Age of Empires IV is finally headed our way. Over the weekend, the real-time strategy game received a boatload of new information including an “autumn 2021” release window and what platforms players will be able to play the game on. Microsoft says the RTS game will release on PC through Steam and the Windows Store and will also be available on Xbox Game Pass for PC.
A big focus for the game at launch is the Norman campaign which Microsoft says is very “BBC documentary”. According to the publisher, it draws inspiration from the gilded manuscripts of the time and by utilizing historical events over present-day and real-world locations, the game will be able to provide a realistic idea of how events unfolded hundreds of years ago.
Age of Empires IV will include four campaigns at launch. One being the Norman arc. There are eight civilisations planned for launch too and four ages including Medieval, Fuedal, Castle, and Imperial. The official Norman campaign details read:
“The Norman campaign will tell the story of Duke William of Normandy as he wrestles control of England from King Harold, starting at the Battle of Hastings, then later following his descendants Robert, William II, and Henry I as they continue to fight for what would become modern day England. All the classic medieval units were shown here in action, from knights on horseback engaging with pikemen across large fields of battle capped off with a great looking castle siege.”
Age of Empires IV also includes new stealth forest mechanics that revolve around unique patches of forest that units can use to hide away and set up ambushes. Microsoft says that sight in these forest areas are limited and armies can move past one another without even seeing each other.
While we don’t have a set release date for Age of Empires IV yet, players can also look forward to the Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition Dawn and Dukes expansion coming in the next few months. There’s also a co-op historical battle mode releasing soon.
Lastly, on 13 April, Age of Empires 3: Definitive Edition will get its first major update in the form of the United States civilisation. The new update includes a new home city, nine new units, a new age-up mechanic and more. The DLC will release for free at first as players try and complete all 50 Star Challenges in order to own the content. Alternatively, players can also purchase the US civilisation DLC.