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Age of Empires: The Rise of Rome is an expansion pack for the real-time strategy game Age of Empires. It is based on the rise of the Roman Empire, and adds the Roman Empire and three other playable civilizations to Age of Empires.
The Rise of Rome features a new Roman architectural design, shared by all four new civilizations, the Romans, Palmyrans, Macedonians and Carthaginians. Four new researchable technologies have been added. Additional new features include five new units, four new random map types, and a larger map size option. Pathfinding for all units is also considerably improved. New music was composed for this expansion, which replaced the original score entirely.
Gameplay-wise, the expansion introduced numerous interface tweaks, such as unit queuing, the ability to double click a single unit and highlight others of the same unit-type, balancing damage done by catapults, and the option to increase the population limit beyond 50 (only in multiplayer games). By installing the 1.0a update from 1999, it is also possible to use the period key to cycle through idle villagers. After the last official patch by the developer, the game's community continued the support by a own-made unofficial patch to address remaining issues and to improve compatibility with modern hardware and OSes.
According to Microsoft, The Rise of Rome's demo received 1 million downloads from its official website alone by April 1999, and another 350,000 from CNET's Download.com. Sales of the game reached 1.2 million copies by June 2001.
The Rise of Rome won Computer Games Strategy Plus's 1998 "Add-On of the Year" award. The editors wrote that it "added whole new campaigns, refined rules, and a fresh new gaming experience for a title that was already highly regarded."
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Age of Empires: The Rise of Rome System Requirements
- Operating System: Microsoft Windows 98 / 2000 / XP
- Processor: 90 MHz
- RAM: 24 MB
- Video Card: 2 MB
- Hard disk space: 290 MB