Age of Empires 4 PC performance report - Graphics card benchmarks

Written by Chad Norton on Wed, Oct 27, 2021 2:46 PM
System Requirements Optimum 1080p PC Build Low vs Ultra Screenshots GPU Performance Chart CPU List That Meet System Requirements GPU List That Meet System Requirements

Let's take a trip back in time to the historical period of the middle ages, as the new Age of Empires game finally launches tomorrow. But how well will our PC systems perform? Thankfully, the new game seems to cater to a range of hardware, so let's see what kind of FPS we can get with different graphics in this Age of Empires 4 PC performance benchmarks...

First of all, in this PC performance benchmark article for Age of Empires 4, we benchmark a range of graphics cards going from the higher-end RTX 3070; to the mid-range GTX 1060 which is around the same performance as the recommended GPU for AOE4; and finally down to the lower-end R7 370 to test out the game's new Min Spec Mode for low-spec PCs.

Then we go through the FPS test results of each graphics card running at 1080p, 1440p and 4K screen resolutions. From there we can see the performance of the minimum and recommended system requirement graphics cards and consider how well optimized Age of Empires 4 really is.

Unfortunately, Age of Empires 4 doesn't have any graphical presets to choose from, so we've gone ahead and chosen our own mix of graphics options to represent our own custom presets, which you can see below. However, AOE4 also includes a new 'Min Spec Mode' which is a substantially reduced graphics option for lower-end systems. To enable the mode, you need to change the 'Image Quality' setting down to Low, which will automatically reduce all other settings to their lowest value. Settings marked with a '-' indicates an option that was seemingly set to lower than its represented value.

Age of Empires 4 Custom Presets Low Medium High
Image Quality Low Medium High
Animation Quality - Medium High
Shadow Quality Low Medium High
Texture Detail - Medium High
Geometry Detail - Medium Maximum
Anti-Aliasing - Low High
Physics - Medium High

Age of Empires 4 also unfortunately does not include an in-game FPS benchmark tool, so instead we loaded up one of the early levels of the game where there is a big battle between two factions. This area includes dozens of friendly and enemy units engaging in combat. In our tests, we found this to be pretty representative of some of the most demanding moments in AOE 4, as FPS can improve quite a lot during calmer moments. As such, consider these close to the worst case scenario FPS results so you don't get caught out on low FPS in the late game.

With that in mind, let's jump into the PC performance benchmarks for Age of Empires 4...

Age of Empires 4 PC Graphics Settings

Check your PC can run Age of Empires 4 system requirements

--------------

Age of Empires 4 Minimum system requirements

Age of Empires 4 Low system requirements

Age of Empires 4 Recommended system requirements

Age of Empires 4 Ideal system requirements

--------------

CLICK ANY IMAGE IN THIS PAGE TO EXPAND THE IMAGE

Age of Empires 4 RTX 3070 benchmarks and frames per second analysis performed on Nvidia Gigabyte GeForce RTX 3070 Aorus Master | Intel i7-10700K | 16GB

8c4e0b7e-9956-44c0-889c-b1523f0b544a.jpg

Average FPS for Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 in Age of Empires 4 @ 1080p

Age of Empires 4 Low Medium High
Average FPS 303.2 187 169.9
Min FPS 278.6 174.5 163.3
Max FPS 319.9 202.5 176.5
1% Low 145.3 138.7 138.9
0.1% Low 111 100.2 115

The FPS performance of the RTX 3070 in Age of Empires 4 at 1080p is really good, achieving well over 100fps even on High graphics settings. This means the RTX 3070 is perfect for playing AOE4 on High graphics settings at 1080p resolution,

Average FPS for Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 in Age of Empires 4 @ 1440p

Age of Empires 4 Low Medium High
Average FPS 299.1 179 153
Min FPS 271.8 170.7 149.4
Max FPS 318.9 193.8 158.3
1% Low 147.3 143.8 125.6
0.1% Low 109.2 118.2 104.9

The FPS performance of the RTX 3070 at 1440p in Age of Empires 4 is also really good, once again delivering more than 100fps even on the Max graphics settings. Overall, the RTX 3070 is perfect for playing AOE4 on High graphics settings at 1440p resolution.

Average FPS for Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 in Age of Empires 4 @ 4K

Age of Empires 4 Low Medium High
Average FPS 273.6 110.7 87
Min FPS 231.7 108.3 84.7
Max FPS 297.3 115.3 89.2
1% Low 157.4 98.2 77.5
0.1% Low 90.7 83.6 58.2

The FPS performance at 4K in Age of Empires 4 with the RTX 3070 is once again really good. Although it doesn;t reach more than 100fps on Max graphics settings, it still delivers above 60fps. Therefore, the RTX 3070 is perfect for playing AOE4 at 4K resolution on High graphics settings.

Overall, looking at the results above, the RTX 3070 is perfectly suitable for playing Age of Empires IV at 1080p, 1440p, and 4K resolutions on High graphics settings.

Age of Empires 4 GTX 1060 benchmarks and frames per second analysis performed on Nvidia MSI GeForce GTX 1060 | Intel i7-10700K | 16GB

54e873dc-c864-4103-be1a-441b2c28f8be.jpg

Average FPS for Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 in Age of Empires 4 @ 1080p

Age of Empires 4 Low Medium High
Average FPS 293.3 110.5 80.8
Min FPS 252 107.5 79.2
Max FPS 310.4 115.8 83.5
1% Low 196 98.3 73.7
0.1% Low 18.4 81.3 65.7

The GTX 1060's FPS performance in Age of Empires 4 at 1080p is really good, achieving more than 60fps even on High graphics settings. This makes the GTX 1060 perfectly suitable for playing AOE4 on High graphics settings at 1080p resolution.

Average FPS for Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 in Age of Empires 4 @ 1440p

Age of Empires 4 Low Medium High
Average FPS 214.5 75.1 54.6
Min FPS 198.6 72.6 52.1
Max FPS 231.2 78.8 57.6
1% Low 181.5 60.7 27
0.1% Low 116.1 36.2 24.9

At 1440p, the GTX 1060's FPS performance in Age of Empires 4 is also pretty good, achieving above 60fps up to Medium graphics settings and just below 60fps on High settings. Luckily, AOE4 does not need more than 60fps for an enjoyable experience, so the GTX 1060 is perfectly suitable for playing Age of Empires IV on High graphics settings at 1440p resolution.

Average FPS for Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 in Age of Empires 4 @ 4K

Age of Empires 4 Low Medium High
Average FPS 114.3 36.1 29.4
Min FPS 107.1 34.1 27.9
Max FPS 119.7 38.9 30.9
1% Low 99 20.7 18.1
0.1% Low 51.7 19.7 17

Finally at 4K resolution, the GTX 1060's FPS performance is okay. As mentioned above AOE4 does not need 60fps for an enjoyable experience, so up to Medium settings are fine. At High settings it is still playable most of the time since this benchmark was conducted during some of the most demanding moments in the game, so the rest of your playtime will be okay, but it is not ideal.

Overall, the GTX 1060 is perfect for playing Age of Empires 4 on High graphics settings at 1080p and 1440p resolutions, though the latter may be preferable on lower graphics settings. At 4K it is also suitable up to Medium settings, with High settings pushing it slightly in the most demanding moments of the game.

Age of Empires 4 R7 370 benchmarks and frames per second analysis performed on AMD XFX Radeon R7 370 | Intel i7-10700K | 16GB

a0bf1289-9e21-4abf-b22e-70eb1ddd4ea0.jpg

Average FPS for AMD Radeon R7 370 in Age of Empires 4 @ 1080p

Age of Empires 4 Low Medium High
Average FPS 122.9 36.1 19.4
Min FPS 97.2 35 18.7
Max FPS 130.7 36.9 20
1% Low 103.5 23.3 14.3
0.1% Low 6.7 22.3 13.8

The FPS performance of the R7 370 in Age of Empires 4 at 1080p resolution is not too great. Although it reaches above 100fps in Min Spec Mode, it struggles to reach above 30fps on Medium settings but is still playable. However, on High graphics settings it became a struggle to play. Therefore the R7 370 is perfect for playing AOE4 at 1080p resolution on Low graphics settings, and is okay at Medium graphics settings but not recommended for High.

Age of Empires 4 R7 370 Min Spec Mode benchmarks and frames per second analysis

286d8ca3-2e86-4105-b8f9-6b5153d44046.jpg

Average FPS for AMD Radeon R7 370 in Age of Empires 4 Min Spec Mode @ 1080p, 1440p and 4K

Age of Empires 4 - Min Spec Mode 1080p 1440p 4K
Average FPS 122.9 77.6 37.4
Min FPS 97.2 73.8 34.8
Max FPS 130.7 81.9 39.1
1% Low 103.5 62.1 26.4
0.1% Low 6.7 39.3 25.4

Although the R7 370 became unplayable at resolutions higher than 1080p when playing on graphics settings higher than Low settings, the Min Spec Mode offers great performance for this GPU even up to 4K resolution, though 1440p is certainly more preferable. At 4K it is still playable, but not ideal.

This shows that when enabling Min Spec Mode by switching to Low Image Quality settings, even low-spec systems can play up to higher resolutions to take advantage of sharper image details. So if your system struggles above Low settings even at 1080p, you'll still be able to play at higher resolutions when enabling Min Spec Mode.

--------------------

Conclusion

Overall, looking at the benchmark results above, Age of Empires 4 is a very well optimized and high performing game even on low-mid range hardware. You'll still need a beefy GPU in order to play on Max graphics settings at 4K resolution, but it is still achievable on lower settings with a lower-end GPU.

For instance, if you want to play AOE4 at its best you will need a high-end GPU like the RTX 2070 that is recommended, which will achieve more than 60fps performance at 4K on High graphics settings. But even something like a GTX 1060 can achieve high FPS at 4K resolution depending on the graphics settings and your personal preference.

For lower-end hardware, thankfully Age of Empires IV includes a 'Min Spec Mode' activated by reducing the 'Image Quality' setting down to Low, which will automatically lower all other settings down to their lowest options (or even lower). This allows low-end hardware like the R7 370 or low-spec laptops to play at a better FPS.

The R7 370 for example struggles to reach above 30fps even on Medium settings at 1080p, but is able to achieve playable frame rates up to 1440p or even 4K whilst using the Min Spec Mode. Essentially, if you have a low-end laptop or desktop PC, then enabling Min Spec Mode will produce much better results than higher graphics settings (up to 4 times the frame rate even).

As a side note, because Min Spec Mode can dramatically alter the visuals so much (it also limits multiplayer matches to just 4 players), you will have to restart the game in order to enable the setting. Other graphics settings will also require a full game restart, otherwise you will not notice the changes in graphical quality.

It is also worth noting that FPS can change dramatically depending on what is happening. For our benchmark run we chose to test FPS during the most demanding moments with dozens of units on screen fighting each other, as this is an example of one of the more demanding moments in the game. However, in a typical match you will likely experience much better frame rates during calmer periods, but dropping to an unplayable frame rate in a crucial moment can affect your own personal performance in-game and as such these results should be taken as the worst case scenario so you don't get caught out on bad frame rates in crucial moments.

As always, we welcome any and all feedback from you guys as well with your experience of hardware configurations and FPS performance/quality settings. That way we can all better gauge how well our systems will be able to run Age of Empires 4.

Login or Register to join the debate

Rep
-6
Offline
15:54 Nov-01-2021

It seems that they have fixed the multi-core cpu utilization issues somewhat!

0
Rep
1
Offline
20:59 Oct-28-2021

They wanted the game to be playable on iGPUs so it's no wonder it performs so well at low settings on almost anything. It might not look as good, but it will be playable even in multiplayer.

0
Rep
272
Offline
admin approved badge
17:56 Oct-27-2021

Yay, a CPU upgrade! Nice one 👍


Looks like I should be able to play smoothly at 4K or 5K then, considering a 3070 already does so well at 4K!

1
Rep
1,041
Offline
senior admin badge
16:49 Oct-27-2021

looks like 1080 Ti should handle solid 100fps at 3440x1440 which is better than I expected :O

1

Can They Run... |

| 60FPS, Ultra, 1080p
Core i7-11700K 8-Core 3.6GHz GeForce GTX 1060 Asus ROG Strix Gaming OC 6GB Edition 32GB
0% No [1 votes]
Ryzen 5 3550H 4-Core 2.1 GHz GeForce GTX 1650 8GB
| 60FPS, High, 1080p
Ryzen 7 2700X GeForce GTX 1660 EVGA XC Gaming 6GB 16GB
| 60FPS, Medium, 1080p
Ryzen 7 2700X GeForce GTX 1660 EVGA XC Gaming 6GB 16GB
100% Yes [1 votes]