"An excellent strategic game!"

Since the first game, Age Of Empires for the PC. Age Of Empires II has been a great improvement for the series. Microsoft and Ensemble Studios have produced a worthy successor to the original.

Story 10/10
Anything that is based on history deserves a 10/10! The story is basically your objective. The Roman Empire as recently fallen. It's you job, depending on what type of race you pick, is to beat all your enemies who may challenge you, and be the winner and become king of the land. You must build up technology, weapons and troops to rain supreme.

Game Play 9/10
Depending on how well you trained everything, the game play can be a dream, or an utter nightmare. Training takes hard work, but you can't spend too much time in one area. Someone will always attack your land, even if you are still training troops. Either way, it's fun to play and plot out strategy. There can be tons of kingdoms on one map, they can be allies, enemies, and you decide that. In a team mode, you have to work with your partner. Send him supplies; create trade routes, shipping courses, anything to exchange resources. A story mode is based on history, such as a chapter with Joan Of Arc, or Genghis Kahn. As well as other characters we all knew in history.

Graphics 7/10
The graphics are small. Yes small, the characters aren't detailed...why? Because there is tons of fighters and objects on the screen. The game would slow down to often with really great graphics. I think the small graphics are good, because it's not a pain to hover around the area, so you can go to places quickly. As well as you can operate things in bigger proportions when they are smaller. Otherwise, environment graphics are nicely done.

Audio Effects 9/10
Sounds are nicely done in this game as well. Swords clashing against swords make clinging swords. Multiple sword fights make multiple sounds. Spells being cast make little strange sounds. All the stuff you stop to nit-pick at is all included. Music is.... soothing. It's nothing great, kind of a working and determined theme throughout every stage. Nothing I haven't seen before.

Recommendations
For related Age of Empire games, you could check out the first Age Of Empires. Age Of Empires: Raise Of Rome or some sort of expansion pack that is offered for this game, to boost game play a little bit. You can also try to find out details, for when this game is suppose to be released for PlayStation 2

Demo Or Buy?
If you're interested in a type of strategic game in history, this is your game, buy it. If you have second thoughts about this game, maybe after reading the review. Give it a test run. Microsoft contains a demo on their website. You might want to give it a test run first before you buy it.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 07/14/02, Updated 05/09/08

Game Release: Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings (US, 09/30/99)


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