Team Methods

Heaven’s Reference Pages

Team Methods

By Cherub Malachi

This guide is intended for teams who’s goal is to win. Some of these suggestions are not very fun to follow, but they will improve your teams ability to win games. This guild is written with 3v3 and 4v4 games in mind.

Selecting Civs

In a team game you have a few options. The makeup of the opposing team should effect which option your team chooses. You should discuss what type of game you want to play with your team before the game is launched; in a private chat room of course;-) It’s also important to be able to recognize what your opposing team is doing when they pick their team. You may need to make some last minute changes, or even select a whole different type of team before the game starts. Here are a few of the options I like. 
Option 1: The diversified team
The idea behind the diversified team is to produce a unit where all of the important aspects of the game are covered. These teams consist of 3 or 4 civilizations that are extremely good in a certain area of AoE. The civilizations compliment each other by covering for the weaknesses of one another. An example of this type of team would be Yamato, Minoan, Egyptian. This type of team can deal well with a variety of situations, but when one player is dropped the unit becomes much weaker. Another powerful example would be Persian, Sumerian, and Yamato. 
Option 2: The stacked team
This type of team can be very powerful in team competitions. This involves a team where all three player choose the same, or very similar civilizations and try to overpower the opponent in their area of specialty. An example of this would be Yamato, Yamato, Shang. This team would be in bad shape when the opponent is in the Iron age, but the idea is to keep the opponent from ever getting there. Another example of this could be Babylonian, Choson, Egyptian. Of course this team would have a very hard time against the previous example, but as a defensive team you can’t get much better. 
Option 3: The age stepping team
This is a team where each player picks a civilization that peeks militarily at a given age. The players rush to that age and attack. This can be very effective, but problems can arise when positioning is bad, or the early rush player gets a bad start. An example of this type of team would be Sumerian, Shang, Hittite. Here the Sumerian would have to villager rush, the Shang would Bronze rush, and the Hittite would rush to Iron. This works best with 3 very advanced players who can all hold their own, on their own. Obviously none of the players will be of much help to each other during the primary attacks. 
With this type of team each player must commit to their rush and go all out towards that end. The Sumerian must do an all out villager rush on at least one civilization, even at the expense of the rest of his game. He may be out by Bronze, but if he does his job at least one civ will also be effectively out as well. The Shang must do a true Bronze rush and put everything towards that and not even think about going to Iron until he has severely crippled or destroyed one civ in Bronze if not 2. The Hittite of course can’t go past Iron, but he must not participate in pre-Iron attacks either. The Hittite must wall in and do an Iron rush, he should be Iron by 18 – 20 min into the game. He cannot help the other players until Iron.


In a team game all players much be responsible for scouting their own area and the opponents close to them. If one civ has a villager speed advantage though that player should take it upon himself to do the deep scouting, since he will be able to do a better job with less resources and time spent. Anything worthwhile should be reported back to the team. This may include resources that are up for grab in the middle of the board.

The Aging Process

Age rushing can be very effective in AoE, but it can also be disastrous. If you are performing a true Bronze rush and you get attacked in Tool your game could be over. Most people don’t truly rush in AoE unless they are using Yamato, Shang, or Assyrian for obvious reasons. Two factors should effect your decision to rush and what age to rush to in team play. The FIRST factor should be position. The second should be your civilization and prior game plan. A player who is positioned in a way where his allies are on either side of him, the protected position, should usually rush to Iron. He will be the least likely to be attacked early so defense is less of an issue, that player will also be the farthest from the opponents in most cases. Even a Shang player in that position could do his team a favor by rushing to Iron. A possible exception to this is Persian, they lose too much steam in the Iron age, I would go ahead and Bronze rush with Persian, even in the protected position. 
The players on the ends, however, should NEVER rush to Iron. This would be foolish, even though it may work from time to time. The player(s) closest to the enemy should either Tool rush or Bronze rush most of the time. The exception being civilizations that will be late, or in situations where resource problems slow your early economic growth. In that case you should still attack in Tool or Bronze, but you have to setup an early defense as well. (Note: When I say rush I mean an all out, no defense , total optimization toward reaching a given age) NEVER expect an Iron rusher to assist in any way until Iron. When you decide what you will do, which should be by late Stone age, you should announce it to your teammates.


There is really way too much here for me to discuss, but here are some principles I like to go by:

  1. Group attacks are good, but someone needs to be watching the production base to ensure that sneak attacks are not effective while your fighting forces are away. 
  2. I think that double teams are good, but triple teams can be foolish. If a diversified team is being used then triple teams will be much more common since all players are needed to really be effective. 
  3. The main thing is to always let your teammates know when and where you will start an attack, and let them join if they can. 
  4. Multi-sided attacks are usually much more effective on larger opponents. 
  5. Don’t call for help during an attack unless it is a close match-up where the extra forces could decide the victory. 
  6. If your forces are getting slaughtered outright then just retreat and notify your teammates. 
  7. If you are really doing well then let your teammates know but don’t call them in, let them attack elsewhere.


There is too much for me to talk about here as well, but here are my guidelines:

  1. Make sure to build walls in most cases unless you are Bronze or Tool rushing. 
  2. I think it’s best to wall your allies out, then if they need in they can tell you. 
  3. If you are getting attacked and you cannot save your base then don’t try. If 20 Cavalry come in and you have 3 units then just run, don’t even ask for help. Notify your teammates and let them decide if they can help or not. 
  4. Walling the enemy into your base is a good thing. If your base is a lost cause, but you can wall the enemy in then do so. 
  5. Always build towers far enough way from the attackers that they won’t get destroyed before they are finished being built. 
  6. If you can hold the enemy for a while, but you feel you will ultimately lose, then hold them as long as you can, and notify your allies. In the mean time send your villagers somewhere safe.

Counter Attacking

This is the most important part of the game many times. Timing is critical here, not numbers. When you are attacked, whether you win or lose the battle you should immediately go on the counter offensive in most cases. This is especially true in Bronze. Even if all you have is 2 units send them on the counter attack right away. On the counter attack your highest priority should be to destroy houses, then military buildings, then villagers. If you are incapable of doing much damage to buildings then just go for villagers. By doing this you destroy the immediate threat of rearmament, then you can work on the villagers and production. Hurting production at that stage often has little effect if the opponent has already built up resources. 
If you are being attacked and you see that defense is useless then you should take your forces to the enemy, and not fight at your own base. In this case you should target villagers first. The purpose of this is to slow the opponent down, the immediate threat still exists so you should just attack his production as quickly as possible and hope this will benefit your allies. 
Overall, counter attacking in team game does this: 
It can regain or take the initiative, it distracts the opponent, it causes doubt in the mind of the opponent, it can slow the progress of the opponent. 
Counter attack can also involve double teams, and all kinds of other stuff not mentioned here.


I tend to shy away from tribute except for extreme cases. If you have been destroyed and you need wood for a TC, then you should ask for tribute. If you are in a position to do some offensive walling or towering, but you don’t have the stone, then ask for tribute. Don’t ask for tribute to get an age upgrade. If you don’t have the resources to do the upgrade, then you won’t have the resources to do anything when you get there either. Generally don’t do much tributeing until you have Coinage. If you have tons of something then tribute it out without asking first, if they have it too so what, but someone might need it. Don’t tribute when you don’t have much of something; this is a major point. 
If your ally has just been attacked and lost most everything he had then don’t tribute resources to him if you don’t have a lot of that resource, NO MATTER WHAT. If they just attacked him where do you think the enemy is going next… to you most likely. If you have the ability to improve your army then that is where the resources need to go, not to someone you just got spanked. If you get attacked soon after the situation could be worse for you than the person you just gave to. 
If you are just “fu-bared” and have no military hope then stop trying to age, just hide and collect wood and food and tribute to the team. This helps a lot more than trying to get a military going when you really can’t. Once your economy is going good then advance, but don’t push it. 
Never tribute to a sinking ship, and if your ship is sinking don’t ask for tribute, except for wood to build a TC, or stone to build walls or towers.

When Things go Wrong

Sometimes everything just seems to go wrong. If you are attacked before your allies can help, and you can’t help yourself, then just run away and hide. Its best to split your villagers up at this point and just try to get a few doing something somewhere. Don’t run all your villagers to your ally’s base. If they are undefended you will cause their death as well. You should run some of your villagers there though; the best time to do this is early in the game, especially if you think your economy will be bad. 
If some of your military buildings are left after the attack then continue to produce units there and distract the enemy. As long as they are dealing with you they are not attacking your allies. Your game is over so you might as well distract the enemy, and resort to gorilla warfare. Be sure to tell your allies NOT to come and help you if it’s hopeless. Tell your allies exactly what the enemy has unit wise. 
Try to counter attack if you can, even if it is useless, because you will distract the enemy and cause him spend time fortifying his base instead of pursuing offense.