testudo formation, it was also used by the Byzantines in the battle of Yarmuk. You could say “well but the Byzantines have not yet been introduced” → well yes it is true, but without a “battalion” mechanic, it will be very difficult that we will see these implementations.

Tercio for spanish army

Staggered column maybe to increment mobility…
and so on

And also here you can say: how do you know that they give/don’t give bonus?
From the fact, that same formation are present for everytype of unit…even the siege weapons!lol

About naval, ships were very different from mediterranean to the north sea, also here nothing has been presented bonus/malus in deep or shallow waters…
No boarding
No ramming
Ships throw arrow, and after some damage, some explosion appears on the ship damaged. Arrows are not even fire arrows lol.

Basically it’s aoe2.

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I wish they could have used it’s native name for rank.

It sounds like type of metal or something I don’t wanna talk about. Doesn’t sound like rank or upgrade.


How about single type of units using multiple weapons. Like Archer using sword in close combat. Cav’s Lance’s replaced by swords after charge. Looks great.


This information is outdated. Please update the post:



At least one more type of infantry has been seen:
It is not a pikeman, it’s more like a type of halberd. Used by the french player, and not mentioned among the french unique units.

We have seen: ram, onager, balista, siege tower, trebuchet, “normal cannon” (deployable), french cannon (non deployable), “culverine” (we don’t know the name, it is longer than french cannons), organ gun and nest of bees (10 in total).

All the captures are from the Xbox Game Showcase.


That already happens. It was first seen in the 2019 trailer, and it’s seen again in the April 2021 one:
The second image is very little, but the archer has a sword or knife.


Looks good. And something new.


In my opinion better is a fix name for different upgrades ( example Elite etc ) else it will be difficult for players to know the rank of enemy units. Now we have 8 civs. Its not so big number. When we will have 15+ it will be very difficult to remember each name.

Also, about the naval battles, I like the idea of different ship behavior. The arrow ships that fires from the front I think will have more range and accuracy and significant less dmg (good vs land units), in compare to the other ships that fires from the sides with less range and accuracy and significant more dmg (good vs other war ships).


Effectively it’s quite odd.

I agree, i’ve just hope, that archers cannot uset the bow and aim other enemy units while receiving a sword blow! :smiley:

Oh many thanks! Didn’t notice!

It could be just an upgrade of the spearman/pikeman; or be an unique unit. From the videos shown, when selected the barrack, you can choose only among two type of units.

I was talking about the generic siege units…

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Maybe, but we still aren’t sure. The only barracks we have seen are the mongolian ones, a civ not specialised in infantry. Am I wrong?

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Yes it is.
But are called generic units, because every civ have them.
If a civ have units that others don’t have, are unique units.
Type of infrantries showed are many, (for example, i remember that in norman campaign, some soldiers have axe).
You could say: Well, there are a lot of unique units…(although ladder, and diggers were used almost everywhere)
Well it’s very probable (having seen that chinese have: nest of bees, jingdao, chu ko nu, fire lancer, imperial offical and maybe i forgetting of someone, but anyway at least 4 unique units), and that would be very good.
But we have seen it only about chinese, french how many unique? 3? english 2? (longbowman and a type of cannon); mongols 2 (hardened khan and mangudai?);
What we could do is just to get a better idea from the videos, since the gameplay minutes shown are very few; and before to buy i think everyone just wants to clear his mind, on what he 's going to buy, or expect by the game.

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Where are the onagers? I never saw any onagers in the footage.

I believe it’s a voulgier. Voulgier is a type of polearm soldier using a voulge.


In the first post, is present also a picture, where it’s almost assemblied

But also here: