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Microsoft announces Age of Empires Online, a PC-only persistent version of the popular Age of Empires real-time strategy series that will feature free online play through Games for Windows LIVE. The game is currently in closed beta and expected to launch next year, and the Age of Empires Online Website is live, offering beta signups, and featuring a teaser trailer showing off gameplay and the game's stylized graphics. Also, Computer and Video Games reports Microsoft telling them that AoE vets are on board for this. "I'd say about 75% of the team have worked on Age of Empires before," Microsoft Game Studios GM Dave Luehmann tells them. "So it's the core team that you can feel comfortable with and who are well skilled with Age [of Empires]." Here's a bit from the announcement:
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