Fans of the Age of Empires franchise will once again have a reason to return to the legendary second installment. Next month, Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition will receive its fourth expansion, with a Roman theme.
Even though it was announced on the 25th anniversary of Age of Empires, October 25th, 2022, the game still isn’t out.
Fans have been eagerly anticipating its arrival, but the wait is almost over. Although there are conflicting reports online about its exact release date, Windows actually confirmed that the official release date is set for May 16, 2023, and it will be available, for the first time, simultaneously on PC and Xbox consoles.
Age of Empires 2
Age of Empires 2 is a real-time strategy game developed by Microsoft Studios that was released in 1999. As the second game in the Age of Empires series, it has earned a place as one of the most iconic and revered strategy games of all time.
The game is set during the medieval era, and players can select one of 18 civilizations, each with its unique strengths and weaknesses, to build and manage their empire. The game’s goal is to compete against other players or AI-controlled opponents, building up resources, and managing an army to claim foreign lands and secure victory.
Resource management, economy building, and strategic combat are at the heart of Age of Empires 2’s gameplay. Players must gather essential resources such as food, wood, gold, and stone to build structures, train units, and research technologies. The game offers several different game modes, including single-player campaigns, multiplayer matches, and custom scenarios.
With its complex and challenging strategic gameplay, historical medieval setting, and engaging the multiplayer community, Age of Empires 2 has maintained its status as a timeless classic and continues to attract new fans. Even though the game is more than 2 decades old, it still has an active professional scene. In fact, besides AoE2, Counter-Strike, and StarCtarcraft are the only two games from that decade that still host Esports tournaments on weekly basis.
AoE2 is definitely one of the most successful strategy games of the last century. Some may argue that it is the No.1 strategy game ever. Be that as it may, it definitely is the most famous one within the franchise.
The game is perfect in every aspect, and that’s the main reason why Microsoft decided to re-run it twice. The first re-run was in 2012 with AoE 2 HD Edition and 3 additional expansions, and the second one was in 2017 with AoE Definitive Edition and also 3 additional expansions, with Return of Rome being the fourth one.
What’s New in This DLC?
Not much is known about the expansion itself, but the main news is that it will bring all 16 playable civilizations from the Age of Empires 1 (Definitive Edition) to AoE 2. Transferring the old content to a modern platform that is still being maintained is a wise strategy to satisfy the devoted but limited following of the original.
Games from the Age of Empires series are traditionally arranged according to different historical eras, so adding civilizations from previous games to their sequel is actually unprecedented. There have been attempts to do this before, but unofficially through user modifications.
This update will surely bring a lot more, maybe even some aspects from AoE4, but we can’t know for sure. As there are no leaks, we will have to wait until the game is officially released.
In conclusion, the return of Age of Empires 2 with its fourth expansion, Return of Rome, is an exciting development for fans of the franchise. The game’s release date has been confirmed for May 16, 2023, and it will be available simultaneously on PC and Xbox consoles.
The Return of Rome DLC will bring all 16 civilizations from Age of Empires 1 to Age of Empires 2, making it the first time that previous civilizations have been added to a sequel.
Although there is still much to be revealed about the expansion, the anticipation for Return of Rome is high, and fans are eagerly waiting for its release to experience the latest chapter in this beloved franchise.