Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. Gamers with an interest in history, and no aversion to a rather abstract rendition of same, should love the atmosphere and feel of the game. And anyone who appreciates a solid, lovingly-crafted work of design should appreciate the overall quality of this product.
  2. The first fully mature real-time strategy title... This is a great game, builds on the best of both "Warcraft 2" and "Civ 2" (would you rather they ignored previous successful games as models?), and quite frankly is the best game to ever come out of Microsoft.
  3. It's refreshing to find a game that's so strong in single-player mode - not that I've got anything against multi-play, you understand, it's just that a lot of software publishers are using the strength of their multi-player mode as an excuse for the weakness of their games in single-player mode. Age Of Empires, needless to say, triumphs in both departments. With the exception of "XCOM 3," this is the best game I've played in a year and a half. [PC Zone]
  4. My only real complaint is that upon completion of a task, villagers will just stand around doing nothing. This can lead to some annoying micro-management tactics...Problems aside, Age of Empires is one of the most enjoyable and addictive real-time strategy games I’ve ever played.
  5. Combines great graphics, real-time strategy and an intriguing plot (our own history!) to raise a phoenix from the ashes of wayside, ordinary strategy games.
  6. It's very much a product of "WarCraft II" cloning, but Age of Empires is a surprisingly sound and enjoyable real-time strategy game. [Dec 1997, p.240]
  7. Despite its flaws, Age of Empires is great fun to play. The graphics and sound effects are of high quality, and the computer plays a respectable game. In fact, there is a very large selection of AIs to choose from in the scenario editor.
  8. The micromanagement got a bit tedious at times and I found myself having to do too much just to keep things running. I thought the scenario editor was quite good, although I wish I'd been able to have more control over the amount and location of resources, which could have made for even more interesting scenarios.
  9. The system can go very far with some fine-tuning, but as it stands it seems downright schizo. Is it a simplified "Civilization" or a modestly beefed up "Warcraft"? It's almost as if the designers started out to create one game and ended up with another.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 160 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Aug 21, 2012
    This game is a classic! It is one of the first RTS games and it is one of the best, but not the best... the best RTS is Age of Empires II, the true sequel worthy of the name! Age of Empires has good graphics even though it's 15 years old now... It's really fun and it is the definition how an RTS game should be made! An RTS shouldn't be an MMO like Age of Empires Online. Full Review »
  2. Dec 18, 2010
    An outstanding example of what Ensemble Studios had to offer - it's such a shame that they no longer exist! The superb controls and expansive campaigns are only let down a little by the AI, which can be a little stupid at times. Full Review »
  3. Nov 10, 2013
    The game that started the best RTS series to ever see the light of the day. The only things that can be criticized about this one are the stupid AI and 50 population limit. Otherwise, great at its time, still fun today. Really a shame that Ensemble Studios were dissolved. Full Review »