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Age of Empires 2 HD: Rise of the Rajas expansion today

Hordes of battle elephants

Here we are, almost in 2017, with official new expansions still coming out for a game from 1999. Age of Empires 2 HD [official site] today launches Rise of the Rajas, the third new expansion since the real-time strategy game was revamped and rereleased in 2013. Rise of the Rajas is off to Southeast Asia for historical warfare with four new civilisations, each with their own campaigns and so very many battle elephants.

Cover image for YouTube video

Rise of the Rajas introduces four new civilisations, Burmese, Khmer, Malay, and Vietnamese, each with their own units and their own voiced campaigns. Also, it looks pretty pretty.

A big patch for all AoE 2 and its other expansions hit last week with fixes and balance tweaks and things.

If you're interested in the Age of Empires revival, do check out Richard Moss chatting with modders-turned-developers Forgotten Empires:

"It was a tough transition into professional development for many of the modders, and not just because of Microsoft’s fondness for firm deadlines. 'When you are modding you can do awesome crazy stuff without caring if they will fit on the original game,' says lead artist Jorgito Ageitos. 'You can put dragons in there and people will love it because it is a mod. But when when you are an official dev, a lot of things change. You have a lot of new restrictions that you didn't face before and everything needs to make sense [and] fit in the game nicely with the rest of the stuff. And achieve that certain level of quality.'"

Apparently loads of battle elephants (in factional variants!) are totally fine. Splendid.

Rise of the Rajas will be £6.99/9,99€/$9.99 on Steam. It's due out, ooh, an hour and a half ago. It's also chucked together with the base game and other expansions in a discounted bundle.

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Alice O'Connor

Associate Editor

Alice has been playing video games since SkiFree and writing about them since 2009, with nine years at RPS. She enjoys immersive sims, roguelikelikes, chunky revolvers, weird little spooky indies, mods, walking simulators, and finding joy in details. Alice lives, swims, and cycles in Scotland.