It's great fun, and I actually like the art. My experience after only one game is that it ended rather fast and without warning because of one special building. The game ended in a three way tie, which is a little unsettling as well. However, the game play is very fun, interactive, and challenging enough to keep me interested...more so than Dominion. Glory to Rome!
A really great hidden gem. I love the bidding mechanic with secret goals. It's a quick game with some thoughtful strategy. The poorly designed board gets well deserved criticism, but the other components are great.
Once you get over the learning curve (I hated this game the first time I played), the game-play and emerges as quite ingenious. Be careful how you teach this. It can turn someone off very easily with the overwhelming iconography.