With its sixth installment and second collaboration with Paradox Interactive, Dutch developer Triumph Studios lives up to its name. The turn-based strategy game is the more complex alternative to Heroes of Might and Magic. In our Age of Wonders 4 tips and tricks, we’ll show you how to lead your fantasy empire to victory, even as a beginner.
Table of Contents
1) Save your money and spend mana instead
There are two main resources in Age of Wonders 4: gold and mana. You need gold to build buildings and recruit units. Mana, on the other hand, is for casting spells. To be victorious, you’ll need plenty of both throughout the game. But it’s important that you don’t spend all your gold right away.
Unlike most other global strategy games, the cost of gold for each building and unit is immediately due, even before the construction of the building or training of the unit begins. While it’s possible to pay an additional lump sum of gold to complete the operation immediately, this is expensive and can cost you your entire supply in a single turn.
Our tip is to save your gold until you really need it and resist the temptation to spend too much at the beginning. Buying heroes or strong units will be expensive. This is something you should work towards. In the first hours of the game, spells are the better strategy. The first ones don’t use much mana, so you’ll always have enough of the resource.
2) Age of Wonders 4 tips and tricks: Focus on city building
Good infrastructure is key. You must first ensure resource production before you can invest in a large army. If you run out of resources, your armies will rebel and your empire will crumble. Provide food, build mines to extract resources, and expand your borders.
A well-developed city is the best defense in Age of Wonders 4. Gold is also an important resource for building strong troops and conducting diplomacy. So develop your province and your economy at the same time to fill your treasury faster and to attract new inhabitants.
3) Armies should travel together
Each army in Age of Wonders 4 can consist of a maximum of six units, regardless of their type or level. However, when a battle occurs, all armies within two fields of the attacked field can participate. To give your opponent as much resistance as possible in combat situations, you should keep your units moving together and close to each other.
The AI is programmed to send three to four armies with the maximum number of units in case of war. To stop their attacks, your troops will have to defend together. In addition, with groups of armies, you can gain allies in the form of neutral raiders. Also, the more units that are involved in a battle, the more their rank will increase.
4) Age of Wonders 4 Annexation Tips
What is annexation?
The annexation mechanic is one of our most important Age of Wonders 4 tips and tricks, as it is unfortunately very under-explained in the game. Annexation works differently than in most other 4X games and is very complex. Just because you conquer new outposts doesn’t mean you own their infrastructure. With annexation, you use your population to create a province in a neighboring hex.
This colony can then grant you various bonuses and increase your influence in the world. Your distant claim grows and you can be supplied with resources that occur in the annexed hexagon.
When to annex?
You should explore and annex as much as possible. For one thing, it grows your empire and strengthens your economy, and for another, you can file a complaint every time a hostile faction tries to conquer a land you have annexed. The more hexes you own, the more likely this will happen during the game.
The advantage of the complaint is that you are now allowed to wage a legitimate war against the faction attacking your lands. There are exceptions, however, where annexation isn’t useful. This is because every time you annex a city, you receive a -5 stability penalty. Keep an eye on your stability. If it is too low, you’ll lose income and possibly even your provinces.
What can be annexed?
The price of annexation is the same for all provinces. What’s different are the available resources. You can view these before annexation to strategize and conquer the exact province that fits your plan. Resources include farms, quarries, mines, and research facilities.
5) Minions make good border guards
As in many Paradox titles, the number of cities you actively control in the game is limited. As a rule, you won’t manage more than six provinces simultaneously. Your vassals are responsible for all others. They pay you, as their liege lord, a certain percentage of their income. At the same time, they serve you as border guards.
Although the vassals keep their troops within their own borders and don’t help you conquer new territories, they’re an effective defense. If an enemy faction wants to invade your lands and has to pass through a vassal’s territory, the vassal will automatically attack your enemy’s army. This will weaken attacks or even crush them before they reach you.
By the way, the troops that are given to you by your vassal will remain in your vassal’s country. You can’t actively move them beyond its borders. On the other hand, you can regularly recruit new soldiers through the Rally of the Lieges, which you wouldn’t get in the normal way.
6) Age of Wonders 4 victory conditions
There are four conditions in Age of Wonders 4: expansion victory, magic victory, military victory, and score. In expansion, you must control as many territories as possible and have a large number of allies.
The military victory is the classic winning variant. You get it through wars as well as by forging alliances. Magic victory becomes yours when you upgrade each spellbook to level 5, unlocking the corresponding province improvements.
7) Build your victory provinces close together
If you want to achieve the magic or expansion victory in Age of Wonders 4, you should build your victory provinces as close to each other as possible. After all, these victory conditions require you to build and protect three powerful monuments. Once these are built, your opponents will do everything they can to destroy them.
In single-player mode, however, defense against enemy factions is not a problem if you centralize the monuments and position your armies around them. The AI is not programmed to launch coordinated attacks on monuments. But there is another threat: marauders.
To deal with these roaming prowlers, you should always keep your armies close to the monuments. If your troops are scattered all over the map, you’ll lose too much time.
8) You can stack Heroes in an army
Those who are new to Age of Wonders 4 often have the misconception that you can only have one Hero per army. This isn’t true. You can stack several Heroes in an army of six. This increases combat power and is especially important in difficult battles. Especially in Ancient Wonders, where only one army can be involved.
Therefore, it makes sense to recruit many Heroes and, if possible, choose the strongest of them to lead your armies. Be aware, however, that once you have a certain number of heroes, you’ll get deductions.
9) Age of Wonders 4 Combat Tips
Know your opponent
Every unit in Age of Wonders 4 has different strengths and weaknesses. Know not only the characteristics of your own troops but also those of your opponents. By clicking on the unit portraits, you can view their stats and strategically position your armies. By specializing in certain types of damage, you’ll gain an advantage in battle.
Conversely, you should be careful not to use troops against an army that is particularly effective against your units. Keep a close eye on the movements of enemy factions to avoid such confrontations.
Combining different units
To be prepared against different types of enemies in Age of Wonders 4, you should mix your armies with units of different types. This way you’ll be prepared for all eventualities and have units that can be used universally. Your armies must consist of melee fighters, ranged fighters, and solid cavalry. The melee units are divided into infantry and shield infantry.
Use the defense mode
Put your units in defense mode to get +2 defense and +2 resistance. Units in Defense Mode are immune to flank attacks and also gain all adjacent hexes as a control area. Units that are still able to act after a turn are automatically placed in this mode. Especially when your units are low on energy or your army is waiting for reinforcements, Defense Mode will be useful.
In dangerous situations, it will allow you to save your units from destruction and preserve their accumulated experience.
Prioritize certain targets
There are three basic types of units on the battlefield: attackers with high damage, support units, which make attackers more powerful by giving them buffs, and defenders, which are designed to do little damage but fend off enemies with high resistance.
When attacking, you should prioritize your targets so that you eliminate the high-damage units first. Only after you’ve taken care of the attackers and supporters should you target the defenders.
Find good flanks
Side and rear attacks count as flanking and do 25% more damage. Cavalry units are best for this, as they have the speed to ambush.
To take away the 25% bonus from enemy flank attacks, use Defense Mode as mentioned above. In addition, units can be turned in the direction of the flank attackers. This action doesn’t cost a turn but can be performed for free.
Customize Age of Wonders 4 with PLITCH!
Besides our Age of Wonders 4 tips and tricks, PLITCH’s Age of Wonders 4 cheats will also help you improve your gaming experience in single-player mode.
Create an additional challenge for yourself by reducing the damage in battles or your mana value. Or minimize the difficulty by instantly recruiting, setting affinities, or lowering movement costs. The codes can be used to make the game easier or more challenging.
If you want to learn more about our Age of Wonders 4 cheats, check out our Trainer Showcase on YouTube.