More Details Revealed For Future Age Of Empires IV Seasons

Xbox Game Studios revealed more info this week about the next two seasons' worth of content coming to their Age Of Empires IV this year. Season Two is actually right around the corner as the team will be releasing all new content for the game on June 30th, but now we know they already have Season Three pretty much planned out as it will be dropping sometime before November 2022. Season Two is set to come with a brand new map, remappable hotkeys, player color chooser, and more, while Season Three is launching Seasonal Events, as well as giving the game a number of balance changes. The team released more info on Xbox Wire this week, which we have a chunk of it for you to check out below.

Age Of Empires IV Dropped A New Trailer At Gamescom 2021
Credit: Xbox Game Studios

Age Of Empires IV – Season Two: Just on the Horizon

We shared a little bit about Season Two back in March, and we're here today to say that features like the Map Preference System, Fully Remappable Inputs, and Player Color Picker are on their way in July… along with a few other exciting changes! Those of you who participated in our recent Public Update Preview may have already had the chance to test some of these features out (and thanks for the feedback, by the way!). Here's an overview of some of what you can expect:

  • Introducing the Player Color Picker! You requested it, and it's almost here. With this new setting, players can choose a color or have a color randomly assigned at the start a match that will surface in-game and on the mini-map in single-player skirmish, multiplayer custom matches, quick matches and ranked matches.
  • Based on your feedback, we've continued to refine hotkeysto ensure you're able to customize and play as you wish. In Season Two, we'll be introducing the new Fully Remappable Hotkey layout, along with making changes to how hotkey conflicts work and reorganizing remapping menus so hotkeys are easier to find.
  • For some time, we have heard community requests for a way to give players a say over the maps they play in Quick Play and Ranked multiplayer matches. With this update, we are adding our first version of a Map Preference System that will give you influence over the maps that you will encounter in ladder play. When the Season Two update releases, we'll be sharing FAQs and other details further outlining how the system works!
  • Speaking of maps, we'll be introducing a brand new map in Season Two, called The Pit! This map has a competitive focus with a mostly open layout.

Season Three: What's Still to Come

At the start of Season One, we sent out a player survey asking a lot of questions about how our players felt about the update and requesting guidance on our next steps. In some cases, your responses validated some work we already had underway (such as the Map Preference System), and in other cases, your responses helped us change our priorities.

One thing we learned is we have a lot of players who like ranked in theory but would prefer to enjoy with others. As a result of that feedback, we made it a priority to introduce our first iteration of Team Ranked in Season Three. We'll explore some other meaningful changes to Ranked based on other learnings resulting from the survey, and we've also started early discussions on what we can do to provide more opportunities to allow players to enjoy Age Of Empires IV in more social and less competitive ways.

We'll also be looking to introduce two features you've been asking after for a while: Taunts and Cheats! While our starting point with Taunts and Cheats is heavily inspired by what you've seen and experienced in previous Age of Empires titles, we'll be looking to expand upon this space as we go. When it comes to Cheats, we'll be offering up some of what you've seen in the past, as well as some new things – both functional and playful. When it comes to unique units, we expect we'll be asking you for your input once our first offering of Cheats releases so we can continue to entertain.

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About Gavin Sheehan

Gavin is the current Games Editor for Bleeding Cool. He has been a lifelong geek who can chat with you about comics, television, video games, and even pro wrestling. He can also teach you how to play Star Trek chess, be your Mercy on Overwatch, recommend random cool music, and goes rogue in D&D. He also enjoys hundreds of other geeky things that can't be covered in a single paragraph. Follow @TheGavinSheehan on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Vero, for random pictures and musings.
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