How to Create a Map for Age of Empires 3

Written by david weinberg
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How to Create a Map for Age of Empires 3
(Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images)

The single and multiplayer game modes of Age of Empires III feature lush maps with detailed terrain, fortified encampments and challenging enemies. Age of Empires' built-in Scenario Editor allows you to create your own maps capable of doing everything the in-game maps do. The editor allows you to lay terrain, create units and group them into armies, build structures and create behaviour triggers. Maps can be designed for single-player or multiplayer use.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Open Age of Empires III from the Start menu. Select "Help and Tools" from the main menu. Select "Scenario Editor" to launch the scenario editor. Select "New/Load Scenario" from the file menu. Fill out the prompt with information about the map you would like to create. This will include the size of the map, the number of players, the number of teams and the default terrain.

  2. 2

    Use the options in the "Terrain" menu to decorate your map. "Paint Terrain" allows you to select a terrain type from the pop up palette and click anywhere on the map to place the terrain in that location. You can also drag the mouse across the map to fill terrain. "Paint Land" creates level land where there was once mountains or water. The "Water Tool" replaces land with water and adds visual effects to water that is already in place.

  3. 3

    Place objects on the map using the "Objects" menu. Objects include controllable units, buildings, animals, and props. Place buildings on the map to define military bases. Place units to create armies. Add animals and props to the map to create an economy.

  4. 4

    Define advanced map behaviours and conditions using the "Triggers" menu. The "Army Editor" creates groups of units that can be given commands or used to trigger events via the trigger editor. The "Group Editor" creates groups of other objects that can fulfil the same purpose. The "Trigger Editor" creates advanced behaviours by selecting a condition from the condition list and matching it with an effect from the effect list. For example, a trigger might be: if all of the enemy units are dead, declare victory for the player.

  5. 5

    Select "Save" from the "File" menu. Enter a name for your new map and press "Enter." Click "Play your Scenario" in the "Scenario" menu to try out your map.

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