Age of Empires is a Real-time strategy PC game series that launched its first title in 1997. All the sequels has had various developers in different installments. However, the core developing companies are Ensemble studios, Big Huge Games, and Microsoft Studios.
In the 19 years of its serialization, the game has been a financial success and sold over 20 million copies.
The games developed so far in the series are listed below. They are listed in descending order, from the earliest version to the latest. Some of these versions as the game changed had some features I would have loved for the developers to keep in terms of; graphic quality, battle mechanics, and overall gameplay. This list would serve as a guide if you wish to indulge yourself in the AoE Real-time strategy Universe. They are
1. Age of Empires(1979): This is the very first installment in the AoE series. It uses the Genie game engine. The game was expected by game reviewers to be a fusion of two other existing Real-time strategy games; Civilization and Warcraft. It failed to meet these expectations but a healthy fan base locally(USA) and internationally.
- Age of Empires 2 (1999): The second installment in the series, titled Age of Empires2 : Age of kings met and exceeded gamer expectation worldwide. It also won multiple and till date is considered a classic of the real-time strategy gaming genre. These achievements were due to better attention to detail in it’s design, the addition of new features, a more user-friendly interface, and even a better mapping system. It still continues to receive expansion packs and is one of the most successful Age of Empires titles to date.
- Age of Empires(2002): Originally titled age of Mythology. This saw an overall improvement in gameplay mechanics and the introduction of the bang game engine.
- Age of Empires(2003): A sequel to Age of Mythology, it was titled Age of Mythology: Titan. It saw the inclusion of special soldier units called titans, to the mythology series.
- Age of Empires III(2005): Age of Empires 3 was a huge commercial success and by 2007 had sold over 2 million copies. The game developers made a lot of improvements in the bang game engine and general improvement in the graphical production due to the inclusion of havok. The graphic quality of AoE III is said to be on par with first shooters in its generation, this earned it the Gamespy arcade “game of the year 2005”.
6.Age of Empires Online(2011): This was the fully online installment of the AoE franchise. There is a significant decrease in graphics complexity for easier online gameplay. I personally prefer the offline or LAN versions of the AoE games. If you’re a fan of online gameplay, you will love AoE online.
- Age Of Empires: Rise Of the Rajas(2016): This is a repack of the Age of Empires2.
Other notable mentions are:
The war Chiefs (2006)
The Asian Dynasties(2007)