In 1997, my best friend and I discovered AoE and networked computers in my basement so that we could play. AoE was partially responsible for me learning how to make patch cables, set up a network hub, and run Cat5.
We once started a game just after an early dinner. It was on a large map with high resources, and it was just the two of us playing. We liked to take our time and build significant cities with defenses, strong militaries, and then launch into all out wars. At 1am, we’d completed one of our largest battles and resources were scarce. After making a significant survey of the map, I couldn’t find any resources. Eventually, I told him I was almost out of resources. He agreed that he was having trouble finding anything. We stopped playing and made a concerted effort to look at the entire map. There was nothing left. We continued the game for about another hour, fighting with units that only needed the food we could make. Villagers back to using sticks and rocks after advancing through all of the technologies. To this day, when we get a chance to spend a few days together, at least one game of Age of Empires will happen. It’s been AoE II HD since Steam made it available. When I told him that AoE DE was coming out in October, he immediately started planning a trip for this fall.