Age of Empires Series Wiki

King of the Hill is a game mode featured in Age of Empires II: The Conquerors, Age of Mythology, and Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties. In order to win, players must have a military presence around a landmark in the center of the map for a certain period of time.

AoE2-DLCicon-0 Age of Empires II[]

Control the Monument in the center of the map for a specified time to win. To control the Monument, kill all the enemy units around it.
—In-game description

The style of the Monument differ on every map

King of the Hill is a game mode introduced in Age of Empires II: The Conquerors. The players have to capture the Monument (a renamed Wonder), located exactly in the center of the map, and hold it for 550 years (approximately 9 minutes) in order to win.


It isn't possible to build in the rocky area surrounding the Monument

To capture the Monument, a player must have units in the greyed area surrounding it. Even if the player only has a single unit in the area, they will retain control of the Monument, but if the last unit dies, the game uses a method similar to scoring in curling where the player whose unit(s) are the closest to the Monument will capture it. If multiple players have units in the same distance to the Monument, then the player in the highest slot will capture it. Building is not allowed in the vicinity of the Monument.

Capturing the Monument brings a trickle of 50 food, 50 wood, 50 gold, 50 stone per minute incentivizing the capture as early as possible.

Apart from the Monument in the center, the maps are very similar to regular random map games.


  • If the player who is in control of the Monument is defeated or resigns, it will remain under that player's control, which may result in all players being defeated should the countdown end with the Monument remaining in the defeated/resigned player's control.

Aom original icon Age of Mythology[]

In the center, on water, ice or cliffs, is a Plenty Vault. Whoever controls it starts a countdown to victory.
—In-game description

A grass terrain variant of King of the Hill in Age of Mythology

Unlike in Age of Empires II and Age of Empires III, King of the Hill is a random map rather than a game mode, but the goal is similar. The player must control a Plenty Vault in the middle of the map, protected by Shades, for 8 minutes. Controlling the Plenty in the center not only puts pressure on all the enemy factions, but also grants an economic edge as it provides a trickle of resources for the player that holds it.

As the in-game description hints, there are three varieties of King of the Hill, each favoring a different gameplay approach:

  1. A water map, similar to Crater Lake, where players must invest in navy, in order to quickly unload troops to the islet in the center of the lake, where the Vault and its Shade guards are located, while also fighting back against other landing parties and naval units.
  2. A map similar to Ghost Lake, with the Vault being in the center of the frozen lake, that encourages rushing, but also prohibits expanding building, thus negating Castle drops, tower rushes, and camping with military structures.
  3. A grassland map, with the Vault located in a hill right in the middle; unlike the other two maps, structures can easily be built close or on the hill, thus allowing for Castle Drops and other similar tactics.

As King of the Hill is a map setting exclusively for these three maps, the mode is unavailable on any other map.

A campaign scenario which perfectly resembles this game type is Fight at the Forge in the Golden Gift campaign.


  • When a player recaptures a Plenty Vault, it will take about a second or two for the system to recognize the player has done so, before changing the countdown to their team's. Therefore, if the player manages to capture the Plenty Vault at the last second, they might still lose the game. This also occurs in the Fight at the Forge scenario.

3Icon48px Age of Empires III[]

A central fort dominates the map. Capture and hold it for victory.
—In-game description

Similarly to Age of Empires II, King of the Hill is a game mode rather than a random map, as in Age of Mythology, which means that King of the Hill can be played on any map, be it open, closed, with water or landlocked.

In order to win at this mode, a player or team must hold the King's Hill (a renamed Fort) for exactly 10 minutes. Unlike the other games however, the perimeter around the Kings' Hill is completely unbuildable, meaning that players cannot abuse fortifications or other military structures to keep a military presence, forcing them to rely on their military units.

Explorers, War Chiefs, and Monks cannot capture the Kings' Hill, however other military units, such as Natives, can. War Chiefs can in fact abuse their Nature Friendship ability in order to send converted Treasure Guardians to hold early the Kings' Hill, as a sort of psychological warfare, in order to force enemy players at making panicked moves.

GameIcon-AoE4 Age of Empires IV[]

King of the Hill icon AoE4

King of The Hill icon in Age of Empires IV

Fight for the resources in the center of the map!
—In-game description

King of the Hill is a random map in Age of Empires IV.


King of the Hill is a fully land based map, notable for the large scalable mountain in the center which contains a multitude of resources and the forest that surrounds the limits of the map. Other things of note are the complete lack of Neutral Trade Posts, and the presence of a single Sacred Site, located on top of the central mountain. All these factors make controlling the center of the map of utmost importance.


Similar game modes[]

  • Defend the Wonder: One player must defend their Wonder against enemy players for a set period of time.
  • Wonder Race: A non-violent game mode, where the first to construct a Wonder instantly wins.

Both game modes are a type of race against time, and involve focusing on a certain landmark/object in order to win. Both are found in Age of Empires II.

Random maps
Age of Empires
ReturnRome-AoEIcon Age of Empires Coastal · Highland · Inland · Large Islands · Small Islands
RomeIcon The Rise of Rome Continental · Hill Country · Mediterranean · Narrows
Age of Empires Definitive Edition icon Definitive Edition Oasis · Rivers
AoE2Icon-ReturnRome Return of Rome Alliance · Citadel · Clearing · Dark Forest · Desert Ridge · Gold Mountain · Inside Out · Land Nomad · MegaRandom · Muddy Waters · Nomad · Ocean Channel · Ocean Ring · Plateaus · River Crossing · Sahara · Twin Settlements
For maps used in high-level tournaments, see liquipedia.
Age of Empires II
AoE2-DLCicon-0 The Age of Kings Random Arabia · Archipelago · Baltic · Black Forest · Crater Lake · Continental · Coastal · Fortress · Gold Rush · Highland · Islands · Mediterranean · Migration · Rivers · Team Islands
AoE2-DLCicon-1 The Conquerors Random Arena · Ghost Lake · Mongolia · Nomad · Oasis · Salt Marsh · Scandinavia · Yucatán
Real World Britain · Byzantium · Central America · France · Iberia · Italy · Mideast · Norse Lands · Sea of Japan (East Sea) · Texas
Custom Canals · Capricious · Dingos · Graveyards · Metropolis · Moats · Paradise Island · Pilgrims · Prairie · Seasons · Sherwood Forest · Sherwood Heroes · Shipwreck · Team Glaciers · The Unknown
AoE2-DLCicon-2 The Forgotten Random Acropolis · Budapest · Cenotes · City of Lakes · Golden Pit · Hideout · Hill Fort · Lombardia · Steppe · Valley · MegaRandom · Hamburger
Capture the Relic CtR Monsoon · CtR Pyramid Descent · CtR Random · CtR Spiral
AoE2-DLCicon-3 The African Kingdoms Random Kilimanjaro · Mountain Pass · Nile Delta · Serengeti · Socotra
Real World Amazon · Bohemia · China · Earth · Horn of Africa · India · Madagascar · West Africa
Special Canyons · Enemy Archipelago · Enemy Islands · Far Out · Front Line · Inner Circle · Motherland · Open Plains · Ring of Water · Snakepit · The Eye
AoE2-DLCicon-4 Rise of the Rajas Random Bog Islands · Mangrove Jungle · Pacific Islands · Sandbank · Water Nomad
Real World Australia · Indochina · Indonesia · Philippines · Strait of Malacca
Special Border Stones · Holy Line · Jungle Islands · Jungle Lanes · Yin Yang
AoE2-DLCicon-5 The Last Khans Random Alpine Lakes · Bogland · Four Lakes · Golden Swamp · Land Nomad · Mountain Ridge · Ravines · Wolf Hill
Real World Antarctica · Aral Sea · Black Sea · Caucasus · Siberia
Special Journey South · Snake Forest · Sprawling Streams · Swirling River · Twin Forests
Battle Royale BR Battle On Ice · BR El Dorado · BR Fall of Axum · BR Fall of Rome · BR Majapahit Empire
AoE2Icon-LordsWest Lords of the West Random Acclivity · African Clearing · Amazon Tunnel · Atacama · Coastal Forest · Crater · Crossroads · Eruption · Frigid Lake · Greenland · Lowland · Marketplace · Meadow · Michi · Mountain Range · Northern Isles · Ring Fortress · Runestones · Seize The Mountain · Team Moats · Volcanic Island
Dawn of the Dukes icon Dawn of the Dukes Random Aftermath · Enclosed · Haboob · Kawasan · Land Madness · Sacred Springs · Wade
AoE2Icon-DynastiesIndia Dynasties of India Random Morass · Shoals
Aoe2 hb Victors and Vanquished Random Cliffbound · Dunesprings · Golden Stream · Hollow Woodlands · Isthmus · Karsts · Mountain Dunes · River Divide · Sandrift · Shrubland · The Passage
For maps used in high-level tournaments, see liquipedia.
Age of Mythology
Aom original icon Age of Mythology Acropolis · Alfheim · Anatolia · Archipelago · Black Sea · Erebus · Ghost Lake · Jotunheim · King of the Hill · Mediterranean · Midgard · Nomad · Oasis · River Nile · River Styx · Savannah · Sea of Worms · Sudden Death · Team Migration · The Unknown · Valley of Kings · Vinlandsaga · Watering Hole
AoM The Titans icon The Titans Highland · Islands · Land Unknown · Marsh · Megalopolis · Tundra
AoM Extended icon Tale of the Dragon Basin · Blue Lagoon · Deep Jungle · Old Atlantis · Open Fields · Regicide · Silk Road · Yellow River
Cut Forgotten City · Golden Fleece
For maps used in high-level tournaments, see liquipedia.
Age of Empires III
3Icon48px Age of Empires III Amazonia · Bayou · Caribbean · Carolina · Great Lakes · Great Plains · Hispaniola · New England · Pampas · Patagonia · Rockies · Saguenay · Sonora · Texas · Unknown · Yucatán · Yukon
3WCIcon48px The WarChiefs Andes · Araucania · California · Northwest Territory · Orinoco · Ozarks · Painted Desert · Plymouth
3ADIcon48px The Asian Dynasties Borneo · Ceylon · Deccan · Himalayas · Himalayas - Upper · Honshu · Honshu - Regicide OR Regicide - Honshu · Indochina · Mongolia · Siberia · Silk Road · Yellow River
Age3DE Icon Definitive Edition Alaska · Andes - Upper · Arctic Territories · Bahia · Baja California · Bengal · Cascade Range · Central Asia · Central Plain · Colorado · Dakota · Fertile Crescent · Florida · Gran Chaco · Guianas · Hokkaido · Indonesia · Kamchatka · Korea · Malaysia · Manchuria · Mexico · Minas Gerais · Pampas Sierras · Panama · Parallel Rivers · Punjab · Texas Frontier · Yamal
Age3DE Icon The African Royals Arabia · Atlas · Congo Basin · Darfur · Dunes · Dunes - The Eye · Gold Coast · Great Rift · Highlands · Horn · Ivory Coast · Lake Chad · Lake Victoria · Niger Delta · Niger River · Nile Valley · Pepper Coast · Saharan Routes · Saharan Routes - LOST · Sahel · Savanna · Siwa Oasis · Sudd · Swahili Coast · Tassili · Tripolitania
Age3DE Icon Knights of the Mediterranean Acropolis · Alps · Anatolia · Archipelago · Balkan Mountains · Baltic Sea · Black Forest · Black Forest - Arena · Black Forest - Forest Nothing · Bohemia · Budapest · Carpathians · Caucasus · Corsica and Sardinia · Courland · Danish Straits · Dnieper Basin · England · Eurasian Steppe · Eurasian Steppe - LOST · Eurasian Steppe - Survival · Finland · France · Hungarian Plains · Ireland · Italy · Karelian Lakes · Lithuania · Low Countries · Mediterranean · Muscovy · Pomerania · Portugal · Pripet Marshes · Pyrenees · Rhine · Saxony · Scandinavia · Scotland · Spain · Vistula Basin · Wales · Wallachia
For maps used in high-level tournaments, see liquipedia.
GameIcon-AoE4 Age of Empires IV
Launch Altai · Ancient Spires · Archipelago · Black Forest · Boulder Bay · Confluence · Danube River · Dry Arabia · French Pass · High View · Hill and Dale · King of the Hill · Lipany · Mongolian Heights · Mountain Pass · Nagari · Warring Islands
Season One MegaRandom
Season Two The Pit
Season Three Baltic (Mediterranean) · Forest Ponds · Hideout · Mountain Clearing · Oasis · Prairie · Waterholes · Wetlands
Season Four Continental · Four Lakes · Marshland
Season Five Golden Heights · Migration · Volcanic Island
Season Six Canal · Gorge · Rocky River
The Sultans Ascend African Waters · Cliffside · Forts · Glade · Golden Pit · Haywire · Hidden Valley · Himeyama · Thickets · Turtle Ridge
Season Seven Land MegaRandom
Season Eight Socotra
Expansion maps are not available without buying the expansion. Maps are sorted according to their expansion (must be bought) and launch seasons.
For maps used in high-level tournaments, see liquipedia.
Game modes in the Age of Empires series
PopularCampaign (II) · Multiplayer · Random map · Deathmatch · Regicide · Nomad · Co-op · D3 · Free-for-all
Battle Royale · Capture the Relic · Defend the Wonder · Dominion · Empire Wars · Historical map · King of the Hill · Sudden Death · Treaty · Turbo Random Map · Tycoon · Wonder Race