Republic of Rome Alternates?
Peter Dahlstrom
United States
Arlington
Virginia
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I like Republic of Rome. I like the theme, I like the historical details, I like the things players get to do in play.

There is one thing, though, that stands out for me as separating RoR from any other game. I've seen a few games billed as RoR light, and, yes, they have the trappings, but none of them have this thing.

This thing is that while players are fiercely competing with each other, sometimes they need to work together to keep Rome afloat and the game from crashing down into a loss for everyone. That makes for some great situations, where players sometimes have to agree to give a player more power - power they could possibly use to win the game themselves - in order to keep Rome afloat! Delicious decisions! Brilliant!

However, RoR is not a perfect game (length of play, complexity of rules, fiddliness for example). I'd love to see a quicker, easier, tighter game that still has that ... pressure in it. Given the recent spate of cooperative and semi-cooperative games, I believe it's possible!

So, what games should I play to try to experience this pressure? Know a good substitute, or a bad substitute, or info/news about the reprint of RoR?
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1. Board Game: The Republic of Rome [Average Rating:7.54 Overall Rank:338]
Peter Dahlstrom
United States
Arlington
Virginia
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The game itself.

All reports I hear are that the reprint will be a full reprint of the original game - no streamlining, so not really an alternative.

Should I just stop looking for an alternative & play it?
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2. Board Game: Capitaneus et Defensor [Average Rating:6.90 Unranked]
Dan Blum
United States
Wilmington
Massachusetts
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This is based on Republic of Rome, but is simpler and supposedly shorter. (I have not played it yet.) It's set in San Marino.
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3. Board Game: Galactic Destiny [Average Rating:6.22 Overall Rank:7717]
Brad Johnson
United States
Crystal Lake
Illinois
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I own this game, but I haven't played it yet. Having only read the rules, it struck me that this game is very, very similar to Republic of Rome in a space setting. I really don't know for certain if it plays similarly to RoR, or if it's any more streamlined or not.
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4. Board Game: Cutthroat Caverns [Average Rating:6.58 Overall Rank:1145]
Mike Betzel
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
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While this is a very light game, Cutthroat Caverns has a similar core concept. The players are working together to kill off a series of monsters. Only the person that actually gets the killing blow earns the reward from a monster, though. So you want time your attacks (and screw your neighbors) so you earn the kill. Monster strength is based on the number of starting players, so if you kill off your teammates too quickly the monsters are going to wipe out whoever remains.

It's a clever game and while it has much more in common with games like Munchkin and Guillotine, the cooperative/competitive aspect is certainly there. Not sure if this is quite what you are looking for but it fits the bill on a very simple level.
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5. Board Game: Red Empire [Average Rating:5.87 Overall Rank:8992]
Paul Glenn
United States
Wheaton
Maryland
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This is a pretty good game that has the same tension--everyone is trying to win, but if people don't work together the USSR comes crashing down. It also is a lot shorter than RoR--you can play it in maybe 30 minutes (or less).
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6. Board Game: Roma Celer [Average Rating:6.00 Unranked]
upandawaygames.com
United States
California
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Republic of Rome, played with celerity!
 
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7. Board Game: The Republic of Carthage [Average Rating:7.80 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.80 Unranked]
upandawaygames.com
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California
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Same idea from the Carthaginian point of view. Or play both it and Republic of Rome together.
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8. Board Game: Founding Fathers [Average Rating:8.03 Overall Rank:3798]
upandawaygames.com
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If you like American history between the founding and the Civil War, try this one as well.
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