Aqua Romana was one of my first Euro game acquisitions and it remains in my collection for a number of good reasons. I had a hiatus from play as I participated in cult of the new but recently pulled it out once again and was glad that I did so.
From the box exterior on, this game is a gem. Beautiful artwork on the front lends to inrigue about mechanics. The classic meeples make a show with 4 each for a total of four players. The number of meeples scales to the number of people playing. This is a tile laying game and the tiles are of very high quality cardboard stock, nice and thick and just the right size. The aqueduct resevoirs are available in the four player colours and the nice thing about this game is that they are double sided. One side has 4 exits for bigger groupls and the other 3 exits for a two player game. The resevoirs start in different positions on the gameboard depending on the number of players. Constructors are made of very high quality wood and look like a bent mega meeple. The traverse the board perimeter. The board itself is visually beautiful with the grid for tiles, constructor perimeter and podiums for meeples to rest when their circuit ends.
Players take turns selecting orthagonally to their meeples, according to the shape of the aqueduct. There are 4 types of tiles. The object is to create the longest circuit possible without running into another aqueduct line. Once a circuit terminates, the meeple is removed from play and placed on the post podium. Only a few podiums can hold two meeples and if podiums are fully, players fall back one podium to the next lowest scoring podium. Upon using the constructor players move it one space clockwise. Variants exist that have the constructors moving counter clockwise or slanted in different directions to denote direction. Another thing, upon completing a circuit the player chooses one of the constuctors including a "wild card" constructor. This helps the players to strategize new placements. The initial placement of constructors is random.
I like tile games. This one and Carcassone were my first and remain gems in my collection. I like the quick speed of the game, ease of setup and got great value for my purchase. A knock against it might be that the game might be considered too simple for some. That is a question of personal preference. This game is great for a light gathering, make people show up game, teach to children game or even for gateway crowds. Queen games hits a home run with me most of the time.
Thanks for reading. Feedback and discussion are welcome.
Totally agree Paul!
It is a very clever game with nice mechanics.
It is also underated but I guess simplicity is not appreciated some times.
In my collection, this is still a favorite.
P.S Good overview!