How to Use the Age of Mythology Editor
By Jonathan Langdon
Updated September 22, 2017
Items you will need
Age of Mythology
A general familiarity with Age of Mythology game play
Age of Mythology is a real-time strategy game created by Ensemble Studios, which developed the Age of Empires series. Much like Age of Empires, Age of Mythology has players build towns and armies to wage war and capture territory with the thematic element of channeling the powers of deities from the ancient world. Also like Age of Empires, Age of Mythology comes with a map builder to allow players to create their own campaigns and custom battlegrounds. The Editor is a complex suite of tools, and this guide will give you an overview of its various functions.
Run Age of Mythology, then click More in the opening menu.
Click Editor to open the Age of Mythology map editor.
Click File, then New to create a new map. The New Scenario window will open and present you with several options. "Type" defines which of the tile packages the editor will load for your map, the terrain type. You change the Type according to what area from the game you want to emulate in your map design.
"Seed" allows you to open a previous random map. When you create a map with the Seed set at "100", you can generate an identical map by opening a new map with Seed 100. Seed is useful when you are experimenting with random generations and wish to backtrack to an earlier result.
"Number of Players" sets the number of player starting points that appear on the map. "Size" gives you the option of a standard or larger territory.
Checking "Start under debugger" opens the map in a text interface where you can edit the map code line by code line. If you are new to the Age of Mythology Editor, avoid the debugger.
The File tab also gives you the options for saving and loading scenarios, building cinematics and taking screen shots and either returning to the main menu for Age of Mythology or exiting the program.
Click Edit. The Undo command cancels an edit while Redo lets you take back a canceled edit. The Unit Copy and Unit Paste actions function like "copy & paste" in word processing and basic computer operation. When you select a unit in the editor and click Unit Copy, the unit is marked for duplication. Unit Paste duplicates the marked unit. The Unit Copy and Unit Paste save you from having to navigate the Editor menus for repeated unit placement. Terrain Copy and Terrain Paste act like Unit Copy and Unit Paste, but for terrain.
Click Scenario. The Scenario menu allows you to edit and test a variety of player and map settings.
Player Data gives you an overview of what players start with in the map. You can set color, deity, name, starting resources, starting favor and starting population. You can also set which players are controlled by human or computer, and whether or not the player is visible on the map from the beginning. The AI option lets you choose from a list of presets how the computer acts; choosing a later map in the campaign results in a more difficult computer-controlled player.
Scenario Data shows an overview of scenario settings. Player Count sets starting players, String ID identifies the map from others, Bonus Pop gives players a starting population, and Popcap Limit lets you set the limit for how many units players can have at a time. Checking "Use Victory Conditions" activates the parameters for winning the scenario, which is set elsewhere. The Filename dictates the name of the scenario when saved.
Scenario Summary opens a window for an overview of the map so far.
Clicking OK in the Playtest Scenario window allows you to try out the map. You can select which player you control and the general difficulty of the computer opponents.
The Objectives Editor allows you to create scenario objectives just like the standard campaign. In the Age of Mythology single-player campaign, players advance through the game by accomplishing specific objectives in each map. The Objectives Editor is the setup for creating objectives in your map besides destroying the opposition. The Title is the name of the objective, the Goal a tag-line for the objective, Text is the narrative, and Hint gives advice for players on how to complete the objective. The SL Pic and SL Title describe triggers set elsewhere in the Editor.
The Forbidden Units lists which units were deactivated for each player. The window will be blank until the units are deactivated elsewhere in the Editor.
Diplomacy shows a graph of how players are related, whether they are allies, enemies or neutral to each other.
Click the World tab to open a menu for editing basic, physical parameters of the map.
Lighting lets you set the lighting conditions of the map based on presets from the core game. Map Size shows the current size of the map and allows you to alter the size of the map at its four corners. The Map Elevation window gives you options for raising and lowering the basic platform of the map.
Click Terrain. The terrain tab lists tools for changing the terrain of the scenario.
With the Paint Terrain tool, you select a tile, hold down left-click and move the mouse cursor across the map to change the terrain. Paint Land acts like the Paint Terrain tool, but also edits terrain elevation. The Water Tool creates waterways, Edit Water gives you more options for altering waterways, the Canyon/Cliff Tool creates changes in elevation and the Forest Tool generates trees.
Click Objects. The Objects tab gives you a menu for inserting people and objects into the scenario.
Place Objects is used to place creatures, crates and other objects on the map.
Position Objects lets you move placed objects and rotate them.
Delete Objects removes selected objects from the map.
Object Info gives you information about the object. The ID sets the object apart from similar objects, Object defines what type of object it is, and Name is used to further identify the object.
Customize Object lets you further alter an object if the option is available. Not all objects can be customized.
Place Wall and Convert to Gate are tools for creating wall structures and gates within the walls.
Click Triggers. The Triggers tab opens tools for generating scripted events in the scenario. With the Triggers, Group Editor and Army Editor, you can create sequences in which players receive units, lose technologies or view a cinematic when certain conditions are met. The creation of Triggers is a complex process with a steep learning curve.
Click Cinematics. The Cinematics tab collects tools for creating movie-like scenes within a scenario. The scenes are set by programmed Triggers, so the creation of cinematics is also a difficult process.
Click View. View gives you a menu for generating grids and setting the appearance of Editor. The Age of Mythology Editor is complex and difficult to learn, but after some experimentation and seeking help from fellow scenario builders, you will be able to build scenarios that rival the core Age of Mythology campaign.
Below each menu is a set of shortcut icons for the various functions of the Editor. The expansion for Age of Mythology, The Titans, also expands the features of the map editor. You can download scenarios created by other players for reference or enjoyment. If the idea of complex scenarios is daunting, you can create plain maps with Editor as well.
The Editor does not have a help function. You will have to rely on more experienced users for assistance.
Jonathan Knorr Langdon is a freelance writer from South Jersey with a Master of Arts in creative writing from Rowan University of Glassboro, New Jersey. His areas of expertise include gaming, general computer usage and research. His articles have appeared at eHow and Answerbag.