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Age of Empires - Definitive Edition review round-up: better graphics, old quirks

Forgotten Empires
Age of Empires - Definitive Edition logo
Age of Empires - Definitive Edition

Age of Empires: Definitive Edition is set to launch on 20 February 2018. Reviews agree that the expanded zoom feature and gameplay are some of the best things about the remaster. Some of the pitfalls are the connectivity issues and the fact it's not available via Steam.

Age of Empires: Definitive Edition for PC, developed by Microsoft, is set to hit the proverbial shelves of the Microsoft Store app on 20 February 2018. Review copies of the new game have made their rounds, and the reviewers themselves have delivered their verdicts. 

One thing to keep in mind is that Age of Empires: Definitive Edition is a remaster, and not a remake. The game has a critics' score of 83 and a user score of 8.7 on Metacritic.

Forgotten Empires[undefined]Age of Empires - Definitive Edition

The drawbacks that Chris Carter from Destructoid has faced during his time with the game reflect the fact the original came out in the 90's. The cause of his complaints was the dated UI that is one of the few things the developers have left untouched. 

Age of Empires: Definitive Edition still has the ping issues it had in the 90's and the online multiplayer has trouble with latency. Chris has also had instances in which the entire games would drop as a result of a minor connection error.

The fact that the remaster is available via the Microsoft Store application on Windows 10 and not through Steam carries its own set of frustrations, as the app itself has a couple of boot errors.

Forgotten Empires[undefined]Age of Empires - Definitive Edition

Another point made by Richard Scott-Jones from PC Games N is that the game's missions have remained particular in the sense that a victory is not claimed after the initial challenge is overcome. Instead, he had to chase down each and every enemy unit in order to successfully end his mission.

Since the Microsoft Store cannot match the Steam Workshop when it comes to sharing and curating community content, a new website dedicated to these functions should go live soon. A form of mod support has been added to the "promised" pile. With mod support, it's possible that Microsoft will leave players to their own devices when it comes to providing fresh content.

Forgotten Empires[undefined]Age of Empires - Definitive Edition

Trusted Reviews have saved their words of praise for the Age of Empires: Definitive Edition's graphics and the addition of an attack-move order. The game's 16 civilizations share a pool of common units rather than having bespoke rosters. Each civilization has some historically inspired bonuses that grant them certain units or tactics.

In Richard Scott-Jones's opinion, each in-game scenario's storytelling devices have remained somewhat limited, but the voiced narration provides each with its historical context. The voiced narration can be explored further via the history tab.

Another plus is that the Definitive Edition boasts a doubled campaign, and retains the bots. On top of the multiplayer and custom game modes, there are ten single-player campaigns that have taken the reviewers through some of the ancient world’s most important conflicts. 

Forgotten Empires[undefined]Age of Empires - Definitive Edition

The folks who played it agree that the overall gameplay has remained solid. You'll have your chance to read our own thoughts on Age of Empires: Definitive Edition come 25 February 2018.