Age of Empires Online Coming This Fall

Age of Empires Online is one of the classic real-time strategy titles. Age of Empires 2 was the peak of the series, and AoE 3 never really lived up to its predecessor. When Ensemble Studios was shut down, pretty much everyone thought Age of Empires was dead. As it turns out, that was completely wrong, as Microsoft announced Age of Empires Online back in August.

Age of Empires Online is currently in open beta, and now Microsoft has announced that the game will be launching this fall. It will be available as a digital download or as a boxed retail starter kit. The online RTS will be free-to-play, but you’ll be able to purchase premium content packs to add on.

AoE Online will launch with the Greek and Egyptian civilizations. New civilizations will be one type of add-on content, with boosters and empire extras also available. Each civilization has a free version and a premium upgrade that will grant access to new content.

An example of a booster pack is the cooperative competitive mode title Defence of Crete, which lets you take on waves of enemies. Empire items are simply vanity items to deck out your capital city so your friends can see how cool you are.

Microsoft also announced today that they will be offering “pro premium civilization” upgrades. These civilizations will start at level 20, and are targeted to hardcare RTS gamers.

We should have more info on the exact release date and final pricing somewhere around the end of this month.

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