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Author Topic: Age of Empires Online  (Read 1025 times)
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CeeKay
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« on: August 17, 2010, 08:05:19 AM »

Formally rumored to be called Spartan, MS has officially announced Age of Empires Online.  according to the FAQ:

Quote
How does the game work online? Can I play offline? Do I have to have an Internet connection?
With Games for Windows – LIVE at the core, Age of Empires Online requires an Internet connection to enjoy the game at its full potential. The social experience of the game requires being connected to our servers at all times. There is no offline play.

I wonder if that means you simply need to sign in to play at all or if any missions you take on must involve other people.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2010, 08:29:36 AM by CeeKay » Logged

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Blackjack
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« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2010, 11:33:48 AM »

Some other interesting stuff in the FAQ:
http://www.ageofempiresonline.com/faq/
Quote
#Are the campaigns in Age of Empires Online based off of historically accurate sources?
The campaigns in Age of Empires Online are based on historical periods that provide rich settings for storytelling. Our primary focus is on making the game an enjoyable experience for our users. History provides the setting; from there, you make your own story.
#
What can you tell us about the single-player add-on content? Can we expect to see a new story-driven campaign?
We’re currently announcing the Greeks. We don’t really focus on campaigns any more. confused There are many quest lines that have interesting stories throughout them.

#
What are quests and how do they work?
Quests are a core part of the Age of Empires Online gameplay, allowing you to display your skills and earn rewards for use in your capital city. Quests make use of the full range of gameplay, including cooperative and single-player missions, and more, allowing you to build your skills and empire through story-driven missions.
They mention single-player missions repeatedly, so it sounds like you just need to login (as with SC2) whether you're playing solo, co-op or pvp.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2010, 11:46:04 AM by Blackjack » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2010, 01:41:08 AM »

beta keys from Alienware.
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« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2011, 02:40:10 AM »

Gas Powered Games takes over.
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EddieA
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« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2011, 02:38:30 AM »

The game launched today - anyone else try it?  I played the first five or so "quests" or missions, and it seems like a cross between Age of Empires and the base aspect of Starcraft 2.  I don't really like the whole free-to-play system, and according to IGN, free players are very restricted in what they can do, so I'll probably just mess around with it until I hit the "pay money" wall.
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Harkonis
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« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2011, 05:08:49 PM »

Seems pretty good so far.  I am not adverse to f2p at all, but i do think the $20 per civ price is about twice as much as reasonable.
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« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2011, 04:30:27 PM »

Eurogamer weighed in (7/10):
http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-08-17-age-of-empires-online-review?page=2
Quote
You can certainly play Age of Empires Online without handing over any money, but the very best free-to-play games value their non-paying communities because their sheer mass and commitment support the top five per cent who pay for the thing. Age of Empires Online does not. In the long term, it's crippled for free players: no ranked player-versus-player, certain units unavailable, a stunted tech tree, limited crafting and limited storage. If you have no plans to spend money, look elsewhere, because AOE Online does not do the business model justice.

In fact, for paying players, it's even worse: £15 [almost U.S. $22] for each civilization (at the moment, Greek and Egyptian; the Greeks come in the £20 [almost $29] boxed version) or a whopping £80  [$115] for the season pass, which grants you all content released in a six-month period. If you want the new civilizations down the line, cough up. To play this game long-term will cost much, much more than its competition.
...
It breaks my heart to give Age of Empires Online a less than brilliant score. If you'd told my teenage self that, one day, AOE would have this much content and you could play it online against actual people for free, my spotty head would have exploded. It's as good as mechanically identical to previous entries in the series, and although its new structure spreads it a little thin, there's still a fine strategy game underneath it all. But the context has changed.

Age of Empires, great as it was, doesn't quite stand up against the best in the RTS genre today - and Age of Empires Online doesn't improve on its mighty predecessors in any meaningful way in-game, while adding a lot of bumf around it of questionable value. It's still a grand name, of course, and in some ways a grand game - one trumpeted as 'Microsoft's triumphant return to the RTS genre!' So let's put it this way: it's certainly a return.

It seems, like Relic and it's now deceased Company of Heroes Online, RTS makers are struggling to develop some sort of F2P MMO-ish format that can pull in some steady nickel-and-dime Internet-store revenue since most RTS-devs can't pile up the number of sales Starcraft does, and C&C and AoE franchises did in their heydays. Blizzard notwithstanding, the days of the RTS gravy train seem to be over.

*The fact it requires Games for Windows Live (I thought that was dead! icon_razz) will probably scare quite a few folks off, fairly or not.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2011, 04:42:27 PM by Blackjack » Logged

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PR_GMR
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« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2011, 04:59:05 PM »

Quote from: Blackjack on August 24, 2011, 04:30:27 PM

Eurogamer weighed in (7/10):
http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-08-17-age-of-empires-online-review?page=2
Quote
You can certainly play Age of Empires Online without handing over any money, but the very best free-to-play games value their non-paying communities because their sheer mass and commitment support the top five per cent who pay for the thing. Age of Empires Online does not. In the long term, it's crippled for free players: no ranked player-versus-player, certain units unavailable, a stunted tech tree, limited crafting and limited storage. If you have no plans to spend money, look elsewhere, because AOE Online does not do the business model justice.

In fact, for paying players, it's even worse: £15 [almost U.S. $22] for each civilization (at the moment, Greek and Egyptian; the Greeks come in the £20 [almost $29] boxed version) or a whopping £80  [$115] for the season pass, which grants you all content released in a six-month period. If you want the new civilizations down the line, cough up. To play this game long-term will cost much, much more than its competition.
...
It breaks my heart to give Age of Empires Online a less than brilliant score. If you'd told my teenage self that, one day, AOE would have this much content and you could play it online against actual people for free, my spotty head would have exploded. It's as good as mechanically identical to previous entries in the series, and although its new structure spreads it a little thin, there's still a fine strategy game underneath it all. But the context has changed.

Age of Empires, great as it was, doesn't quite stand up against the best in the RTS genre today - and Age of Empires Online doesn't improve on its mighty predecessors in any meaningful way in-game, while adding a lot of bumf around it of questionable value. It's still a grand name, of course, and in some ways a grand game - one trumpeted as 'Microsoft's triumphant return to the RTS genre!' So let's put it this way: it's certainly a return.

It seems, like Relic and it's now deceased Company of Heroes Online, RTS makers are struggling to develop some sort of F2P MMO-ish format that can pull in some steady nickel-and-dime Internet-store revenue since most RTS-devs can't pile up the number of sales Starcraft does, and C&C and AoE franchises did in their heydays. Blizzard notwithstanding, the days of the RTS gravy train seem to be over.

*The fact it requires Games for Windows Live (I thought that was dead! icon_razz) will probably scare quite a few folks off, fairly or not.

Three words: League.. of.. Legends.

Riot Games has finally unlocked the recipe for the succesful, lucrative free-to-play MOBA-style game. RTS developers needs to follow their example, because, yes, no RTS will ever be succesful as 'Starcraft'. The genre doesn't have that big of a mass appeal. But it is possible to create a succesful MMO RTS if you play your cards right. Unfortunately, it doesn't seem that Microsoft played their cards right with 'Age Of Empires Online'. 15 dollars per civilization? Oh, come on!

Why not make it 5 bucks per civilization? Then charge little bit of extra money for civilization 'wonders'? That's how they could make their money! Riot Games' LoL charges 5 bucks per new champion and about the same for new skins for those champions... and the results: 15 million signed subscribers and explosive game and company growth.

Trion's upcoming 'End Of Nations', which is looking attractive, just announced that it'll be F2P. That's a step in the right direction for that game's hopes.
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