Age of Empires 4 goes back to the roots

© Microsoft / Relic Entertainment

It’s been more than 15 years since a new part of Age of Empires was published. Nevertheless, the enthusiasm for AOE II in particular is unbroken. The Definitive Edition is therefore also provided with a co-op mode for historical battles. And this fan-love seems to be the basis for the newest part, Age of Empires 4.

One notices that, among other things, that the developers Relic Entertainment have brought historians on board again. This undermines the memory of the less popular Age of Empires III several times. Instead of fictional stories, historical characters and battles are played again. In addition, you are returning to the Middle Ages instead of positioning yourself according to AOE III.

Cross-generational campaign

So far known are the campaigns Dehli Sultans (including elephants) and the Normans. These campaigns are divided into chapters that span generations. This is how the story of Britain’s war is played from King Harold’s fight against William the Conqueror at the Battle of Hastings to the signing of the Magna Charta. With this, the developers want to clarify the effects of political actions across history.

The campaigns are linked by small documentary films about actual historical events. They should not only give players a context, but also show in real locations what influence these events have on the present day.

Get players excited about history

Although on the one hand the developers put a lot of effort into the realistic representation, on the other hand they continue to speak of the Middle Ages as “Dark Ages”. This discrepancy is allowed in pop culture, also to draw a bow to AOE II, according to the developers. When it appeared in 1999, people were not yet fully aware that this term was not only being used incorrectly, but that it was also spreading a wrong image of the time. The aim is to get players excited about history and to celebrate the different cultures.

These new civilizations are not yet fully known. There will be 8 at the launch, 4 are already known: China, England, Delhi and the Mongols, who are supposed to bring a breath of fresh air with their Khan unit. There will also be new tactical means, such as naval battles or, for example, planning an ambush in which you run over opponents from two sides out of a forest.

Modern look

From a purely visual point of view, the new Age of Empires 4 looks a little more colorful, knobby and modern than its predecessor, without losing the charm of its predecessor. Since the game, like the Definitive Edition, will be released for the Xbox Game Pass and is therefore free for subscribers, beginners are also promised a low-threshold entry.

The game will be released for PC in autumn 2021. There will also be a console implementation this time. The entire fan preview can be viewed on YouTube.


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