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Age of Empires II: The Conquerors

aka: AOK:TC, Age of Conquerors, AoC, AoE2:TC
Moby ID: 2195

Description official descriptions

Age of Empires II: The Conquerors is an add-on for Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings adds five new civilizations, including two from America, the Mayans and Aztecs. It also adds eleven new units such as the halberdier (an answer to the powerful paladins) and eagle warriors, which are used by the Mayans and Aztecs instead of stable units; a unique technology for each civilization including Kataparuto for the Japanese (increases Trebuchet fire rate and pack/unpack speed) and Zealotry for the Saracens (increases hit points for camels and mamelukes); and several new general technologies, such as Bloodlines, which increases the hit points of mounted units, and thumbring, which increases the rate of fire and accuracy of archers.

Several game balancing tweaks have been added too, for example janissaries have had their attack increased, and mangonels don't auto attack if some of your units could be hurt. One of the biggest changes, however, is the villager AI has been changed so they now gather after making a drop off building...i.e. after making a lumber camp they will start to chop wood.

It also adds three new types of play, such as Wonder Race in which the goal is to build a wonder before anyone else.

Spellings

  • 世紀帝國II:征服者入侵 (資料片) - Traditional Chinese spelling
  • 帝国时代I:征服者 - Simplified Chinese spelling

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Credits (Windows version)

123 People · View all

Program Manager
Lead Tester
Playtest Lead
Testing
Playtest Team
Multiplayer Lead Tester
Multiplayer Test Team
[ full credits ]

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 87% (based on 44 ratings)

Players

Average score: 4.1 out of 5 (based on 77 ratings with 3 reviews)

A truly great add-on, well worth the money

The Good
the 5 new civiliztions and the modifications to the existing civilizations help to balance the gameplay. The new gameplay modes adds new twists to the formula giving the game even more replay value. The new campaigns are unique and exciting. the minor tweaks with the villagers, after they build a mine or lumber camp they automatically start harvesting resources, are also a welcome change. The ability to ato-queue farms also is great for the end game when you're trying to vanquish your foes

The Bad
Some of the civilazations are still not as strong as most of the others.

The Bottom Line
This is 1 of the best RTS games ever made. It does everything right.

Windows · by jeremy strope (159) · 2000

The product of perfectionism

The Good
My first reaction upon hearing of The Conquerors was "an Age of Kings expansion pack? That game was practically perfect! What could they possibly add?" There were no glaring bugs or horrible gameplay features that needed fixing, and even on the content side Age of Kings felt far more complete than most historical strategy games on the market.

The sad thing is, many expansion packs are nothing more than glorified patches, released to fix bugs that shouldn't exist in the first place at additional expense to the user. With The Conquerors, Ensemble Studios delivers a true expansion loaded with millions of small improvements and additions. None of which the game couldn't have survived without, but that's a testament to Ensemble Studios insane drive to improve upon perfection.

There are three new story-driven campaigns with seven missions each, and another one containing 10 miscellaneous missions. You can play as the Aztecs, and change history by defeating the Spanish (this is an Ensemble Studios quirk, allow the player to be the underdog), join Attila the Hun on his rampage across the Roman Empire, or fight the Moors as El Cid Campeador. All of them are quite good and improvements upon Age of Empire II's campaigns. The population limit (annoyingly low in the original) has been raised and there's more variety in the missions than simply building up from scratch and destroying the enemy.

The most striking addition to the game is you can now play as Mesoamerican civilizations such as the Aztecs and Mayans. There is a whole new art set for these cultures, as well as new terrain (you can play in South-American jungles, with jaguars instead of wolves and turkeys instead of sheep). The Mesoamerican civilizations can not build horse units but have very robust economies to compensate.

The other new civilizations are Spanish (who have the powerful Conquistador unit), Huns (who do not need to build houses and have a great speed advantage because of this), and Koreans (who are a very good defensive civ with bombard towers, cannons, and greater stone mining abilities). All of these civilizations slot in perfectly with the existing civilizations, and are neither hopelessly weak nor unfairly overpowered. For advanced users, The Conquerors allows you to extend the lifespan of the game by creating your own random maps (the data is now stored in text files that can be edited in Notepad), meaning you can change how many trees, sheep, deer etc there are, change how hilly the terrain is and whether it's snowing or not, and even mess around with the player's starting positions so that all players in the game spawn right next to each other. I recall there always were a few gamers who thought the vanilla Age of Kings random maps were a trifle unfair, but the game's new functionality should allow users to iron out even the smallest of imbalances.

Other changes include smarter villagers (as soon as they finish building a resource dropsite like a lumber camp or gold mine, they immediately go to work), the ability to queue up farm production (basically, when a farm is exhausted you can make villagers automatically replant it rather than doing this yourself) and smarter siege weapons (catapults no longer auto-fire if they could hurt your own troops).

All of these things basically continue the original design goal of Age of Kings: create a game as user-friendly and micro-free as possible. The thing I liked most about Age of Kings was you were free to plan large-scale strategy and economic development rather than getting bogged down in the minutiae of running a town, and The Conquerors makes this easier than ever.

The Bad
Nothing. The game was rock-solid to begin with and The Conquerors only improves it.

The Bottom Line
One of the few expansion packs worth full-game price. There's a huge amount of value in The Conquerors. It's incredible that they could (and would) take a near perfect game and make it better.

Windows · by Maw (833) · 2007

It's even more fun to play than AoK.

The Good
This time, we get 4 new campaigns, 5 new civilisations (two of them, Aztecs and Mayans, use their own tileset) and 11 new units (most of them are unique units). All civilisations (even those from AoK) have their own special technology, unavailable to other civilisations. There are also 3 new gameplay styles in Random Map - Defend a Wonder, Wonder Race and King of the Hill.

The Conquerors contains few interface changes, such as reseeding farms and more intelligent villagers (for example, after building Lumber Camp they automatically start woodcutting).

Graphics and sounds remain unchanged from Age of Kings. Encyclopedia is now much bigger.

The Bad
Unlike Rise of Rome, there aren't any units which radically change gameplay (like Scythe Chariots and Armoured Elephants from RoR), and player who choose Aztecs and Mayans due to historical reasons can't build Stables, so they lack of good counterpart of Mangonels and Trebuchets. And once again, eastern Europe is omitted in game.

The Bottom Line
Well, if you liked Age of Kings, you will also like The Conquerors. You should at least download a trial version to give it a try.

Windows · by Sir Gofermajster (485) · 2009

Trivia

Janissary

Microsoft forced Ensemble to change the artwork for the Janissary unit in the Conquerors, because they thought the white dress and tall hats made them look like members of the Ku Klux Klan.

References

With the series of Conqueror maps that shipped with the game, there is one of Texas. For anyone who doesn't get the joke, that's where Ensemble Studios is located. Of course, there is a little flag with the ES logo on it right over Dallas, and even a shipwreck where the designer Greg Street's old marine biology lab was.

Snow

Due to many people complaining that the new snow terrain in The Conquerors was ugly, a hack called NoSnow was released by m0d that removes all snow and ice from random map games.

Awards

  • GameSpy
    • 2000 – Special Award for Best Expansion Pack
  • PC Gamer
    • 2000 - Best Expansion Pack of the Year
  • PC Player (Germany)
    • Issue 01/2001 - Best Add-on in 2000

Information also contributed by Maw

Related Games

Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings
Released 1999 on Windows, 2001 on PlayStation 2, Macintosh
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Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition
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Great Conqueror: Rome
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Age of Empires IV
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Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition
Released 2019 on Windows, Windows Apps, 2023 on Xbox Series...
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Age of Empires: Definitive Edition
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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Kartanym.

Additional contributors: Dr. Elementary, Andrew Hartnett, jeremy strope, Unicorn Lynx, Maw, Paulus18950, Patrick Bregger, Plok.

Game added August 22nd, 2000. Last modified November 10th, 2023.