Age of Empires Online will be transitioning to true free-to-play; that is, all content, premium and otherwise, will be free. Players will still be able to purchase premium content, but as a shortcut, rather than as a requirement.
After the most current update, the game's currency, Empire Points, can now be earned through conventional gameplay, as well as purchased via Steam or Games for Windows Live. The update also includes some new content including Alliance Wars. That gameplay mode is team-based competition for players level 40 and up. Also included are new vanity items and consumables.
According to CEO Chris Taylor, "With Empire Points and this true free-to-play business model, we are giving players what they have repeatedly asked for... fewer pay walls and more ways for players to experience this legendary franchise."
All current players will be getting a 500 Empire Points gift, while new accounts will get 100 Empire Points. Players who currently own Empire Points will have them converted to in-game coin.
Age of Empires Online was launched on the 16th August 2011, and earned an 8.0/10 score in Strategy Informer's .