New Age of Empires 2 expansion out next week

Prepare for the Rise of the Rajas.

When Andy covered Age of Empires 2's African Kings expansion last year he said: "To say it's unusual for a 16 year old game to get a new expansion is more than a bit of an understatement." That's absolutely true, yet here we are welcoming yet another slice of DLC to a real time strategy game first released on PC in 1999. 

Granted, Rise of the Rajas, due December 19, is the third expansion for the 2013 Age of Empires 2 HD remake, but it's no less impressive that there's still demand for official updates on an idea now over 17 years old. 

So what's in store by virtue of the Rajas? Quite a bit, it would seem. The latest DLC adds four new civilisations: the Burmese, Khmer, Malay and Vietnamese; and four fully-voiced campaigns. New generic units take the form of Battle Elephants and Imperial Skirmishers, while "massive" rainforests, "treacherous" beaches, and mangrove forests are but some of the add-on's new environments. 

Besides improved AI, Rise of the Rajas also adds five new random maps, five special maps, five real world maps, 13 new terrains, new Scenario Editor objects and a new Spectator Mode.  

"Welcome to Age of Empires II HD: The Rise of the Rajas; the third new official expansion for the Age of Empires II universe in over 17 years," reads a description on the expansion's Steam page. "Challenge friends with four additional civilizations, new units, technologies, and build your empire on both water and land. Guide history’s greatest heroes in Southeast Asia through four additional campaigns and conquer your foes with mighty hordes of elephants under your command."

Full details on all of the that can be located here. Age of Empires 2 HD's Rise of the Rajas DLC is due December 19.