"Age of Mythology" lets you select one of three major pantheons of gods as your benefactors. You can choose from the Greek, Egyptian and Norse pantheons in the core game, and your choice affects the specific combat bonuses, technological advancements and special mythological units you receive from paying tribute to the gods. Each pantheon has three major gods and nine minor deities that provide magical interventions in combat that are unique to each deity. "The Titans" expansion lets you also choose to play as the Atlanteans, who receive divine bonuses from mythological Titans who fulfill the roles the gods served in the original game.
"Age of Mythology" is a real-time strategy (RTS) game that uses ancient mythologies as a backdrop for its single-player campaign and stand-alone scenarios. RTS enthusiasts will find the basic gameplay familiar, which involves gathering and managing resources to create units and facilities, while researching technologies to gain access to increasingly powerful troops. Ensemble Studios developed the game for Microsoft Game Studios, which released it in October 2002. Microsoft released "The Titans" expansion in September 2003 that provides additional content for the core game.
A unique resource to the "Age of Mythology" series is favor, which determines how much your gods reward you with powerful mythological units and bonuses to your technology, units and facilities. Greeks receive favor through praying at their city's temple, Egyptians through building monuments and the Norse through waging combat. In "The Titans," Atlantean players pay tribute to the Titans to gain favor, which they accumulate through building town centers throughout the scenario's map, making rapid city expansion key to acquiring divine bonuses.
In addition to special combat bonuses and magical intervention, the gods grant you the use of a miracle, a particularly powerful magical effect that can only be used once during the single-player campaign in "Age of Mythology." Atlanteans can call upon the Titans for miracles multiple times, though the stronger the effect of a miracle, the less often you'll be able to use it.
In "Age of Mythology," players can produce hero units at their temples. These powerful troops specialize in combat against the game's mythological units and are the only units that can retrieve relics -- powerful artifacts that confer a variety of bonuses. Atlantean players in "The Titans" bestow hero status on normal combat or villager units in exchange for resources and population instead of creating them at their cities' temples. This dynamic gives Atlanteans a potentially greater number of heroes among their forces at any given time.
"The Titans" introduces the Titan unit, an extremely powerful unit that can quickly lay waste to buildings and armies. Only other Titan units or massive armies composed of human and mythological units have a fighting chance of slaying a Titan.
"Age of Mythology's" single-player campaign offers a 32-mission campaign and "The Titans" offers a 12-mission campaign. With "The Titans," you can choose any of the four cultures to play and you'll gain access to the units of the other three cultures as the game progresses. "Age of Mythology" lets you generate random maps and compete against up to 11 AI-controller opponents; "The Titans" offers the same stand-alone scenario play, but its AI-controlled players have a greater range of play styles. The AI may exhibit tactical preferences, such as choosing to aggressively attack you early in the game, or focus on growth and gathering resources until it can support massive armies to overwhelm you.
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