Age of Empires To Go Social In Age of Empires Online

Posted by BradNicholson (812 posts) -

It was unfortunate when Microsoft decided to close Ensemble Studios, the creators of Halo RTS Halo Wars and the generally lauded RTS franchise Age of Empires. But we all guessed the latter, at least, would live on without Ensemble's touch. It was a solid bet, as Microsoft has just announced Age of Empires Online, an exciting new free-to-play strategy game that will try to merge a lot of social elements with Empires' traditional strategy and building mechanics.

In the press release announcing Age of Empires Online, Microsoft describes the game's world as a steadily "growing" one that can be shared "with friends and friendly rivals around the globe." Players will start with their own civilizations that will eventually grow to empires, both on and offline, but as their fledgling societies turn into pillars of humanity, players will be tasked with quests that involve "epic tales, quirky characters, adventure" and strategy. Players will also be expected to trade, play with buds in co-op challenges, and accumulate experience points for...something
 
  

  

Age of Empires Online is a Games for Windows Live-exclusive joint that is being created by Robot Entertainment, a Dallas-based studio founded by Ensemble co-founder Tony Goodman. According to the games' official site, Age of Empires Online hits in 2011 as a digital-only title and is set to go into closed beta rather soon. You can sign up for that now, in fact, if you so desire. 


#1 Posted by BradNicholson (812 posts) -

It was unfortunate when Microsoft decided to close Ensemble Studios, the creators of Halo RTS Halo Wars and the generally lauded RTS franchise Age of Empires. But we all guessed the latter, at least, would live on without Ensemble's touch. It was a solid bet, as Microsoft has just announced Age of Empires Online, an exciting new free-to-play strategy game that will try to merge a lot of social elements with Empires' traditional strategy and building mechanics.

In the press release announcing Age of Empires Online, Microsoft describes the game's world as a steadily "growing" one that can be shared "with friends and friendly rivals around the globe." Players will start with their own civilizations that will eventually grow to empires, both on and offline, but as their fledgling societies turn into pillars of humanity, players will be tasked with quests that involve "epic tales, quirky characters, adventure" and strategy. Players will also be expected to trade, play with buds in co-op challenges, and accumulate experience points for...something
 
  

  

Age of Empires Online is a Games for Windows Live-exclusive joint that is being created by Robot Entertainment, a Dallas-based studio founded by Ensemble co-founder Tony Goodman. According to the games' official site, Age of Empires Online hits in 2011 as a digital-only title and is set to go into closed beta rather soon. You can sign up for that now, in fact, if you so desire. 


#2 Posted by TheManiacsGnome (279 posts) -

For some reason, I really am excited for this. I'll always take new AoE.

#3 Posted by RTSlord (1201 posts) -

I gotta say, this looks pretty cool, but im a bit apprehensive about this free-to-play stuff getting in my age of empires.To me, f2p usually means theres a drop in quality and i really dont want a drop in quality in my beloved AoE

#4 Posted by Dynoro (113 posts) -

Looked good to me - beta signed up for straight away
#5 Posted by superscott597 (109 posts) -

Wow. I might actually play this...

#6 Edited by kalmis (1549 posts) -

Free to play. Meaning browser based or?
 
edit. No
 

System Requirements:

  • A Windows Experience Index score of 3.0 or higher or...
  • At least a 2 gigahertz CPU
  • Microsoft Windows XP, Windows Vista, or Windows 7
  • 128 MB video card
  • 1 gigabyte (GB) total system RAM (2 GB is recommended for best performance)
  • 3 GB of hard drive space
  • An Internet connection capable of downloading large (500 MB–2 GB) builds of the g
#7 Posted by Knucklesthegreat (69 posts) -

interesting... and cool~! 
I can't what for more.
#8 Posted by BounceDK (166 posts) -

GFWL ... Pass!

#9 Posted by Cirdain (3151 posts) -

Oh fuck no!  
What have you done? What have you fucking done!

#10 Posted by zepp (229 posts) -

I'm really digging the art style of this game.

#11 Posted by Earthborn (386 posts) -

That game's pretty persistent...
#12 Posted by Russcat (140 posts) -
@Earthborn said:
" That game's pretty persistent... "
It's insistent that it's persistent.
#13 Posted by skrutop (3615 posts) -
@Russcat said:
" @Earthborn said:
" That game's pretty persistent... "
It's insistent that it's persistent. "
I'm not going to offer any resistance to the insistence of persistence.  Unfortunately, I don't have a PC.
#14 Posted by TheHBK (5563 posts) -

Yes!  What i have been waiting for.  Hope this has some kind of Facebook connectivity so that my friends can see what a real game is.  
Hope that they stick to the AoE2 formula with those civilizations, the medieval and renaissance eras are the best for this kind of game.

#15 Posted by Earthborn (386 posts) -
@skrutop said:
" @Russcat said:
" @Earthborn said:
" That game's pretty persistent... "
It's insistent that it's persistent. "
I'm not going to offer any resistance to the insistence of persistence.  Unfortunately, I don't have a PC. "

Let's be consistent here. While it's insistent that it's persistent, my assistant has given a decent distance to the resistance of the persistence.
#16 Posted by PenguinDust (12629 posts) -

Might be cool.  I'll check it out since it's free.

Online
#17 Posted by Robitt (351 posts) -

Free? Thats pretty cheap!

#18 Posted by Shnitzel (5 posts) -

Well, I suppose the cutesy-ness will make it more accessible but I'll stick to AoE2

#19 Posted by Little_Socrates (5715 posts) -

New AoE is all I need. Hopefully a little more balanced than AoE2.

#20 Posted by Jimbo (9993 posts) -

I could cry.

#21 Posted by Willy105 (4691 posts) -

This sounds amazing.

#22 Posted by Bollard (5844 posts) -

Isn't this the thing they said was coming to Facebook a while back? Or am I going crazy...

#23 Posted by JoeyRavn (4983 posts) -

Looks more like Age of FarmVille: Online... Enough with making games "more accesible". Making everything ultra bright and cartoony does not mean the game will be huge among "casual" players.

#24 Posted by ISuperGamerI (1880 posts) -
@Maniac said:
" For some reason, I really am excited for this. I'll always take new AoE. "
Same I actually downloaded one of the desktop wallpapers and I haven't  changed my wallpaper for about 2 years, that's how excited I am lol.
#25 Posted by Rapid (1402 posts) -

Can we get a quick look? Looks interesting.

#26 Posted by Momie (5 posts) -

Sweet! I loved the gameplay of AoE2, I hope it's similiar!

#27 Posted by DryvBy (236 posts) -

Hrm. This looks like Torchlight got ahold of Age of Empires. Please, pick a new artist. These TF2 cloned graphics are getting old. AOE is a more realistic looking RTS. Whatever. Whatever sales.

#28 Posted by Atlas (2457 posts) -

So it's Evony meets FarmVille but made by people who actually know how to make real games? Could be cool, and I'm a die-hard AoE loyalist, but I definitely have my reservations.

#29 Posted by endless_void (703 posts) -

I have alittle hope for it, only because I was a loyal fan of the franchise. Cartoony art styles are annoying though, except for TF2.

#30 Posted by Atomasist (2818 posts) -

Hm, I'm interested to see how this turns out.

#31 Posted by Three0neFive (2304 posts) -

Eh. AoE is all good and I'm excited, but I really want a new AoM now.

#32 Posted by Subjugation (4740 posts) -

Ensemble is gone. This is not a true AoE. In fact, it totally ruins my memories of AoE.

#33 Posted by Gugi9000 (69 posts) -

Hasn't it been ages (no pun intended) since we saw the latest AoE? 
 
Oddly enough, this excites me. I had given up hopes. Maybe I'm getting them up for nothing? 
 
I hope for the best in this. Been some years since I lost a good game of AoE to my girlfriend :-)

#34 Posted by thedez (133 posts) -

WOLOLO

#35 Posted by kratier (223 posts) -

out of all the games this year i think this is going to be the most innovative,

#36 Posted by Teirdome (262 posts) -

The beta signup lead me to believe that there was some facebook integration.  This whole thing seems weird though.

#37 Edited by swiftblade (17 posts) -

I would look forward to this more if they had kept the old style and not changed it to a childish/cartoony-style. But the Idea of a persistencein AoE is interresting.

#38 Posted by phil44 (33 posts) -

I really wish microsoft would give up on gfwl already, it's horrible. I'd be more willing to give this change in direction a chance if it didn't force gfwl on you (i wouldn't mind if gfwl was actually useful, but it's not).

#39 Posted by ryanwho (12082 posts) -

Really now. Queue Price if Right fail horn. I just don't even. 
You have this name and people who have expectations for it. Then you have this, like, Animal Crossing Empires thing here. What do they gain from calling this Age of Empires?

#40 Posted by nunami (99 posts) -

age of farm empires?
 
I really would love to see a new age of empires game that took slow steps from the early ages up until the turn of the last century.. where is my not too complex not too dumbed down rts empire builder?

#41 Posted by KommanderCevin (243 posts) -
@weeman105 said:
" Ensemble is gone. This is not a true AoE. In fact, it totally ruins my memories of AoE. "
So TAD expansion made by Big Huge Games doesn't count either? 
#42 Posted by MadBaron (13 posts) -

OMG I'm 85% sure this will end up ruining one of my most beloved franchises. 
Hope not.
:(

#43 Posted by Subjugation (4740 posts) -
@KommanderCevin said:
" @weeman105 said:
" Ensemble is gone. This is not a true AoE. In fact, it totally ruins my memories of AoE. "
So TAD expansion made by Big Huge Games doesn't count either?  "
More like the fact that this looks like a glorified Farmville and not something the creator of the IP would have done. BHG has some RTS background at the very least. Whoever is doing this iteration of the game may as well give it a new name and ditch the Age of Empires tag. Handing a franchise over to a new developer rarely turns out well.
#44 Posted by Branthog (5597 posts) -

Not a fan of the art style.

#45 Posted by ryanwho (12082 posts) -

This isn't about "fearing change", this is about how utterly purposeless it is to use an IP name then completely gut the IP. Hey, make something new. I have no problem with that. But if its going to be practically nothing like AOE, call it something else.

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.