Hey all, I'm new here and only came here because my AOE 2 kept freezing as well, and it seemed hopeless to fix it because no one had a fix. Well i figured it out and it's quite ridiculous to be frank, here goes...
Get a copy of your video drivers
first for your video card.
Go to Start and right click on "My Computer" and click on properties. Then the window pops up with all its tabs with the "hardware," tab being one of them; click on it. Then click on the "Device Manager" button and a new window will popup showing a list of your hardware devices under their categories. We need to find the "display adapters" category. Click on that and then it expands to show what device (or sometimes software renderer) you are using. Click on your video device (video card) and right click it. When you right click it, click on uninstall, follow the prompts to uninstall it and then reboot the computer. Now this part sounds a little crazy but just follow what i say
: When the computer finishes rebooting, click on age of empires and play it! It will work perfectly and you can play it at any resolution the game lets you (one of the three resolutions lol). So at this point you're playing the game without any technical videocard drivers. And yes their is a difference, try opening up a folder and scrolling or scrolling on a webpage and you'll know your drivers were unisntalled because the scrolling will be very choppy. Another thing you could try back in the device manager is disabling the device driver
instead of uninstalling it, it gives you both options, that could also work but i've never tried it. But anyways, it would be nice to have another copy of your video drivers so when you decide to play a 3d game that you would need the drivers for, that you could easily install them again.
I gotta say, i'm gald to be playing AOE2 after a year of getting my new laptop and not being able too. And the funny thing is, not all vista people have the problem, so it became really puzzling to attempt to fix but then i did this and it was so simple but a little annoying but well worth it for our AOE2 lans
. Another thing, it froze for me in both vista AND xp! so don't think downgrading will well, i'm dual booting and it did nothing for me changing back to xp, but xp was able to run more older games than vista could so xp might be worth it