To Play a Medieval RTS You Must Think About The Time Period: Why Age of Empires II Makes You do This!


Hey Guys,
It’s a long time overdue but I want to share with you why I think I stand out from other players in Age of Empires II.  First, let me start by saying, I am not the best at this game by any means.  I play the game for fun, but, most people would say I put up a good fight.  In this post I’m going to break down why I think I may have an upper hand on other people in the game.

Town Centers:

The most under utilized building in the game by new players.

This is where the title of the post comes into play.  During this time period nobility usually stayed inside of a castle, but these nobles were also somewhat smart.  They knew the key to controlling land and protecting themselves was to protect the resources.  Though age of empires doesn’t necessarily hit this concept on the head, many castles developed small towns right outside out the gates so they could be at least somewhat protected by enemy attacks.  How Age of Empires represents the concept holds true though, town centers provide the same protection as these “Castle towns” received.  Aside from the obvious reason, you can make two villagers at a time as oppose to one.  An extra town hall provide 20 garrison spaces to protect your valuable citizens from a quick hitting scout or knight rush.  People ask me all the time, why not just build a castle with all the stone you are using, as I usually build 3 – 5 town centers when I hit the castle age.  A castle only provides 25 garrison spaces, is more resource intensive and Provide no economic value.  before you want to build your beautiful stone structure you need to make sure you have enough garrison spaces so that if you are rushed, you can hide your troops safely inside.

Trade Carts:

Ever here of the Silk Road?  Trade carts are how the developers decided to represent this concept.  If you aren’t taking advantage of your very own Silk Road, you are messing up.  This concept is still prevalent today!  Why do you think nations put Embargos on other nations?!?  Trade is important to economy,  without an economy, you have no troops.  Without gold, you are left with defensive / counter troops.  In my games you can spot me building up to three markets if my Silk Road is protected.

*NOTE:  Trade profit is the very best way to boost your economic score.  What to avoid being rushed?? Be 2,000 score ahead of your enemy entering the Castle Age.  They will be building an army and walls preparing for you to attack.  The whole time you could be sitting there with two scout cavalry!!

Forward Bases:

I understand, this is very difficult to do!  The bottom line is, if you can build military buildings in your opponent’s face, you induce stress and cause them to make mistakes.  When England invaded Ireland how did they manage to hold it for so long?!  They build military outpost EVERYWHERE.  Just the presence of these outposts (Military buildings) was enough to keep the clans of Ireland fearful for many years.

Counter Your Opponent:

Watch Braveheart, Joan of Arc, any movie that the underdog wins.  They usually don’t win from brute strength, they win because they found a clever way to counter their opponent.  This concept is the same in age.  If you are getting rushed by knights, that’s great news for you!!!  All you need to do is build five barracks and pump out Pikemen!!  You won’t be spending any gold while your enemy spend 60 gold every time one is created!!  If you are facing the nasty English Longbowmen, pump Skirms and Onagers!!!  You have to study the counters in this game and know them well (Just as during this time period and still today).  To beat your enemy you must know your enemy!

Build Production:

No Medieval Civilization had just one place to go and learn how to shoot a bow and you shouldn’t either!!  Age of Empires allows you to build multiple of the same military building so if you have the wood, build them.  You have to understand the war and the time period!!

Don’t Be Scared of the Dark:

During these times, people present requested money from their kings and queens all the time and better yet, received money all the time.  Why is this the case??  Because having vision = having resources.  Kings and queens usually did not like to waste money, this must have been fruitful!  The same thing is applied in Age of Empires II.  By the Castle age, you shouldn’t have even a dark spec on your map!  That dark spec could be hiding over 2,000 uncollected gold.  Either way you are going to have to fight in the game, may as well just start it early!

Mix Up Your Troops:

Even the Germanic Barbarians that overtook the Holy Roman Empire had more that just men with swords.  You have to attack with all sorts of different troops.  Emphasize a troop that counters your enemy, but bring almost everything with you to the field of battle.

If There is Water, Get in it:

Lastly, during this time period naval exploration was huge!  The same should be applied when playing Age of Empires.  Trading by sea on a map like Nomad is usually much safer (unless you are in a game with Ud1eByQwik33).

NOTE:  Docks are basically Town Centers that can produce food and gold collecting villagers (fishing, trade cogs)

That about wraps it up.  Please leave a comment so we can continue this discussion further!




One response to “To Play a Medieval RTS You Must Think About The Time Period: Why Age of Empires II Makes You do This!

  1. Enjoyed the real-life relations. It takes a whole different perspective, and at the same time you’re only playing the game the most efficient way because it’s true.

    This made me think of multiple things i can improve on. I always have dark splots. Usually, more like a dark half of the map! It’s so important to make sure no resources go to waste.

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