The Dark Age is the first and typical starting Age in Age of Empires II.

On most maps, every player starts out with three Villagers (except Chinese, who start with 6, and Mayans, starting with 4 Villagers) a Town Center, and a Scout Cavalry. Because they have no access to mounted units, Aztecs, Mayans, and Incas start with an Eagle Scout (an Eagle Warrior in The Conquerors) instead of a Scout Cavalry.