'Age of Empires 2: Rise of the Rajas' Latest News & Updates: Game Getting Brand New Expansion After Almost 20 Years!

By Joe Marsalis , Updated Dec 14, 2016 07:10 PM EST

RTS games of the late '90s have already attained legendary status, it can't be denied. While a publisher like Blizzard would be happy to release next-gen sequels to iconic titles like "StarCraft," Microsoft is releasing a brand new expansion to "Age of Empires 2," called "Age of Empires 2: Rise of the Rajas."

Microsoft made the announcement on the official "Age of Empires 2" website today, and "Age of Empires 2: Rise of the Rajas" will be dropping next Monday, December 19. There aren't any updated graphics at all, but instead, there are four new Indochinese civilizations added to the game: the Khmer, the Burmese, the Malay, and the Vietnamese.

Each civilization introduced in "Age of Empires 2: Rise of the Rajas," like the others in the original "Age of Empires 2," bring with them special traits and unique units. GameSpot lists them down as follows: the Khmer, who can build the biggest religious monument in the game, has the Ballista Elephant that fires two bolts. The Burmese, the largest empire in Southeast Asia at one time, can deploy Battle Elephants and the ranged cavalry unit Arambai. The Malay have harbors that serve as naval production as well as naval defense buildings that can shoot arrows, as well as the Karambai Warrior unique unit, which is notable for being very cheap to produce. The Vietnamese can deploy a powerful unique unit called the Rattan Warrior, which is a ranged unit that can absorb incoming ranged attacks with its heavy armor.

Aside from the new civilizations and maps coming to "Age of Empires 2: Rise of the Rajas," there are also game balance fixes and what the developers are calling "performance upgrades" to the game's thriving multiplayer mode. There will also be improved AI in the game, which is now available for pre-order on Steam before its December 19 release date.

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