#330 Age of Empires

Posted: 25th April 2016 by Jeroen in Games
Tags: , , , ,

506th played so far


Genre: Strategy
Platform: PC
Year of Release: 1997
Developer: Ensemble Studios
Publisher: Microsoft

Have we not played this game yet? (Almost, we played Age of Mythology a year ago.) Age of Empires is, and feels like, one of those important strategy series that everyone played for a while, although I believe we haven’t seen a release in the series for a while now.

As one of the first historical-based RTS games out there, it feels like it includes some additional research elements that, from what I remember, perhaps places it closer to Rise of Nations than Command & Conquer. Let’s see what I remember about the game from, oh, fifteen years ago!

Our Thoughts

This game – I will admit – stopped me in my tracks before I got well and truly started. Playing through the tutorial, the third or fourth tutorial level involves hunting and food gathering. Only workers, no warriors. The level also features several lions, which easily kill your worker when you get too close. To the point where you can run out of workers before you finish the objective (part of which requires getting past those lions). Another tutorial level has an enemy warrior walking around, posing similar problems (although not as obviously so – I did manage to complete the objectives without him). It’s sort of doable – I skipped part of the tutorial – but felt like bad tutorial design.

It’s a shame, as the game is good (if difficult) game, offering more 4X-based base growing variety than other RTS games while providing more direct action than 4X games tend to have.

The historical element sthemselves are interesting, not overly visible, but adding a nice, more realistic touch to proceedings (although having to climb out of the stone age each time seems a bit odd).

Final Thoughts

It feels like there’s not much to say about Age of Empires – it’s a real life history based strategy game that does its things competently, but a lot of it was done by earlier games and improved by later games like Rise of Nations. Good fun to play though.

  1. […] Age of Empires was an interesting one, one where I got stopped in what I normally feel is an annoying but necessary part of these games – the tutorial. Age of Mythology went better, but then, that’s newer. I assume a lot more was refined in those times. Now we play the middle game of the three (with a mobile game to follow), which makes me wonder where we end up. […]

  2. […] obvious route when adapting a real time strategy game like the Age of Empires series to consoles and handhelds is to make it turn based. You often need precision mouse movement […]