We play a fairly extensive preview of Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition, the “new” installment in the long-lived strategy saga that sits on the foundations of a classic.
As soon as you start this preview of Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition, the first thing that appears on the screen is a message with the following warning: changes have been made at the level of historical representation by consulting different sources, from Native Americans to others involved. It may seem trivial, but it exemplifies well that after this improved edition much more than a simple compilation or graphic jump has been put in place, but also a lot of care at the level of historical documentation. And we rejoice.
This advance to which we have had access in Meristation has allowed us to play the campaign “Blood, ice and steel”, the one that begins with Morgan Black and that will surely make everyone who played it fifteen years ago wince. Likewise, we have also been able to enjoy multiplayer mode, Skirmishes and the Art of War. First impressions of this return to the past.
To remove settlers
At this point in the movie – or in the story, as you see it – you don’t need to explain much about the mechanics of Age of Empires. We build buildings, gather supplies, and create troops and settlers to not only pass civilization, but also conquer territories and, of course, defeat the enemy.
This is the formula that has prevailed in Age of Empires since its inception, an equation that has remained just as attractive and powerful since its first installment. Therefore, the key to these definitive editions that Microsoft is releasing to the market is not so much the gameplay itself, but the changes it makes with respect to the originals.
The fact that Age of Empires II and Age of Empires I came out before this third part works in favor of the latter; and we explain ourselves. It has been easier to take advantage of the models and graphics of Age of Empires III, which in turn shows on the screen. It doesn’t look like it’s a strategy game from a decade and a half ago, it just hit the market.
With a PC that is already crying out for a change (with a GTX 780), we have been able to run the game at all times in high quality, sometimes even a little more. Everything looked smooth, no frame drops, and only the occasional visual bug that would surely be corrected for the final edition (such as the water getting pixelated). In addition, with the possibility of taking advantage of it in 4K if the PC (and the monitor) allows it.
The work of Tantalus Media and Forgotten Empires is more than remarkable, especially if we consider that they face a titan of strategy such as this third part. But not only have they stayed in the graphic, but the soundtrack has also been completely remastered. And you can see it. The pity is that the dubbing sometimes lags behind and is a bit out of tune, as well as that the new modes do not incorporate dubbing into Spanish, but nothing to object too much.
And speaking of the latter, we have been able to test two small advances of them. The first is the Art of War, a modality that proposes challenges to the player. The idea is to delve into very basic concepts to take advantage of them, see collect a lot of food in a short time, build buildings, etc. Small challenges to enter specific fields of the game.
The second, for its part, is Historical Battles. As its name suggests, this game mode allows us to enjoy those historical battles that have some of our game factions as a backdrop, a total of 14 considering that this Definitive Edition includes everything. As with the previous mode, it is a new addition to expand the possibilities of Age of Empires III, something that is appreciated.
We have been wanting to play all the content of Age of Empires III again, although for that we will have to wait for the official launch. At the moment, this impressions comes only three weeks after this Definitive Edition goes on sale, and the result could not be more optimal.