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Triumph Studios and Paradox Interactive have released Dragon Dawn, the first of several DLC packs set to expand turn-based strategy game Age of Wonders 4 over the coming months. The expansion was accompanied by the free Wyvern Update, which focused on integrating feedback from players regarding balancing and tech issues into the game. Naturally, this wasn’t the last substantial update the developers will put out free of charge.

On a newly released roadmap, Triumph detailed two upcoming patches with big changes – one is planned to come during the summer months, the other alongside the Empires & Ashes DLC in Q4 2023.

The Watcher Update, which is up first, will contain a major AI update, implement improvements in research and empire building, smooth out the path to a magic victory, and give some love to underground maps.

The Golem Update, which arrives with the Empires & Ashes DLC, will add a completely new game mechanic, the Item Forge System. In addition, it will allow for better war coordination with allies and vassals, take a deeper look at faction balance and identity, and improve the gameplay on water, which has been pretty lackluster on release.

Age of Wonders 4 free update roadmap.

Two additional free content updates are set to arrive this year for Age of Wonders 4.

Interestingly, it seems like the developers are planning to put more constraints on players when it comes to research and faction development: “Currently, it's too easy to acquire an abundance of Tomes, causing balance issues and often resulting in homogenous end-game factions. Our changes will limit players to a subset of Tomes and Affinities in a single session, encouraging more meaningful choices and stronger faction identities,” game director Lennart Sas wrote in a developer diary.

He continued: “For the Watcher Update, we're enhancing the Underground, making caverns more spacious and valuable, relocating the Ore-class of magic materials predominantly underground, granting higher annex ranges for underground cities, and introducing themed Infestations through excavations. Water gameplay improvements are also planned, offering more reasons to explore and ways to exploit water provinces, as well as enhancing naval encounters. Lava gameplay, including lava walking and faction-specific lava sector exploitation, is under consideration for future updates.”

It looks like some drastic changes are coming to Age of Wonders 4. Be sure to check out our overview of Dragon Dawn units, Tomes of Magic, and Race Transformations to stay on top of things. If you’re new to the game, you may also want to know everything there’s to know about outposts.