New Info Surfaces On AOE 4 Expansion: Byzantines and Japanese

Age of Empires 4 - Massive Mountain Wall Defence
Age of Empires 4 - Massive Mountain Wall Defence

Key Highlights:

  • Age of Empires IV expansion The Sultans Ascend arrives November 14th with new civilisations and content
  • The Byzantines and Japanese civilisations bring unique mechanics like aqueducts and samurai units
  • Four new variant civilisations offer twists on existing civs like China and the Holy Roman Empire
  • Ten new maps and two new biomes add environmental variety and strategic depth
  • An 8-mission single-player campaign will be included along with unlockable achievements
  • New civilisation architecture, audio design, music, and historical speech immerse players culturally
  • Pre-orders are available now on Steam, Microsoft Store, and Xbox Store for $14.99

Age of Empires IV Expansion Adds Byzantines and Japanese Civilizations

The Sultans Ascend, the first major expansion for Age of Empires IV, launches on November 14th and introduces highly requested civilisations like the Byzantines and Japanese to the acclaimed RTS.

Each new civilisation comes fully featured with unique mechanics, architecture, military units, technologies, music, historical voiceovers, and achievements. The Byzantines utilise aqueduct networks and Greek Fire attacks, while the Japanese field samurai warriors and shinobi spies.

Four variant civilisations offer creative twists on existing civs by exploring alternative histories:


  • Trade classic House of Wisdom’s unique technologies of the Abbasid Dynasty for versatile bonuses. Emphasise camel units with support from infantry instead of vice-versa.

Jeanne d’Arc:

  • Trade some classic French civilisation bonuses for a powerful hero unit, Jeanne d’Arc herself.

Order of the Dragon:

  • Replace many classic Holy Roman Empire units with enhanced Gilded versions on the battlefield. Enhanced units are stronger but cost more resources, time, and population.

Zhu Xi’s Legacy:

  • Re-envision Chinese Dynasty bonuses and Landmarks for an economic and long-term efficiency focus, as opposed to rapid expansion.

New Environments and Single-Player Campaign

Age of Empires 4 The Song Dynasty Begins

Expanding the world, The Sultans Ascend will add 10 new multiplayer maps and two fresh biomes to compete on. New unlockable Achievements and Masteries provide challenges to pursue.

An 8-mission narrative campaign is also included, delivering more single-player content. Details remain scarce, but the new civilisations suggest potential Eastern Mediterranean and Japanese feudal Japan settings.

Pre-orders are now available for $14.99 on PC via Steam and the Microsoft Store, as well as Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One.

Unique Byzantines Overview and Mechanics

Age of Empires IV Building an Army

As one of the most requested civilisations, the Byzantines introduce several unique mechanics to Age of Empires IV. They construct sprawling aqueduct networks that increase production and generate olive oil, a new resource used to hire mercenaries.

The Byzantines excel at battlefield control by pairing a wide military roster with powerful Greek Fire attacks that scorch targeted areas. They also passively gain small amounts of stone when building constructions.

Certain structures like Keeps and Towers gain new emplacements for mangonel weapons capable of devastating packed enemy troops. The distinctive Byzantine architectural style immerses players in the empire’s storied history.

Japanese Civilization Adds Samurai and Shinobi

Age of Empires IV - The Japanese
The Japanese

The Japanese similarly expand Age of Empires IV with their iconic feudal warriors and mechanics. Players can upgrade to daimyo castles and unlock samurai bannerman units that rally soldiers in combat.

Special shinobi units can disguise themselves among enemy villagers to sabotage production. Unique rocket artillery castles provide formidable late-game firepower as fortresses.

A unique mining bonus lets the Japanese efficiently harvest both gold and stone from single deposits. Combined with samurai warriors, Japanese introduction brings decisive martial skill to matches.

Variants unlock fresh strategic opportunities within familiar civilisations players have already mastered, adding value. There’s plenty of content heading your way if you’re a fan of the strategy title, the recently announced Mountain Royals is now available in Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition!

With its wealth of civs, environments, single-player content, and replayability, The Sultans Ascend looks set to reignite Age of Empires IV warfare and ensure the beloved RTS remains ascendant heading into 2024 and beyond.

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About The Author

Stephen is the proud owner of a popular gaming news website GLN, where he provides the latest updates on everything gaming-related. With a passion for video games that dates back to his childhood, Stephen is dedicated to sharing his knowledge and expertise with fellow gamers around the world.

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