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This article is about the Scenario Editor in Age of Empires II. For the Scenario Editor in other games, see Scenario Editor.

The starting screen always aligns itself at the center of the map whenever a new scenario is created.

Aoe2de scenario editor

The editor in the Definitive Edition.

The Scenario Editor in Age of Empires II features everything its predecessor does along with newer features allowing greater customization and versatility in game design and architecture. Among the most notable features is the ability to create triggers, which enable more sophisticated gameplay.

Since update 107882, it is possible to launch the game in the Scenario Editor by entering the launch command "EDITOR".


After having created a scenario, players can save it and play it by going in "Standard Mode" and selecting the game mode "Custom scenario" for a full experience. Players can also play it using "Test", there and then, which has the side effect of saving it as "default01". The difference between the two is that the latter does not allow for more than 1 non-AI player, and that after the game ends, it does not show the Statistics.

All scenarios, whether created by the player, by someone else in the Mods section, or official campaigns, work the same way. Firstly, civilization tech tree load, then team bonuses load (since the Definitive Edition; previously team bonuses loaded after map generation), then free (not requiring any time) Dark Age technologies load, then maps load, and finally, the units are placed. After this, the game starts, and activated triggers without conditions load. The order is important because modifying certain resources using triggers will not accomplish anything since they activate at game start. The following are examples of these:

  • Modifying Resource 263 (starting scout unit) will not change the scout unit already placed.
  • Modifying Resources 91 to 94 (starting food/wood/gold/stone) will not change the amount of resource the player has already started with. However, players can modify Resources 0 to 3 (current food/wood/gold/stone).
  • Modifying Resource 210 (the Burmese Relic bonus) will not do anything due to a bug. Modifying Resource 209 (the Vietnamese enemy Town Center bonus) works as normal.
  • Modifying a unit to be a scout unit will not make it auto-scout, since auto-scout behaviour also works from start.

In order to modify these, one should be using .xs scripts or random map scripts, since these load before the game starts.


The Scenario Editor has a number of hidden hotkeys. Uniquely, these cannot be configured in the options.

  • ESC: opens the menu.
  • Ctrl+Q: prompts the player whether they want to quit (same as "Quit to Main Menu" in the menu).
  • Ctrl+S: saves the current scenario (also under the menu).
  • Ctrl+L: opens the Load Scenario menu (also under the menu).
  • Ctrl+M: goes to the Map tab.
  • Ctrl+T: goes to the Terrain tab.
  • Ctrl+P: goes to the Players tab.
  • Ctrl+U: goes to the Units tab.
  • Ctrl+D: goes to the Diplomacy tab.
  • Ctrl+V: goes to the Victory tab.
  • Ctrl+O: goes to the Options tab.
  • Ctrl+W: goes to the Messages tab.
  • Ctrl+C: goes to the Cinematics tab.
  • Ctrl+R: goes to the Triggers tab.
  • Ctrl+A: shows the selection box of every object. This includes sub-objects, such as the individual, internal parts of the Town Center,
  • Ctrl+G: cycles replacement restrictions (listed below) when placing units and other objects (loops to the beginning).
    • Objects snapped to grid; no illegal placement (default).
    • Objects have no grid snap; no illegal placement.
    • Objects have no grid snap; objects can be placed anywhere (highlighted yellow when normally illegal).
    • Objects snapped to grid; objects can be placed anywhere (highlighted yellow when normally illegal).


The terrain available are split into three categories: Land, Forest, and Water. Note that several terrain are in multiple categories. Land terrain can be built upon and crossed by land units, forest terrain automatically creates trees, and water terrain can be crossed by water units.


  • Beach (Non-Navigable)
  • Beach (Non-Navigable), Wet Gravel
  • Beach (Non-Navigable), Wet Rock
  • Beach (Non-Navigable), Wet Sand
  • Black[note 1]
  • Desert, Cracked[note 2]
  • Desert, Quicksand[note 3]
  • Desert, Sand
  • Dirt 1
  • Dirt 2
  • Dirt 3
  • Dirt 4
  • Dirt, Mud
  • Dirt, Savannah
  • Farm
  • Farm, 0%
  • Farm, 33%
  • Farm, 66%
  • Farm, Dead
  • Grass 1
  • Grass 2
  • Grass 3
  • Grass, Dry
  • Grass, Foundation
  • Grass, Jungle
  • Grass, Jungle (Rainforest)
  • Grass, Other
  • Gravel, Default
  • Gravel, Desert
  • Ice[note 3]
  • Ice, Navigable[note 4]
  • Road
  • Road, Broken
  • Road, Fungus
  • Road, Gravel
  • Rock 1[note 3]
  • Snow[note 5]
  • Snow, Foundation[note 5]
  • Snow, Light
  • Snow, Strong
  • Swamp, Bogland[note 3]
  • Underbrush
  • Underbrush, Jungle
  • Underbrush, Leaves
  • Underbrush, Snow
  • Water 2D, Bridge[note 3]


Forest terrain works by having tree objects automatically spawn when creating the terrain in the editor. These trees can be manually removed or manipulated afterwards. Each forest terrain is listed with the non-forest terrain and trees that have the same appearance.

Forest Name Terrain Trees
Forest, Acacia Dirt, Savannah Tree (Acacia)
Forest, Autumn Underbrush Tree (Oak Autumn)
Forest, Autumn Snow Underbrush, Snow Tree (Oak Autumn Snow)
Forest, Bamboo Underbrush Tree (Bamboo Forest)
Forest, Baobab Dirt 4 Tree (Baobab)
Forest, Birch Underbrush Tree (Birch)
Forest, Bush Underbrush Bush A
Bush B
Forest, Dead Underbrush, Snow Bush C
Tree (Dead)
Forest, Dragon Tree Dirt 1 Tree (Dragon)
Forest, Jungle Underbrush Tree (Jungle)
Forest, Mangrove Shallows, Mangrove Tree (Mangrove)
Forest, Mediterranean Underbrush Tree (Cypress)
Tree (Olive)
Tree (Italian Pine)
Forest, Oak Underbrush Tree (Oak Forest)
Forest, Oak Bush Underbrush Bush A
Bush B
Tree (Oak Forest)
Forest, Palm Desert Desert, Sand Tree (Palm Forest)
Forest, Palm Grass Grass 2 Tree (Palm Forest)
Forest, Pine Underbrush Tree (Pine Forest)
Forest, Pine Snow Underbrush, Snow Tree (Birch)
Forest, Rainforest Underbrush, Jungle Tree (Rainforest)
Forest, Reeds Underbrush Tree (Reeds)
Forest, Reeds (Beach) Beach, Wet Tree (Reeds)
Forest, Reeds (Shallows) Shallows Tree (Reeds)



  1. Cannot be crossed by land units or built upon.
  2. Causes buildings placed on top to receive +20% damage, rounded up.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Cannot be built upon.
  4. 4.00 4.01 4.02 4.03 4.04 4.05 4.06 4.07 4.08 4.09 4.10 4.11 4.12 Can be crossed by both land and water units. Cannot be build upon.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Generates snow graphics on buildings.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Also a forest terrain, see above table.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 Can be crossed by both land and naval units and can be build upon.

Terrain files[]

Each terrain has an associated texture file (.dds) which determines how the terrain looks. Each terrain also has an associated sound file (.wem) which determines the ambience sounds which play when the player is in-game. The exact mechanism of the ambience selected is not known, but it roughly depends on the tiles currently in view of the player, randomly chosen from the possible ambient sound files associated with all terrain types on visible tiles.

The list of texture and ambient file names for each terrain is tabulated below. The table also mentions which terrain is walkable (land units), buildable, and which are navigable by ships:

Scenario Editor terrain name Texture file (.dds) Ambience file (.wem) Walkable by land units Buildable (except Fishing Ships) Navigable by ships
Beach g_bch 1923763734 Yes Walls/Docks Yes
Beach (Non-Navigable) g_bch 1923763734 Yes Yes No
Beach (Non-Navigable), Wet g_beach_wet 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Beach (Non-Navigable), Wet Gravel g_gravel_wet 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Beach (Non-Navigable), Wet Rock g_rock_wet 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Beach, Ice g_ice_beach 521013026 Yes Walls/Docks Yes
Beach, Vegetation g_bc2 1923763734 Yes Walls/Docks Yes
Beach, Wet g_beach_wet 3923190460 Yes Walls/Docks Yes
Beach, Wet Gravel g_gravel_wet 3923190460 Yes Walls/Docks Yes
Beach, Wet Rock g_rock_wet 3923190460 Yes Walls/Docks Yes
Beach, White g_bc3 1923763734 Yes Walls/Docks Yes
Beach, White, Vegetation g_bc4 1923763734 Yes Walls/Docks Yes
Black g_bla 151185016 Yes No No
Desert, Cracked g_pal1 151185016 Yes Yes No
Desert, Quicksand g_qs 151185016 Yes No No
Desert, Sand g_pal 151185016 Yes Yes No
Dirt 1 g_des 151185016 Yes Yes No
Dirt 2 g_ds2 151185016 Yes Yes No
Dirt 3 g_ds3 151185016 Yes Yes No
Dirt 4 g_ds4 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Dirt, Mud g_gr4 151185016 Yes Yes No
Dirt, Savannah g_gr5 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Farm g_fm1 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Farm, 0% g_fc1 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Farm, 33% g_fc2 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Farm, 67% g_fc3 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Farm, Dead g_fm2 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Grass 1 g_grs 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Grass 2 g_gr2 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Grass 3 g_gr3 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Grass, Dry g_gr7 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Grass, Foundation g_ds2 151185016 Yes Yes No
Grass, Jungle g_gr6 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Grass, Jungle (Rainforest) g_gr6 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Grass, Other g_grs 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Gravel, Default g_gravel_default 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Gravel, Desert g_ds5 151185016 Yes Yes No
Ice g_ice 521013026 Yes No No
Ice, Navigable g_ice 521013026 Yes No Yes
Rice Farm g_rm1 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Rice Farm, 0% g_rc1 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Rice Farm, 33% g_rc2 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Rice Farm, 66% g_rc3 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Rice Farm, Dead g_rm2 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Road g_rd1 - Yes Yes No
Road, Broken g_rd2 - Yes Yes No
Road, Fungus g_sr2 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Road, Gravel g_rd5 - Yes Yes No
Rock 1 g_rck 3923190460 Yes No No
Shallows g_sha 1923763734 Yes No Yes
Shallows, Azure g_sh2 1923763734 Yes No Yes
Shallows, Mangrove g_sh3 1923763734 Yes Yes Yes
Snow g_sno 521013026 Yes Yes No
Snow, Foundation g_snd 521013026 Yes Yes No
Snow, Light g_sno 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Snow, Strong g_sno 521013026 Yes Yes No
Swamp, Bogland g_qs2 151185016 Yes No No
Swamp, Shallows g_sh4 1923763734 Yes No Yes
Underbrush g_for 811708576 Yes Yes No
Underbrush, Jungle g_fo2 2245623692 Yes Yes No
Underbrush, Leaves g_underbrush_leaves 3923190460 Yes Yes No
Underbrush, Snow g_snf 521013026 Yes Yes No
Water 2D, Bridge g_wtr 1597834659 Yes No No
Water 2D, Shoreless g_wtr 1597834659 No No Yes
Water, Azure g_wt5 1597834659 No Docks Yes
Water, Brown g_wt_brown 1923763734 No Docks Yes
Water, Deep g_wt2 1597834659 No No Yes
Water, Deep Ocean g_wt4 1597834659 No No Yes
Water, Green g_wt_green 1923763734 No Docks Yes
Water, Medium g_wt3 1597834659 No No Yes
Water, Shallow g_wtr 1923763734 No Docks Yes

The terrains used by different forests from the forest tool, and their texture and ambience file names are:

Forest name Terrain used Ambience file name (.wem)
Forest, Acacia Dirt, Savannah (g_gr5) 2245623692
Forest, Autumn Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Autumn Snow Underbrush, Snow (g_snf) 811708576
Forest, Bamboo Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Baobab Dirt 4 (g_ds4) 2245623692
Forest, Birch Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Bush Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Dead Underbrush, Snow (g_snf) 811708576
Forest, Dragon Tree Dirt 1 (g_des) 2245623692
Forest, Jungle Underbrush (g_for) 2245623692
Forest, Mangrove Shallows, Mangrove (g_sh3) 2245623692
Forest, Mediterranean Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Oak Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Oak Bush Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Palm Desert Desert, Sand (g_pal) 151185016
Forest, Palm Grass Grass 2 (g_gr2) 151185016
Forest, Pine Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Pine Snow Underbrush, Snow (g_snf) 521013026
Forest, Rainforest Underbrush, Jungle (g_fo2) 2245623692
Forest, Reeds Underbrush (g_for) 811708576
Forest, Reeds (Beach) Beach, Wet (g_beach_wet) 811708576
Forest, Reeds (Shallows) Shallows (g_sha) 1923763734


The Map tool allows the user to create a brand-new map for their scenario, as well as edit several settings relating to the map.

Blank maps[]

Blank maps can be generated based on default terrain, with a few changes. In the Definitive Edition, any terrain is available for a blank map.

The default terrain for blank maps in The Age of Kings are the following:

  • Dirt 1
  • Grass 1
  • Water 1

From The Conquerors onwards, any terrain can be chosen.

Random map[]

Random maps are more varied in terrain and some feature more realistic topography. Any non-Real World/Special map can be generated this way.

Seed map[]

Like Random map, but allows the user to choose a particular seed for the random number generator when creating the map.

Map size[]

The number listed in brackets is the size of each side of the map (every map is a square). While several maps have a recommended map size, they can be any of the following:

  • Tiny (2 player) [120]
  • Small (3 player) [144]
  • Medium (4 player) [168]
  • Normal (6 player) [200]
  • Large (8 player) [220]
  • Huge [240]
  • Ludicrous [480] (introduced in The Forgotten)

Hidden map sizes[]

Since update 107882, the following map sizes are also available if the player enters the launch command "MORE_MAP_SIZES"

  • Miniature (1 player) [80]
  • Giant [252]
  • Massive [276]
  • Enormous [300]
  • Colossal [320]
  • Incredible [360]
  • Monstrous [400]

Other settings[]

  • AI Map Type controls what how the AI acts. Essentially, the AI will function as if it is playing the map that is selected.
  • Color Mood, added in the Definitive Edition, controls what visual color shader is loaded. This can give the map an aesthetic feeling depending on which is chosen.
  • Team Positions places teammates in order depending on their color.
  • Extend Map allows the user to make the map bigger (but not smaller). The Map Offset is the place where the current map is relative to the expanded map.
  • Script Filename is the name of the .xs file that is intended for the scenario. The ".xs" extension needs to be ommitted.


The terrain tap allows the user to modify features of the scenario's map with different brushes.


This brush allows the user to modify the map's terrain.

Terrain settings[]

When land and water terrain meet, they automatically generate beaches. The types of beaches generated can be controlled by the "Beach Types" table. Additionally, whether a beach creates waves can be toggled on or off.

When painting terrain, several terrain types will automatically generate eye candy. This can be disabled as well by unchecking the "Enable Eye Candy" option.

The Definitive Edition introduced a feature for 'terrain layering'. This is a simple checkbox that lets map makers combine two different types of terrain in the same map squares, which greatly increases the variety of terrains that are possible to feature in game maps. The terrain's properties are the same as the base layer (for example, grass over water has the properties of water). Some terrain combinations look very different depending on which terrain is the base and which is the layer (e.g. Ice layered over Black looks very different from Black layered over Ice).


This brush manipulates the elevation of the map, on a scale of 1 through 7. Certain terrain (notably water) cannot be on slopes, and will instead be automatically replaced by grass.


Cliff types AoE2DE

This brush allows the creation of cliffs. There are three types: Granite (grey), Desert (sand brown), and Snow (grey with white tops). The three variants cannot connect to each other.

Map Copy[]

The Map Copy feature enables the player to copy certain objects and patch of terrain into another area. This also enables the player to make contraptions of buildings that looks like a huge, custom building, very popular with designers that concentrate on the aesthetics of their map (though the ability to disable placement restrictions in later versions has made this feature less useful). Additionally, objects can be converted via this method (though this is also possible via the units tab). There are several options to decide what to copy:

  • Everything
  • Buildings
  • Eye Candy
  • Gaia Objects
  • Terrain
  • Units


This brush allows the user to quickly erase objects en masse. Specifically, it allows the option to chose to delete:

  • Everything
  • Buildings
  • Gaia Objects
  • Invisible Objects (notable Map Revealers)
  • Terrain Overlays
  • Trees
  • Units


The top-left corner of the bottom window displays the player currently being modified, and can be used to switch players.

Base Priority[]

When placing players together based on their team, the game uses this to determine where to place each player. For example, on Front Line, the two players in the center have a base priority of 1, with the next closest having a priority of 2 and so on. With two teams, the game places the first two players of each team in the center positions, and uses the priority to place each following player as close to an ally as possible.


Sets the AI used by the player. If set to none, the AI will not do anything (outside of some units, like Monks will still pick up Relics and Villagers will harvest sheep). Can be locked with the "Lock Personality" checkbox, preventing players from changing it while setting up a game.

Other Settings[]

  • Starting Age: sets the age that the player starts in.
  • Starting resources: sets the resources each player starts with.
  • Pop Limit: sets the player's population limit.
  • Color: controls the player's color.
  • Tribe Name: If a name is entered, it overwrites the name of an AI player (human players will always use their name).
  • Name (String ID): If a valid language string ID is entered, it overwrites an AI player's name as above (overriding the Tribe Name if entered). Useful for multi-language support.
  • Civilization: sets the player's default civilization.
  • Lock Civ: locks the player into their default civilization.
  • Architecture: sets the architecture to the chosen civilization. If set to "Random" or "Full Random", it will use the default architecture.
  • Swap Players: this option will switch the two selected players, as well as all of their units.


There are 4 tabs and these include Units (standard, usually in-game soldiers), Buildings (standard, usually in-game buildings), Heroes (Heroes, usually from the campaigns, but also others) and Other (Miscellaneous objects like flags etc.). If too many units are placed on the map, the game may lag which may vary depending on the amount of units placed and the performance of the player's operating computer. Placing too many buildings, especially towers, may also cause this problem although to a lesser extent.

If a player has no units or buildings when the map is started, they will start like the standard start - 1 Town Center, 3 Villagers, and one scout unit. There will not be any additional resources, as these are controlled by the player panel. These units are generated after the game has started, and as such, the scout unit will not be able to auto-scout.

Wild animals are available in the Units subsection after setting the player as Gaia. Resources such as Berry Bush, Stone Mine, Gold Mine, individual trees, Relic, and all types of fish, are all available in the Other subsection after setting the player as Gaia.

Scenario Editor units[]

The following units are exclusive to the Scenario Editor and may appear in campaign scenarios. Some of these units are cheat units.

* appears in the "Building" list

Scenario Editor buildings[]

Unconstructable buildings can only be placed when a map is created in the Scenario Editor and are usually not available in random map games.

* appears in the "Other" list

Scenario Editor objects[]

Miscellaneous objects and eye candy.

  • Animal Skeleton
  • Barrels
  • Black Tile
  • Blocker
  • Bonfire
  • Bridge (various)*
  • Broken Cart
  • Buddha Statue A
  • Buddha Statue B
  • Buddha Statue C
  • Buddha Statue D
  • Burned building
  • Cactus
  • Castle Runs
  • Chapel
  • Church Ruins
  • Cracks
  • Crater
  • Dismantled Cart icon AoE2DE Dismantled Cart
  • ES Flag
  • FE Flag
  • Fern Patch
  • Flag A
  • Flag B
  • Flag C
  • Flag D
  • Flag E
  • Flag F
  • Flag G
  • Flag H
  • Flag I
  • Flag J
  • Flag K
  • Flag L
  • Flag M
  • Flame 1
  • Flame 2
  • Flame 3
  • Flame 4
  • Flare
  • Flare A (Permenant)
  • Flare B (Permenant)
  • Flower Bed
  • Flowers 1
  • Flowers 2
  • Flowers 3
  • Flowers 4
  • Gallow
  • Goods
  • Grass Patch, Dry
  • Grass Patch, Green
  • Grass, Dry
  • Grass, Green
  • Grave
  • Hay Stack
  • Head
  • Ice, Navigable
  • Impaled Corpse
  • Indian Ruins
  • Indian Statues
  • Loot
  • Lumber
  • Map Revealer
  • Map Revealer Giant
  • Map Revealer Medium
  • Mountain 1
  • Mountain 2
  • Mountain 3
  • Mountain 4
  • Mountain 5
  • Mountain 6
  • Mountain 7
  • Mountain 8
  • Nine Bands
  • Old Stone Head
  • Nubian Pyramid
  • Old Stone Head
  • Pagoda A
  • Pagoda B
  • Pagoda C
  • Paifang Gate
  • Path 1
  • Path 2
  • Path 3
  • Path 4
  • Plant
  • Plant (Bush, Green)
  • Plant (Dead)
  • Plant (Flowers)
  • Plant (Jungle)
  • Plant (Rainforest)
  • Plant (Shrub, Green)
  • Plant (Underbrush Tropical)
  • Plant (Underbrush)
  • Plant (Weeds)
  • Quarry
  • Rekha-Deul Temple
  • Rock (Beach)
  • Rock (Jungle)
  • Rock 1
  • Rock 2
  • Rock Formation 1
  • Rock Formation 2
  • Rock Formation 3
  • Roman Ruins
  • Rubble 1 x 1
  • Rubble 2 x 2
  • Rubble 3 x 3
  • Rubble 4 x 4
  • Rubble 8 x 8
  • Rugs
  • Ruins*
  • Sea Rocks 1
  • Sea Rocks 2
  • Shipwreck A
  • Shipwreck B
  • Woodensign aoe2DE Sign
  • Skeleton
  • Smoke
  • Snow Mountain 1
  • Snow Mountain 2
  • Snow Mountain 3
  • Statue (Civilization)
  • Statue (Column)
  • Statue (Left)
  • Statue (Right)
  • Stelae A
  • Stelae B
  • Stelae C
  • Stump
  • Stupa
  • Svan Tower
  • Target A
  • Target B
  • Temple Ruin
  • Torch A
  • Torch B
  • Trowulan Gate
  • Vases
  • Waterfall (Background)
  • Waterfall (Overlay)
  • Wooden bridge (various)*
  • Well
* Listed under Buildings tab

Manipulation options[]

  • Place: places the unit. This can be used to garrison objects by clicking on the building or unit they are to be garrisoned inside. The unit can be rotated with the scroll wheel.
  • Delete: deletes the unit under the cursor. All garrisoned units are also deleted.
  • Garrison Delete: deletes the highlighted unit in the "Garrison" box.
  • Move: moves the unit under the cursor.
  • Rotate: rotates the selected unit. The scroll wheel can be used to expedite the process. Note that certain objects (notable houses) use their rotation to dictate their aesthetic variant.
  • Select: selects the current object, and shows its garrison.
  • Convert: converts objects belonging to the selected players to the right of the option to that of the player in the box on the left. The size of the brush can be configured. This does not allow conversion of gaia-exclusive objects to a normal player.


This tab allows the player to adjust diplomatic relations for each player. Under default settings, computer players are more likely to randomly change diplomatic stance of the user from enemy to neutral the more computer players are on the map.

Global Victory[]

This tab serves to determine how the overall game should be played. Gameplay can be set to standard, conquest, score with or without the time limit or using custom settings. The custom settings are conquest, exploration victory, and relic victory. Any number can be selected, and it can require either all or any one. This also allows for a secondary game mode in Empire Wars, Sudden Death, Regicide, and King of the Hill, all of which are able to be selected independently of each other.


This tab allowing the creator to disable the creation or development of certain units, buildings or technologies for each player. Full tech tree can be checked for each player (this does not disable civilization bonuses) as well as the AI difficulty when testing the scenario. The player's starting view can also be changed under this tab. This can also disable human players from changing alliances, cause Villagers to lose their resources when re-tasked to a different resource, and enable units automatically moving out of the way of others.


This tab serves a similar function to the previous game in that it offers the player to create and edit crucial background information about the scenario which is always presented before the game starts if available. Sections include scenario instructions, hints, scouts reports, victory and loss messages, and history. There is also a box to use string table IDs instead.


This tab is optional and provides the player to insert a short video clip related to the scenario both before and after the game based on whether the player successfully completed the scenario. To perform this action, the video file must be present in the "data" folder of the "Age of Empires II" folder. It is also possible to include a background image for the instructions.


Main article: Trigger

This feature enables the player to create and activate a variety of effects once certain conditions are meet. Triggers can be used to enhance scenarios and simulate many genres, e.g. Defend-the-Spot, Role-playing games, Build and Destroy, and Fixed Force effectively. If used creatively, triggers can be used to create objects that can be found nowhere else in the game. The Definitive Edition has the added ability to copy and paste triggers, making scenario editing quicker.


This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it.

AoEIIDE icon Definitive Edition[]

  • In a patch[When?], the Desert cliff was added, but made visually identical to the preexisting cliff.
  • With update 95810, the Desert cliff was given its own appearance, and the Snow cliff variant was added.


Gameplay elements in the Age of Empires series
Age · Ability (II · M · III · IV) · Architecture set (II · III) · Area of Effect (Trample damage) · Armor/Resists (hack/melee · pierce/ranged · crush/siege)  · Armor class/Tag (I - original · I - Return of Rome · II · IV) · Artificial intelligence · Attack (Attack bonus/Multiplier) · Attack delay · Attack ground · Aura (IV) · Auto Scout · Building (I · II · M · III · IV) · Civilization (I · II · M · III · IV) · Civilization bonus · Cheat code (I · II · M · III · IV) · Conversion · Counter · Diplomacy · Gaia/Mother Nature · Game modes · Garrison · Gather Point · Healing · Hit points · Hotkey · Line of Sight · Mini map · Player · Population · Range · Rate of Fire · Regeneration · Relic (II · M · IV) · Repairing · Resource (Renewable resources) · Scenario Editor (I · II · M · III · IV) · Score · Signal Allies/Flare · Soundtrack (I · II · M · III · IV) · Speed · Stealth mode · Taunt · Technology (I · II · M · III · IV) · Technology tree (I · II · IV) · Terrain (AoE:DS · AoM:DS) · Town Bell · Trade (IV) · Tribute · Unit (I · II · M · III · IV) · Unit formation · Unit stance (III) · Upgrade (I · II · III · IV) · User interface · Victory · Villager Priority
Genie Engine
Frame delay · Full Tech Tree · Team bonus
ReturnRome-AoEIcon Age of EmpiresRuins · Discovery
AoE2-DLCicon-0 Age of Empires IIPass-through damage · Projectile duplication
Bang Engine
Autoqueue · Snare
Aom original icon Age of MythologyGod (Major · Minor) · God power · Settlement
3Icon48px Age of Empires IIIAge-up methods (Politician/Tribal Council/Wonder/Federal State/Alliance· Banner army · Consulate · Damage Cap · Home City · Home City Card · Inspiring Flag · Minor civilization · Nuggets · Promotion · Revolution · Target Lock · Trade Monopoly · Trade Route · Treasure
Essence Engine
GameIcon-AoE4 Age of Empires IVBounty · Dynasty · Fire armor · Imperial Council (Vizier Point) · Influence · Landmark · Religion · Sacred Site · Variant civilization
If a gameplay element has different pages across games, like civilization, the individual pages are linked in brackets.