All the good players left. It's been like this for a long time. You get a marginal boost whenever a patch is released, but as soon as people get bored by the repetitiveness again they will move on to something else (like me). I am pretty much done with AoEO, there's just no magic that keeps me playing (unlike the genie based games, which are in every way superior).
I notice you joined since 1/5/2011 and i cant blame yea : D 2 years is pretty good!
I think there are a few things that help keep this game alive for a very long time but you'll never know seeing GW2 is around the corner :3 anyway
1. LINK every servers to 1 match making system. Make it like cross
over and it will be great for the alliance update. why? because match
making will be quick.
2. epic and leg items make me a trader and
pretty much 99% of the population has turned to trading. So adding more news items with each big update is a good star.
3. This game made us all greedy players. So giving some good reward
to the losers that pvp is a good start because wasting 20-40 minute and
getting nothing or worst broken item is not cool, but you're cool if you
add more idea :D
11 backstabs against players with flame thrower s& machine guns
36 kills in 6 min
arrow to the head and face