If you have never played the original real time strategy games, you have issues. These games are fantastic even by today's standards. Keep in mind that I have and play my fully functional Atari 2600, N.E.S. and Sega Genesis more than any newer consoles. With that said, the AOE games are from an era gone by so, to not have the same issues I did, turn off the direct draw option in your directX so as the games will be fully functional. Without doing this, you will not be able to use "diplomacy"(I do mostly just destroy but certain campaigns depend on it) and may have issues saving/loading games.