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Age of Mythology
(hx) 04:39 PM EST - Nov,11 2002

It has finally happened, after years of waiting I can finally play Age of Mythology. There's no doubt that Ensemble is a great developer, their Age of Empires series has long been one of my favorites, not just in the real-time strategy genre, but for gaming in general. Did Ensemble innovate the real-time strategy genre like they have done in the past, or is this game just the same game with updated graphics? Is Age of Mythology worth buying? I will try to answer these questions in this review.

Age of Mythology plays a lot like the original Age' games, as well as other real-time strategy games. You gather resources, use them to build armies, and then use those armies to destroy your enemies. Did you expect something else? :) Of course, it's not exactly the same game as Age of Kings or Age of Empires 2, they have added a number of entirely new gameplay features, impressive graphics in a fully 3D environment and many other goodies which make this game one of the best strategies ever. Basically, Age of Mythology preserves the familiar elements popular in previous Age of Empires games. Despite the hype, I think that all those who loved the originals, Age of Empires, Age of Kings and their expansions, will find this game pretty satisfying because the battle of the gods has finally begun :)

There are three sides in Age of Mythology, the Egyptians, the Norse, and the Greeks, each with unique units and resource gathering rules. The Greeks excel in raw power, and are the easiest race to pick up and play immediately, as their basic game mechanics should be familiar to anyone who has player other Age's games. The Egyptians are all about building a vast empire with legions of troops, and they have an incredibly versatile economy. Lastly, the Norse are all about wild aggression, with the ability to build up anywhere so you can expect rather constant fighting with this race. In addition you have to worship gods, and they will help you kill your enemies - each god (Hades, Hor, Isis, Odin, Osiris, Zeus..) provides different strengths for your civilization, and new god powers such as weapons of mass destruction (two different kinds of lightning, meteor swarm etc). Alike the Age of Empires games, there's also fourth resource in the game called Favor (a new resource which replaces Stone), which represents the powers of your civilizations' gods and is used for summoning your civilization's powerful mythological units (Cyclopes, Medusas...) , as well as for armor and weaponry upgrades. Favor is gathered in different ways, Greek villagers pray at a temple, Egyptian workers construct statues and the Norse getting Favor through battles.

Overall, Age of Mythology features story-driven single-player campaign divided into 36 missions, more than 20 mythological creatures, quite challenging AI, a random map skirmish mode, multiplayer up to 12 players (Scenarios /include co-op/, Lightening, Deathmatch, Conquest, Supremacy) via LAN/Internet (ESO) and highly intuitive interface that's very similar to that of Age of Empires II.

Age of Mythology is far and away the most polished, deep and beautiful real-time strategy game I have ever played. This game took everything that I liked about the Age of Empires series and fixed all the things that I didn't like. It's definitely the leading contender for Game of the Year. Download massive playable demo(340MB).


System requirements (single player)
Minimum: PII-300, 32MB RAM, 500MB HDD, 3D accelerator w/ hardware T&L
Recommended: PIII-733, 256MB RAM, 1.5GB HDD, 32MB 3D accelerator, 512MB swap-file

The following guidelines are recommended for a good multiplayer experience:
12 Players - Greater or equal to a P4 2.4 GHz, 512 MB RAM, Cable/DSL, LAN
8 Players - Greater or equal to a P4 1.7 GHz, 512 MB RAM, Cable/DSL, LAN
6 Players - Greater or equal to a P3 1.0 GHz, 256 - 512 MB RAM, Cable/DSL, LAN
4 Players - Greater or equal to a P3 733 MHz, 128 - 256 MB RAM, 56 KB modem
2 Players - Greater or equal to a P2 450 MHz, 128 MB RAM, 56 KB modem


snd: 5/5 - pretty good, impressive music, nice voice-acting, decent effects
gfx: 5/5 - gorgeous graphics in a fully 3D environment, (completely new graphics engine, up 1600x1200x32), incredible special effects (ocean waves, waterspouts, infernos, lava, tornadoes, earthquakes and smoke), excellent in-game cut scenes, units are highly detailed and move extremely realistically, nice zoom (use +/- keys) and rotation (must be enabled in options)
playability: 5/5 - addictive, infinitely replayable, Multiplayer LAN is lag-free (up to 12 players, five modes), simple and painless installation, solid and stable, highly intuitive interface that's very similar to that of Age of Empires II, nice learning curve, too cheap manual :)
genre: real-time strategy
release: November 2002
developer: Ensemble Studios
the game is similar to: AoK, AoE2
publisher: Microsoft
Excellent
Overall: 91%


last 10 comments:

Geexposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 03:26
But this stupid game freezing every 5 minutes and there are a lot other bugs!

Breatheposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 03:33
bugs? It's exremely polished! I haven't had a single problem with it yet and it's a very strong contender to Warcraft III for my favourite game of the year (but WC3 still beats it for the essence in it) Overall, this has to be the most satisfying RTS experience

Zeusposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 03:37
bugs? have to agree, didnt see any and all of my friends who play it are fascinated by this game and dont have no problems, although they find warcraft3 slightly better. nice to see a RTS game with fresh ideas and a not so serious background.

Lard Assposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 03:56
this is another WC3 clone and even that cartoony piece of turd was just OLD HAT, come out with something original BLIZZARD like the DIABLO series me prefer human like textures not CARTOONY JUNK, look at DOOM3 them boyz r on de £££££ !

Lukeposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 05:39
ONLY IDIOTS LIKE THESE ONES CAN SAY THAT THIS IS NOT A GREAT GAME!

zeusposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 05:39
diablo series is something original haha, didnt ahve such a laughter for long, waht you call ortiginal i call a gauntlet clone from old C64 times, and why the heck are you talking about blizzard here?!? age of mythology is from microsoft, but anyway i guess you are just drunk.

Da_Godposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 07:00
This game has some bugs that annoy. 4 instance ip games errors with DSL, hotkeys, ESO upload error, alt+tab drop. and some of the units especially at egyptians, ucant decide if its a labour or an axeman or a slinger. at first glance differences are too small. thats a big problem in combat. beside of this it is really a great game, i have been waiting too long 4 this. graphic is, beside of the mentioned probs, really good, especially bigger myth units look wonderful (hydras rule^^).

magaposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 07:22
this game is 90% a AoE clone ! the rest of 10% it's non-interesting bullshit. Same-ol, same-ol.

Leoposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 08:37
It was supposed to be a Age * clone, with new stuff in it. hx said it himself (with other words :P) in the review. See, the God powers are cool, but the gameplay for the Egypt is weird, about that monuments and stuff. If only it represented the truth, as Egypt had temples and priests working on then etc etc... Sure, it's a cool game, but it could have zoom (or am I the only one who missed it) like EmpireEarth, and the ability to build large things like Piramids etc :D

magaposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 09:27
hey, Leo, you have the game, right ?

SlowBurnposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 11:02
i heard that AoM is better than WCIII... i can't tell which is better though, because i only played WC. by the way, you are a moron LardAss, just let you know, Diablo is not the original game.

Cheesyposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 11:09
You can zoom, + or - keys. Anyone who says this is a WC3 clone was dropped as baby :O Same with all u ppl that say it sucked. Nuff said :P

Erbozposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 12:04
This is a GREAT game ! Bill, I'm suprised by you !

abcposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 12:46
lard ass is just a deprived little bitch child that like to see his own ignorance left in the form of comments here.

Titanposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 14:12
Greeks rule

chipmunkposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 17:24
AoM rulezzz!!!

Night Watchmanposted - Nov, 12 2002 - 22:07
Actually a question??? Does AoM have the same multiplayer ability, can I play head to head at home or is the multiplayer only at a web game zone? The packaging of the box only mentions single player and online multiplayer player.

Zeusposted - Nov, 13 2002 - 03:23
you can play wherever you want it, you can use direct ips, and lan, so everybody can play it where and how he wants it multiplayer. and its not an age of empires clone, its more like a follower in a slightly different direction. does this make the game bad? i dont think so. i enjoy playing it, and that is all that matters.

robert matthewsposted - Nov, 13 2002 - 07:38
Yes!! It is a great game, BUT, It could be better. The game seems to focus TOO much on military actions instead of CULTURE and everyday life of civilians.

Kenshiroooposted - Nov, 13 2002 - 07:53
I played this game in LAN this Week end. It seems very well balanced and varied. But there is a serious problem that makes WC3 far better. This game is too SLOW!!!! All your units seems to walk at the speed of a dying turtle. When you try to help a friend whose base is attacked ,you arrive when the battle has already ended :( WC3 rulez!! But AOM could have ruled too :(

zeusposted - Nov, 13 2002 - 09:17
well if i want to play a more realistic game about civilians and stuff i would recommend the anno series, i think this game is jsut a fun game with fresh ideas, warcraft3 might be better, but nonthless, its something else for a change

MR. TACOposted - Nov, 13 2002 - 11:20
Yeah, the ninjas in this game are REALLY cool. They come equipped with these heat-seaking laser guns. Now that's realistic! woohoo!

Foclanposted - Nov, 14 2002 - 03:35
Completely agree with Kenshirooo. I like AOEII (particularly The Conquerors Expansion) as LAN-game, but now i been disappointed in AOM. Yes, this game is too SLOW!!! Gameplay lose dinamical :(

zatposted - Nov, 14 2002 - 07:28
This is the greatest RTS game even better than WC3

clovisposted - Nov, 14 2002 - 18:20
please someone help me.how can i play the game if i don't have nickname and password.how can i do this? is there any way to enter without them/ please help me

Bodyoffposted - Nov, 14 2002 - 19:48
If you like RTS then you will like this. If you prefer Quake, then you wont. 'Nough Sed.

Rposted - Nov, 14 2002 - 23:05
maybe some of the people saying its slow need to upgrade their PCs. I have no problems with a 1.8 GHZ P4

AsauPrimeposted - Nov, 15 2002 - 22:47
I think I need to try the game.

devil 666posted - Nov, 16 2002 - 04:34
this is a great game i have no problems with it good job guys

Azaposted - Nov, 17 2002 - 01:11
A fucken ripper of a gme this one man. Graphics and all, AoM rulz! Greek rule!

horusposted - Nov, 17 2002 - 01:36
I have never been a friend of Microsoft but i was always an admirer of Greek civilization. So this game was a very cool surprise for me. Democracy, poetry, philosophy, poliics, history, athlet, mathematics, geometry, geography, theater and hero are greek words. Actually there are more than 10.000 greek words in eglish alphabet (even the word alphabet is greek). But it's not the words, it's the consepts. History, democracy, theater, olympism and many more consepts were invented by greeks. So, it's no surprise that Age of Mythology is heavily based on greek civilisation. Afterall... Mythology is a greek word

Ottoreposted - Nov, 17 2002 - 01:58
I like Norse myths but greek mythology is the best. Even when u play with the Atlantian hero Arkantos, you are in fact playing another greek myth. Atlantis was mentioned for the first time 2400 years ago in the works of greek philosopher Plato. And that war with Troy in the campaign mode is the main scenario in Iliad, the greek epic poem of Homer, written 2800 years ago.

tomas in da houseposted - Nov, 17 2002 - 07:23
im a fan of the aoe serie, this is the best game ever!!!!

Nazaritesposted - Nov, 17 2002 - 15:50
Er anyone play medal of honor :-) i like that game ;) Reading the comments i think i'll buy AOM...ta

ADYCOKE2posted - Nov, 23 2002 - 10:50
THE AGE SERRIES ITS THE BEST RTS LET'S FACE'IT GUYS.AGE OF MYTHOLOGY ITS NOT A CLONE OF WARCRAFT.AGE SERIES ARE EXPRIMED REALYTY-WARCRAFT ITS JUST SCIENCE FICTION

_SK4LTUR®_posted - Nov, 26 2002 - 10:04
Ok, so you all played the game and thown your comments here. This game really follows Age Series, but it's not for us to COMPARE with it, nor with Wacraft. This is Microsoft we're talking about. Not Blizzard. You can never compare one thing to another, 'cause you will always find errors. What you can do is play the game and enjoy it, no matter what. If didn't want it, you would have not bought it. Period.

SaLaD_PuNkposted - Nov, 26 2002 - 16:59
Yessss AOM its finally out. Too many 'special' powerful units. What ones shall I use in battle?? Just steamroll yr opp. with special units - forget yr infantry,archers & calvary... 7/10

DaTenUKposted - Nov, 27 2002 - 06:59
Is this yet another game where trees don't grow again if you cut them and Gold don't come back as natural resources?

Master of Olympusposted - Dec, 02 2002 - 07:57
HEY Guys!! i need some help!! what civ i destroy first? The Egyptians or the Nordics??? I have a lot of money, but i dunno how to smash them!!!

GTR007posted - Dec, 03 2002 - 13:39
THIS GAME IS GREAT !!!! I'm a big fan of Aoe ,so i think i'm gonna buy it

WareZRulEposted - Dec, 10 2002 - 08:53
this game looks good to me. it sounds better if i say it cost me little more than $1.59

Meulebeestposted - Jan, 07 2003 - 15:24
If the game is as slow as the demo gameplay, they won't see me no more... Never heard of balanced programming, or are they just wasting good resources ? Or sponsoring the IT business, faster, bigger, but not worth it.

???posted - Jan, 14 2003 - 23:16
AOM SUCKS ASSSSS !!!!!!!! This game doesnt have gun selection like CS, and the graphic is crappola! CS graphics is the best, and in AOM they just sux. Look, I know my computer is not greatest, but I know it is one of the best out there. I have Pentium 166 MicroHertz, and 32 MiniBytes RAM. Why do people rant not having fast graphic card? I know Im clever, so instead of buying GeForce, I know the best graphic card is Voodoo 2, because it is said in a magazine as "The Best graphic card EVER". Now,

kostasposted - Jan, 19 2003 - 11:15
guys this is a game that shows to people whick was the greatest civilalation. and i am talking of course about the greek one... as you know tha norse gods are just a silly copy of the greek gods. anyway "vulomai" as arkantos would say....

Paul Jacobsposted - Jan, 19 2003 - 18:42
This game is excellent, Online/Multiplayer gaming is well polished. Even more so that AOE 2. Most of the errors that people have mentioned here are server side errors and not actually problems with the game code at all. I will admitt one thing. I was running a network game with 4 other players, over a 100mb/sec network, now this is a 2ghz system with 512MB of DDR 3200 with a spanky GFX Card to boot.. Yet it still got lagged when we came to the end of the game, due to the high levels of content in the map. Other than that, not a single complaint. and it is outstanding. Dunno how they are going to be able to improve it with an expansion pack. But i am sure they will suprise :)

:dDposted - Jan, 29 2003 - 09:18
This i a very great game I give it a 9.5 I dind't discover any bugs. It is one of the best stragety games I've ever played in my whole life

-posted - Jan, 31 2003 - 02:42
I need the greg

The Gamerposted - Feb, 13 2003 - 07:17
Being a fan of the AoE series, this was an interesting and thoroughly enjoyable step in the series. One of the best RTS games I've played in a long time. Even if the units seemed slow, or my machine was practically dying, it was still worth the show, the playability, and importanly the fun. GO the horde of 20 titans!!! :P

Durk "easy" edwardposted - Apr, 22 2003 - 18:28
i played this game for one whole day. THEN WHAT I DO WITH IT? then i threw it in the garbage. WHY not return it for a refund? unfortuntely this game was so bad i could not allow another copy of it to be subject to game playing individuals. since i don't want to write another 5 paragraph i think i will just end with this comment: "SPAM SPAM THE GAME GORDON CAME IT LIKES LOTS OF STUFF DONE CRAPPEN MAN" .

daaaaaa booooom bangposted - Apr, 24 2003 - 22:55
well i got to say i became extremly violent after playing this game for 4 hours. i was so disappointed i bashed it agaisnt the wall. unfortunetly for me the repair bill for the wall costs more than the game.

ben ryanposted - Jul, 25 2003 - 05:20
its the greatest game that has gone to the shelves

Moon_Angelposted - Sep, 24 2003 - 23:54
Age of Mythology should ONLY be compared to that of the same type (isometric). Just as Centimetres should be compared to Metres of Kilometres...NOT Cenrimetres to Mililitres. In other words, why are people comparing AoM to stuff like counter strike? And of course, everyone has different tastes in games. Just like how everyone has a different type of favourite food. Some foods may be more popular, some not so, some equal. Just as how some people prefer other games instead of AoM. And comparing games like Warcraft 3 to AoM is like comparing 2 different flavours of ice-cream, in the end, they are both just ICE-CREAM (Games). And ofcourse, different people have different favourites. Some of us might like the idea of 'Starfall -wc3' some of us might like the idea of 'Meteors - AoM'. Whether a person likes a game depends on what they have played in the past, AoM does take a while to like - I know when I first played it I thought it was stink, but that was because I only played it once, when I played it a few times more it started getting much better (Like an animal adjusting to a new climate, some animals die, some survive and live happily). So in conclusion, what is the point of comparing? It's just like comparing different interests. Instead of comparing you could have already gone to Mythic age to Earthquake a town(aom) or Shot someone in the head with a rifle(cs)or even smash someones town with Meat Wagons (wc3).

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