There is another route they could take in the future, which could satisfy many of the wishes of the community and especially those who prefer AoE2 but with the setting of AoE: an optional DLC for AoE DE which changes/adds most of the functionality and features of AoE2. Not having it enforced is the way to go, for that will certainly drive away hardcore fans (purists if you will). The keyword being optional. It would require a tremendous amount of work - I really don’t see anything like this happening soon however.
Better yet, one should simply download your mod and play AoE2 DE, since you filled this void