"Age of Empires more widely played than ever," game director hails Microsoft's classic strategy game

Red Bull Wololo: El Reinado
(Image credit: Red Bull)

What you need to know

  • World's Edge Director of Production Earnest Yuen recently expressed gratitude towards the Age of Empires community in response to the Red Bull Wololo: El Reinado tournament announcement.
  • Yuen remarked that Age of Empires is "more widely played than ever" with a "vibrant eSports scene."
  • Red Bull Wololo: El Reinado is scheduled to begin October 3 and wraps up October 6, with competition including Age of Empires, Age of Empires 2: Definitive Edition, Age of Empires 4, and Age of Mythology: Retold.
  • This year's tournament is held at Castillo de Almodóvar del Río, a historic castle in Spain. Qualifiers are underway, and spectator tickets are available.

The Age of Empires series has been around for more than 25 years, and it shows no signs of slowing down. With the original three games receiving Definitive Edition updates, an Age of Empires 4 release in 2021, and Xbox version releases more recently, the legendary RTS series continues to reach new gamers even in 2024.

World's Edge, an Xbox Games Studio and the team overseeing Age of Empires since 2019, has played a major role in revitalizing the legendary Microsoft franchise. It has worked with a bunch of other studios to bring us the remastered and new Age of Empires titles, and it's also working on another remaster called Age of Mythology: Retold.

Director of Production at World's Edge, Earnest Yuen, recently spoke out on LinkedIn in response to Will McCahill's (World's Edge Studio Business Director) post about Red Bull Wololo's tournament being hosted in an actual castle in Spain.

Here's what Yuen had to say:

Earnest Yuen's comment regarding Age of Empires more widely played than ever. (Image credit: LinkedIn)

As someone who actively tunes in to major Age of Empires tournaments — Hidden Cup 5, hosted by T90Official (Tristan Berry), was held in February 2024 — this doesn't come as too much of a surprise. With a partly crowdfunded prize pool of more than $70,000 and more than 73,000 peak viewers, Hidden Cup 5 was a huge success for the Age of Empires 2: DE community. It just goes to show how popular the game remains even today.

And with Red Bull Wololo: El Reinado roping in Age of Empires, Age of Empires 4, and Age of Mythology: Retold gameplay on top of Age of Empires 2: DE, it has the makings of the biggest Age tournament yet.

Yes, Red Bull Wololo: El Reinado is held in a Spanish castle

Red Bull Wololo is an Age of Empires tournament originally hosted in 2020, skipping 2023 but now returning for 2024. The biggest news, aside from the tournament returning for another year after a short break, is that it's being held in an actual castle in Spain. 

The Castillo de Almodóvar del Río was built in the eighth century by the Emirate of Córdoba, and it's situated on a picturesque hill with clear views of the Córdoban countryside. Does it get any better than that for an Age of Empires tournament?

Red Bull Wololo: El Reinado is open to all competitors, though you can trust that competition will be steep. The Age of Empires website states that "qualification trials will soon commence," and you can find the qualifier sign-ups at the Red Bull Wololo website.

Competitors who make the cut won't be the only ones who can check out the tournament in person. Spectator tickets for October 5 and 6, 2024 cost about €80 and can be purchased at Eventbrite.

It's clear that Age of Empires is on a roll even so many years after it was first introduced to the world, so much so that other RTS games from Microsoft like Age of Mythology are also receiving a remaster. The AoM: Retold version is expected to launch in 2024, and the fact that it's listed as one of the Red Bull Wololo: El Reinado games signals that it could launch before October when the tournament begins.

As a longtime fan of the Age of Empires series (I started playing the first game in 1999 and still regularly play Age 2: DE), I'm also incredibly grateful to the community, Microsoft, and sponsors like Red Bull for keeping the series not only alive but thriving. Hearing from a World's Edge director that Age of Empires is "more widely played than ever" certainly gives many of us a warm feeling, and the whole situation is a testament to the lasting power of great games designed with care.

Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition — See at Steam

Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition — See at Steam

The original version of Age of Empires II is no longer available on Steam, however, the new Definitive Edition with improved mechanics and visuals can be purchased there. Play against the computer or with friends as you work to prove your skill with civilization building and combat.  

Cale Hunt

Cale Hunt brings to Windows Central more than eight years of experience writing about laptops, PCs, accessories, games, and beyond. If it runs Windows or in some way complements the hardware, there’s a good chance he knows about it, has written about it, or is already busy testing it.