The remaster of Age of Empires 2 is titled: Definitive Edition. So the definitive issue. The version that unites all the others. And that actually meant that Age of Empires 2 would in a way be finished. No more new peoples should come.
Now. Never say Never! A little surprisingly, Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition got a new expansion on January 26th, 2020: Lords of the West. And that includes new parliamentary groups that – the name suggests – come from Europe.
The DLC has been out for about two days now. We’ll tell you what’s in the expansion and also why an expansion to a terrific remaster is still criticized by some fans.
Marius Beck from the developer studio Forgotten Empires also discussed many details about the new DLC live with us in the stream (from 5:05:58):
Link to YouTube content
Two new races
Age of Empires 2 has been expanded for decades. In most cases, these were new civilizations from around the world, each with their own game mechanics and unique units. Lords of the West is also introducing new races. Namely the people of the Burgundians and the people of the Sicilians.
The Burgundians can do that
Historically speaking, the Burgundians were a Europeic tribe that first became an independent kingdom after the fall of the Roman Empire and then became part of the Franconian Empire. Playfully, the Burgundians are a faction that has above all a strong cavalry.
Burgundy specialties include:
- Tickler: A unique cavalry unit with a powerful onslaught.
- Flemish Militia: A unique infantry unit that is strong against enemy cavalry.
- Burgundian vineyards: A unique technology that converts all food into gold at a 2-to-1 ratio and also enables farmers to generate gold.
- Flemish Revolution: All villagers will become the Flemish Militia, and from now on you can recruit this unit in the village center.
In addition, the Burgundians have a number of special faction advantages. Economical upgrades are available earlier, stable technologies are 50 percent cheaper, gunpowder units have a 25 percent higher chance of hitting and they get the Chevalier upgrade as early as the age of knights.
The Sicilians can do that
Sicily is, of course, in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, right at the tip of your Italian boot. The island has always been a real melting pot of different cultures and influences. If you want to play with the Sicilians, you will benefit from solid infantry and strong archers.
The peculiarities of the Sicilians include:
- Serjeant: A strong infantry unit that donjons can set up.
- Donjon: The donjon is a kind of castle in which you can barricade your units. It replaces the tower and trains serjeants.
- First crusade: Each of your village centers immediately creates a group of 10 serjeants.
- Shield money: Each team member immediately receives 15 gold for each of their military units.
The Sicilians also have their own bonuses with which they can gain an advantage. Castles and village centers are built 100 percent faster, land units absorb 50 percent of all bonus damage, and farm upgrades provide 100 percent more food.
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Three new campaigns
Above all, single players and players interested in history can look forward to three new campaigns with the DLC, in which you can relive the stories of extraordinary personalities. Two of the new campaigns deal with his torical events linked to the new factions. In total, enough missions come together to keep you busy for about 15 hours.
- Edward Longshanks: You do not contest the first campaign with Sicilians or Burgundians. Here you control the faction of the British. You accompany the English King Edward I on a journey through the whole of Britain and on a crusade.
- The Grand Dukes of the West: This campaign for the Burgundians is about various Burgundian dukes who want to expand their position of power in France and strive for their own kingdom.
- The Hautevilles: In this campaign you will experience how the descendants of Robert Guiskard rose to rulers in many parts of the world and finally went down in history as the kings of Sicily. Accordingly, you play with the Sicilian faction in the campaign.
A lot of praise but also criticism
Basically, most players were initially pleasantly surprised that Age of Empires 2 got a new DLC after all. However, there were also some critical voices in the days after the release. Not every player is happy with the new factions and the patch that was released at the same time. Commonly there seem to be two currents.
- Single player: Judging by the Reviews on Steam, most single players are very happy with the DLC. The new campaigns should be a lot of fun, deliver great maps and tell interesting historical stories. So if you mainly like to sink into Age of Empires 2 alone and want to learn more about the past, the DLC is good for you.
- Multiplayer: However, there is criticism from the multiplayer purists. Here the game balance seems to have gotten a little out of joint with the new factions. Both Burgundians and Sicilians are common overestimated as something. Players complain here that the DLC would mess up the meta.
Regardless of the balance and the campaign, the new patch is also criticized. Here are some really annoying bugs that are extremely annoying, especially in multiplayer. According to this, there is now a glitch with which sections of the wall of the enemy can be easily deleted and an exploit makes the Lithuanian cavalry virtually invincible. The development team is already aware of these issues and announced that it would take care of it.