So, no discount in Return of Rome for Age: DE owners. Really, Microsoft?!?

As someone who first played Age of Empires beginning by the classic from 1997, the announcement of the Definitive Edition in 2017 was a blast for me. Despite been a lover of the first game, Its limitations where always self-evident, so I was expecting the Definitive Edition to include gates, unit stances and so on.

Unfortunately, that was not the case, and despite that, I bought the Definitive Edition the same day it launched on Steam. Since even before the launch, I have created many threads on the game’s forum making suggestions and giving voice to my expectations:

Making Age of Empires a 21th Century RTS (Nov '17)

Which visual improvements can we expect on the first Definitive Edition (Jun '19)

Let’s debate some game improvements (Apr '20)

Age of Empires: Definitive Edition epic bug list (Feb '21)

My wishlist for the next big update (Apr '21)

Can we expect good news for the fans of the classic game on october 25th (Sep '22)

Formations should be a tech in Return of Rome and other ideas (Nov '22)

And to end with a flourish:

What if the first Age of Empires could be added into Age II as a DLC (Mar '21)

This after the following thread from xWHIT3W0LFx, the first to propose something similar, If I recall correctly:

[REQUEST] Port AOE1:DE to the engine of AOE2:DE (Apr '20)

As you can imagine, for me the announcement of the Return of Rome DLC were like a dream coming true. “Everything I have been waiting for, but launched as a DLC for a different game? Well, why not, for sure we, who own the first game will have a fair discount on it!” I have thought to myself. “Perhaps we will even be gifted it for free!” I have foolish myself.

Now, I discover that those changes that I and many others are anxiously expecting for so long have FINALLY ARRIVED! Yeah! :laughing: :partying_face: :tada:

As a DLC.

In another game.

Which I’m being asked to pay full price for it, like if I was paying for an actualization patch to a game that I was promised would receive full, continuous support after launch.

Anyway, I would like to thanks the devs that worked on this DLC and believed in the potential of the game that began it all. The DLC looks amazing, the new decorative elements and unit designs I could identify looks beautiful (been the Babylonian gates the prettiest of them all!), and the new, narrated campaigns look great! I’m truly grateful for it.

But this movement from the financial department… that was a really, really bad one.

I already own the Age II: DE, and will gladly buy this DLC… when I have the proper discount for it.


Hey, it’s great to see your passion for the game.

Part of growing up is understanding that you can’t change people, no matter how much their actions/inactions hurt. You have to accept that they are autonomous and will often act in ways that we could perceive/know to be self-destructive.

In this case you, have lucky that your complaints have been heard and actions have been taken. I think you need to let go of the fact they are moving support from AOE1:DE to AOE2:DE, this move centralises the dev support for all future content related to AOE1 and provides a platform for your other requests to be heard.

The devs who are enacting your changes need to be paid for their work and I’m sure they would appreciate you supporting them by purchasing AOE2:DE and the ROR DLC. They obviously don’t set the price tag or potential bundling.


I’ve been saying the same thing since Return of Rome was announced. Agreed the DLC looks amazing.

I don’t think the devs are involved, in this price strategy, but Microsoft is. Same with the dumb censor, all Microsoft being greedy clowns.

Anyway I just found out there is a preorder discount and an additional discount for AoEDE2 owners, so it comes down to $10,75, which is only marginally more than the usual new DLC price, and since I want to support the devs and want to see future DLCs with Indians and Celts (one of the reasons the RoR DLC got made) I’m going to preorder.

I am still not happy about this and a major discount should be added for current AoEDE owners.


Don’r buy it if you can’t afford

1 Like

Thx for mentioning me, would be interesting if the devs really read my thread and if it was an inspiration for them to finally making it happen.

Anyway, I couldn’t be happier to finally play the game that started it all with all the QoL improvements from AoE2DE. The demo of AoE1 was my first PC game and my brother and I spent hours playing the same level over and over again… and it was great!

Regarding the pricing situation, it’s unfortunante that AoEDE owners don’t get a discount but imo the price is still fair for the content you get. Yes, it’s the same game again but we also have to consider that it was a lot of work (AIs for 17 civs are not created in one day).


Devs could port hunts, celts and goths to Aoe1 as new civs, but with new bonuses and adapted to the 1st game.


…like charging their consumers for a new, upgraded version of a previous product you already paid for, which has been dropped from support for unknown reasons? (Age I: DE)? :sweat_smile:

After a long time waiting, but yeah, I agree with you. The communities of many other games out there will not see even the slightest sign of a revival of their beloved franchises anytime soon.

The best move they could have made, better late than never! And I’m hopping for more content in the future, but presented more fairly.

They sure need it, and it’s well deserved! You see, what bothers me is that Age II: DE, for example, launched with not only the original game’s existing content, but also new civilizations and campaigns, and some other quality of life features like attack-movement, auto-scout and tower range indicators were free upgrades.
Those of us who bought the first game’s DE had little of that, just auto-reseeding for farms and a faulty attack move, and were told the game would have continued support going forward. Well, unfortunately that didn’t happen, and now I have to pay for those quality of life improvements I’ve been looking for so long at a price more expensive than the DE itself.

Now that I’ve found out there’s a cumulative discount for pre-ordering the DLC and already owning Age II:DE, I’m considering supporting it, but I can’t help but feel a little exploited by Microsoft.

1 Like

Surely, it’s Microsoft to blame!

Thanks for bringing this to my attention! Now I feel more inclined to buy this DLC…

…exactly because of this! I can’t wait to see it grow in the future with more campaigns, units and civilizations! Have you heard of the Beyond the Indus Mod for the classic game? Sadly, it was abandoned before completion, but it was a great sample of how great an Indian civilization would look in the game.

I’ll wait until the last minute to see if they do something about it; otherwise I will accept current discounts anyway.

To afford it or not isn’t exactly the issue, but this pricing policy seems unfair for those who were been waiting for the first DE to be updated!


Who knows, I think it is perfectly reasonable to think that’s possible!

Honestly, me too! I’m sick of can’t be able to build gates since the Gold Edition lol

That’s great, indeed! For me, it was my uncle how bought the Gold Edition CD on a game’s magazine, and I couldn’t stop asking my parents to give me one, too! I have it since them! :smile:

Yeah, I agree with you. Now there are 3 new campaigns and fully voiced acted, something a have been desiring since before the DE launched!

Work that perhaps could have being done already, but I will grant them the fact that the previous attempt was the first DE launched at they had already done an wonderful job with the new graphics!


I can’t wait for this, it will be very fitting to have the Huns in this game, even more so than they already had in Age II. And if they add Celts and Goths in the future, we could have new campaigns telling their point of view on the Roman conquests!

1 Like

They want to milk a poor third world country. It is a very heinous act imo.

1 Like

Are you talking about the Vietnamese civilization they’re adding? Well, from that point of view, it looks a lot worse than I thought…

1 Like

Remember, prices are not the same in VN. It’s half the western price basically. Check on steamDB.

1 Like

so according to a player from vietnam who plays with us regularly, he told me steam is charging around $8 USD for the DLC, for one who already has the base game.

I am not sure how much $8 USD translates to for people in vietnam, that person explained the new mode added with DLC isn’t exactly similar to the D3 mode people play in AOE1. I just hope this isn’t a flop and ended up with just AOE1DE players.


I’ve also made a post about how the current pricing is a tad expensive for Vietnamese players, and unfriendly to AoE1DE owners. Even suggested other pricing schemes.

Do you have a detailed breakdown of the difference?


Yeah, in the end, AoE1:DE didn’t really seem like what a “definitive” edition should be to me, and to not have much by way of post-launch improvements is too bad. I only played that game a few times. I was okay with buying it to help support the DE endeavors at the time for a franchise that I’ve loved for so long, plus it was nice to try AoE1 again. But the gameplay itself, sadly, didn’t grip me like AoE2’s does (I mostly forgot how different it was, and a 50 population cap? yikes, but I mean, that’s how AoE1 was I think, so I’m cool with it), and I didn’t find many reasons to go back to it. I think it will be nice to have AoE1 stuff in AoE2.

If they don’t carry over some of the main audio cues from 1 to 2, though, then it’s a pass for me for quite a while. For example, I hope to hear, “Rogan?” from the villagers, etc. And do the age names change when playing AoE1 civs, or is there an option in lobby to shift the ages to be named that regardless of what civs you play? They may not apply to AoE2 civs, but it should be up to the individual player, imo, if they want what is, ultimately, just a cosmetic renaming of ages. Carrying over AoE1 UI icons to AoE2’s UI would be nice, too. (I think they look a little different in the promo trailer, so I believe this is being done?)

1 Like

anyone that isn’t willing to pay for dlc rn, wait for next sale to see a greater discount

So whereas in my other thread, I’m very much putting myself in the publisher’s shoes and thinking about what they could have done to reach their strategic goals, here I want to talk about the users’ reaction, and the validity of said goals themselves. I will use sterner words, because this is a more unflinching look. Any dev reading this: please don’t take it personally - I’m 100% supportive toward your work, and the topic here isn’t about you.

In short, Return of Rome feels off to players, especially people who bought AoE1DE, because:

The franchise management made mistakes, and they are getting customers to pay for them.

Below is the detailed argument:


At the beginning of the DE initiative, they had mismanaged AoE1DE in both software development (creating a technically deficient product) and market outreach (little commitment to the Vietnamese community beyond translating the game), and now they are trying to rectify both by redoing AoE1 and courting the Vietnamese community, while asking the users to pay for their fixing.

We can compare the situation to the DEs’ stablemate, Halo: Master Chief Collection: it was released in 2014 as a technical mess, and 5 years later received systematic fixes, which are naturally free to owners of the initial release, and helped paid for by releasing the missing entry of Halo Reach (campaign is paid DLC, PvP is free to owners), and also releasing on new platforms: PC and next-gen consoles. That would be a more admirable example.

Now for Return of Rome, they are justifying the purchase by new content: many new scenario decorations, 3 new campaigns in the AoE2DE engine, a new AoE2 civ, and a new AoE1 civ - comparable amounts of new content as previous AoE2DE DLCs, except Return of Rome has a higher price tag due to the inclusion of the AoE1 mode itself.

It’s quite reasonable to argue that AoE1DE owners, especially those who bought it full-price, have already paid for this latter part - the “right to play an updated AoE1”, and have yet to receive the full product they were promised. On this account, they should get a discount that lowers Return’s price to the equivalent of buying a DLC containing new campaigns and civs.


For now, the userbase still holds deep trust in the AoE series. It’s only a vocal minority who complaints about Roman civ in AoE2 or not being able to play it in ranked; if you go on social media and other broader communities, you can see most players are welcoming Return of Rome with open arms.

Like many others, I personally have no problem paying for Return of Rome myself - the new balance, new scenario objects and the significant color design update to AoE1DE’s assets that lifts them from the dreary appearance of AoE1DE, they are worth the price for me.

However, our current trust is built on the diligent hard work of the series’ developers who have brought joy to everybody through stellar visual artworks and game design. I am worried that more mistakes like we have seen will tarnish the franchise’s reputation, and make the developers’ efforts go to waste.

I hope this worry is unnecessary.


You summed it up perfectly my friend! I assume I have mixed feelings about this DLC; I feel happy to finally get the chance to play the AoE experience I’ve always wanted, but at the same time I can’t help but feel betrayed by Microsoft using my esteem for this game to squeeze more money out of me :unamused: