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Best Age of Empires II Civilizations

20th Nov 2017
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Age of Empires II is one of the most beloved real-time strategy games of all time. Developed by Ensemble Studios and published by Microsoft in 1999 as a sequel to the legendary Age of Empires, the game received "universal acclaim" upon release and remains a staple for RTS fans to this day. Since its initial release as Age of Empires II: Age of Kings, four expansions to the game and an HD remake has also been produced - Age of Empires II: The Conquerors (2000), Age of Empires II: HD Edition (2013), Age of Empires II HD: The Forgotten (2013) (based on the fan-made Forgotten Empires), Age of Empires II HD: The African Kingdoms (2015) and Age of Empires II HD: Rise of the Rajas (2016). At the heart of the award-winning gameplay of AOE 2 are the civilizations that players are able to choose to play with. In addition to their distinct art and play style, these civilizations have their unique set of advantages and disadvantages which are based fundamentally on a "rock-paper-scissors" architecture. This delicate balance of strengths and weaknesses extends all the way up from the overarching meta-strategy (e.g. economic boom beats defensive gameplay which in turn beats early rush strategy) down to individual units (e.g, infantry are generally powerful against buildings but weak against cavalry, thus the infantry counter units—spearmen and pikemen—have attack bonuses against cavalry). Because of the attention paid towards making each civilization as balanced as possible, any discussion of the relative ranking of these civilizations in terms of overall strength is often hotly contested. Now is the time to put all of that debate to rest - this list contains all the civilizations and their specialties in Age of Empires II and all its expansions. Rank these in the order of best to worst and let's find out what everyone thinks on average. Happy ranking and Wololo! Source(s): Age of Empires Wikia and Wikipedia

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Best Age of Empires II Civilizations

#30.

Khmer

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Khmer are classified as a Siege and Elephant civilization in the game, thanks to their team bonus, their faster Elephants and their two Unique Technologies, that encourage them to exploit 2 different types of Elephants, as well as Scorpions, hinting that they are based on expensive units (somewhat similarly to the Slavs and Teutons, both possessing mighty, brute force units and siege). Their balanced tech tree, however, pushes them towards a jack-of-all-trades/generalist civilization, similarly to the Malians, Byzantines and the Chinese. In fact, they aren't as dependent on mighty, vulnerable-to-conversion (they lack both Heresy and Faith) units as possibly thought. But, they operate at a very different way than both balanced and "siege" civilizations, thanks to 2 quirks; the no-requirement bonus and the fact Villagers can garrison in Houses. This specific combination is unlike anything else ever implemented in Age of Empires II, and in fact, the Khmer might be the closest to an "unconventional" civilisation. Having no set chain of requirements, other than Age, means that they can eschew buildings a player doesn't feel like needing, in order to execute unpredictable maneuvers. Rushing, booming and even turtling (they only lack Bombard Towers and Arrowslits) can be considered, depending on civilization matchup, map settings, default age and alliances. They lack direct economic and early game bonuses, but their Villagers will be safe, as long as Houses are around, and no-requirement means that resources can be diverted away from certain structures towards anything else. One, if bold enough, can even totally ignore Mills or other essential structures. Elephants and Scorpions, among others, offer solid late level power and their balanced tech tree provides a wildly unpredictable army. They operate well with siege civilizations (especially Slavs and Teutons, see strategy section) and ones that provide team bonuses to generic unit lines (e.g. Goths or Huns) and the Chinese. They may struggle against ones with great Monks (Spanish, Aztecs) or great early game. The Khmer might be the most mentally challenging civilization to play, even harder than the Chinese, as they require both careful planning and extreme micromanagement to play properly, and to select the appropriate allies that can optimize gameplay. Despite these disadvantages, with unique actions including "house-hopping" (a Villager can build Houses in a way so that attacked Villagers can "hop" from House to House to shield themselves), building early Castles close to an enemy and (combined with the Slavs' team bonus) they can even construct "forward bases" (Villagers + Khmer houses + military buildings with population boost) close to enemy resources, in order to execute a form of attrition warfare (by harassing and starving a nearby enemy base).
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