The Meaning of AOE: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of AOE? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the abbreviation AOE, including its definition, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the abbreviation AOE stand for?

According to Cyber Definitions and eSports, the abbreviation AOE most often stands for area of effect. This term is used in many role-playing games and MMORPGs (massive multiplayer online role-playing games) to refer to a zone around a character that is affected by spells, powers, weapons, or other in-game mechanics. This is often represented as a radius around a character. If a weapon is attempting to strike outside the AOE, it will have no effect on the character. If a weapon strikes within the AOE, it will cause damage to the character.

There is a difference between the area of effect, splash damage, and split damage. Splash damage is considered a type of AOE, in which the terms splash area and are of effect are used interchangeably. This term is used to refer to a situation in which one character is attacked, but the weapon hits another character’s AOE and therefore causes damage to that character as well. In this case, the character who was not intended to be hit was in the “splash zone.” On the other hand, split damage refers to targets that share a damage count. While this idea is also centered on the idea of taking out multiple targets at once, it does not need to be part of an area of effect for it to occur. 

Many different games include an AOE for its character, including Overwatch, League of Legends (LoL), Fortnite, Dota 2, Clash Royale, Hearthstone, World of Warcraft (WoW), Mobile Legends, and more. 

According to The Free Dictionary, the acronym AOE can stand for much more than just area of effect. There are numerous other definitions for this acronym. However, these other meanings are far less common and should therefore be used sparingly. If you do decide to use one of these alternate definitions, make sure that you provide the reader with proper context so that they can infer the correct or intended meaning. This should be standard practice whenever you use an acronym that has more than one potential meaning.

  • Automotive Original Equipment
  • Ata over Ethernet
  • Alpha Omega Epsilon (engineering sorority)
  • Avenir Ouest Energie (French energy consultancy)
  • Alpha Omega Electronics (West Chester, PA)
  • American Orient Express
  • Age of Empires (game)
  • Alberta Order of Excellence
  • Association of Engineers (India)
  • ATA Over Ethernet (Storage Area Network Protocol)
  • Area of Eligibility
  • All of Enemies
  • Annual Operating Expense (various locations)
  • Anywhere on Earth (calendar designation)
  • Arrow Energy NL (Brisbane, Qld, Australia; stock symbol)
  • Airport of Entry
  • Auditing Order Error
  • Acute Otitis Externa (swimmer’s ear)
  • Area of Emphasis
  • Asia Optical Fiber Communication & Optoelectronic Exposition & Conference
  • The Art of Electronics (book)
  • Fast Combat Support Ship
  • Application Operating Environment
  • Aeronautical Obstacle Environment
  • Age of Extinction (Transformers movie)
  • Aces Over Europe (flight simulation game)
  • Army Of Excellence
  • Arising out of Employment (workers’ compensation)
  • Angels on Earth
  • Ammunition Oiler Equipment
  • Approach Outdoor Education (Canada)
  • Automatic Overwing Exit (aircraft)
  • Ask at Order Entry (healthcare)
  • Age Of Empires (Microsoft game)

How can the abbreviation AOE be used in a sentence?

The abbreviation AOE can be used in many different sentences to refer to the zone of impact that surrounds a player in an online role playing game. In this example, Tyler and Frank are talking on their headsets while playing an online role-playing game. They are on the same team.

Frank: Aah! Dude, you shot me!

Tyler: Wait what? Sorry man, I was aiming for the other team. Didn’t realize you were in the AOE.

Frank: Ugh, it sent me all the way back to the beginning. Damn. I better steer clear of your aim!

Here, Tyler uses the term AOE to tell Frank that he did not realize he was within another character’s damage zone and would be affected by the blast.

What are synonyms for the term area of effect?

While you may not find exact synonyms for the term area of effect in the Thesaurus, there are numerous different synonyms for both area and effect. Then, you can form your own synonym for the term area of effect! Synonyms are very useful to know if you are in a situation in which it is inappropriate to use an acronym, as well as if you are trying to avoid repeating yourself, or are looking to expand your vocabulary. These lists of synonyms for the words area and effect are provided by Thesaurus. 


  • orbit
  • amplitude
  • run
  • gamut
  • domain
  • sweep
  • earshot
  • neighborhood
  • tune
  • swing
  • length
  • leeway
  • elbowroom
  • circle
  • panorama
  • realm
  • operation
  • ambit
  • span
  • limits
  • latitude
  • scope
  • extension
  • stretch
  • dimensions
  • extent
  • province
  • territory
  • spread
  • distance
  • matter
  • run of
  • diapason
  • range
  • order
  • play
  • breadth
  • vicinity
  • spectrum
  • hearing
  • width
  • ken
  • bounds
  • extensity
  • parameters
  • compass
  • size
  • expanse
  • space
  • radius
  • confines
  • field
  • sphere
  • reach
  • purview
  • magnitude


  • implementation
  • event
  • drift
  • significance
  • bottom line
  • reaction
  • impact
  • tenor
  • fallout
  • power
  • sense
  • payback
  • impression
  • validity
  • action
  • chain reaction
  • repercussion
  • outgrowth
  • aftermath
  • force
  • sequence
  • influence
  • purport
  • issue
  • upshot
  • can of worms
  • consequence
  • reality
  • end
  • effectiveness
  • import
  • clout
  • follow-up
  • imprint
  • strength
  • weight
  • aftereffect
  • essence
  • purpose
  • vigor
  • effect
  • efficiency
  • waves
  • efficacy
  • execution
  • result
  • spin-off
  • fact
  • sequel
  • enforcement
  • use
  • follow through
  • meaning
  • mark

Overall, the term AOE is most commonly used to refer to the area of effect, which is used in online gaming to refer to the zone around a character that can be affected by spells, powers, weapons, or other in-game devices. This term is frequently used by gamers who play MMORPGs and other role-playing games. The term AOE also has numerous other less frequently used definitions.