Age of Empires

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games

This page is for the original game. For the re-release, see Age of Empires: Definitive Edition.

Age of Empires
Age of Empires cover
Ensemble Studios
Mac OS (Classic) MacSoft
Windows Microsoft
Mac OS MacSoft
Release dates
Windows October 15, 1997
Mac OS (Classic) July 1, 1999
Monetization Expansion pack
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Bird's-eye view, Isometric
Controls Multiple select, Point and select
Genres RTS
Themes Africa, Europe, Classical
Series Age of Empires
Age of Empires on HowLongToBeat
Age of Empires guide on StrategyWiki
Age of Empires on MobyGames
Age of Empires on Wikipedia
Age of Empires 1997
Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings 1999
Age of Mythology 2002
Age of Empires III 2005
Age of Empires Online 2011
Age of Empires II (2013) 2013
Age of Mythology: Extended Edition 2014
Age of Empires: Castle Siege 2014
Age of Empires: Definitive Edition 2018
Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition 2019
Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition 2020
Age of Empires IV 2021

General information

Official Discord server for the series
Microsoft's Official game page (archived)
Age of Empires Heaven is an active fan website and forum that offers support and extra game content.


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
Mac OS

Version differences[edit]

Age of Empires: Gold Edition contains the base game and The Rise of Rome expansion, first released in 1999.
Age of Empires: Collector's Edition was first released in 2000. It contains:
In later DVD-ROM releases, it includes the latest patches and is DRM-free for all titles. However, such releases are missing the Red Book audio.



DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
Age of Empires: The Rise of Rome

Essential improvements[edit]


This patch updates both Age of Empires (to 1.0c) and The Rise of Rome (to 1.0a): English, German, and French or Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese.
Alternately, the latest official patch is available at
Age of Empires: The Rise of Rome 1.0a suffers from a serious bug in saved games. If a projectile (arrow from archers, ships, towers, siege weapons) is "flying" through the air while saving a game, the saved game becomes corrupted; loading it will crash the game.


Unofficial patch that contains bug fixes and improvements for modern operating systems. Does not require any previous patches.
Fixes the color problem caused in newer systems
Fixes the save game bug of version 1.0a
Requires The Rise of Rome expansion

Skip intro videos[edit]

Use the NoStartup command line argument.[1]

Game data[edit]

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

System Location
Windows HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Games\Age of Empires\1.00\
Mac OS (Classic)

Save game data location[edit]

System Location
Windows <path-to-game>\savegame[Note 1]
Mac OS (Classic)
Campaign progress is stored in <path-to-game>\game0.nfo
Custom scenarios are stored in <path-to-game>\scenario
Custom campaigns are stored in <path-to-game>\campaign
You will need to backup all of the above files and folders to have all of your player data and progress.


In-game options menu.
In-game options menu.


Keyboard and mouse State Notes
The only option available is to use one or both mouse buttons.
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
For scroll speed.
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.


Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Red Book CD audio
On Windows, CD music might not play correctly; see the troubleshooting guide for solutions.


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Fan translation by .:i2k:. link #1, link #2
Brazilian Portuguese
Microsoft Brasil.


Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play
Online play

Connection types

Type Native Notes
MSN Gaming Zone support has been discontinued.[2]
Direct IP


Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP 2300-2400, 47624
UDP 6073, 2300-2400
Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) support status is unknown.

Issues fixed[edit]

Game uses weird colors[edit]

Playing the game on modern versions of Windows may cause it to use weird colors. Repetitive red and purple specks in water and marsh areas are the common issue. This can be fixed by downloading and using DirectDrawFix.

Weird colors fix[citation needed]
  1. Download and extract the DirectDrawFix zip file.
  2. Run DirectDrawFix.exe.
  3. Use the browse button to locate and select EMPIRES.exe.
  4. Press the apply button.
  5. Repeat for EMPIRESX.exe.
Could not initialize graphics system error[3]
  1. Run the game in Compatibility mode for Windows XP Service Pack 2
  2. Disable Visual Themes
  3. Disable Desktop Composition
  4. Run this program as an Administrator

Other information[edit]


Technical specs Supported Notes
DirectDraw 5
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes


Middleware Notes
Multiplayer MSN Gaming Zone Discontinued.[4]

System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 95, NT
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium 90 or higher
System memory (RAM) 16 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 80 MB
Video card (GPU) Local SVGA bus video display
1 MB of VRAM
DirectX 5 compatible
Mac OS
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 7.5.3
Processor (CPU) 120 MHz 604
150 MHz 603
System memory (RAM) 32 MB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 70 MB


  1. When running this game without elevated privileges (Run as administrator option), write operations against a location below %PROGRAMFILES%, %PROGRAMDATA%, or %WINDIR% might be redirected to %LOCALAPPDATA%\VirtualStore on Windows Vista and later (more details).