Return of Rome DLC: Why not directly update AOE:DE instead?

If AoE1 is indeed being ported over onto AoE2, and assuming that the ancient and medieval game modes are going to stay separate, there’s a suggestion:

Why not make a fork of AoE2DE, then insert AoEDE’s dataset, graphics, sounds, interface, and then replace AoEDE with that fork? Instead of turning AoE1 into ‘just another’ dlc of AoE2? Are we missing something?

Not to say, that releasing a DLC instead will likely open an unexpected can of worms (for example, how ridiculous will future expansions look - a dlc of a dlc?; and more).

Concerning finances, you can be pretty sure, that fixed AoEDE will drive up its sales. Yes, what I’m saying is, that an update can be just as profitable as a DLC.

Here are two extreme statements that don’t necessarily reflect reality, but can be utilized to look into the opinions of the small and desperate AoE1 community about the upcoming Return of Rome:

A) Making a fork indicates, that the devs are truly interested in AoE1, and want to bring it closer to the greatness of a perfection which is AoE2.
2’s game engine reused for 1, a noble intent and goal which can’t possibly do harm to our communities

B) Making a DLC indicates, that the devs continue to dehumanize and punish AoE1 by turning the father of the series into ‘just another AoE2 dlc’.
1 gets gobbled up by its younger brother, becomes just another dlc of 2’s


I already replied to you in a different thread but I’ll do it hear again.

The first question is: How are they actually going to release RoR.
If it’s a standalone DLC for AoE2DE where owners of AoE1DE get a 100% discount you practically get what you want.

So the big 2 questions are:

  1. Is it standalone or do you have to buy AoE2DE?
  2. Is there going to be a discount for AoE1DE owners and how much will it cost in the first place?

Reasons why they might want it to be part of AoE2DE:

  1. They are adding West Rome as a playable civilisation to AoE2DE in the same DLC
  2. They plan some crossplay features (maybe scenario only) so you can have Celts, Goths and Huns in AoE1.
  3. It’s a lot harder to market a patch then a DLC. Most people would probably not even notice the patch.
  4. It’s marketed to AoE2 players giving them an easy way to try out AoE1. Having a big greyed out button in the main menu might be a good way to get people to buy the DLC.
  5. You can’t make people pay for a patch. And porting over AoE1 to AoE2 is not that easy, so they need to sell something to make money. You just assume AoE1DE would suddenly sell better after the patch but I doubt that many people would give it a second chance after that. Most people don’t know how engines work or closely follow gaming news.
  6. There are changes in RoR that not everyone likes, they want to keep the old AoE1DE around for people that want to original experience without formations, gates and whatever else RoR will give us.

I don’t disagree that just updating AoE1DE to the AoE2DE engine would be a clear and massive improvement to the current situation.

You can’t dehumanise something that is not human, lol.
I don’t see it as a punishment. Finally after over 20 years AoE1 and AoE2 are joined in one game, isn’t that awesome?

That is a good question. Depending on how it’s being sold on Steam and the Microsoft Store that might be quite awkward. But not really impossible.

Dawn of War had a Expansion model where you could only own the Expansion and still play Multilayer, but you could only play the races from the Expansion.
RoR could do it the same way. You just buy the DLC that adds Indian civilisations to RoR then you can only play those civilisations. You can still play against AI and other players with all the other civilisations.


I also replied in the other topic.

It’s the same under different label. The only thing that can change is the visibility inside the client. Having the game integrated on the 2 grans the support and makes it easier to maintain, that’s what the game deserves.

Your opinion. For me it’s great to have 1 on 2 and have technical support, a thing that wasn’t an option as an independent game. Plus all the upgrades that the game needed but wasn’t implemented on 1 DE.

I seriously doubt that cross play will be available at all, since unit and building stats are so different. I have seen some screenshots and stats of units and building were same compare to regular AoE1DE. I did noticed that TC had garrison option but no damage. Unless they are going to change things drastically just for one special game mode I don’t think so that cross play between aoe1 and aoe2 civs will come.

They would definitely have to change AoE1 stats a lot to make it compatible with AoE2.
But AoE1 doesn’t have that many units overall so it wouldn’t be that hard.

Then what’s the point, if units will have same stats but different look compare to regular aoe 2 units, then its just like playing with skin mod?

Adjusting the stats doesn’t mean copying AoE2 units.
There are a lot of generic AoE2 units that don’t have an equivalent in AoE1 and a lot of AoE1 units that don’t really have an equivalent in AoE2.

I know, I was looking for a word :smiley: . Maybe ‘humiliate’ would be a better fit.

Not like that, they’re not joined in one game, AoE1 is rather becoming merely a part of AoE2. The technical aspect and support it will get is awesome though, yes.

Yes, my opinion.

The question is, what will happen to AoE:DE? A bad game stays a bad game?

It almost doesn’t sell. Why keep it dying like that? To the shame of Microsoft and affiliated developer companies?

What will happen to this forum? Become useless as everyone moves to Return of Rome?

Will they add warning to Steam “don’t buy this game, buy Return of Rome instead” or even unlist it from the store? Well, I’m aware, that some people don’t want the new functionality like fixed pathfinding, added formations, gates, but they are rather a minority.

So, from the limited amount of data I’ve gathered so far, the main reason that you all disagree with me / want it to be a 2’s DLC is because you want crossplay features, is that right? Or correct me.

I guess. It would be fair if they would give it a permanent discount since they aren’t supporting it anymore and especially because AoE2DE and AoE3DE get so much more support for the same price currently.

AoE1DE is not bad, it’s average for a remaster. Many remasters are much worse.
It’s AoE2DE and AoE3DE that are the exceptions. Is there any other remaster (not remake!) that got multiple new DLCs?

Good question. RoR threads are currently on both forums but maybe they will make a RoR subforum on the AoE2 forums or something like that.

I don’t think that will happen, you can still buy AoE2HD and AoE3. AoE3 complete collection costs more then AoE3DE and has a lot less content and features.

I don’t really disagree with you. I just said my thoughts on why I think they did what they did.
As someone who loves making Scenarios a crossplay feature would be awesome because it would give me a lot more content to work with but I’m afraid that won’t happen anyway.

There is also still the possibility that RoR will be a standalone DLC that doesn’t require you to own AoE2DE. In this case you practically get what you want.

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I think it’s a little bit too late to ask the devs to change their plans entirely and ditch a good chunk of their work so far if it isn’t compatible with AoE1’s codes.
As for the “dlc for dlc” is unthinkable arguments, people did say that about Total War Warhammer. And when the devs started doing dlc for dlc, all those same people were saying was “more, please”.

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I always thought that updating AoE:DE is more logical.

  1. It’s more convenient, more consistent, comprises a whole lot less cognitive dissonance, when ancient content is introducted to actually an ancient era game.

  2. AoE2 is a medieval game, set during 400 to 1600 CE. It was never ever meant to encompass Stone Age, Bronze Age, and so on, these were left to history.
    That’s why it’s so weird to see Return of Rome in AoE2…Even as a separate mode. Sorry, but it IS weird.

  3. I suppose it’s more convenient and logical, to:

  • keep the ancient stuff in Age of Empires
  • keep the medieval stuff in Age of Empires 2,
    instead of a some sort of mishmash…erghm…hub, that AoE2 is just about to become. I’m worried that developers may be making a design mistake.
  1. Personally, I will find it annoying to have displayed hundreds of hours played on AoE2:DE on my Steam profile, while that would have been actually from playing Return of Rome…
    Feels like 2 is going to appropriate a lot of 1’s success.
  1. Honestly, this could’ve been done… they could have added a third mode to AoE:DE, so there would be 1.Classic, 2.Definitive, 3.Return of Rome
    In case there would be problems with porting the first two modes to the newer game engine, they could make Return of Rome an option in a launcher pop-up that asks you when launching AoE:DE from Steam.
    This solution would please both demographics; those, who desire QoL changes reminiscent of AoE2, and those, who are opposed to any changes to AoE:DE.
  1. They could then release it as a DLC anyway after all (for 1DE). Might be even standalone if needed.

The conclusion:

What having Return of Rome in AoE2 has going for it:

  • a DLC may possibly sell better than a patched game because people are ignorant
  • possible crossplay features

What having Return of Rome in AoE has going for it:

  • it’s more convenient, more consistent, less cognitive dissonance
  • would serve justice for AoE:DE, which is currently abandoned
  • AoE:DE would start to actually get supported and begin to sell slightly more
  • if anything, they can still release it as a DLC if they felt like they are missing out on some of the profit

Thanks for the debate :slight_smile:

This is the reason why they did it.

This is the reason why I want it.
Or if not crossplay at last some shared unity and buildings on top of shared terrain and gaia objects in the Scenario editor.

Assuming switching to RoR is just one button in the main menu (which should be perfectly doable) it would be a lot easier to switch between both games for all those people that enjoy both games.

Also not the first game that does that. I remember Battlefield Bad Company 2 had a Vietnam DLC where basically everything was different, completely different weapons, equipment, vehicles and maps, but it was in the same game. No one thought that was wrong.

This is not an argument.
AoE1 is not a person that has been treated badly. It’s a product.
AoE2 is not the enemy. Many people enjoy more then one AoE game.

Making it a DLC that just gives a new engine would very likely be considered a scam by most people.
Also would be a lot harder to sell it to people.
Most people don’t know what an engine is but they have they kinda understand that AoE1DE was technically worse then AoE2DE so they understand that adding all the AoE1 content to AoE2DE will make it run better.

I kinda have the feeling that this is the main reason for you.
You don’t like AoE2 (or the AoE2 community always thinking they are the best) and you want people to notice AoE1 more.
AoE2 was made by mostly the same people that made AoE1. It’s the same family. They are not the enemy.

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I suggest that you look up these terms. They don’t mean what you seem to think they mean.

For whom? I can’t see how it would be more convenient for the developers. For players, depending on how they implement it, it will be at least as convenient to have AoE1 “in” AoE2 than having it separate.

This would be much less convenient (for the developers) than what they’re planning, because Return of Rome uses a different version of the engine to the AoE:DE. It would be more separate from AoE1 than it will be from AoE2.

You missed easier upkeep for the devs, since they only have to maintain one version of the AoE2 engine, rather than two separate ones. If, for example, they want to fix a bug/add a new feature/improve an existing feature, they only have to do that once, not twice.


AoE1 DE is sadly just a messy nostalgia game with bugs, insane pathfinding issues and so much more, its clear they don’t care for this game and this mode into aoe2 DE was the final nail in the coffin. Sad because i love AOE1DE but it has so many issues its not fun playing for more than 1-2 games.

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It’s because of the limitations of the AoE 1 Genie engine version…the devs have more experience working with the AoE 2 Genie engine version, they only used 1 DE to continue to gain experience with the engine code, but they said that It was a pain to work with that version of the engine…they released DE 1 just for people who liked 1 DE as it was, but since they didn’t do it enough justice, they decided to re-release it within the AoE 2 engine as a dlc “Return of Rome”… I have 1 DE (and I passed the Egyptian and Greek campaign), but it’s horrible to play it, therefore I prefer to replay it in Return of Rome better…


I think that it is a vicious circle. The developers has presented a very bad image that they just want to coin out money from the aoe fans. As a aoe “lover”, I cannot feel the developers have the “heart”(intension) to make aoe better (particularly there is great contrast with aoe2). So I will give a bad feedback (Sorry that I am among the one who gave “Not Recommended” in RoR in Steam). Then the developers think that as the feedback is not good, so there is not meaning for further development.

This is really upset. Aoe should have been great, but the developers are too short-sighted, and finally turned a game into a relic

Your thought is what I think. As I commented on another thread, what devs did with RoR was a deny of AoE DE’s existent. I never ask for RoR. But if you bought that dlc, then I don’t think they would care for your review.

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Campagnes with Triggers.
Not possible with the AoE1DE Engine.
Have you Player the Rose Campagnes?
They are worth every penny!!!