Gas Powered Games are writing their own kind of history when Age of Empires Online
launches on Games for Windows LIVE next month. The game will launch with the Greeks and the Egyptian civilizations, and players will be able to get 40 hours of free gameplay out of these two civilisations. Those of you who want more variety will be more interested in the Celt and Persian civilisations that appeared in their own sneak peek trailer
five days ago.
The Celts and the Persians are the first two Premium Civilization Packs. Purchasing one (or more) of these packs will add extra fetaures, such as rare and epic gear, advisors, the Tech Tree, the ability to initiate player vs. player games, additional Inventory slots, more Workshops, Craft Halls, Empire Points and in-game stores. More details on these features can be found here
Here is the lowdown on the Celtic Civilization:
Invaders from the Northern Tribes are here! Take on the Celts, masters of metalworking and crafting, as you explore new lands and new challenges in “Age of Empires Online.” Explore the snowy northern realms as you learn their new units, such as the frenzied Woad Raiders, the dangerous Druids, and the powerful Celtic Swordsmen. Earn new gear and great rewards with the Celts!
The Persians are just as tempting an offer:
Travel east as you command the Persians, one of the most powerful empires in ancient times. At their height, the Persians controlled much of the known world and influenced culture around the globe. Take control of unique units such as the Immortals, mounted Persian Archers, and special attack elephants. Uncover new unit gear and Advisor cards. Single player and player vs player battles await you!
The game will also make use of Booster Packs to add new storylines or new game modes. The "Defense of Crete" Booster Pack, detailed here
, will also launch on the same day as the game itself and will add a new storyline. The second pack, "Skirmish Hall" Booster Pack, will instead add a new game mode. Here's a quick reminder of the pack's contents:
With the Skirmish Hall Booster, YOU control the battlefield. Customize your starting Age, starting forces, beginning resources, difficulty levels, and even the number of enemies you face. Take on one, two, or three enemies at once. Set the teams and choose the maps. With this level of customisation, “Age of Empires Online” players can create nearly endless hours of gameplay while varying the battlefield scenarios. In the Skirmish Hall, a rich and robust experience awaits you.
Finally, there will be Empire Extras that will serve to add more options when customising your city. The first four packs were confirmed in the pricing breakdown
, and it will be interesting to see what they come up with for the new civilizations.Age of Empires Online
is due to begin on August 16th, 2011, and will be free when 'purchased' online. The "Celtic Civilization Pack" and the "Persian Civilization Pack" are due to be released by the end of 2011, and will each cost $19.99 / £14.99. The "Skirmish Hall Booster Pack" is also due to be released by the end of 2011, and will cost $9.99. A sterling price is yet to be confirmed, but going with the usual Microsoft logic of taking the actual conversion and adding 10% interest, the price is likely to be £6.75.