Posted: March 2
Remember the days of old, the age of glory for Age of Empires and The Settlers? Well, that's where Age of Mythology comes in.
One has to admit that 9 out of 10 purchases of this Age of Mythology: Extended Edition is made purely for nostalgic reasons. Most buyers remember this game from the past, or from their childhood, and are glad it's got a reboot, escpecially after Microsoft completely removed the ESO (online Multiplayer) support for Age of Mythology, making the game only playable through LAN and VPNs. For those people it's more than obvious that the game's a viable purchase.
Mind that Age of Mythology is highly educational. It's an RTS that uses 4 different kinds of mythological cultures as factions to fight each other. You can choose Norse, Greek, Egyptian and "Atlantean" gods to worship, in which the atlanteans tend to worship Greek titans rather than gods. The upgrades, units, myth creatures and buildings are extremely and surprisingly accurate to what is described in their respective mythologies, and the game even has a built-in encyclopedia full of lore behind each entity and upgrade within the game. Before actually having proper mythological history classes, Age of Mythology was my base mythological knowledge and by the dragons, it gave me a huge advantage. Age of Mythology is definitely an entertaining way to learn about ancient culture and old religions.
Are you looking for something shiny and revolutionary? Look elsewhere. This game is quite old and despite the updates, it hasn't got the fancy graphics and mechanics you'd get in strategy games nowadays. Are you into retro-ish games with stable mechanics and decent online gameplay? Yes, this will work out fine.
There's some issues I have with this game, though. First of all, the game is expensive, considering that the only real addition to the classic game that is truly significant is the reboot of the online game mode. The game has the same old bugs and the game's connection online is worse than it's been in the old days. But... I guess it works, which is quite an improvement. The issue is more or less that it is very much questionable whether matches of the day, online support, achievements and minor tweaks (which are mostly imported scripts that one could've just downloaded from AoM Heaven or whatever Age of Mythology fan website) such as changing of seasons and "updated graphics" (which are barely notable) are actually worth the money.
If you're extremely interested in and devoted to the comeback of random PvP online gameplay within Age of Mythology, then yes, consider getting this. If you're up for amazing new features and fixes to the game other than ranked online modes, I do NOT recommend this, for the new features are barely notable and not worth your money.
Why do I recommend this game? Because I'm rating Age of Mythology here, and not the extended edition per se. The game is not bad, the game is actually quite fantastic. It's the extended edition updates that's just not worth the effort in my opinion.
In conclusion, Age of Mythology is an all-time classic and must-have for those who enjoyed Age of Empires and other relatively old RTS games. The rules of thumb for purchasing this game are:
- IF you're extremely interested in random PvP online Age of Mythology gaming, buy the extended edition. Note that the connection is bad and you will experience a lot of lag.
- IF you are a fan of Age of Mythology and want to support the reboot, regardless of the additions being underwhelming, buy the extended edition.
- IF you're here for revolutionary RTS experiences and shiny new mechanics, move along.
- IF you're not interested in history and mythology, move along.
- IF you don't care about the online mode and/or find the additions not impressive, get an old copy of Age of Mythology + the Titans expansion at your game store or online. You can get these old copies for about $2 and they run perfectly fine on ANY XP or higher Windows OS without trouble, and the LAN feature will work fine, so if you want to play with some known friends you can just use a VPN client like Hamachi or Evolve.