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News Archives - January 2007

Updated Draugur AI

If you've been playing Single Player against the AI and keep wanting it to be more competitive by making a dock, creating counter units, using scouts properly, and make Trading Posts, Felix Hermansson has had a custom AI for quite some time now that makes the AI opponent do all those things and more!

If you want a more competitive AI, download it here, however, it may cause issues with online play.

Download Section Preview Screenshot

If you have ever uploaded a file to our Downloads Section, you may have noticed that you can not show a little tidbit of your file through an image.

Now, when putting in a Recorded Game you can show a screenshot of a decisive battle, when putting in a scenario you can put in a screenshot of two characters having a conversation, and so on...

Just scroll down to the button of the upload page while describing your file and you will see where you need to browse for your screenshot.

So whether your uploading a Recorded Game, Mod, Scenario, Random Map, or something else, remember a picture can say a thousand words.

Forum Party January 27 (Saturday)

This Saturday we will hold another riveting round of our weekly Forum Party.

If you have never been to a forum party before, it is when forumers log on to ESO2 at 12pm and 7pm EST and play some friendly team games together. Everyone is welcome so come and play!

We encourage you to record the games you play so I can write a War Story after watching the rec and have it posted here on the news and in General Discussions.

If you have further questions or want to see what time to log on in your time zone, check the Forum Party Thread.

New TWC event: WTT

user posted image

The [hope] clan and [SkWizZ] clan have announced that they are hosting the "biggest" TWC tournament the community has seen yet. It is the TWC World Team Tournament (WTT).

More information will become available in the coming weeks.
More info soon on skwizz.com. We'll have more information tomorrow. So keep checking!

Partners:
user posted image

Balance Changes You Want

With 1.02 out and about people are already thinking to what 1.03 might possibly have in store for us. Many are hoping it is a large balance patch. Even if it is not, forumers are speculating on what would bring the most balance to Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs.

Voltiguer started the most recent discussion with his on patch thoughts. Some agreed, some didn't. We want to know what you think for the minor balance changes that will edge this game to closer absolute balance.

First read Voltiguer's ideas and then post you own if you wish.

Aztec "ZAP!" Rush

The Aztecs are a very interesting civilization and have many unique bonuses. One bonus many like to use is the Jaguar Prowler Big Button Tech in the Town Center for a rush. Another is Warrior Priests on Gift Dance on the Fire Pit. Another is a full out Aztec Scout Rush. But F1RE_FLY feels that he has found a rush that quite possibly exceeds those three.

Yes, a rush worthy of trying and defeating foes. A rush ready to push back a rush, crush a Fast Fortress, defeat a boom. A rush that combines all of the Aztec bonuses into one BANG.

This is the ZAP! rush. The ZAP (Zapotec) rush is similar to the Jaguar Big Button rush because it uses those units, however it also takes advantage of the 11 Rodeleros card and the 9 Zapotec Allies Card.

F1RE_FLY lays down the purpose of the strat:
Upon reaching age 2, ship in 10 maces, followed by 11 rodeleros. While the rodeleros are shipping get the first big button. Send that army at the enemy, and ship 9 zapotec when you get enough XP. Queue the second big button by the time the zapotec arrive. Send these guys in. Ship 6 Janeys, and after the janeys arrive you should have enough resources for the third and final big button. This third big button should be clicked any time between 9 and 10 minutes.

Intrigued? No? Well, Aztecs are not the civilization for you then.

For the rest of you who want to try it: read, love, enjoy.

Forum Party January 21st

This Sunday we will hold another riveting round of our weekly Forum Party.

If you have never been to a forum party before, it is when forumers log on to ESO2 at 12pm and 7pm EST and play some friendly team games together. Everyone is welcome so come and play!

We encourage you to record the games you play so I can write a War Story after watching the rec and have it posted here on the news and in General Discussions.

If you have further questions or want to see what time to log on in your time zone, check the Forum Party Thread.

Rise of Istanbul: A Guide to the Ottomans

xMatt the Greatx, (__Sephiroth__), has posted an in depth guide to the Ottomans through his experience and various strategies that he uses on a daily basis.

He discusses the Janissary Rush, Silk Road Rush, and Spahi Fast Fortress. But, he is only halfway done. Tomorrow he will implement: the Ottoman Semi-Fast Fortress, the no TP rush variants, and general ottoman strategy and tips sections!

You'll have everything you need to exceed as the Ottomans. He has a whole Replay Pack in our Recorded Games Section. and is working on Replay Pack Version 2.

Read the thread and comment on his strategies thus far here.

AoEIII is on WCG Zone

What is WCG ZONE?
WCG Zone is the game play site operated by World Cyber Games. WCG Zone allows gamers to play games, manage rankings, communicate with other games, and participate in online tournaments. WCG Zone’s GamOn anti-cheat client allows gamers to play with other gamers in a safe, cheat-free environment.

That's right, operated by World Cyber Games.

They started an AoE3 test league (not TWC yet) that will end at the end of the month.

So, without further delay, visit Leagues, Register, and have fun :)

You can comment and discuss this move on our forums.

Patches 1.02 and 1.10 Released!

The new patches for The Warchiefs and Age of Empires III have now been rolled out and are available for download via the in-game updater or in standalone form: AoE3 1.10 and WarChiefs 1.02.

Why not discuss the new changes with other players in our forums? Also, don't forget to uninstall any mods before you update folks!

Server downtime for patch 1.02

The wait is almost over! ES have announced that they will be taking down their servers to roll out patch 1.02 for The Warchief and patch 1.10 for Age of Empires III. From Age Community:

We will be taking ESO servers offline tomorrow at 12:00pm GMT (7:00am CST) while we roll out patch 1.02 for WarChiefs, patch 1.10 for Age of Empires III, and perform maintenance on the servers. Downtime is expected to be approximately 6 hours.

Two New Pair of Wings

Congratulations Just a Player (or as we call him in the forums, Walker) and Oliver, our two new staff members!

Walker will help us with Age3 info, strategies, moderating and our Recorded Games. Walker is a well beloved member of the community so he will fit in quite nicely.

Oliver applied for the position of Graphics Designer (for everyone else who did, thank you very much, it was a hard decision as some of you has amazing talent) in the end though it came down to oliver being a very popular community member who has entertained us with his photoshop skills before.

So go ahead and give them a warm welcome!

Patch 1.02 Next Week!

ES have just announced that they will likely release patch 1.02 for The WarChiefs and patch 1.10 for Age of Empires next week. Here's a quote from the announcement ES's website, Age Community.

Patches 1.02 and 1.10 were held up this week in testing. We hope to be able to release the patches next week when test has completed their work on all of the localized versions of these patches. We'll do our best to keep you updated.

Credit to Brtnboarder495 for finding the news. Discuss the patch with fellow players in the forum thread!

Poll Roundup

Last time we asked you "What is your favorite new feature in The WarChiefs?" Your answers were:
Revolutions [238 votes]
The Native American Civilizations [415 votes]
New Minor Native American Tribes [38 votes]
Spies and stealth [76 votes]
New maps [92 votes]
Deck Changes (more cards allowed and new cards) [346 votes]
Other [74 votes]

It seems most of you enjoy the idea of playing as the new Native American Civilizations, which in my opinion is really what made the expansion so creative and refreshing. Anyway, this week we have a more controversial topic to discuss - Custom Online Scenarios. Since pre-release even, a large portion of the community has been arguing that Custom Multiplayer maps is crucial to the long term success of Age of Empires III. However, some argue that the development time and costs to include the new feature would not be compensated with great maps, because in part the scenario editor that comes with the game is limited and the maps we're used to from Age of Kings wouldn't be as fun here.

So what are your thoughts? Vote!

Cyber Globe E-Sports Association

Cyber Globe E-Sports Association (CGESA) has decided to run weekly tournaments. However, they want the community's input on what type of tournament to run and the rules for it. They also want tips if their should be an entry fee for the weekly tournaments for greater prizes.

They already support games such as: Counter Strike 1.6, Counter Strike Source, Call of Duty 2, Battlefield 2, and also 2142. Now they have moved on to Age of Empires 3 and want to see what the community suggest. So, ask and comment away here.

Also, they are looking for volunteers to help run and admin the tournament. If you wish to apply read the application thread.

Forum Party War Story

Last week’s Forum Party brought upon a fun and interesting game that I played in on Yukon.

It was a quiet day. The sea was calm, trees were still, Elpea was napping. That did not last long. Six innocent soldiers turned from red to green to begin a fight that will last over an intense hour and fifteen minutes (plus lag) that was going to involve intense battles, demolition, imperialists, and a lone soldier trying to escape the doom of an opponent’s light infantry.

Unfortunately, I started closest to the enemy. omnizero suggested a rush because he could keep up xbow spamming. I chimed in suggest I will use puma spearmen with mace shipments while wreckoning was going to pitch in with his fair share of coyote runners. Omnizero’s forward barracks was not as close as we were hoping so wreckoning and I place our war huts a little closer. We muster up and army and march into Neon Blue’s base after killing a couple stray Coureurs.

PumasHowever, we did not really pay attention to the fact that donkee has already aged to the Fortress Age before we even made the initial hit to get rid of his war hut. As my pumas attacked it about 20 forest prowlers pop out of no where, those stealthy warriors were going to be a force to be reckoned with. I take the hut down then run away from him as wreckoning and omnizero push into Neon Blue’s base. I looke my puma spearmen around, I have about 15 left but leave my 19 mace back to keep the prowlers busy. I take one house down, then another while wreckoning keeps his coyotes running around and omnizero uses his xbows to take down the TC and shoot back at the prowlers...

To read the complete war story, visit the thread. and if you wish to view the whole Recorded Game, Download it!

A New Scenario Design Trick


Alexandergreat3 has found a new trick for all of you scenario designers out there.

What is this trick? Well it unlocks special abilities for units of your in the editor.

How do you do it? It is quite simple, Alex explains it in one sentence:
How to do this trick: Use the Effect Set Tech Status, and set the following techs as "Active" to activate their corresponding abilities:
Tada! It is done. He has provided a table to show what can be done.

Check it out and thank him in our Scenario Design Forums.

VnX's Intermediates Tournament

Clan [VnX] (Visions X Clan) has decided to make up a tournament for people with a Power Rating from 17 to 28.

If you ever join a regular tournament and know you have no chance of winning but love the tournament feel, this is your chance to fight and win! It is open to everyone within that Power Rating, but there are only 32 slots available! So, sign up before it fills up.

Go here to discuss the tournament, or straight to the signups.

Bug Squashing Part 2

Microsoft's Multiplayer Test Lead Wibble has been working hard lately to squash as many bugs as people find. So far he has gathered the entire community who report bugs small and big to be solved on an upcoming patch. Although the fixing of every bug is not guaranteed, I believe that a good number of them will be dealt with.

Wibble has written the first set of replies to all the bugs reported here in Age of Empires III Heaven. His reply clears a lot of what people think are bugs but that are actually either by design, and also explains why some of them happen. You can read Wibble's reply or report any more bugs in Kastor's forum thread.

New Bruce Shelley Blog

Bruce Shelley typed up a new developer's blog December 21st (sorry we missed it). The new entry talks about the ES Christmas Party and festivities, as well as the activities during it, like the Ginger Bread House Competition (Viva Pinata Ginger Bread House, that is awesome!), the really fun exchange of gifts (Michael Jackson CD wrapped up in boys underwear is genius!) and the dinner at a Cuban Restaurant.

Mr. Shelley then talks about the office Halo 2 tournament and some Halo Wars playtesting, and adds on this interesting bit:
Our old friends at Heaven recently launched their site dedicated to our new game. They launched the first Age of Empires site many years ago and two people who worked on it went on to become valued ES employees. Check it out here.

*flattered*

You can read Bruce Shelley's entire blog entry in his blog.

Flag Pack and TWC Flag mod released!

Lord Tahattus presents the full 5th version of the flag pack. They can be found here.

You can freely save these images and use them at your own personal projects, without asking permission but if you plan to release a mod or scenario using my flags, you should give credits to him and ask him for permission to use it. Check out the download and the thread with all it's rules here.

Also check out his TWC Flag Mod which replaces Iroquois, Aztec and Sioux buttons with ones slightly different, to look like Aoe3 flags. It also includes replacements for all 64x64 plain flags with beautiful and detailed 128x128 flags, like in Aoe3. Additionaly, it replaces Iroquois, Aztec and Sioux buttons with ones slightly different, to look like Aoe3 flags. All revolutionary buttons redone, too. Iroquois, Aztec and Sioux small buttons now have a native texture. You can delete these, if you didn't like them.

AoE3H's Official TWC Bug List

We have set up an official TWC Bug List to lay out confirmed and unconfirmed bugs in the topic post for the forumer's and ES's benefit. We hope that this list will let Ensemble have a better idea what the community is finding with bugs. However, posting a bug does not automatically means it will be fixed. But, it can not hurt to let everyone know of some bugs.

Keep OP/UP and balance discussion out of the thread for it is strictly for bugs.

So if you think you have a bug that no one else knows of, visit the thread!

What do YOU Think of Two Pop Cuirassiers?

Many people dislike late game Gendarmes. Since The WarChiefs has been released, people dislike them even more. With the new Level 40 card, Thoroughbreds, Cuirassiers can take up two population slots instead of 3.

This has sparked discussion on our forums and we want to know what you think about it. ultimitsu posted an MSN conversation discussing the situation with forumers Just a Player and somme. They thought of various solutions. However, many see nothing wrong with the card.

What do you think? Is the card fine or should it be altered? Post your opinions here