“Reflecting on a Year of Age of Empires II: A Gratitude to the Community”

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    I have been playing video games for nearly my entire life, ever since I watched my dad play Age of Empires 1 (AOE1) in 2000. I was so captivated by it that I wanted to learn everything about it. When I turned six in 2001, my parents gave me my dad’s old PC and his copy of AOE1, and I was ecstatic. I spent countless hours playing against the AI and having matches that lasted days, since my playing time was monitored. In between gaming sessions, I would think of ways to defeat the AI and eagerly look forward to my next gaming session.

    As I grew older, I moved away from AOE1 and played some AOE2, but not to the same extent. I became a console player and played games like FIFA, Halo, and GTA, and later on games like The Witcher and The Last of Us. Living in the countryside, I rarely had a stable enough internet connection to play online. That changed when I was in my early twenties. When I discovered online play, I jumped into Rainbow Six: Siege. I was fascinated by this game and eventually joined a team and competed in small leagues.

    In late 2021, after four years of playing, I became frustrated with the game and started watching a video by T90 called “The Legend of WALL”. I was instantly captivated by AOE2 and started consuming more and more AOE2 content. This rekindled my desire to play, so I bought a friend’s old PC and the game. I immediately started playing ranked and quickly realized that I didn’t know much about the game. Nonetheless, I was hooked and felt a joy playing that I hadn’t experienced in a long time.

    I eventually climbed up the ladder and reached 1,000 ELO. I then started looking for tournaments to play in and formulated my goals for AOE2. I wanted to reach 1,200 ELO by the end of the year, 1,400 by the end of 2023, 1,500 by 2024, and 2,000 by 2025. I joined several discords and met a lot of people, and I even started helping to host my first tournament.

    Now, a year later, I have played nearly 400 1v1s, 600 team games, and 50 tournament games, and I am sitting at my highest ELO of 1,353. I am very thankful to the AOE2 community for welcoming newbies and keeping the game alive. It is an honor to be a part of it!

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