I guess everyone plays this game for fun yet Im sure everyone wants to win too.
So, winning depends on the players skill which can be learned. There are two important matters that I will describe in this text: economy and army . The rest depends on skill and experience.
2)How to handle
So how to win? Suppose your economy is stronger (more vills). This allows you to build a bigger army and keep building that army. Using your army wisely will lead to victory. Having a better economy than your opponent will be a huge step towards victory, but you must be aware of certain things: don't send your army into battles if you already know that you are going to lose them...
Ask yourself the following: Why do I lose games? Is it because he keeps attacking me? Am I losing villagers?
The short awnser (in general): the person who is under attack will lose the game, since his economy suffers under the attack, while his enemy keeps on getting bigger and better...
As I stated above: you must get a better economy than your opponent. Imagine: you are playing a 1v1 starting in dark, any map... you are building villagers, like your opponent, yet you cant build any for few seconds or more (e.g. because you are housed), still your opponent can. This will be to your disadvantage because even if you both reach feudal at the same time, he will have a villager (or more) ahead of you: his economy is stronger! Hence the importance to make villagers all the time! How to handle this? Be sure that you have a constant food income - dont forget you also need the 500 to hit feudal... I will discuss the playing style commonly used in a 1v1, where almost everyone attacks in feudal age. Keep in mind though, that water maps like islands arent that different. Grushing involves attacking with galleys so you must be aware that you will need masses of wood and gold - adjust your economy according to this.
2.1.2) Build up
1v1 arab, tiny, dark age, standard resources(low), reveal map normal
Because you want to have the same economy as your opponent, immediately start queuing villagers. You have three villagers and a scout near your TC so, unless you are playing huns, select two villagers and let them build a house. You will notice that if you let them run a little too far you will get housed. To prevent this, place the house between those two villagers. The third villager and your scout should start finding the first six sheep - with some luck they are already in your line of sight (LOS). Send one or two sheep to your TC and let your initial three villagers start gathering food, the next three vills should also gather food from sheep to secure a constant vill production. Your scout should never be idle! Find all the resources you need, Eight sheep, two boar, gold spots, stone spots and deer spots which are always useful. Make sure that you are never housed, for it slows you down alot. Six villagers on food wont be enough but at least you can keep building villagers. Sometimes you wont have the 50 food: force-drop the resources that they carry, or loom - you will need loom for luring the boar sooner or later.
I recommend to build a mill first, before constructing a lumbercamp. So, after putting six villagers on sheep (your initial three and three more) I would place a mill near berries and send about two more villagers to collect berries (three in all). Nine villagers on food are a good start. Now you will need wood for houses and a lumbercamp. Since you dont have wood for a lumbercamp yet, cut down stragglers near your TC untill you have enough. From now on you will have to see what will work best, don't forget to lure those boars and put a few more on food or you wont have enough. Most ppl feudal under 12 min - I suggest you do the same. Make sure you have your barrack built before you reach feudal. Once feudal, research double bit axe at your lumbercamp. Economy upgrades are very important - they get the maximum out of your villagers. Horse collar can be upgraded later since your not farming that much yet. Construct the Military buildings needed for your attack. Either a Stable and an archery, or 2 archeries - your choice - yet make sure you can keep queuing from each of them. Spearmen near your woodies will protect them from raiding scouts. Don't forget to queue vills all the while.
Once feudal, you will have to start farming however, most ppl build three farms whilst in dark age, to secure the food income. The trick is to hit the opponents economy with an early attack as possible. Dont send four skirmishers towards your opponent, for they will certainly die - a few villagers knock them down! Skirmishers are strong if you have alot of them, yet try to secure them with spearmen or scouts.
Keep an eye on your economy: while you were feuding, you probably had at least six villagers eating boar that run out of food eventually, split those villagers up: some to wood, some to berriers, if you have sheep left, eat them. The lurers that went after your boars will probably be hurt. Never use those villagers as forward builders, or leave them too far unprotected. The best thing to do is to let them farm near your tc... Since everyone fights in feudal, the castle times will be late and you will have alot of villagers, so upgrade Wheelbarrow before you hit the castle age button. I will stop here, the rest will follow later...
Of course you could use your army to protcect your economy, but it would be alot better if you use your army to go after his economy. If you can keep applying pressure on your opponent, he wont send an army towards your economy. Walling in helps alot, placing outlook posts at flanks will warn you when he is approaching. Since you have 200 stone, you can always put a tower in your base but only do this when its necessary. The best way to protect your economy would be to place your gathering sites away from the direction of your enemy. In other words: build your lumbercamp at the back of your base, away from opponent, you can place walls in a way that would force your opponent to enter your base from a certain direction, for example near a hill: easy for you to guard when you have your army on it (elevation effect). Since your opponent will try to hit your economy you have to watch out that he doesnt take away important resources like gold spots. Is your gold spot forwarded? Build around that spot so you can see if he tries to wall it or place a tower near it. When feudaling you must build a barrack. Place it near that gold spot, place the stable or archeries next to it so the buildings make a wall, thus protecting that gold spot.
Adjust your economy to the troops that you will build. If you would decide to go massif archers out of 2-3 archerys you will need at least 6 gold miners but you must maintain villager production so you need food income also. Since ppl mostly charge whit spears/scouts/skirmishers we can conclude that food is the main resource here. Once you have the buildings you dont have to put more villagers at wood but you must expend your economy by starting to farm as hell. Dont have the 60 wood for the farm? No problem, send the next villager to wood and then the next back to farms. Trying to queue villager, scouts or skirmishers at the same time wont be easy but while playing you will learn how to manage your economy. The more you play the better your micromanagment will be.
2.2.2) Control and tips
To make it easy, hotkey you army by unit type: meaning, (example) scouts: number 1, skirmishers: number 2, spears: number 3. Should the opponent attack with scouts and skirmishers, you can easily select those skirms and let them fire at the opponents spears. When those spears are down, the road is clear for your scouts to hunt down his skirmishers. He will either send his scouts to your scouts or send them to your skirmishers. Your spears can guard your skirmishers but should he send his scouts after yours you can either: a) fight, if you have more, or b) retreat towards your skirmishers while they fire on the scouts. If he gets too close, the spears finish the job. You will have to train this. Units standing on hills have an increased attack, whilst the atteck of troops located lower down is decreased. This rule applies in every age that the game has, just that the army will be upgraded etc... Controlling isent all that counts, you must maintain the production of your army. You can fight all you want but if he keeps sending in new troops and you dont, he will take over control - dont let it happen. If you have 150 spare wood, place a blacksmith and research fletching, thus enhancing attack and range of your archers/skirmishers. Upgrades are important, if you can afford it, (and you have alot of those troops). don't let your army be idle, meaning, dont let it stand around doing nothing. Go attack something: hit his eco, kill his army, take control. Since you got a scout at start, try to find out what your opponent is doing, find his weak spots, army location... You can see him send an army towards you, if you are lucky. Send your army towards his, wait for him on a hill and hit him. If he retreats, you dont! Follow him, try to force him into combat but make sure that you will win it. Watch out for ambushes: dont send 20 skirmishers towards your enemy IF you know that he has got a stable...