Age of Empires mobile game Return to Empire debuts at #1 in China, already among the top 10 highest-grossing games

Return to Empire doesn’t have an overseas release date yet.

Image via Microsoft

Age of Empires IV might be getting an Xbox port in the future, but that’s not the only AoE game making its way to new platforms. A mobile Age of Empires is out now in China, and it’s already conquering the market.

Games industry analyst Daniel Ahmad, known to the Twitter world as @ZhugeEX, reported the news. The game is called Return to Empire in China, and it was developed by TiMi Studios, a subsidiary of Tencent, the #1 game company in the world in terms of revenue. Return to Empire was in development before the license approval freeze that shut down 14,000 Chinese game studios in 2021, and it’s taking after papa Tencent by hitting #1 on the iOS charts. Ahmad also points out that it’s reached the top 10 grossing charts on launch day.

Return to Empire is a collaborative effort between Xbox and Tencent, and it seems to have already paid off. There’s no word on if the mobile game will release outside of China, but if it does, its “true to Age of Empires” gameplay will be exciting to many fans. Ahmad concludes by bringing up other popular strategy titles in China, including Civilization & Conquest, Immortal Conquest, Rise of Kingdoms, and Three Kingdoms: Strategy. Notably, none of those are published by Tencent. This further points to the company making inroads in China’s lucrative mobile strategy market.

As for the flagship franchise, Age of Empires IV recently got a roadmap. Seasonal content is coming to the strategy game, including ranked standings and lots of improvements for the keyboard-and-mouse control scheme.