I have finally given Evony a try. After a week of playing Age I the one thing it made me think of, was that it was one giant College Project with the theme of "Create the best way to part people from their money in a 'Free' game".
Once I started looking at it that way, the whole thing made much more sense. The lack of certain features that one would expect from an "RTS" or from just a strategy game in itself. Literally the only point of the game is to be bigger than someone else. There is no satisfaction from any of the upgrades, just that guy is bigger than me, I need to be bigger. And That Guy is shoveling $30 or more per month into the game to stay bigger.
Everything about the gave is built to encourage you to spend a little here, or there. Even the "Quests" at the beginning are only there to teach you how useful the tools are, but they are only available after the beginning if you pay for them.
And I sh*t you not, for those that haven't played before, you cannot build any building completely without a specific tool, but you only get 1 at the beginning of the game. You might get one from the daily gift, but it has to be like a 1/1000 chance of getting 1. And if you do fork over the dough they are about $1 per. So you might think, meh a buck ain't that bad, till you realize there are 72 locations to have buildings, non of which can be upgraded completely without one.
Of course you don't know this when you first start. It is quite entertaining to realize how much of it was built just to get you to spend, but once you have played it, you realize that there are significant features that should be there to make a logical, fun game that are missing. They are missing because there was no way to monetize anything about the feature.
Anyway when I did decide to play it I came to Blue's and continually refreshed until I got one of the ads, just in-case it gave Blue something for the click-through and signup.
/*New and stirring things are belittled because if they are not belittled, the humiliating question arises, ``Why then are you not taking part in them?'' -H.G. Wells*/