“Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties” Gets Ready to Expand Into the Eastern World, Goes Gold

Second expansion pack for massively popular Games for Windows franchise adds Eastern flare...

Second expansion pack for massively popular Games for Windows franchise adds Eastern flare, hits store shelves Oct. 23rd

Age of Empires III: The Asian DynastiesMicrosoft Game Studios today announced that the eagerly awaited "Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties," the second expansion pack for "Age of Empires III," has gone gold and will hit retailers throughout North America on Oct. 23rd.

From renowned real-time strategy developers Big Huge Games and Ensemble Studios, "Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties" introduces gamers to Asian civilizations and a host of new gameplay features. Players will experience firsthand the rich and historical influences of Asia while commanding their units and expanding their empire in the Eastern world.
In addition to the introduction of playable Asian civilizations to Age of Empires III, the expansion pack provides new content, new ways of winning and trading, random map styles that feature remixes of classic "Age of Empires" game styles, and the return of Wonders - a favorite gameplay element in "Age of Empires II." These new features will coincide with the basic core gameplay of "Age of Empires III" that gamers have come to know and love. "Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties" will also ship as a Games for Windows title with easier installation, improved reliability and support for key Windows Vista features, including the Games Explorer and Parental Controls.

"Age of Empires" and real-time strategy buffs can pick up "Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties" for the estimated retail price of $29.99 for Windows. "Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties" is rated "T" for Teen, for gamers 13 years old and above. "Age of Empires III" is required to play "Age of Empires III: The Asian Dynasties." For more information, please visit www.ageofempires3.com.

About Big Huge Games
Founded by four veteran game developers who together have brought strategy gamers such classic hits as Rise of Nations, Alpha Centauri®, and Civilization II®, Big Huge Games is a video game studio focused on cutting-edge technology and aimed at mass-market game development. Big Huge Games founders Brian Reynolds, Jason Coleman, David Inscore and Tim Train continue in the tradition of creating inspired and innovative games for PC and next-generation consoles. Creating games that have received numerous "Game of the Year" awards and accolades, Big Huge Games is headquartered in Timonium, Maryland. For more information about Big Huge Games, please visit http://www.bighugegames.com.

About Ensemble Studios
Ensemble Studios (http://www.ensemblestudios.com) is one of the world's premier entertainment software developers. Ensemble Studios is known for its blockbuster "Age of Empires" and "Age of Mythology®" game series, as well as the upcoming "Halo® Wars." Ensemble's titles are distinguished by the highest-quality art and gameplay dynamics applied in familiar historical settings, and appeal to hard-core gamers and mass audiences. Ensemble Studios is based in Dallas, Texas.

About Microsoft Game Studios
Microsoft Game Studios is a leading worldwide publisher and developer of games for the Xbox® and Xbox 360 video game systems, the Windows® operating system and online platforms. Comprising a network of top developers, Microsoft Game Studios is committed to creating innovative and diverse games for Windows (http://www.microsoft.com/games), including such franchises as "Age of Empires®," "Flight Simulator" and "Zoo Tycoon®"; Xbox and Xbox 360 (http://www.xbox.com), including such games as "Gears of War" and franchises such as "Halo," "Fable®," "Project Gotham Racing®" and "Forza Motorsport®"; and MSN® Games (http://www.games.msn.com), the official games channel for the MSN network and home to such hits as "Bejeweled" and "Hexic®."

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