Microsoft to bring 'Age of Empires' to Apple, Android phones

SAN FRANCISCO/TOKYO Mon Jun 24, 2013 10:57pm EDT

The Microsoft logo is seen at their offices in Bucharest March 20, 2013. REUTERS/Bogdan Cristel

The Microsoft logo is seen at their offices in Bucharest March 20, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Bogdan Cristel

SAN FRANCISCO/TOKYO (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp will offer its popular "Age of Empires" game for Apple Inc's iPhone and other smartphones through a tie-up with Japan's KLab Inc, seeking to capture growth in a booming mobile game market.

Microsoft's gaming business is dependent primarily on its Xbox franchise but mobile devices have been eating into the gaming industry, luring consumers away from traditional consoles.

While the tech giant has released a few mobile games for iOS and Android like Wordament, "Age of Empires" is its most popular game to date to be offered beyond its own consoles.

The strategy is one that analysts argue other game machine makers such as Mario Brothers creator Nintendo Co Ltd could consider in a bid to leverage their software assets.

KLab will develop a mobile version of "Age of Empires" which will be released before the end of March, a KLab spokesperson said.

Shares in KLab were overwhelmed by a glut of buy orders in Tokyo trade on Tuesday, with its price indicated at 972 yen, 18 percent higher than its last close.

Contrary to an earlier report, the agreement is only to develop a mobile version of "Age of Empires" and there were no announcements on other titles, the two companies said.

The historical strategy game will be released worldwide in English for iPhones and Android-based phones, "with plans to release the game in other languages and on a Windows Phone in the future," a Microsoft spokesperson said.

(Editing by Bernard Orr and Edwina Gibbs)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (2)
Lanto wrote:
Instead of making age of empires IV, you’re putting out a PC RTS onto a phone? Microsoft, you do realise this isn’t going to get much sales, just make a new IV, and boom, 100000000 sales.

Jun 25, 2013 5:28am EDT  --  Report as abuse
tekelley22 wrote:
Lanto, they definitely will make money off of this. This is a great idea, there are so many games that try to do what microsoft did with age of empires but apply it to phones.

Jun 25, 2013 8:09pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.