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Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
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Although this product has been released, it remains under active development - information may change frequently and could be outdated or irrelevant.

This page is for the Definitive Edition. For the original game, see Age of Empires III (2005).

Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition
Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition cover
Forgotten Empires
Tantalus Media
World's Edge
Xbox Game Studios
Release dates
Windows October 15, 2020
Metacritic 75
OpenCritic 79
Monetization Free-to-play, One-time game purchase, Expansion pack, Subscription gaming service
Microtransactions Cosmetic
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Pacing Real-time
Perspectives Bird's-eye view
Controls Multiple select, Point and select
Genres RTS
Themes Africa, Asia, North America, South America
Series Age of Empires
Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition on HowLongToBeat
Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition on IGDB
Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition on MobyGames
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: HD Edition 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
Age of Mythology: Retold 2024

Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition is an updated version of the 2005 colonial age RTS Age of Empires III and its The War Chiefs and The Asian Dynasties expansion packs. It features completely redone graphics, improved controls, an updated multiplayer lobby, an in-built mod repository, an Art of War mode which teaches new players gameplay intricacies, and new content in the form of new campaigns, single missions, and civilizations. The Native American civilizations were renamed and given new voiceovers, the latter being redone after release due to poor deliveries and sound mixing.

The game has received multiple expansions with new civilizations and campaigns (see Monetization), as well as skin packs for existing units. After a launch plagued with bugs, performance issues and audio mixing (primarily choppy music playback caused by an encoding error), the game was gradually tweaked to a state which allowed it to replace the original version for most of the community. The balancing was based on the ESOCommunity patch for the original version of The Asian Dynasties.

As of August 2, 2023, the main Steam store page has the base game set to a limited free-to-play model with the following limitations: access to only three of the 16 nations which periodically rotates, access to the first act of the original game's campaign, and unranked multiplayer access in the same infrastructure as other players. The full game content is now a separate purchase.[1]

Periodic seasonal events, usually enabled with major patch releases, allow the unlocking of player profile images and official cosmetic mods.

As of August 2023, multiplayer events are constantly organized, and updates are still being made to resolve bugs and imbalances, as well as occasionally introducing new map templates.

General information

Official Discord server for the series
Official forum
Official support knowledgebase
Steam Community Discussions
ESOCommunity home to the competitive multiplayer community
Age of Empires on Liquipedia



Type Notes
Expansion pack The expansion packs include new civilizations, units and campaigns. Players can play in multiplayer regardless of whether all of them have any or all DLC.
Free-to-play As of August 2, 2023, limited parts of the game are accessible for free.[1]
One-time game purchase The full game requires an upfront purchase to access.
Subscription gaming service Available via Xbox Game Pass for PC.


Type Notes
Cosmetic Skins for units.

DLC and expansion packs

Name Notes
United States Civilization Was available for a limited time for free for players who completed a 50-stage challenge in the base game around the release date.
The African Royals
Mexico Civilization
Knights of the Mediterranean
Hero Cosmetic Pack - Lizzie Free skin.
Hero Cosmetic Pack - Kunoichi Skin.
Hero Cosmetic Pack Vol. 1 Skin pack.
Untitled DLC Coming at the end of 2024, featuring two new factions.

Essential improvements

Skip intro videos

Use command line argument[2]

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Games\Age of Empires 3 DE\Common
Microsoft Store %USERPROFILE%\Games\Age of Empires 3 DE\Common
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/933110/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game data location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Games\Age of Empires 3 DE\16 digit number\Savegame
Microsoft Store %USERPROFILE%\Games\Age of Empires 3 DE\16 digit number\Savegame
Steam Play (Linux) <SteamLibrary-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/933110/pfx/[Note 1]

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
Steam Cloud
Xbox Cloud


Graphics feature State Notes
Widescreen resolution
Hor+ gameplay.[3]
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
Borderless fullscreen windowed
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
Anti-aliasing (AA)
Vertical sync (Vsync)
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
Frame limiter supports a maximum of 144 FPS.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.
Color blind mode
While there is no dedicated color scheme for color blind players, key UI colors (e.g. teams) can be manually changed with full HSV (hue, saturation, value) control


Gameplay settings (1/2)
Gameplay settings (1/2)
Gameplay settings (2/2)
Gameplay settings (2/2)


Sound settings
Sound settings

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Sound, ambient sound, taunts and AI chats, music.
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
Royalty free audio


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Simplified Chinese
Traditional Chinese
Fan translation based on the 2007 retail localization, download.
Brazilian Portuguese


Multiplayer types

Type Native Notes
Local play
LAN play
Requires a connection to the master server for all LAN play.
Online play
Supports cross-platform multiplayer

Connection types

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 11
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes


Middleware Notes
Cutscenes Bink Video 2
Multiplayer Relic BattleServer

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 10 (v18362.0 or higher)
Processor (CPU) Intel Core i3-2105
AMD Phenom II X4 973
System memory (RAM) 8 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 42 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce GT 430
AMD Radeon HD 5570
Intel HD Graphics 4400
2 GB of VRAM
DirectX 11 compatible
A 64-bit operating system is required.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Notes regarding Steam Play (Linux) data:


  1. 1.0 1.1 Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition is Launching a New, Easier Way to Jump In and Play! - Age of Empires - last accessed on 2023-08-03
  2. Steam Community :: Guides :: Automatically skip intro videos - last accessed on 2022-08-18
  3. Age of Empires 3 Definitive Edition Ultrawide Review - 16:9/21:9/32:9 Comparison & Gameplay! - last accessed on 2020-10-22
  4. Verified by User:Rose on 2020-10-20
    The fullscreen mode is borderless windowed in the Microsoft Store version.