Building an empire and dominating the world without leaving home is a great plan, and this is demonstrated by the success with which Age Of Empires II Definitive Edition sweeps so far in 2020 and is at the head of the most played.
With or without quarantine, we at JOINGAMES are clear that the approach of this saga, which emerged two decades ago, remains very much alive and continues to be able to hook, on the one hand, the nostalgic and on the other, those who have just discovered it on Steam.
It may be that you have not yet tasted the honey of power in this new installment but, if you are a lover of real-time strategy games, the name of Age of Empires will surely sound familiar to you.
At the end of 2019, Microsoft decided to throw the house out the window with the delivery of Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition, which has been loaded with news and also summarizes the fantastic trajectory of this game.
Play Age of Empires II DE online: what’s new
This new edition also features cross-play according to Microsoft with the Valve platform.
In this way, it does not matter where you buy the Age of Empires II DE, either Steam or XBOX Game Pass, since you can play in a multiplayer format without any problem.
Without a doubt, an added value for the rebirth of one of the most successful sagas of real-time strategy games.
Cross-play allows you not to limit the number of players you can add to a game, but it also adapts your needs to your wishes.
Therefore, it has a fully integrated mixer that facilitates the broadcast of live games. Even viewers may not see the entire map from the beginning. Thus, you can delay its appearance until you see fit. For example, while everyone is preparing their armies it can be a little more boring for the audience until the skirmishes begin.
As the 20th anniversary of the first launch approached in 1997, Microsoft gave way to its new goal.
However, time was thrown on them and they delayed their release a couple of years, especially due to problems in the AI.
Undoubtedly, surely you had a lot of expectations to see how they tried to revitalize a game whose original version many still keep. In this sense, how has it been improved compared to the HD version that was launched in 2013?
New way of presenting campaigns and missions in the menu
Depending on how much a fan you are of this saga, you will be able to appreciate more or fewer changes.
In general, this new installment comes with great improvements in AI compared to the first remake that was already tried to be done in 2018.
In addition, it is not a compilation of all the content that was carried out especially in Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings and in its expansion The Conquerors, but rather presents new content, as well as great graphic improvements with 3D effects.
This new installment features a new expansion, new game formats, and even a completely redesigned menu to introduce Age of Empires II and all the expansions that came after.
The Conquerors in 2001, The Forgotten in 2013, The Africa Kingdom in 2015, and The Rise of Rajas in 2016. To all of them is added the current The Last Khans.
In this new installment, Microsoft has also thought about the new generations that did not grow up with the two main classics.
Age of Empires II DE in 2020 features a mode known as the ‘Art of War’, inspired by Sun Tzu.
In this game mode, you must be able to understand all the variables offered by the same game to use the strategy that is most effective for each of the scenarios.
In this sense, you must bear in mind that each civilization that you can use has strengths and weaknesses compared to another player with another civilization.
In addition to the war part, it also presents other missions on an economic level.
Once you complete all the challenges, you can receive a gold, silver, or bronze medal depending on the results you have obtained. Without a doubt, a hu
ge step forward concerning the traditional tutorial based on William Wallace and the warlike conflict that the Scots experienced with the kingdom of England of Edward I.
New campaigns in expansion
The enormous number of campaigns that all deliveries present has forced Microsoft to carry out changes in the way of structuring all the game modes that you currently have.
For this reason, it has separated by territories each of the historical moments that are lived in each campaign.
In this sense, if we take Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings as a reference, Joan of Arc’s campaign takes place in Europe, just like that of Federico Barbarroja.
Instead, Saladin’s takes place in Africa, while Genghis Kahn’s takes place between Asia and Europe. All other expansions are distributing their campaigns in their corresponding territory.
The new 2020 expansion adds three more campaigns. One of them takes place in Asia for Tamerlane, while the remaining two take place in Europe. In this case, you will be playing with Koten Khan and Ivailo.
Another great news is that in this case, you have missions that you can unlock.
What has not been lost compared to the previous installments is the enormous playability that this video game has, in addition to its high historical content.
It’s still a great way to learn history as you face multiple opponents at once in multiple battles or are surprised by the betrayal of what seemed like your ally, or you have to build or destroy fast and running a wonder to win. Additionally, historical battles continue to be added to the Conqueror campaigns that began in The Conquerors.
In total, you will have a total of 16 battles, such as that of the Vikings in York, that of Bukhara, or that of the Noryang Strait in Asia in 1598.
An enormous amount of hours at your disposal
In this sense, just by adding the campaigns you already have a huge amount of playing time at your disposal. To all this, you can add the random maps that you can create when you play against the computer and even the multiplayer games that you can organize online.
It is precisely in this type of game that Age of Empires II Definitive Edition also presents some new features.
In addition to the type of map that you can choose, the game conditions at the resource level, and how victory is achieved, something that was already present in previous installments, it is also possible to edit not only scenarios but also campaigns.
Therefore, your creativity is another factor that you can add to be able to spend more hours enjoying this game.
The interface improvements also work in your favor, as Microsoft has been able to perfect the weak points that were left in the ink in the past, such as giving a more realistic touch to the fog of war, as well as the debris of the destroyed buildings or the reflection of the water.
On the other hand, in the upper left part, you will also be able to see the status of your production queue and, even, you will also be able to know how many villagers you have destined for each of the resources, be it gold, stone, food or wood.
More importantly, you will have a record of inactive villagers. No more worrying about those farms that require replanting to get the most out of them!
If you remember correctly, in previous editions it was necessary to prepare a special production queue to automatically replant the farms. Now everything is much simpler. By pressing a button, this whole thing is automated.
Do you remember that in the initial editions you had to choose between recruiting soldiers or developing technologies to improve the performance of your army?
Well, in the new edition of Age of Empires II Definitive Edition it is now possible to queue both aspects at the same time.
Thus, the AI is much better and, therefore, you do not have to control so thoroughly the route that your soldiers take since the decision-making will generate much fewer errors.
What else adds Age of Empires II Definitive Edition
If you are a history geek, this new installment will undoubtedly make you happy.
Microsoft has given much more pampering to this new edition, which allows you to learn more about the history of the 35 civilizations with which you can play. And do not forget that there is news! In the Age of Empires II Definitive Edition, it is now possible to play as the Bulgarians, the Cumans, the Lithuanians, and the Tatars.
One of the points that Ensemble Studios has put more emphasis on is trying to attract those users who are less expert or are more afraid of fighting massive battles.
Therefore, one of the main novelties in AI is that soldiers will no longer always fight to the death. An army will be able to detect when it has a losing battle and when it is necessary to retreat to minimize casualties while waiting for you to produce more troops.
At the same time, when you explore the map or have to carry out a long journey, you will also have data to know which route is the least dangerous.
The only negative point is that Microsoft has not given a continuity line to the audios in Spanish, but has opted for comments in Latin
It is somewhat shocking, especially if you are one of those users who have played since the first installment. However, after several games, it will be really easy to adapt.
Age of Empires II Definitive Edition to play on MacOS
macOS users have always had trouble playing this saga created by Microsoft.
The reason stands alone: Apple and Microsoft are natural rivals, and supporting each other through content sharing has never been a highly blessed option by either.
However, users have made a living to play Age Of Empires II Definitive Editions on Steam using MacOs using Windows emulators.
Within the Steam community itself, you can find indications that users have been sharing and testing.
A brief review of the Age of Empires saga
Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings was one of the great surprises of real-time strategy games. It was the continuation of the first edition, which focused especially on the Old Age.
The arrival of the Middle Ages and the Imperial Age brought with it multiple civilizations, and especially four campaigns: Joan of Arc, Frederick Barbarossa, Saladin, or Genghis Kahn. A few years later came the edition that acted as an expansion known as The Conquerors.
In this edition, other civilizations were added, especially related to the Spanish colonial conquest. Thus, you could play with the Aztecs, the Mayans, or the Spanish. It was precisely the reason why you could participate in the Cid Campeador or Moctezuma campaigns, among others.
On the other hand, another of the great novelties is the presence of the Huns with the Attila campaign, which began at the time of the Roman Empire and lists all the conquests of this civilization.
You can even start playing battles for conquerors. They are single missions based on historical battles that have marked the course of History.
Later, Age of Empires 3 was raised that focused exclusively on the colonization of America. In this sense, you can have American colonies and the campaigns are based on this historical moment.
On the other hand, the Age of Mythology also had its heyday, which was based more on the realm of mythology and religion.
It seemed that this was going to be the end of this saga, but Microsoft had an ace up its sleeve.
Almost ten years later, in 2016, the arrival of The Forgotten in 2013, The Africa Kingdom in 2015, and The Rise of Rajas were announced.
It could be said that it was a kind of experiment to measure the level of desire you could have to continue playing this saga.
And it ended up being a hit with the Age of Empires HD version. This was the prequel for the Age of Empires II Definitive Edition to be released in 2019.
You can also see how the AI has been improved in each of the deliveries and, in addition, practical aspects were perfected for you.
Therefore, 2020 has been the culmination of the Age of Empires in commemoration of this 20th anniversary of the delivery. In this sense, it seems that Microsoft makes it clear that this saga is going on for a long time and that updates could be produced in the coming years, as it has been shown that it continues to attract the audience.
The reality is that the future passes through the arrival of Age of Empires IV, although Microsoft is still not clear or giving clues about when that launch will be.
You will have to wait for it and be able to enjoy it soon.