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Age of Empires IV — Server-Side Patch

Image of Age of Empires IV civilization images for all the civs with the words: server side patch.

We’re serving up some balance changes in this Server-Side Patch! To help keep the meta fresh, we’re making tweaks to some of the top-performing civilizations. In this patch, you’ll find that it will take more time to build walls and defensive structures, a few adjustments to the Chinese civilization, and other balance changes to the Malians and Mongol civilizations. Read on to learn more! 

Thanks again to our amazing community members, all of whom have helped to make Age of Empires what it is today!

—The Age of Empires Team

Download on the Microsoft Store
Remember that you’ll need to update your game in the Microsoft Store:

  • Open the Microsoft Store.
  • Click the [∙ ∙ ∙ ] symbol next to your profile picture.
  • Select Downloads and updates.
  • Press the Get updates button to automatically detect, download, and install the latest changes to your game!
  • Open the game. The title screen should show you on Build

If you are unable to launch the game after downloading the update, make sure you add (or re-add) the Age of Empires IV client or folder as an exception to your firewall and antivirus program.

That’s it; you’re ready to play!

Download on Steam
Remember that you’ll need to update your game in Steam:

  • Open Steam.
  • Click on Library to see your games list.
  • Click Downloads at the bottom of the Library window.
  • [If the new build does not download automatically,] click the Download Now button to manually download the new update.
  • Open the game. The title screen should show you on Build

That’s it; you’re ready to play!

Download on the Xbox App for Windows 11
Remember that you’ll need to update your game in the Xbox App for Windows.

  • Open the Xbox app.
  • Games that are installed show up on the left side of the app.
  • Hover over the game or click it, and then select Update.
  • [If the new build does not download automatically,] hover over the game, select More Options (…), choose Manage. Under the Files tab, choose the option to Check for Updates.
  • Open the game. The title screen should show you on Build

That’s it; you’re ready to play!

NOTE: After this update, you will no longer be able to utilize replays and saves from previous updates. While we do our best effort to minimize impact on saves, Campaign and Skirmish saves from the previous patch are impacted and will no longer be accessible after you update. Campaign progress will NOT be lost with this patch update.

Balance Changes


  • Stone Wall cost increased from 15 stone to 20 stone.

Developer Note: Stone walls are a very powerful option for shutting down raids. We wanted their cost to more closely match their effect in game.

Civilization-Specific Changes


  • Fixed an issue where fortifications were not properly built 50% faster.
    • Stone wall build time increased from 8 seconds to 10.5.
    • Palisade Walls build increased from 2 seconds to 2.5.
    • Keeps build time increased from 1 minute 45 seconds to 2 minutes.
    • Outposts build time decreased from 45 seconds to 40.
  • Song Dynasty Villager bonus changed from 35% reduction in time to a 33% increase to production speed. This means villagers will build in 15 seconds instead of 13.

Developer Note: As we made Town Centers more difficult to build, this had the unintended effect of making Song Dynasty a relatively stronger economic option with less resource investment.

  • Barbican and Village garrison slots reduced from 10 to 8.

Developer Note: We wanted to allow more counterplay options when attacking a booming or teching China player.


  • Cattle cost increased from 75 gold to 90 gold.

Developer Note: We found that at 75 gold it was so cost efficient that players would completely ignore farms and exclusively eat cows. Cattle are meant as a supplement to farms and not a total replacement.


  • Pastures Sheep spawn time increased from 120 seconds to 140 seconds.

Developer Note: Pastures are still more cost effective than farms, we just wanted to reduce the delta in power level between these options.

What’s on the Horizon

Coming Up...

As we prepare to head into the Winter Holiday, we’ve got lots of plans up our sleeves for next year! You can read about some of what’s coming in Season Four in our community roadmap, and we’ll have more news to share with you about the next Public Update Preview (PUP) in January! 

January won’t just be PUP-focused, however. We’ll also have a new Season Three event kicking off late in the month! Our team has also heard your feedback on making the Hardest AI more difficult to play against, so you’ll see those adjustments in our next minor patch early next year as well. We hope you’re ready for a challenge — our Balance Team is already breaking a sweat testing some early concepts of the Hardest AI update! 


Please note that this list is subject to change and should not be considered a comprehensive list of all the known issues we’re tracking. The above is to inform you of the team’s current priorities, which will change as other issues arise or take precedence.

For the latest updates and announcements, please visit our social channels.

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