Having a good time with friends is very different than trying to have a competitive match, i can always find pro players complaining about path finding, like the current one where all military units follow the first unit in line making not damage and getting annihilated by little micromanagement and players like mbl having crashes and then getting banned at the same time.This forum never ceases to amaze me, the amount of people complaining about how terrible the game is, yet are on this forum all the time, consuming AoE2 content, talking about it, playing it, etc. but somehow, this is a horrible game, no balance, new civs are dumb, etc.
Have you tried playing other RTS games, and seen what issues they have?
AoE2 has issues, and I agree with the lack of ranked lobbies being an option is frustrating, and solo queuing TGs can be very not fun. But last night perfectly encapsulated why I love the game. I get online, see a few friends are on, get on a call on Discord, and play in an 8 player lobby doing Arena games, and it was a total blast. All the new civs keeps it fun and you never know what army comp people are gonna go for, it wasn't just knight/xbow over and over and over, there was all sorts of army comps mixed in. We had players of various skill levels playing all together, and everyone still had a lot of fun!
You you are just isolating those issues by excluding urself from the rest of the players, just like the BF community, living in bubble doesn't solve the problems.