alert notification image

Age of Empires IV launches October 28th, available for Pre-order Now!

Hey everyone,

This is my first time doing an official blog post for Age of Empires so first, thank you so much for trusting us with this franchise. The reception for everything from the Definitive Editions, to tournaments, to the Age of Empires: IV  teasers, have been nothing short of humbling.

So, a little about myself, I’m an Arena team game clown and I lead the business and data team for the Age of Empires franchise at Microsoft. A big part of my job is looking through the numbers and trying to see where we can improve, and make the game even more fun. I’m certainly not alone, just one of many people who are passionate about the franchise, looking for ways to grow it. We don’t always get it right on the first try, but we do our best and appreciate your patience!

Ok, enough preamble, I’m here to announce that we will be removing Deathmatch from the ranked queue and replacing it with Empire Wars in an upcoming patch. Believe me when I say this is something we take very seriously and I want to walk you through the logic and why we think this is the right decision for Deathmatch and the wider Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition community.

♦     ♦     ♦

Why are we adding Empire Wars Ranked queue?

One of the most common requests we see is for a short game mode. It’s a difficult problem to solve because shortening or speeding up matches can impact the “classic Age of Empires: II” feeling. In the lobby (& mods) there are a few options for short game modes including Deathmatch, Turbo, Battle Royale, and Castle Blood Automatic, but the most popular, and fastest-growing, is Empire Wars. This could be thanks to the Red Bull Wololo tournament series (which you should all check out starting May 29) or it could just be because it is a fun, shorter game mode, that feels like Age of Empires. It’s hard to say for sure, so we want to raise its visibility by giving it a ranked queue and let you decide.

It’s worth noting that we don’t expect Empire Wars to replace Random Maps. These are distinct game modes. To me, it is a nice way to play some competitive Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition when I don’t quite have enough time to play a long 4v4 Arena Ranked Match. For those of you saying “faster match? Just play Arabia!” my answer is no, that map is perma-banned from my personal matchmaking queue because you all are way too good at Arabia and my early eco needs protection.

To the one Redditor on the original Empire Wars announcement who said, “this feels like a push to get rid of the Dark Age…to make the games faster for Esports”… we love the Dark Age and we love esports, but the real reason we are doing this is so more people can find time to play.

Why are we removing ranked Deathmatch?

The more people we have queuing for ranked, the faster and better the matchmaking will be both in terms of ELO and ping. We are excited about the vibrant scene in Random Map, which has doubled year-over-year, but ranked Deathmatch never quite hit the critical mass it needed to grow. Since Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition‘s launch, we’ve seen queue times that are much longer than we would like, along with occasionally significant ELO gaps between opponents. This isn’t the user experience we want and, predictably, the majority of experienced multiplayer DM’ers have moved to lobby matches.

Monthly Matches in Ranked Queue

Monthly Matches in Ranked Queue

Games like Age of Empires follow a certain progression where new users come in, they play some tutorials, go through some campaigns, play vs increasingly difficult AI, then try their hand at multiplayer. We want that first experience in multiplayer to be excellent because if it is, that person might come back, and then everyone in multiplayer benefits. If these “new-to-multiplayer” players find their way over to lobby and happen to queue up for a DM ranked match, two things frequently happen: they sit and wait in a very long queue before switching to a different game mode, or they get matched up against a player at a vastly different skill level than themselves and possibly lose their interest in DM going forward.

There are a lot of great ideas in the community about how to improve that experience, but for the moment, we think removing it and centralizing the multiplayer DM’ers in Lobby is the best near-term fix to help people find matches quickly.

*NOTE: If you are one of the many people who never made it to multiplayer and instead fell in love with the Genghis Khan or Joan of Arc campaign…20 years ago…please don’t feel called out! I’ve probably played through the Siege of Paris 50 times myself. Campaigns are amazing and we are happy you found your way to play Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition!

So there you have it. This is a test. We will continue to listen to your feedback and try our best to be good stewards of this amazing franchise. A lot of the best ideas in Age II: DE come straight from you (like Empire Wars’ current iteration) so please, keep telling us what you like and how we can improve

See you all on the ladder!

Will McCahill

♦     ♦     ♦

Discuss of 162 comments

  • trevi June 12, 2021
    I just can't wait to ranked Empire Wars mode is released. Definetely is better than Death Match. It is even better than RM from Dark Age. Some day people will relize it.
    Reply
  • elghazee June 6, 2021
    i am also very disappointed with the removal of ranked DM, this is the only game mode I play in AOE and there are many others that are play with who are in the same position and feel the same way about it. Why not have EW and DM ranked one does not negate the other. A poll should have been sent out to the AOE DM community.
    Reply
  • dreamtheory June 3, 2021
    Please add EW to Ranked Queue, it will be better for the games health. I have watched numerous RTS and SC2 streamers try AOE2 only to stop playing due to the slow game start and the ability to have the game be over yet still take 30 minutes. EW Fixes a lot of issues and is a GREAT option for ranked play. Please put this in the game
    Reply
  • smu37 May 29, 2021
    So still remove the DM ?
    Reply
  • nightmare-10 May 20, 2021
    I just want say im disappointed whit removing rated DM I started play aoe 2 in early MS Zone 20 years ago, almost 100% of time was DM, until Ms Zone was closed. After break of a lot of years i retaked the game whit HD and DE. I realized few people play DM, so i started to learn some RM too. But for me DM is way more fun than RM. What i like of DM is have big battles, whit strong ecos. Sorry but i dont undestand several things: So they want a faster way to play the game, and remove the faster way to play? DM is not growing and you punish players who still play DM ? This is not DM players fault. Just remove rated RM so people should play DM, ha ha ha, just joking. Why DM is not popular? I guess is for the gap from players who know how to play DM and new players. RM has a starting guide in the game, DM dont have, and you wonder why not new players. Also the rush make hard for new people even start to play and learn. A litte mistake at begining and you are dead. Personally, rush its notmy favorite part of DM, but probabily DM comunity has good ideas to improve. ( Well in fact its the same for RM if you start wrong probabily you are dead, but you gone realize half hour later) I think Elo is important in several ways: * Elo is important Pro DM players who take the game as e-sport and put the time and efford to training and improve. And now this is gone? Also for the communit who managing events and tournements. How they can rank players now ? Feels so bad. Im average DM player but started play tournements, and triying to improve on rated. * Elo helps to balance the games even in non rated lobbys. I think non elo DM lobby games can go even worse, mixing pro players agains new players ( whit no clue who is who), this gona be frustating for both. In previus HD version all RM and DM are rated. Non rated games is something new for DE ( But still a hidden elo for non rated games). Imo its better to have more profile info, skill (elo), experience games (played, win/lose), maybe quits, drops, reputation etc. For some reason new players, in non rated games like play "blind" agains "non rated" players, but non rated dont mean non skilled The good thing about aoe2 is people can chose the way how they like to play the game , RM, DM ,EW, BR, FFA, Diplo, Regicide, turbo, Custom Scenarios, etc Why not just let people choice ? I dont see any real problem to do this. In DE there are 2 ways to find automatch games, one for rated and other for non rated. This dont make sense to my, should be one way whit game modes options, rated or non rated option, etc. Maybe you can add info of how may people are playing/searching Last thing, i still remember a game in old MS zone days, was DM 4v4 random civs Oasis. We get goths (me) , bizantines (my brother), vikings,( the 4r guy drops at beginig) vs mongols, spanish, coreans and brits. I lost more than 8000 units, but we won. Was a epic game. Usually you dont get this kind of games in other game modes. thanks Charly aka Nightmare
    Reply
  • skabobaken May 18, 2021
    EW queue will be a lot of fun, can't wait to get into it. Only 1300 people have played 10 DM games to get a rank, why not swap it out with something fresh. The RM scene has outgrown DM by orders of magnitude so it makes sense to build off of that momentum.
    Reply
  • ttv-helichaos May 18, 2021
    I'm excited for EW, but can't believe you are gutting DM to make way for it. Please don't do this. Listen to the community.
    Reply
  • dj-b-ill-e May 17, 2021
    I am pretty disappointed i am losing dm for ew. I will honestly never chose to play myself as it is to much like rm to really be different. Not saying there is no difference or skill just to similar
    Reply
  • pepsi-clean May 17, 2021
    As a lifelong (nearly) DM player, it is a shame that the developers didn't bother to introduce it as a valid game mode due to the difficulty level (not the simplicity of it) and instead tried to introduce a new mode that is equally as unpopular as the game mode they don't support at all. I love this game, it would be a shame to have to put it down and stop buying new DLC etc. over losing my favorite game mode.
    Reply
  • chuckthekiller May 16, 2021
    Why wouldn't you just add both to ranked? It doesn't make sense. Why remove an option for no reason? While you're at it you should also add Regicide and King of the Hill to ranked as options. Make everyone happy. If some game modes have longer queues, it's the players decision if the wait is worth playing their favorite game mode. Don't cater to one player base over others. More options = better.
    Reply
    • dj-b-ill-e May 17, 2021
      I can get behind this idea
  • yvga May 15, 2021
    I can´t believe such nonsense
    Reply
  • spooly May 15, 2021
    Someone called me out on the comment I posted the other day, asking why I would "take a stand against DM". Let me clarify; I'm not against DM. That is a ludicrous assumption. I've offered a hell of a lot of support to the DM community in the past and clearly, I am one of the more active members on the DM ladder. But I compared it to racing a car around a track. The race is fun, but not on a track filled with rocks and holes. That is what our DM ladder is like on a daily basis. You can experience huge wait times to match significantly lower ELO and this is more often the case the higher up the ladder you go. Maybe sometimes you get a match because you were lucky to get someone in the queue, or you saw someone on a stream and chose to jump on and play. But it shouldn't be this way, and it doesn't make DM a better place to be, which is why I gave the opinion that I did. It's my belief that the DM community can create something even better from the ashes of MS decisions, and I don't know why we are all as a community 'fighting back' against them when they clearly don't care. Anyone would hope they'd do the right thing and start to back us, but their actions say otherwise.
    Reply
    • spooly May 18, 2021
      Deleting accurate comments now MS? Okay. I'll just repeat the summary: MS treat RM better than DM and have since the start. No updates aimed at DM, no attention to our broken ladder in DM (where a player can get #1 rank in 10 games from playing RM TG to 2.5k+ ELO), and then they wonder why DM isn't as active. My comment isn't nonsense when we have a ladder with no competitive draw and it is valid to point out that MS do.not.care. We as a community can create something better than MS's only input which is to keep a broken ladder active. If MS is listening, then fix the problem by actually helping us.
    • aenima May 16, 2021
      And btw, all DM players are MS customers. Think of those who only bought this game to play (ranked) DM. The decision to remove rated DM will surely not contribute to customer satisfaction and this is the point where we need to grab their balls.
    • aenima May 16, 2021
      Sorry but that's nonsense. If you have track filled with holes and rocks you need to repair and maintain it. Removing the track will even take you the possibility to have funny races. Further, if you want to repair something you will need the basis. So, removing rated DM is not an option. Don't burry your head in the sand! This is the moment to fight!
  • lowerty-2 May 14, 2021
    Really sad to see the DM ladder being removed. Seems unnecessary as it doesn't bother anyone and the ladder is an important feature for the DM community to keep DM competitive. Hopefully this decision gets reversed.
    Reply
  • thieftdp-2 May 14, 2021
    imo a poor decision, can just leave DM well alone and add in EW ranked.
    Reply
  • x-factor May 14, 2021
    Put some marketing dollars toward DM to get actual results. Pulling analytics on 3 mods with varying advertising, marketing spend and game training is just a bad idea. The DM ranking could use some HELP not removal. Add in some offline DM training, add in some incentives and maybe a Microsoft tournament with skill level brackets.
    Reply
    • x-factor May 14, 2021
      Just to break it down a little more. Comparing 2 marketing campaigns, 1 with paid advertising, on platform free advertising, tournaments, etc. compared to campaign #2 with none of those and simply platform organic traffic. There will be a drastic difference between performance. Then try and make a conclusion saying #1 did better, well obviously. Make them equal to to legitimate analytics. As of now, DM hasn’t had any of those and therefore cannot even be used on the same chart to compare. I assume you have a marketing manager or someone to share with you the marketing spend to help compare that as well?
    • leshanni May 14, 2021
      Actually a new AI script specifically for DM would be pretty awesome. Even if you skirmish with extreme I'm pretty sure the AI starts collected resources from the start.
  • tubularatol3840 May 14, 2021
    There is a much much better way to improve the new player experience, and that is the initial ranking. I suggest a few things: 1. Create a tentative rank for new players based on their AI and unranked games. This can be automatically calibrated over time to make sure it gets better at predicting a new players ranked rating. 2. Represent ratings with more than just one number. It needs to include a variation so that it's clear that some players play more consistently than others (and new players will obviously have much more variation than older players). This could be done easily by moving to a better rating algorithm like Glicko-2: http://www.glicko.net/glicko/glicko2.pdf (doesn't have to be displayed to users as a range, could also be lower bound + variation) 3. Fix the ratings in all ladders so that the mean is 1'000, and have this re-calibrate automatically in future (Ratings should decay slowly, a system like glicko-2 can make this easier by allowing just the variation to slowly increase when a player doesn't play).
    Reply
  • real-st-johns-noob May 14, 2021
    There's no reason why we can't have three ladders: RM, DM, and EW. I think we should try having three ladders instead of removing DM.
    Reply
  • unikbrisolyn May 13, 2021
    So awesome to see all the streamers and players that have tried DM for the first time this week. Many RM, EW, Custom Scenario folks could've easily been like "eh whatever, it doesn't impact me", but instead, they have been adamantly fighting for the DM community. Death Match has been a vital part of the game, how sad that Microsoft can make decisions like this that impact the integrity of the game. I've been so heart warmed and uplifted by all the community members joining the #SaveDM moment. Despite all this, I have to admit how sad I am that some players were wanting to drop out of the DMWC4 Silver League event because they are completely demotivated and heartbroken by this announcement. Our Silver League has been an incredible event with no admin wins so far because all the players in it are so invested and passionate, so this timing of this news seriously sucks. You know you've screwed up when you upset the players that are always happy about everything and never complain.
    Reply
  • mysterious-shadow May 13, 2021
    DM has a relatively small community but that doesn't mean they should get disrespected or neglected. Why not have both dm and ew? Too much queue time? I don't mind that and I don't see how that would be a valid excuse or problem. There are strategies and skills and fun involved in dm just like all other game modes. DM should not be removed.
    Reply
  • paladinz May 13, 2021
    Didn't battle royale get more visiblity & financial support from MS than DM? Who plays it today? Give DM a fair chance and you might get surprised.
    Reply
    • spooly May 15, 2021
      "Poured" might be a bit of an exaggeration.
    • paladinz May 14, 2021
      With more money? FYI - DMWC4 (10k prize pool) was entirely funded by the DM community. Since DE's release, DM only received 5k - for DMWC3. Can you show me any other DM tournament sponsored by Microsoft?
    • tempires May 14, 2021
      No. Microsoft has sponsored deathmatch tournaments with more money and do make posts about upcoming or ongoing tournaments just like any other event. Battle royale even was justified as it was new game mode so microsoft wanted show what it's about. DM tournaments are competitions when battle royale was showcase & fun games meaning it's not comparable to competitive tournaments. All game modes are important regardless if they have players online or single player.
    • unikbrisolyn May 13, 2021
      THIS. Microsoft poured 10K into an event where some of the winners donated their money to charity because the prize pool was just simply ridiculous.
  • thaimadz-2 May 13, 2021
    This is madnesss..... Stay away from DM ranked que ! you should jus keep a tab menu to put all rm , dm and empire wires instead of Alt f4 ing
    Reply
  • faust9247 May 13, 2021
    It's so sad and for the many DM Players a "hit in his face". They do many trainings for tournaments etc. and now is there existence away. Safe DM!
    Reply
  • hitchcmj May 13, 2021
    This is a great call. DM has had years to catch on and hasn't. It is good for the game and good for the community for Empire Wars to have a chance.
    Reply
    • leshanni May 13, 2021
      Why does giving Empire Wars a chance involve removing DM ladder?
    • the-otter-aoe May 13, 2021
      Also "the community of Empire Wars" - where is it? Gimme a link where to find it. talking players, not companies.
    • the-otter-aoe May 13, 2021
      Do you enjoy HD? Do you enjoy DE? Did i enjoy voobly? Guess what: Wihtout DMers keeping this game alive together with other communities u couldnt.
    • real-tele-fm May 13, 2021
      dm and its players who have always been faithful for more than 20 years is one of the reasons why age survived 15 years of total neglect in its development
  • mullimns May 13, 2021
    Personally think that this is a reasonable move. DM has such a tiny player base it always seemed strange to me that it had a dedicated latter.
    Reply
  • reddevil0792 May 13, 2021
    Well this is just another slap for old times players, i been playin the game since the release back in 2000 and i hate how much DE has ruined it. Yes it has some good ideas like autoscout and reseed farm button, but mostly it just sucks. Even today i rather play HD version. Now they wanna take out one of the oldest pillars of the game just to support their own game mode? outrageous. With all the bugs and errors in the game i bet this is just because the devs doesnt even know how to program 3 game modes on ranked. and finally but not less important, please, PLEASE stop changin the civs every month and ruining them more and more. Oh and bring back obsidian arrows.
    Reply
  • leshanni May 13, 2021
    I think removing DM is not addressing the problem that people find it hard to get into (because they get smashed in their first games). It would be better to address that problem imo. I made a post in the age II forum but here's my suggestion in brief: "Biggest idea is to create “the art of war” for DM: This was awesome for RM play and is really necessary for DM. Even just being told to build military buildings right away would help a tonne. But other topics like; Rush your opponent/ Keep vills alive under pressure/ Build eco after you stabilise/ Take the Map control. Then when you enter the game for the first time at least you know what to expect. Also why not highlight DM on one months Patch: Play a DM game (get profile Icon) Build 100 military in a DM game (unlock animation) Build 5 castles in one DM game (unlock sound effect when castle builds) You get the idea, what DM needs is a bit more love and not to be side lined." Full post here: https://forums.ageofempires.com/t/dm-removed-from-ranked-my-thoughts/130056
    Reply
    • paladinz May 13, 2021
      Great post @leshanni
    • dawnrim May 13, 2021
      ^^^ hear hear
    • nymets1104 May 13, 2021
      This comment already has more effort than Devs have given DM in the last 2 years
  • floosworld May 13, 2021
    IMO it's a bad move to remove ranked DM in order to replace it with EW. Why don't you consider a solution that fits for everyone... like.. adding EW without removing everything?
    Reply
  • omadon86-2 May 12, 2021
    I like the idea, is worth a try.DM it's in a comatose state, it's time to unplug it. And the amount of people coordinated to come here to complain is endearing. If only they had really played dm sometime maybe this wouldn't happen...
    Reply
    • hitchcmj May 13, 2021
      Amen. If half the people whining played DM once a month they wouldn't have considered removing it.
    • tilosh May 12, 2021
      Bravo! Complainers clearly didn't read the post or see the graph. DM was never a thing in ranked matches. It was eye-openning to watch during last week's DMWC that lobbies were empty. It's clearly a stagnant game type.
    • flauschfuchs May 12, 2021
      They are playing ranked DM which is why they are complaining here.
  • ofeliaaoe May 12, 2021
    Happy to see that you will save 100$ by removing one of the most legendary game modes of the game.. keep the good work on geting revenue..
    Reply
  • charoch May 12, 2021
    I hope if empire wars is added to MM its victory condition is conquest and not standard as its currently on quick match
    Reply
  • tilosh May 12, 2021
    What an awful tantrum display. People, did you actually read the post? The evidence is clear. DM is not growing. It has never done so. EW is growing. The decision makes sense. This is a game that wants to look forward. The fact that you restarted playing AOE2 because of DM helps nobody. DM is stuck. I welcome the decision. DM can still be played in lobby. Move on people.
    Reply
    • thieftdp-2 May 14, 2021
      you're the only one throwing a tantrum. "all others are not allow to complain and as long as I am okay with it others should be okay too!"
    • leshanni May 14, 2021
      The evidence doesn't even have a Y Axis Label/Scale, so I'd say that's about as far from clear as you can get. That graph could be telling you there's X players or X% growth cumulative or X% growth per month. E.g. what if the it shows % growth and it spans 0%-0.1%, so now the RM stats don't even look like they're growing either.
    • unikbrisolyn May 13, 2021
      well tllosh, you seem like a wonderful person that is a joy to have at parties :P DM is ACTUALLY growing. and you have no evidence that EW is growing. a large subcommunity that plays EW outside of RBW doesn't even exist. easy for you to say "move on" when youre not impacted by this whatsoever. i hope you can "move on" from being so insensitive.
    • rogganwololo May 12, 2021
      DM is not as popular because it hasn't been supported as much. The amount of sponsorship empire wars has received in the last year is more than what DM has received in the last 20+ years. It's not a tantrum, it's a legitimate excuse for many players many of whom have been around since the start. Besides their argument as to why DM should be removed doesn't make any sense (to me at least) and I don't see a reason why DM, EW and Random map cannot coexist.
  • brix-aoe May 12, 2021
    Even though I am really happy to see an EW Ladder for Age of Empires the fact that the DM Ladder will be shut down is just wrong. DM has such a nice and lovely Community within the great AoE community. Seeing that they will lose their Ladder which never really got a real support, at least thats what it feels like form, is just sad. I really hope the DM Ladder can stay up there and we just get a 3rd Ladder that being the EW one.
    Reply
  • freakinandy-2 May 12, 2021
    Personally, i love playing DM and I don't think the waiting times are too long. ( 1vs1 ladder) I dont see the point of removing this because a lot of games happen there and the games are pretty competetive aswell + the ratings are often used for seedings at tournaments . Furthermore, people started to play DM after the DMWC with more than 10k viewers. I would really love to see the 1vs1 ladder remaining in the system. For the teamgame ladder it makes sense in my opinion because teamgames are mostly hosted in private lobbies and the ladder teamgames are unbalanced .. PLEASE just add EW as ADDITION, or replace the TG ladder with EW 1vs1 ladder, but dont remove the DM 1vs1 ladder ... That doesnt help anyone and only destroys the game
    Reply
    • spooly May 12, 2021
      You probably weren't around at the time, but before decay was introduce on Voobly the DM ladder was in such a poor state of play. It was oversaturated with different players using multiple AKAs who then never touched them again. If it wasn't decay being integrated into DE as well, it would be the same thing all over again. Now we have players that log on to play seldomly who don't even care about the decay because it doesn't push them down to 2K (or 1800 as it was in TG) like it did on Voobly and even that could have been more severe. 15 days pass and you lose a little rating, then 30 days you disappear until you're active again. Play one game and boom, it was like you were never gone. It makes the incentive to play even less. I've long called for 'Seasons' to be introduced into the ladder to correct activity and promote it in a competitive way. All other competitive games have them to encourage competition. Instead we have this static ladder that evolves over time, and for what? Thereisn't even a prize, not one incentive. Other games give you badges, skins, titles. Remember when DE ladder first came out? So much activity. I'd like to see Microsoft show us accurate activity during the starting period (14th November 2019) rather than a flat line on a graph which simply is not true. How could the activity then be the same as it is now? The problem is, they don't refresh these ladders, offer any kind of prizes and even if they did, they wouldn't care enough to do it for DM. But if they did, things would likely be a lot different. They should proactively promote things for a change rather than let the community do all of the work.
  • mclerristarr May 12, 2021
    lol
    Reply
  • spooly May 12, 2021
    MaJoR_Kd here. I personally agree with the decision to remove the DM ladder because in its current state, it is adding no value to the game or the to the players. The reality is that the large majority of DMers (especially those on US-friendly time zones) that are arguing against the decision are hosting lobby games and inviting players to join through Discord and rarely playing on the DM ladder due to significantly high wait times and ELO imbalance that exists. The convenience to arrange games through lobbies superseeds the draw of 'competing' on the DM ladder, where that competition is currently valueless. Voobly had it right because they promoted chat, a transparent community feel and a spectator friendly approach, where on DE we just don't have this. Quick matching is just bad for the DM community. That's why Discord has proved to be the main way to communicate with one another post-Voobly. Microsoft's unwillingness to give us back this core component due to the cost in employing admins (despite the fact that this worked for many years on Voobly with dedicated volunteers) has led to further segregation. The developers literally do not know what the community wants because they interface through in-game developments and forum announcements post-decision, without including the thoughts of the players most often. I fear that Microsoft's approach of cherry picking known faces within the community to represent what the majority want is flawed, but it's just my view. If Microsoft want to do something truly great for us within the DM community, then listen to us and design something that's truly great and sustainable for years to come. But please, everyone, don't hold on to the DM ladder as a safety blanket. We should be honest with ourselves about what is/isn't working and just accept that if Microsoft have their reasons not to pay it any more attention, then we should just leave it there.
    Reply
  • jamesdhanoa May 12, 2021
    I don't have a say in anything else but as a dev myself all I can say is that longer queue times are not due to bad programming. System tries to match you near your elo and region...after a little while it matches just near your elo...system widens the elo range if still no match...finally after a certain time threshold it matches you with anyone closest to you. No match making algo can help if at certain times no one is queuing up be it any game mode DM or RM.
    Reply
  • dawnrim May 11, 2021
    nah... just don't do this. would be a solid way to show that you throw quirky ideas at the community (which is good) and then listen to feedback (which in this case - clearly -means not going through with it). adding EW ranked ladder is good though, for the record.
    Reply
  • hobo_pope May 11, 2021
    Just acquire any theoretical IP rights over CBA Requiem scenario from its creator and formally develop it instead? Far superior quick game mode with no barriers to entry for new to the game -types when compared to Empire Wars. I log an embarrassing number of hours hosting custom lobbies and under oath could state that I have never actually observed a single Empire Wars lobby. Why sacrifice a charter member community for something for which no demand seems to exist?
    Reply
  • w3stbrookk May 11, 2021
    Stupid stupid stupid. I only bought this game and came back to age after a 14 year hiatus because of DM. Poor execution and lack of effort is the sole reason the DM ladder is the way that it is. Dont blame DMers for that! So much potential, but serious lack of vision to make it even better. Seriously Pathetic excuse u gave
    Reply
  • immortals-greendude439 May 11, 2021
    As someone who got introduced to Deathmatch community last year, and kept playing since, I just see this as a pretty awful decision, especially with the timing of this announcement. DMWC4 just wrapped up, and it also revitalized general interest in Deathmatch. If there was an opportunity to be taken here, then it's an opportunity to recognize, endorse, and grow the Deathmatch community, rather than unnecessarily canning it in the ranked ladder in favor of Empire Wars. I'm not even mad that you guys are adding Empire Wars to the ranked ladder. It's just that Empire Wars and Deathmatch can co-exist in their own competitive environments. There's nothing stopping you from having both ranked DM and ranked Empire Wars as separate options. Removing one is unnecessary. Additionally, I can see withned for a while now. that basic chart that DM in comparison to RM is by no means even close, but where does Empire Wars stack up in that time frame, and why isn't the Y axis labeled? Surely, if you're going by the numbers and want to make a meaningful comparison, then the numbers would be labeled, the relevant comparisons would be made, and the data can then speak for itself. In this post, you also mention that the AOE experience is that you learn how to play from the game and practicing with the AI before going online. Well, as it stands, you currently need mods for either of those things. Perhaps if there was a DM art of war and an AI equivalent to Barbarian in Deathmatch, players would be far better prepared to play Deathmatch, and it would be brought to the forefront in a way similar to RM. And finally, when it comes to Deathmatch tournaments in the future, how are people going to be seeded? ELO will mean nothing if there's no ranked queue anymore for Deathmatch. To recap: The timing is about as bad as it could be, there was no official warning (apart from this post, I guess) that this mode was going to be removed from the ranked ladder to be replaced with something else,the graph that was given has no numbers, and the reasoning presented is practically a self-fulfilling prophecy. Overall, I'd say this was a bad and haphazard decision, and I really hope the people who made it reconsider.
    Reply
  • xaviertenka May 11, 2021
    Yes! Let's take out DM to put RM with Feudal Age start and Fortress resources! DM is good, it's a different ladder for people who do not want to play RM and want to play competitively, replacing a different game for a RM with fast start is not the best idea IMO, why not just add the new ladder and see what happens? I've been asking for a FFA ladder for quite some time and even if I don't play DM that much I know there are guys who LOVE IT and want to play what they love competitively, I think this is a mistake, hopefully you guys just add an experimental ladder with diferent game modes and leave the classic DM for the people who love it.
    Reply
  • uncles-jacket-2 May 11, 2021
    I like the idea of Empire Wars in ranked, and don´t really play DM, but the way you worded the announcement sounds like a cheap excuse. And there is a clear niche for DM. Also, I feel like there are many problems left to resolve, and would rather have that sorted out. Thanks for keeping the game alive by the way. Hope you find the right balance!
    Reply
  • woodsmanac May 11, 2021
    I was an RM player for years until 6 months ago when I was "forced" to play DM because my friend made me. id never played it before but got almost instantly hooke## # # up almost every night. Some support to introduce RM players would for sure improve the player base and the Q time. I found the community to be amazing and active and was glad I found them. Bad move to kill DM ranked, better to support it and watch it grow. Try not to treat loyal members of the AOE community like numbers on a spreadsheet. Also... if RedBull really wants faster pace how can they overlook DM and go with Empire wars?? your talking crazy full army battles in the first 2-3 mins!!
    Reply
    • woodsmanac May 11, 2021
      Instantly hooked, I Que up almost every night*
  • axiisstormcloak May 11, 2021
    Been playing DM since MSN zone days. Please don't remove DM from ranked lobbies. There's still a tight-knit and active community of DMers. Also, removing the ranked element from that game mode gets rid of a huge competitive element amongst the community. I understand there are often long wait times for que but I can't wrap my head around the "why" provided. Getting rid of DM ranked isn't going to get more people to play this game... There is no logic behind that. But it will alienate an active group of players and risk getting them to move back to voobly (sucks but it will happen if there's not rating. some of the best AOE 2 players in the world are active DMers and they deserve to have a rank for that).
    Reply
  • magnolia May 11, 2021
    Deathmatch is what kept me around playing for 20 years. I played DM Franks wars in MSN Zone and love DM to this day. I am honestly devastated by this news. And during DMWC4, when there has been tons of hype around DM and new players jumping in queue. We have a fresh new wave of excitement and they're stopping it dead in its tracks. Doesn't make sense.
    Reply
  • robbo May 11, 2021
    Removing ranked DM sounds like a bad idea that will only hurt the community. Many players such as myself much prefer DM over RM and the queue provides us with a convenient way to find games. If you are concerned with newer players waiting in a long queue and then having a negative game experience (which I think is rare to happen in the first place), why not add an option checkbox for longer queue times to find a more balanced game. That way we are adding features to the game instead of taking away features. By eliminating ranked DM, it would alienate a lot of long-time players from the game. To ensure the future health of the game & community I implore the dev team to reconsider! To reiterate, its better to add features to address the suspected queue problems than to remove the queue altogether and risk potentially alienating a portion of the community forever.
    Reply
  • kronosjr May 11, 2021
    Are you guys serious ? DM is not the problem , i can think of many problems players still have in RM , why not focus on them than continue to do something complete random and against the will of the community! DM is classic for AoE2 community , 2 decades of players and tournaments ... and you just deside to cast it out for the reason that "EW is more popular" , if by popular mean MS sposnoring it , then ok. But come one guys. EW in not more popular than DM , the way i feel for EW is like an advanced gameplay of RM , i like DM and EW. But i were to pick one of them, then DM for sure. Or better add both of them. Focus on the real problems ... the lobby lag , taking 5 mins to start a game after you find a match, the lag , the drops , it feels like after every patch the game has more issues than before, and people that didn't had any problems, get one. Leave DM as it is and focus on the real problems guys. Best option , add the both. Reconsider...
    Reply
  • packers2legit6 May 11, 2021
    Terrible idea. Why not promote DM? Why not have ladder DM and ranked and unranked DM lobby’s? Why not have RM,EW,DM ladder? The ranked ladder helps grow DM.... I think the mix of skill level I match with is good. Especially when a lower skill level asks if I can help them or team with me and learn. It helps to be able to play against/with random players. The ladder helps DM grow which clearly you don’t care about it.
    Reply
  • savvyempire May 11, 2021
    Please re-add DM to the ladder.
    Reply
  • frank-13 May 11, 2021
    Sorry, is this some sort of late April fools joke? DM has been around for as long as this game has, been empire wars is just a drop in a bucket. There’s been what, 2 Empire Wars tournaments? How many Deathmatch tournaments? I feel like you should be working to fix the queue issues of being placed against vastly different opponents. What’s gonna stop the exact same issue from happening in Empire Wars? I’ve managed to queue against True in DM and had a good time, what’s to stop me not queuing against Hera on empire wars? I think doing this will cull a large portion of your player base, I personally will return to voobly to continue playing ranked DM, which I feel many others will too. I’m open to tests but I think this is a huge mistake.
    Reply
    • frank-13 May 11, 2021
      Considering there’s such a small closed map playpool of arena clowns, can we remove that map cause it’s a joke?
  • demo-chip May 11, 2021
    removing the DM ladder? kinda cringe. theres no other mode that quite itches the fast paced spot in mine and other's hearts, and removing it from the ranked pool will lead to it becoming far more stale and repetitive than it ever has been.
    Reply
  • who-is-poo-poo May 11, 2021
    Please for the love of god don't remove DM ranked, its the only thing that keeps me coming back. the DM ranked que may have a large Elo difference, but that is only because people who play in the queue keep coming back to it. Also the community is very warm and welcoming and taught me how to play DM better, aswell as other modes. I request that you take our pleas into account and do not remove DM ranked.
    Reply
    • xaviertenka May 11, 2021
      Agreed, ploppy.
  • ericsiege May 11, 2021
    Big mistake to remove DM from the queue! I've been playing DM, never EW. I'm not against adding EW to the queue... but you don't have to remove DM do you? The only thing you're going to achieve with such a decision is to turn DM players away from the game!
    Reply
  • adix_nomader May 11, 2021
    I find the removal of the DM ladders very disappointing. I have been playing aoe2 since the MSN Zone days and the AOE series since 1998. I mostly play RM but do enjoy playing some DM games from time to time. I have never been interested in playing unrated games, as many people don't take them seriously. Without some sort of rating it is impossible to determine any baseline skill. The matchmaking system is the problem. After only 5 minutes it throws anyone into a game that often is not worthwhile playing for either side. Allowing a longer queue time for worthwhile games would be much more useful than removing the ladder all together. Having a box that people could check for allowing longer queue time would help out and an indication to how many people have queued in the past 15 min or so would be useful. If people want a fast game there already is the option of using quick play. DM playing on fast speed will always be quicker than a RM or EW game. At the very least there should be a 1v1 ladder for DM. Too many unnecessary changes have already happened in DE. If the devs continue to remove and break things that have been the same for over 20 years I can't see myself buying any new expansions or even AOE4. I would not be able to recommend the game either, because why bother playing and learning how to play something if it is just removed. I just started playing and improving in DM about 6 months ago. If the removal from the ladder happens that was a waste of time for something that I have begun to enjoy.
    Reply
  • be4sy504 May 11, 2021
    As one of the few xbox live account players I started this game on aok trial version and feel in love with deathmatch so I decided to buy the full version to fully have the deathmatch experience over the years I have purchased every version and all expansions just for deathmatch and without deathmatch I fear I would lose the love for the game and lose alot of life long friends I've been knowing as a kid
    Reply
    • be4sy504 May 11, 2021
      From this game I supported Microsoft as a whole and recognized the company
    • be4sy504 May 11, 2021
      Without the competitive nature of rank the fun would be lost forever
  • suno_hydra May 11, 2021
    I strongly disagree with the decision to remove death match ladder. The whole reason why I play age of Empires is because of Death Match.. Whether its Lobby Games, Ranked Que 1v1 or Ranked TG DM Que. Just my friends and I (We are a group of 25+) Would have never even bought DE or continued to play age of empires if there wasn't a DM system such as the Ladder Board or Elo system. Although you make some interesting points, I could also say that there are multiple positives to having DM apart of the que. I don't see what's wrong with keeping DM on the que considering you can Que both RM and DM, and in this case Empire Wars at the same time and whichever game mode matches you to the closest opponent first is the game mode that player will play of the 3. However by removing DM you will kill the DM Community that has been apart of the AOE fan base for MANY YEARS since the very beginning stages of Age of Empires. I know some of my friends and I are already looking to uninstall the game as soon as DM is taken off. Hopefully you guys reconsider and realize the DM Community and AoE fan base you are hurting here by doing this.
    Reply
  • apohan May 11, 2021
    HI, Suppressing DM means suppressing AOE for all DM players... Hope u will not commit smthg like that! thanx
    Reply
  • aawwd May 11, 2021
    It's very disappointing to see a classic game mode like DM removed from the ladder. I've gotten to know the DM community and see the passion and dedication they have to learning builds and executing at the highest level - DM is an amazing way to build skills in RM, learn about civs, build strategy, and a fast paced, exciting game mode on its own. There is no need to remove this format from the ladder - Empire Wars does not need to be added at the expense of DM. This decision does not seem to take into consideration the impact this will have on some of the most dedicated and loyal AOE players we have in our game today. While the intention and objectives of adding Empire Wars are clear - the decision to promote a new game mode at the expense of another is misguided and not what the community supports. As someone who plays both RM and DM I am disappointed to say the least and hope that the tremendous stir this has caused resonates with MSFT to reconsider the decision. DM and the DMcommunity have made significant contributions to AOE's increased popularity and resurgence over the past year. This decision undermines their dedication to AOE and disrespects over 2 decades of tradition and competition DM has brought to AOE. One could argue that DM would be an incredibly popular format if given the right support, ladder matching formula, and promotion but it thrives and exists as a popular game mode that just had a very successful and popular DMWC tournament. DM deserves a place on the ladder - don't replace!
    Reply
  • valhalla-raptor May 11, 2021
    Give me my money back for buying the game, I feel cheated, DM is the game mode I like the most
    Reply
  • cortical_ May 11, 2021
    Why not work towards adding EW ladder in addition to current ladders? After so many DM players have voluntarily worked to recruit and train players and organize multiple successful tournaments- is this how the developers pay them back? Instead of supporting DM tournaments, you are crushing DM by removing any interest for rising players. Deathmatch already has a good solid player base/community, and it would have benefited greatly from any kind of Microsoft support. Instead, Microsoft first abandons the DM community and then shuts it down? I only bought this game for deathmatch (and its expansion), and so many others did the same. Many of us have upgraded our PCs for this game, just to play deathmatch without any issues. This feels very disrespectful to the DM community who love this game. The only way to keep the tournaments going is to have an active ladder so that more talent joins in, increases the interest of the wider player base and continues to keep it exciting. This is justanother example of how far off the developers of the game are from understanding the community needs.
    Reply
  • niceintegral557 May 11, 2021
    Totally understandable. When I planted my tomatoes and fed them acid I was similarly bummed out to notice they didn't give much fruit. Absolutely understandable decision to cull a gamemode that survived 20 years with no help- Absolutely understandable decision to cull a gamemode that kept the game alive for 20 years with no help. Absolutely understandable decision to cull a gamemode with a most dedicated, kind, hard working fan base. Absolutely understandable decision to cull a gamemode that on it's own, without any help kept a constant, if small, growth. Absolutely understandable decision to cull a gamemode that people payed for, mind you, that people trained for, that people love and highly value as an integral if not essential part of their aoe gameplay. Again, Absolutely understandable, See you all in Atlantis -the DM community, probably
    Reply
  • d-c-a May 11, 2021
    THe DM scene is alive and well, the DM World Cup was very fun and this game mode gives variety to the game. It's a shame to deny ranked games to it. Why not 3 queue ? There is plenty more room to more boxes to check on the screen !
    Reply
    • hitchcmj May 13, 2021
      BS. A couple hundred occasional players is not "alive and well".
  • unikbrisolyn May 11, 2021
    To add onto what I have previously said below - I am just saddened by how disrespectful this is to the DM community… I am disappointed for players that spent countless hours training for this event (I cannot stress this enough - the high level DM players worked their tail-ends off training hard enough so they could put on epic games against each other), the fans of competitive DM, and the behind-the-scenes admins that put in the time to make these events great.... all for nothing? Around April last year, I felt myself becoming bored with Age of Empires and quite honestly was looking for another game to play. I was a Michi and CBA player back in AoE2:HD and never really felt the excitement of RM like everyone else seemed to. I started to feel really bummed out about losing in RM and was even on a 10 game losing streak… then I had stumbled upon Leash streaming Deathmatch on Twitch (due to a recommendation from a friend) and wondered what this fast paced mode was all about. I was instantly hooked. He was even raising money for DMWC3 and the community had already raised $5000 alone - it was beyond impressive to see! That stream, he invited me to the Deathmatch Discord where I met other talented DM players. The next stream, he offered to train me and do a practice 1v1. At this point, I did not realize that he was a TOP PLAYER, which was so freaking cool. Stuff like this is unheard of in the RM Community, but in the DM Community, we are so lucky and spoiled to be able to communicate and regularly play with the top-level players in our scene. That is what is so special about the DM community. Everyone is eager to help new players. To all those who took me under their wing - You know who you are and I thank you for your patience and kindness. I was legitimately horrible, but you all still let me play in the lobbies and provided advice for things I could do better. We continue to foster this welcoming environment for anyone that wants to join the community. I am grateful to have found my home again within the Deathmatch community. My first time in the DM ranked queue, I played a team game with m3ati_b0i, ######### and True and we had the genius idea to make a wall of bombard towers (yes, we know NOW that this is bad manners), but this was one of my favorite Deathmatch memories of all. m3ati, p0ni, and I were all laughing so loudly on voice chat going along with this STUPID BBT plan while True was actually out there trying to defeat our enemies. What a funny introduction to the ranked queue and I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything 11 I think it’s important for people to know all of the events that have occurred within the DM Community over the past year that were entirely funded and admined by dedicated members of the community: Redemption Cup (which featured an epic grand final between Jidba and True), Death Match World Cup 3, Death Match Rising Star 3 (a beginner <1500 tournament), Winter's War (the first DM team game tournament in YEARS),and then we kept the party going with the DM World Cup 4. When there is Deathmatch content - the DM folks are there. We had such a massive opportunity to actually reap the benefits of our hard work over the past year, but the uninformed Microsoft employees at the top driving this decision will never see the dozens of players that expressed their disappointment about not being able to give DM a proper chance after becoming interested in it this past weekend. I have accidentally queued for RM, just like many have accidentally queued for DM. I can tell you that it did not ruin my Age of Empires experience. It gave me a good laugh because I had built only military buildings and ran out of wood. Then I "gg'd" and made sure I selected DM the next time. You want to know what actually ruins the “new-to-multiplayer” experience? Removing a game mode after their biggest event of the year. This announcement ruined all hype for any old DM players from the MSN Zone/Voobly/HD days that saw the DMWC4stream and wanted to buy DE to play DM again. These players will never get to have the same ranked DM experience I had and that is completely unfair to them. I could go on and on about this, but I encourage you to listen to the community. If you choose to listen to people's wallets and the data on your skewed graph that isn't properly labeled (seriously, can you show us 1v1 DM v RM games? your graph doesn't even tell us what we are seeing), then I know I won't be playing this game for much longer, which is really sad given the hours myself and many others have put into growing this community. It is not much to ask that you bring back the 1v1 DM queue - which is the queue that us DM players regularly use.
    Reply
    • xaviertenka May 11, 2021
      I'm the Otter's friend and I double endorse it.
    • the-otter-aoe May 11, 2021
      I am an Otter and i endorse this message.
  • idraniel May 11, 2021
    It's really sad, I think both DM and Empire Wars could be playable in ranked games. Why should it be one or the other ? Why not both ? The more the better !
    Reply
  • dauntingbrick51 May 11, 2021
    !!! Horrible decision!! Ask your top player Viper who just won the 10K DM world cup what he thinks about the DM community. DM is alive and despite no support from you guys we are constantly trying to train and work with the imbalanced civs and invite new players. I want a refund if you are removing ranked ladder from DM
    Reply
  • unik-cy4n May 11, 2021
    I don't allow you to do it !! You didn't even take 5 minutes to come on our discord and talk to us about what we are planning. This is a shame you don't even respect us and even the other mods communities are disgusted of your behaviour. This is not a good move for the whole game. You are just showing that you don't care about deleting a mod and people will not invest themselves in any new content you are gonna add.
    Reply
  • pete26196-2 May 11, 2021
    This is a really disappointing decision to remove DM from matchmaking.
    Reply
  • tmblwd May 11, 2021
    Wow. I only just saw DM games in the tourney and starting to see how to play it. Guess not then. Could be good to improve my post-imp play but really need some help learning.
    Reply
    • the-otter-aoe May 11, 2021
      Thats what we hoped for when working on the tournament. Please keep playing and help us to show there is interest. As u can imagine (and read below this) this "decision" is very devastating for us.
  • rockunicorn5157 May 11, 2021
    if you move DM to "quick play"... approved
    Reply
  • freakinchris94 May 11, 2021
    I started playing DM last year in March, just because of DM. I invested hundreds of hours into that gamemode because i love the fast speed. I manage to climb my way into the Top 10-20 in the world within 1 year and now you want to shut down everything that many people worked for ? First of all its unfair for the money invested (because we bought the expansions just to play DM ladder). Secondly how are DM tournament seedings gonna happen without any evidence? No one would ever consider playing DM lobby games, especially because the lobby system is horrible.. you dont see who is online, you dont find games and you cant even invite players frequently... For our "huge" community on Discord, thats just a shame. We put so much effort in to make the community grow, teaching newer players and are now at a peak, where we have never been before. We just launched many high priced DM tournaments end last year and this year... More and more people start to enjoy it and just because RM inflated evenmore, doesnt mean that DM is dead or something like that... EW ist just similar to RM and I am 100% sure it will never reach that big of a playerbase than DM ever had... So please reconsider and at least add a 3rd queue.. or give us another solution, besides lobby... Thanks in advance!
    Reply
  • dao-motions May 11, 2021
    Furthermore there are many people that ONLY play ranked deathmatch and have been for years so why should they not be able to play ladder games? Deathmatch is a completely different game style to RM and empire wars and if you wanted more player base why not ever make map rotations or improvements to it?
    Reply
  • dao-motions May 11, 2021
    Please don't remove deathmatch, there are so many of us who still play it and love the game mode as a change of pace from RM, it may not have the player base as RM but it has a great community and there are many of us actively playing each night
    Reply
  • myi-sitaux May 11, 2021
    It would be a shame for MS to remove DM from the ladder, a part of the community bought aoe for DM and now they would remove what people paid for, I hope MS reads the players comments and just add BR as a 3rd ranked mod.
    Reply
  • _k1nky May 11, 2021
    Do you know why I bought DE? only to play death match? I have invested 3800+ hours on this mode. We might be a small community and but we are very passionate. Despite not getting game quicker we sticked to this mode of the game because we love it. You should check the avg. time spent on this mode not just the total number of players. PLEASE DO NOT REMOVE THE MODE.
    Reply
  • wakko May 11, 2021
    Removing ranked DM is a huge mistake.
    Reply
  • valhalla-raptor May 11, 2021
    Please, do not remove DM, it is my favorite game mode, if you remove it I will not play, I hate rm, I do not like sheep, or javalies, it causes me stress
    Reply
  • sisterrespecter May 11, 2021
    This is a mistake, save DM. At least let 1v1 DM stay.
    Reply
  • aphelion-2 May 11, 2021
    I welcome the addition of EW to ranked, I don't know if it was necessary to replace DM though. I played a couple of DM but it didn't grow on me however, I played EW a couple of times in quick match and sometimes I play against the AI (I think is more challenging than in RM) so I am eager to try this ranked ladder, I really like feudal agression so this might be good. My concern (even as a non DMer) is how this decision was made, for someone who leads the bussiness and data team of AoE franchise, that graph is useless (What is Y axis, what are the values?). You wanted to show a trend, but without values you can't compare. Are you trying to hide the number of matches? Also, why compare it against RM? You should have added EW to the ranked queue (without replacing DM) and after X time compare it against DM, that way you could decide which game mode stays at the queue.
    Reply
  • howdoyouturnthi May 11, 2021
    Not gonna lie i am incredible disappointed. I dont play alot of DM but especially with the viewer succes of DM worldcup i was looking forward to grind it again to get my elo up. This is just sad. To remove a feature that brought a smaller but more dedicated group joy is not the way to go
    Reply
  • playh4rd May 11, 2021
    Hello, I don't understand your strategy. people like me bought this game to play DM. We own this game you can not remove the DM as you wish. It's unfair and you think only of yourself. you're going to kill this game as many thought 15 years ago. I discovered the game again a year ago, I thought it no longer existed. What a joy to finally be able to play again. I'm 48, I find myself like a kid every night with friends to play and chat like 20 years ago. e kill not again this game, think of all the players in this game, keep the DM and create something else if you like, and one last time think well that we bought this game for multiple reasons but especially for the DM
    Reply
  • ensoo May 11, 2021
    Please do not remove DM!!! If you really want to add empire wars to ranked add it in part. I'm still more interested in playing DM rather than EW.... I'm sure many other players share my same thoughts
    Reply
  • chdbdm May 11, 2021
    please don't do that. just made search available per queue.. is it that hard?
    Reply
  • unik-lyrics May 11, 2021
    Hello to the developpers team, I am a DMeR player since Age of Empires 2 The Conquerors was released back in the days and DM has always existed and has always been a game mode present in the series from all Time. It had big success with the recent DMWC 4 where community raised 10k of cash prize all by itself ! Reading this really hurts. Reading the end of your message Will McCahill, it really hurts "See you all on the ladder!". Since you are going to remove DM from ladder, i think its bad for communication to finish the news precisly with thoses words, as a DMeR, i feel really humiliated :(. I have no problem with Empire Wars and thats pretty cool to add it, but removing DM ladder, a main game mode here since the start of the series is really insulting for our DM Community wich has always been there to support and play the game :(. I bought DE and Extension only for playing DM and if you remove it, i will just regret my choice in buying again that game and hope there will be a way for me to get a refund since you simply erase a pure mode present since all times. Hope you will read my comment, i dont want to be negative and i dont want that you understand my message in the wrong way. I just want you to understand that by doing that, you are erasing, provoking and clearly killing all the spirits of all the DMeRs puting so many efforts for the communauty and plus, you announce that a few days after the end of DMWC 4 that was a success. Even RM communauty, the ones that support you too, dont understand your choice ! So please, Instead of killing us, reconsider your decision, try to help us, bring some tutorial in the game for DM, we are here for help if needed ! This is all we need, people needs to understand how to play DM before starting, AOE DE actually only helps RM Players, this is also the reason why the ladder cant live properly. I really hope you will reconsider your choice and listen to your community that is trying to support you as much as possible but here, i think you can easily understand that for pure DMeR like me or for the ones loving that game mode, its pretty complicated to support that decision... Thank you and wish you a good day, And to finish, i hope the word you used in your conclusion Will McCahill, those : "See you all on the ladder!" will become real when you will have reconsidered this situation with all the developpement team. Best regards, LyRiCs
    Reply
  • aenima May 11, 2021
    "we think removing it and centralizing the multiplayer DM’ers in Lobby is the best near-term fix to help people find matches quickly". Your fault is, that you do not think in long term solutions. Further, removing DM will not help people finding matches quicklier as the player base for RM will stay the same. Your arguments are simply weak. Why not just adding EW to competitive play and leave DM as it is? I recommend to not take any decisions whose consequences you cannot predict. If you remove DM from the ranked lobby I will stop playing and so will probably many others.
    Reply
  • hazardroxs May 11, 2021
    This is quite the slap to the face by Microsoft to remove DM from the ladders. As a DM player since early 00's on Age of Conquerors, I have continued to support this game and mode throughout the years. I see no reason why we have to destroy one community to build another.. I hope you reconsider this decision.
    Reply
  • real-tele-fm May 11, 2021
    you freaks, you think that the players who have been in the game for more than 20 years are going to come and save the game once again? with our loyalty. keep treating the players with measures like these, and you will find a dead game again; Dm forever.
    Reply
  • softhaddock9796 May 11, 2021
    Removing DM is a nasty move, its one of the oldest and most dedicated communities in aoe2. This really shows how out of touch you guys must be with the community. I support EW but removing DM makes no sense
    Reply
  • tangentekeks299 May 11, 2021
    terrible news, the recent Death Match World Cup streams really got me interested in the game mode, showcasing what high level play looks like, something that I never paid much attention to before and was never much showcased in official developer channels. It was the community that brought it to the fore again for me and it seems really kept it alive over the past decades. Why not just promote the mode more before just kicking it to the curb? You can do better, please reconsider your decision.
    Reply
  • renrew May 11, 2021
    Adding EW is epic! So amped to play it. I was recently getting into DM and would love to see it stay! Surely we can have all 3 available to us.
    Reply
  • oceaningabyss May 11, 2021
    I fully support the addition of EW to the ranked system--it's interesting and adds variety to the competitive scene. That being said, removing DM is by far the oddest decision I've ever seen. I don't understand why all 3 can't exist? This feels like a decision made by someone in a corporate suit than one of the developers--completely tone-deaf and out of touch. The reasoning for removing DM is because "it is the best near-term fix to help people find matches quickly". This will most assuredly harm the community in the long term. Please consider changing your decision. Thank you.
    Reply
  • malfunctioning-eddie May 11, 2021
    Does DM ranked really have to be removed for specchat to exist?
    Reply
  • xtax May 11, 2021
    Man this is really dissappointing that you are removing DM.
    Reply
  • valhalla-blacksky May 11, 2021
    Hello everyone and hopefully developers. I am owner of an AoE2 community on discord and am invested in the DM Community. I myself hosted a dozen tournaments including 2 DM ones. The second was hosted with a cap of 32 players below 1800 elo 1v1 DM 2 months ago. It filled up without much difficulty! Including new players that haven't played DM yet! This means people are still interested to start playing DM especially after DMWC4! But the new players need to be properly introduced to DM in order to have a succesful start! The reason RM has a bigger playerbase is because RM is the mode showed to the public and even has an introduction to new players in the art of war. If DM would have a few chapters in the art of war, new players would know the basics and not have a terrible experience as you mentioned before! By the way, you (Mr. McCahill) said that new players need an introduction before trying multiplayer. Please provide it than because it hasn't excisted in game. Removing the queue for DM team games is reasonable, but the 1v1 queue was in my opinion active enough and is necessary in order to seed tournaments! Like you witnessed for DMWC4! Last point. When you remove, you provide a decent place to move to. Like for example Quick play. But now you condemn us to lobby games with elos mixed up with other modes and a hard method to host casual DM games. So please reconsider your decision. Think about introductions to DM and support us instead of killing us. You are turning your back on players who have supported you for 20 years.
    Reply
  • real-anarka_ May 11, 2021
    Do not remove DM!!!!!! Add EW and let DM Stay in ranked too
    Reply
  • daneomite26 May 11, 2021
    I'm excited to hear about ranked empire wars being added but I'm sorry to hear that you're removing deathmatch. I don't personally play deathmatch but I know that even if they're relatively small in numbers deathmatch players are a very passionate part of the community . As someone who has been an aoe2 fan for 20 years I can relate to being part of an enthusiastic minority and while I'm very excited and grateful that the way I enjoy playing the game has received a lot of support recently I'm sad that we're actually removing a game mode that other players enjoy. It kind of feels like with all of the recent success of the game some community members are being left behind. I definitely understand wanting to avoid too many separate queues to keep wait times down but with ranked DM numbers so low I don't know how much this removal will improve queue times for ranked RM or empire wars. I may be wrong (I don't have any data on this) but my impression is that there is more overlap in RM/empire wars players so these ranked queues might be in competition for the same player base while a decent chunk of DM players may move over to custom DM games rather than queueing for ranked RM or EW. I understand and appreciate the desire to make ranked queue a good experience for new players but if long DM queues discouraging new players I think this could be fixed without removing ranked DM. For instance, some new player pop-up info that explains RM is the most popular mode or posting average wait times (it doesn't have to be super accurate) so new players understand that ranked RM is the best way to get a quick game. Also, if you're adding a team empire wars ladder would it be possible to fix the positive drift team elo issue prior to implementing it? I realize having a very accurate team elo is challenging when some players always play with the same group, others always solo queue, etc, but in it's current state high team elo may be due to a lot of games played rather than highskill which results in avoidable mismatches. An easy way to remove the positive drift is to have the change in rating after the game depend on the average elo of both teams. There are obviously flaws with this but I suspect it would be a large improvement over the current state. Also, I suspect there are some aoe2 fans with a math/stats/data science background who would be willing to work on this for free to help the community (myself included).
    Reply
    • the-otter-aoe May 11, 2021
      Also if people get tired by waiting times a "quick play" option, that doesnt get you any game in 20 Minutes (at least in EW and BR) mayyybe a bigger problem according to the reasoning of the post.
    • the-otter-aoe May 11, 2021
      <- Would have played EW as a DM player but wont now. Already some more queue time here.
  • maceaoe May 11, 2021
    DM has been around since the beginning of Age of empires. I think the problem why more people do not play DM is because there is not enough training material such as "Art of War" scenario's to teach newer players to get into playing DM and/or explain what it is. I think this is a bad decision on Microsoft's part and they should consider a training scenario to teach the basic's of deathmatch so Newer players do not get crushed as soon as they come in the game. and I am sure there will be an incredible boost in the amount of players attempting to play Death Match. I really hope for a change in this decision.
    Reply
  • quendi-kelar May 11, 2021
    no words for how upset I feel about this decision. I spend 100s of hours getting to a top 50 level in dm in under a year only for MS to decide that they dont want us as an community anymore. at least give us the real reasons for that decision and not this excuse of an statement
    Reply
  • real-mortifer101 May 11, 2021
    I just hope you reconsider the option to remove it, it is a game system that is working and many users enjoy it, I see no problem to maintain it and will add more game modes if that is what you want
    Reply
  • daehiise May 11, 2021
    I would like to ask you to reconsider this step. I think there is a valid point in saying that there are way less players on the Deathmatch ladder than on the RM one, but in my opinion it is not fair to directly compare the two. There are tons of incentives, tutorials (Art of War) etc that lead people to playing RM, which is not the case for DM. Rather than just removing the DM ranked ladder and offering no alternative, I think the obvious solution would be to adress these issues and add an art of War tutorial for deathmatch (I'm sure the DM community would be more than willing to help with that if none of the devs actually play deathmatch!). Now I think it could be interesting to have an EW ranked queue, but not at the expense of DM. Why not remove the DM TG queue (so people can still organise DM TGs in lobbies, but will still have the DM 1v1 rating to use and balance teams) and add an EW 1v1 queue on top of the DM 1v1 queue? This way there is a chance to see whether people are interested in ranked EW (and there's the possibility for future EW TG ladders) and you don't just remove a game mode with a passionate playerbase and a long history. I also think this announcement was incredibly poorly timed. Just last weekend, DMWC4 concluded, a 10k tournament entirely sponsored by the community, with 10k viewership. And when you look at the graph you posted, you can see the increase in DM games played in June last year, which is unsurprisingly, when DMWC3 was happening. To announce this post right after DMWC4, just when DM is gonna have an increase in players, seems just unnecessarily cruel. I really hope you can reconsider, I am hyped for playing some EW, but not at the expense of DM!
    Reply
  • suno-daywalker May 11, 2021
    Removing a ladder what's been part of the game for over 20 years... I bought this game for this reason.. Dm has been sold out by the big investors. Thanks for showing your support for deathmatch and advertising it like you do for other modes... Hope your well and thanks for considering us as expendable
    Reply
  • eyes-within May 11, 2021
    EW - 👍 DM - I implore you to reconsider
    Reply
  • salted-pepper May 11, 2021
    Irregardless of the whole situation regarding DM queue being removed, I'd like to adress one further topic. If EW gets implemented, can we *please* get empire wars starts that are the same as used in the Redbull tournament? As the current quickplay settings differ much in resource start up, it just doesn't make good practice games for the only EW tournament around. To me the main reason to implement this queue is basically everything surrounding the Redbull event, so I don't see why the settings would differ from this.
    Reply
  • giantisland3008 May 11, 2021
    what an ugly way to get rid of loyal players of more than 20 years in the game, pity is little, it is rather an emptiness pulling to be tired towards the game after this stick they give us.
    Reply
  • casus-belli May 11, 2021
    I started playing DM 2 days ago after seeing the DMWC4. Says a lot about the lack of exposure and also what exposure can do to bring new players in. Imagine learning about this immediately after getting excited for a new game mode. If the intention is to silently kill DM, this is the way to go. I don't think I will go searching for lobbies as a newcomer.. Why not just say we want to pull the plug on DM?
    Reply
  • the-otter-aoe May 11, 2021
    Please excuse me for posting a second comment, it seems not to be possble to edit the short one. The Main Event of DM World Cup 4 with an over 10k Viewership and Sponsorship entirely from the DM Connunity just finished. As i played yesterday i met a lot of new people on the DM Ladder that are eager to play and learn the mode and have joined the respective Community discord(s). This would be the time where DM grows even more, as it has done steadily over the last 2 years. And by the way: The Silver League and VDM2, which happens to be organized by me and the Valhalla Community, is also still going on. Im am a DM Streamer wich 50-100 viewers as of lately. Also for the old and new players - both those playing DM for over 20 years now and those who just learned and mastered it this feels like the worst possible betrayal. For myself, i just came to DM during the last year, was a Semifinalist of the DMRS3 tournament, played WW (all entirely community funded) and got to the level to Compete in DMWC4, with having (had?) some hopes to improve further and go far in future major tournaments. This all was a TON of time and energy as well as of personal funds (which i dont have really) that i feel being disrespected by this post. This applies even more to the people Organizing these Events and who are/were planning to organize more in the future. Many will probably quit the Aoe Franchise entirely if this decision stands, including multiple Streamers with an actual audience and funding. Thanks for reconsidering, with a little research u are going to find a DM expert / Community Builder to reach out and talk to. If u fail to find anyone else, just contact this account. This cant be all you can say. And dont tell us to play 1v1 unranked lobbies. I am playing this competitevely as an e-sport. I assumed u guys endorse that. Please let me be right on that.
    Reply
  • undeadcretin May 11, 2021
    I'm gutted to lose ranked deathmatches. Without this the game is dead to me as I find it impossible to get a decent game of DeathMatch outside of the ranked games. I don't have a lot of time for games and AOE2 is the only game I play, so with this change you are essentially forcing me away.
    Reply
  • valhalla-kamrat May 11, 2021
    Hate this. The DM community relies on the DM queue to be competetive. without a DM rating there is no real way of knowing who is eligible for tournaments. The audacity of killing this game mode one day after the DMWC4 final is astonishing. The DM community raised 10k dollars for the main event all without outside help. And now its somehow a game mode not worth keeping?
    Reply
    • hitchcmj May 13, 2021
      Who cares if twenty people use that queue for some tournament? No one plays DM.
  • ffavorite_1 May 11, 2021
    absolutely disastrous for deathmatch. there are plenty of people throughout the years that really enjoyed deathmatch gameplay. Microsoft is trying to kill off the DM and replace it with EW which is clearly a business decision. Recommend adding EW to the ladder to promote all-game play instead of replacing DM.
    Reply
  • the-otter-aoe May 11, 2021
    People just invested over 10.000 Dollars and a lot of time and energy into a right now very alive DM 1v1 queue. I cant express how disasterous you would make us all feel if you do not change this decision.
    Reply
  • thecode May 11, 2021
    I encourage everyone who made this decision to reconsider. Removing DM Ladder is a very bad idea in so many levels. Many people bought the game to play DM only. Besides, what is preventing you to simply add EW ranked while keeping DM Ladders too? Is this so much effort to do so? Is it so much that outweighs the endless voluntary efforts DM community has put on their own for over 20 years? Whatever led you to this decision, you at least owe DM community to explain in more detail. I am sure you cannot have made this decision based on looking at a single excel graph, as it only shows how poor of a job Microsoft did to promote DM compared to other game modes. DM tournaments has not been supported by Microsoft, at least not to a level that is even remotely comparable with the support provided towards RM tournaments. I am also curious about the train of thought here. In all honesty, would there possibly be any outer outcome in terms of player growth, when RM tournaments are promoted with over 200k$ investment, while only 5k$ for DM tournaments? Would there possibly be any other outcome when each and every balance change, map and playability updates are done without a single consideration for DM? DM and RM are quite different, to an extent that they can even be considered as different games rather than different game modes. Instead of getting rid of DM in such ambiguous reasoning, I encourage you to rethink on how to make DM more visible, viable and how it may help to reach new player database with its unique and distinct style. DM community is here. Ready, willing and able to help voluntarily.
    Reply
  • jacobchip May 11, 2021
    This is a terrible decision.
    Reply
  • nakamura-rts May 11, 2021
    When something "performs poorly", killing it isn't always the best call. Be as passionate as the community and do something.
    Reply
  • cha0s-x43 May 11, 2021
    In my opinion is a good idea. But dont you see the need to improve the whole multiplayer menu's. We are on 2021, we deserve a 2.0 Menu with all the magic / fantasy you can bring . Honestly, i start playing this game since 1.0b. By then, aoe and the beloved shooter CS, were the games you wanted to play were the best. Now they also are, aoe2 for me for sure. BUT, to see the cs:go menus evolution, and see, where we are now with aoe in this aspect, makes me cry. Just log in an compare both. Thanks for your continuos work. Cant wait to play aoe4!!! Gl & Hf all.
    Reply
  • toao_theseus May 11, 2021
    Simply a horrible decision, there was just a big DM tournament which gave DM a lot of exposure and it was won by one of the most famous professional players/streamers in any game, giving it more exposure. Now would be the time to promote DM, but instead you try to kill off a game mode that was in the original Age of Empires 1 in 1997!
    Reply
  • felipeelbravo May 11, 2021
    Not a DM nor EW player. However, I think that bringing EW to ranked matches is positive and removing DM is negative since it has many loyal/exclusive players (although not enough as presented here). Why don't you instead include a couple of DM "maps" within the pool of EW, with a lot of resources, so players that doesn't like it can ban them and players that love it can put them as favourite. This will push DM players to play a bit different setup, but this is not too bad. When the RM pool started forcing us to play more maps than arabia, at the begining wasn't welcome, but then many players just got used to it. Actually, most of us are enjoying some variability in the gameplay (e.g., playing nomad, or steppe from time to time). Think about it!
    Reply
  • quendi-kelar May 11, 2021
    We just had a 10k DM tourney without MS support, just sponsored by the community and as a thanks for such a small, but invested communtiy, you kill it, good job.
    Reply
  • lowb May 11, 2021
    if the DM ladder removed. That is the day I resign from AOE2 entirely. from 1999 - 2021 This is from a DM player, Sk2_McduLL from Zone.com Confiserie from Voobly LOWB from DE DM ladder #11
    Reply
  • dedlyyetti May 11, 2021
    i have been around the 1990-2021 gaming era and i have watched many companies make the same exact mistake that this company is making right now. First they try to increase their size in the game because of greed and not because of what players want. Second they start to lose player base because people dont like the decisions they made. The company will then try to bring back the mode in a small rotation with other modes to try to *fit everyone* on the page. The outcome for every single game that has ever existed through this time period mentioned above was the game died. Age of empires 2 is one of the only living and thriving games from the past. This decision is the beginning of the end of age of empires 2.
    Reply
  • sevencoder10897 May 11, 2021
    Maybe improve matchmaking and ELO, instead of getting rid of DM. Adding Quick play is detrimental too I would expect... ELO can be improved by taking into account 1v1 RM Elo, and other metadata like game length, APM etc.
    Reply
  • xuanzue May 11, 2021
    there is a thread asking for the removal of DM, but also the consensus of people voting there was to rotate different game modes: regicide, empire wars, nomad nothing. Still, the alt-f4 issue, where people dodges maps they don't like can kill the EW mode pretty quickly. will be terrific if some dev talks about this issue that is increasing the queue time.
    Reply
  • i2age May 11, 2021
    dm has been part of the aoe2 dm rated system since aslong as i can remember yes the numbers are not great but it has a fantastic loyal fanbase without having any support from microsoft. i dont see an issue keeping it on the ranked ladder the more gaming modes a person has to play the ranked system the better right? then they can decide which one they like best i dont see how having deathmatch would deter new players. i believe this is a big mistake and i hope the devs go back on thier decision. i hope us all as gamers realise that dm has a role to play in aoe no matter how small the community is. we have shown from dmwc4 that alot of people enjoy watching competitive games. i might add it had alot less exposure than red bull wololo kingdoms maybe if it had the full support from microsoft it could grow again into a thriving community. but it has always been pushed to one side
    Reply
  • unik-lakes May 11, 2021
    Incomprehensible. Why is it not possible to add an EW scale in addition to the RM and DM? Do you think DM players are going to go for the other 2 game modes? I do not think so... I played this game until 2003, and I came back to DE in 2020, still feeling the same, and all of a sudden you decide to delete a historical mode from this game ... It is true that the ladder in DM is not good, but why not try to change it rather than completely erase it ... You have never done a single update for the DM, just see the maps, it never changes and half of them are not suitable for this game mode. Hoping you can change your mind to save what we can ...
    Reply
  • monauralcub35 May 11, 2021
    Wow, really didn't expect this at all with removing DM. I have been playing AOE since 2000 and just recently got back just because of the Definitive Edition 2 and DM. Please reconsider this and make a poll / vote, there are a lot of DM players here still active and it would be better to organize more tournaments in DM than just to remove it. The whole matchmaking got so much more complicated as well compared to previously on Zone.com (which was wayyyy better) or even the recent Voobly.com. I understand that it has to go through Steam but there should be way better option of matching games and let the players decide if it shall be ranked or not, it worked for the last 20 years...
    Reply
  • smu37 May 11, 2021
    What an incomprehensible decision, you are removing a game mode that has been there from the start, in 98 or 99 when the game was released ... it is also most of these players who still have fun in this game mode . Do you really think that we are going to organize a lobby to keep playing? All this to promote a game mode that does not seem to attract big fashion, I have never seen a single stream on empire wars, that is to say.
    Reply
  • rogganwololo May 11, 2021
    Absolutely horrendous and a blunder of a decision in my opinion. I'm all for adding an EW ranked queue, but the idea of removing DM is simply ridiculous. DM has been around for over 20 years, albeit with low activity as compared to RM, which may even be attributed to the lack of incentive provided towards DM as compared to RM by Microsoft. The DM community is one of the most closely-knit and welcoming communities in AoE2 and this decision comes as a tight slap in their face, right after they pulled off a very successful tournament, by themselves with no support from the company. This decision further shows the big lack of communication between the developers/community managers and the community that has persisted for a while now. If you guys care so much about numbers and graphs, why not run some analytics on why the TG ladder is not working and why there are so many Alt-F4's which make TGs unplayable in the matchmaking? Why not run some numbers on the absolutely broken TG ladder and the never-ending elo inflation on it? Why is the ladder ever increasing and not stabilizing like RM? This is just a lazy decision imo, so that EW can be added into the MM queue without having to introduce another menu.
    Reply
  • morheus-2 May 11, 2021
    I really don't understand the arguments behind removing DM ladder. I will explain from perspective of a player that often queues for both RM and DM 1v1 (around ~1400 in both ladders): - I get around 1 out of 5 games being queued in DM - Most of them are against players of equal skills (I would say the difference is < than 200 points). - Sometimes you get matched against a PRO but then he kills you in 5 minutes. It's not the most pleasant type of games but at least it's some learning experience and I don't mind it. And this could be fixed by introducing some option like "I don't want to be matched with players with elo difference > X" I'm not a DM-er, I'm rather an RM-er who started playing DM to improve my late game. And I don't think that DM deserves ranked queue because it's popular or not. I just think it deserves ranked queue because it's a totally different game mode that requires different skills and different approach to the game. It makes game richer. On the other side EW, Regicide are modes that are based on RM with a small twist. For this reason you don't see any top EW players that are avarage in RM. While in DM there are a lot of players considered as DM pros who are ~1600-1700 RM (DauT got eliminated from DWMC by Zaryab who is 1500 RM...).
    Reply
  • suno_polar May 11, 2021
    Wow is pretty much all I can say. As someone who has played DM on and off for the past 20 years and is heavily involved in the DM community for streaming DM games and organising / hosting DM tournaments, this just shows exactly the problem with large corporations these days being so out of touch with their client base and most of all their loyal playerbase. At the very least, consult with the DM community on how we can improve the situation and help better DM for the considerable future. We have some passioniate, hardcore and dedicated players who have some excellent ideas on how we can achieve this. Listen to the community and the valuable players who help promote DM on every level possible. DMWC4 was an absolute amazing success with over 10K viewership numbers on twitch and $10,000 prizepool donated totally by the DM community itself. The level of DM play was outstanding and encouraged many new people wanting to try their hand at DM as a result of this tournament and this suddenannouncement has thrown all the hardwork out of the window. I cannot stress how much of a fundamental error you guys are displaying in getting rid of a gamemode which many of us have grown up with and are continually playing 20 years later. I will leave you with a quote from the 'Last of Us Part II' - as a character Owen Moore said to his friend Abbie 'I want what you want....but not at any cost' - This quote could not be anymore true with what you guys are trying to achieve in pushing a ladder for EW and getting rid of the DM ladder which has always had to live in the shadows of other gamemodes with no investment in tournaments from Microsoft to help aid and grow the DM playerbase and community.
    Reply
  • heresyfeanor May 11, 2021
    (1) Happy for EW (2) Absolute disaster move for DM. Seriously, the DM community is super friendly and vibrant. Yes it is more niche, but removing the matchmaking is just stupid. Also doing so after an awesome tournament where it was super unpredictable and a great success, is just one big slap in the face. RECONSIDER
    Reply
  • ad-r-fr-91 May 11, 2021
    Dm mod is ranked with 1999. No dm? No aoe2 for me.
    Reply
  • kubko56 May 11, 2021
    This is like one step forward, one step back. I welcome ranked EW, but not at a cost of DM...
    Reply
  • paladinz May 11, 2021
    I'd be curious to see how the DM curve from the graph would look like if DM had the same financial support & resources as RM (7k for DM vs 200k+ for RM so far in DE). It's a bit unfair to compare both game modes when all impacting variable (i.e. the context) are not held constant/equal for both. Also, DM has literally no support for new comers inside the game such as guides, tutorials etc.
    Reply
  • bombaygypsy May 11, 2021
    As a Random Map, Arabia first citizen of the empire, I welcome this change. I do see myself queuing up for EW games once in a while, if I am short of time. DM was just too different a game mode from the rest is the game including the campaigns. As far as the fear of losing dark age is concerned, after the performance of red bull tournaments, I feel, yes RM and EW can Co-exist.
    Reply
  • nymets1104 May 11, 2021
    I've read arguments for "Not enough people play DM so its why we replace it with EW" While others say" we cant have 3 game modes in ranked it will divide the player base" Well which one is it because these two contradict eachother completely
    Reply
  • sylvvan May 11, 2021
    Isn't better to leave queue for dm playera even if it is not Perfect but cripple them entirely? Adding new queue and leaving old one seems better to me...
    Reply
  • krakenlord May 10, 2021
    To everyone here that is saying "why not both?" -- Fragmenting a matchmaking queue system is always appealing at first but results in long-term issues. Keeping matches with similar skills, good connection, and with short queue times should always be the number one goal. Unranked, custom gamemodes provide the option for players that don't care as much about that. If you are seriously sacrificing good matchmaking to provide extra gamemodes, you are doing long-term damage to your playerbase. I'm glad they have recognized this and aren't letting status quo get in the way of growing the game. Yes, there are extremely talented DM players but removing the ranked queue won't stop them from being able to find DM games.
    Reply
    • krakenlord May 11, 2021
      I'm actually a modder that almost exclusively plays in unranked lobby games. That doesn't mean I'm advocating for a "rotating wacky scenario mode" queue because that shouldn't be the priority of the matchmaking system. If DM players aren't invested enough in the gamemode to play it in unranked games I don't see why it should be a part of matchmaking. The ranked queue should be fulfilling players' desires rather than propping up interest by having a button there that anyone can click.
    • auswahlkubus211 May 11, 2021
      some long year dm players including talented ones will walk away from AoE 2 if there won't be a better solution
    • stebron-james May 11, 2021
      not a single dm player is going to stick around for unranked lobby games.
  • desertarms May 10, 2021
    I dont want to go into detailed discussion now about the decision (lot of others already make that and have for sure better points than me anyway), BUT 1 important thing: Please be so kind to put useful maps in the Empire Wars Map pool, in best case atleast half of them should be Red Bull Wololo Maps so ppl can prepare for that tournament. Nobody wants to see Arena, Budapest, Socotra or other strange clown maps in that "fast paste tryhard ranked" (sorry @Will McCahill but i doubt EW arena makes any sense )
    Reply
    • kauzenrocks May 10, 2021
      Actually i would realy like to play a Empire Wars Socotra game! And Arena should be a good option. But you can still ban those maps ;)
  • dedlyyetti May 10, 2021
    you can improve by maybe making a poll before you make and update to the game from the community that literally would say something like "should we remove DM from the Ladder and replace with EW? vote yes no, thats how you can improve
    Reply
  • auswahlkubus211 May 10, 2021
    The much more needed fix would be speeding up the matchmaking queues by just matching players earlier along with adding the option to play ranked games in lobby browser like it is on voobly with penalties for point trading. That can ensure new players have that desired experience AND the DM community doesn't unnecessarily shrink even more since then they could keep playing for elo in the lobby browser. The DM community also consists of many players that play AoE 2 exclusively for DM since that's how they started playing AoE and because they don't like the slow pace of picking berries, researching techs etc.. The more harmful thing for the experience of all players that ever queue is that even if 2 similarly rated players queue up at the exact same time they won't immedietely match as they would on Starcraft 2. It usually takes ~20-400 seconds of waiting in queue til' they get matched even if no other player who is anywhere near the elo of those 2 players is in queue. This applies for both the DM and RM queue. How did that issue seemingly miss the attention of the devs for so long?
    Reply
  • biz May 10, 2021
    the game would be more fun if we could actually play reasonably fair RM teamgames without wasting hours in queues that barely function try fixing that before diluting matchmaking with even more unbalanced stuff. the teamgame civ balance and unit balance is really lopsided, even after so many years of patching it. how is empire wars going to be fair at all? teamgame ratings are wildly inaccurate teamgame matchmaking takes forever as 1 person has the ability to dodge the match before it even starts and waste 7 other peoples' time why can't we queue for forced-random-civ games? that has been the most popular mode for decades, and that's the only way we will get to play with all the civs/units instead of just the imbalanced ones preformed teams using voicechat are getting matched with individuals who don't even speak the same language. why is allied vision not being enabled for these matches? balance has been ruined by position-picking. either balance the game for position-picking or disable the setting. we want to play age of empires 2, not age of crossbows + franks the map pool barely even resembles AoE2. why can't we play something like Full Random? or Blind Random? or the proper nomad map (not this new scenario nomad)? or any of the thousands of custom maps made over the years? all of these were much closer to AoE2 than these map pools with so many different arenas + blackforest why are the no-rush players being grouped together with everyone else? everyone is being funneled into playing maps that neither side wants because they have each others' maps banned
    Reply
  • dedlyyetti May 10, 2021
    Shame on you for removing deathamtch, i wake up everyday get my coffee and start playing deathmatch. i dont care if the opponent is better or worse than me and the reasons you are removing deathmatch from the ladder are not even legit. The only reason empire wars is going to be popular in the next couple weeks is because there will be a tournament. the moment the tournament is gone not a single person wants to play empire wars. and for the classic feel of age of empires 2 deathmatch was always there. we never asked you to impliment all of these new things to the game we just want to play the old game we love. now you are killing the game completely for one of your supporting communities. imagine you removed RM from the que, where would this game be after that.
    Reply
  • flauschfuchs May 10, 2021
    You are so out of touch with the players.
    Reply
  • liltrouble__ May 10, 2021
    This is really disappointing news. I'm all for EW ranked, but not at the expense of the DM community who have been constantly shoved aside for the sake of RM for so long. Clearly there IS an issue with the lack of DM players queuing up (especially in the TG queue), but you're saying that instead of trying to boost DM interest and supporting this game mode like the others have been, the solution is to just... get rid of DM??? Whack. I'm not even a part of the DM community, but I can clearly see how passionate they are for the game and they deserve better. Is it because they're a minority of the overall fanbase that you think it's ok to just push them aside? Please consider keeping the DM ranked queues AND adding EW too.
    Reply
    • arisenbasil3347 May 10, 2021
      I agree, this is really sad for DM community. Especially on the heels of DMWC3 where we saw players like TheCode and True playing out of their minds against actual professional players. No DM ranked queue means there's no future for new DM players to learn and improve to a $10k tournament level.
  • zenack17 May 10, 2021
    It was obvious that people were going to disagree. The solution would be to add the EW and not remove DM. But it is true that the DM is not played by anyone, there are only 1100 people ranked, VS >50,000 of the RM.
    Reply
  • coop-airman-cooper May 10, 2021
    I think the aoe2 de team is making a mistake by taking some of there most devoted players out of the game that have been playing for 2 decades now. Your going to lose people that will continue supporting your game and other franchise games like aoe4 if it isn't a stink bomb. Please don't ruin a community that has been around and supported your game for 20 years.
    Reply
  • stebron-james May 10, 2021
    when in the history of red bull have they sponsored anything that is at a slower speed with less action?
    Reply
    • duxthesavior May 10, 2021
      Watching them get outpaced by Mercedes weekend in-weekend out.
  • silverhawk May 10, 2021
    Frankly, it's a tragedy to see the most welcoming sub-community in all of Age of Empires handled in such a way. From the very beginning of DE's release Death Match has been relegated to, at most, the sidelines of any push for competitive play. There's been no in-game tutorials, no Map Pools specifically tuned for DM, very little financial support for DM tournaments, and so on and so forth. Not only is Death Match an incredibly fun and rewarding game type in and of itself. It also quickly teaches strategy and creativity in a Post-Imperial setting, which are skills that can be utilized in RM and EW both. To go back to my point on the DM community being the most welcoming, I only started playing the game type last year. After 5-6 frustrating learning matches I wasn't flamed by opponents or teammates (a far more common occurrence in RM and admittedly something I've been guilty of) but instead I was invited to the DM Discord Server where I could connect with and learn from other DM'ers. Imean, come on! Within days I was signed up for DM Rising Stars and within months I was a finalist (Champion depending on who you ask). This community should be supported and praised, not relegated to Lobby games. Speaking of which, I believe this is a death sentence for the growth of DM at the very least, and I do believe the DM DOES grow. While I recognize the value in providing a good first experience for Ranked matchmade games, I don't believe removing the ladder (and the rank tied therein) is the right way to go about it. At the VERY LEAST we should be able to create Ranked DM Lobbies. We need a number around which to compete, balance lobbies, balance tournaments, etc. Ranks fuel goals which in turn fuels further play. DM'ers deserve to be able to play and compete in DE just like RM'ers and the soon-to-be Empire Wars players.
    Reply
    • auswahlkubus211 May 11, 2021
      ye
  • stebron-james May 10, 2021
    Also, if you guys spent half the time that you did figuring that you'd remove DM from the rank game que and put that time into finding out how to help grow DM you would probably see the numbers rise that way. I've never once seen any type of advertisement for it on the home screen like you do the different RM modes. You guys were able to get Red Bull to sponsor an RM tournament, if Red Bull even knew deathmatch existed, I would assume that would clearly be the mode and tournament that they would want to sponsor. There is way more action. The game speed is on fast, the units are all fully upgraded, you start with more resources and go straight to war. That sounds way more like something Red Bull would want to sponsor instead of watching villagers chop down wood, mine stone and gold, and farm for 2 hours, with units that aren't even fully upgraded running around on a slower speed in smaller numbers. Literally sounds nothing like a red bull sponsored event. Tell Red Bull about DM and maybe they will throw money for a tournament for once instead of relying on the DM community to fund every tournament we have by ourselves.
    Reply
    • volubledust1724 May 11, 2021
      "One of the most common requests we see is for a short game mode." [...] "the most popular, and fastest-growing, is Empire Wars." Yeah why do you think that is Microsoft? Maybe because of RBW tourneys? DM has existed for all this time, and it literally echoes so hard with what happened when the scene really took off around the time of Hidden Cup 1 and NAC. The world cup was undeniably a success last weekend, with an entirely self funded prize pool of $10k and over 10k viewers on Twitch. How is that not a popular or growing community??? Ugh. I'm really hoping that this is an impulse move just because RBW is approaching so they want to build hype but they will switch back to DM when its over or just give it a third queue.
    • boomstik May 10, 2021
      This guy gets it. BIG BRAIN
  • federaltrout73 May 10, 2021
    I agree that Empire Wars deserves a ranked queue. I sympathize with trying to limit the separate number of pools available so that the queue experience itself doesn't drive people away by splitting into too many queues. That said, the fact that DM is played much less often than RM (and less than I suspect EW will be played) means that it will NOT be a major split. Those that want to play RM rarely queue for DM and vice versa, so in the end you don't really have a split in the available player population, you just have two separate player populations. EW will probably take a few people from RM, but I think it is worthwhile. But... I DON'T think taking away DM is necessary for a good experience. Now, on the note of a good multiplayer experience. PLEASE fix the broken TG elo calculation and queue system. 1. Most importantly, queueing for a 4v4 is a TERRIBLE experience for many because so many people alt+F4 maps they don't want to play and they suffer no penalty. This means you might waitaround for five minutes to get a game, only to have seven players affected by one selfish player, and then have to sit in queue again. Overall queue times sometimes reach 30+ minutes for a single game. I suggest a temporary ban (even 5-10 minutes). 2. TG losses are based on "average" enemy elo and wins are based on "highest" enemy elo, so there is a pure rating inflation based solely on number of games played, and meaning you can have vastly different skill levels of players all with the same rating, creating imbalanced games and bad experiences. Please make both wins and losses calculated from the same number so that there is a net zero addition of rating points after any game. 3. Please do not give people preliminary 1v1 ratings based off of initial inflated TG ratings. I have a friend that won the first 1v1 "placement" game and because of a 2k TG rating then proceeded to lose every following "placement" game (after an initial estimated 1v1 rating near 1800). He never played another1v1 game after that dispiriting start.
    Reply
  • abstractart May 10, 2021
    Preposterous.
    Reply
  • imaginarycomb15 May 10, 2021
    "There are a lot of great ideas in the community about how to improve that experience, but for the moment, we think removing it and centralizing the multiplayer DM’ers in Lobby is the best near-term fix to help people find matches quickly." We do have many great ideas, you are welcome to join us in our DM Discords (DM me for a link) but this idea of yours is not great & will result in fewer DM players, events & more for our DM Community. We do not welcome, "So there you have it. This is a test." We do not need this test, we need results & saying goodbye to DM won't solve your problems it will only exacerbate them. I thoroughly suggest you start listening & rather than remove DM simply add EW as an additional option to our Ranked Matchmaking!
    Reply
  • darkillermon May 10, 2021
    I'm very disappointed at this decision. There was a a thread some days ago in the forums asking for that and I'll repeat here the same question I did there: why can't we have BOTH DM and EW? Anyway, DE has been released for one and a half year, why don't we have a DM Art of War, so noobs won't get stomped over and over again? How are we, who are not pros at DM but enjoy playing it, will find somewhat balanced games? If it's so hard to find a fair DM match, why don't you add it to the quick play and make DMers life easier than lobbying? Lastly, I really have doubts about this long queue issue. I queue for everything and often find a balanced 1,2k DM ELO match.
    Reply
  • shulkerb May 10, 2021
    Is it not possible to have more than 2 game modes for ranked queue? DM is still a significant part of the community and those who exclusively play on the ladder will not be happy.
    Reply
  • tongawhiteboy May 10, 2021
    The timing of this announcement is simply disrespectful to the DM community as they just had a major tournament that brought in a good number of viewers. I know personally I started trying out the mode after watching the tourney (having played over 1000 RM games). I don't see why MS can't just keep the 1v1 DM and add in EW.
    Reply
  • newbsim May 10, 2021
    There are people that bought the game just to play DM. We dmers do realize some tweaks have to be done, but killing the queue is just showing you care more about finding new players than satisfying old diehard fans. There is an active DM discord with about a thousand people where most of us would be glad to try and find a solution that works best for everyone. I wont be able to play my favorite game mode anymore but eh, in a few weeks i might have 2 new civs to play battle royale with. THANKS DE.
    Reply
  • tf-backyback May 10, 2021
    Hey Will, Seems like you may be a bit new to the community and may be a bit confused. Let us clear some things up for ya. DM is a smaller part of AOE yes, but it is a very active and passionate group of players. DM players have been around and played just as much as any RM players here. Taking the DM ranked system out of Age of Empires shows how little you or those in your staff really know about the game. I would suggest you take some time and listen to the players of your game. DM just had its biggest tournament of the year and the day after it’s over you announce that you are removing DM? That doesn’t seem like a coincidence ;). You can do better little guy. Put that brain of yours to work :).
    Reply
  • master-braeburn May 10, 2021
    This is a shame. There is no reason to not have 3 ladders going. A $10,000 DM World Cup just concluded with Viper winning against The Code for 3 straight years, which was arguably one of the greatest series I have ever seen. It had over 10k viewers on something that wasn't advertised as much as Redbull Wololo, Hidden Cup, etc. It is hard to make DM widely viewed stream when Microsoft itself won't even bother to put money into the tournaments. DM has a great community and I hope it still thrives. I don't know a single person that plays Empire Wars except for when there's ANOTHER Redbull Wololo tournament. Feelsbadman.
    Reply
  • argonaut000 May 10, 2021
    I think this is a good idea since the player base for death match is so low. Better to use that slot for a more popular game type like empire wars. Leaving death match in would further split up the player base and make waiting times longer so it makes perfect sense to me.
    Reply
    • pacificwheel208 May 10, 2021
      You seem like a very considerate person...
  • rustyiesty May 10, 2021
    Any update on fixing TG Elo calculation, Will? It no doubt hinders progression to 1v1 ranked as it currently is. So far we have seen: > 6 months to fix averaging in TG matchmaking (party vs non-party) > 12 months to make an Empire Wars ranked queue (we got quickplay instead) > 18 months and counting to fix averaging in calculating TG Elo (hence liable to inflation) It might as well be fixed before introducing a 3rd broken team game ladder.
    Reply
  • lithemink196544 May 10, 2021
    Hi Will! I can imagine it's tough to be the bearer of bad news, especially for Death Match where the players and community are so passionate about their game mode. I have to interject here and let you and the Age team know that this is the wrong move for Death Match. I agree that the team game queue needs to be reworked as the queue times are extremely long and the games are often unfair - but the 1v1 queue? This is what we use for tournament seeding, for competition, for FUN. By removing the DM queue and encouraging us to use lobbies, I know already that I am not going to coordinate every single match I do for an entire evening. As a streamer and as a player, it won't happen. Players are just going to revert to RM or EW instead. I am encouraging you to rethink adding just the 1v1 DM Queue as an option since this queue is actively used by the DM Community, and with all the momentum from the DMWC4 yesterday, there are many new players that want to try this fast-paced game mode - but nowthey can't since it is being removed. I would love to discuss this further with you because I believe there is a much better near term solution. I absolutely love this game and hate to see this news after our biggest event of the year just finished. - Brisolyn
    Reply
  • tocaraca May 10, 2021
    I know a lot of people who love playing Deathmatch in the ranked queue. Why not just add the Empire Wars queue on top, instead of REPLACING DM with it?
    Reply
  • stebron-james May 10, 2021
    Deathmatch is the first mode that I experienced and grew to love on Age of Empires as an 11 year old kid. It is the only mode that I really know how to play at a relatively high level. I watched my dad play this mode and was instantly hooked and couldn't wait to try it out myself. Playing this mode with my dad and brothers are some of the best memories that I have as a kid, and the reason I still play Age of Empires today is for that nostalgic feeling. Finding out that you are taking DM away from the ranked ladder blows my mind and honestly breaks my heart. This is my favorite game and game mode of all time and plenty of others share that same feeling. The DM community has grown so much over the past few years and I feel that you are making a mistake. Visit our DM gaming discord to see for yourself. https://discord.gg/Cf3SQnvH. Surely there is something else you can do.
    Reply
  • seasondsloth May 10, 2021
    Sounds sick! Truthfully havent been able to play this franchise since the original ps2 version of the age of kings, but this idea sounds like it will work the charm to get new members in and make them feel comfortable, wilst helping them truly get there head arpund the dinamics and level that people can play at 👍👍👍👍👍on effort guys 👊 keep it up and bring it to xbox consoles so we can get back to it haha
    Reply

of 162 comments