My nephew and I have really enjoyed Roma since my recent purchase. We’ve played about a dozen times but our last match was a doozy.
In my initial play of 4 cards, I had a Forum, a Basilica, and the Mercator, while my nephew’s cards included a couple of attack cards and a Consiliarius. Right off the bat, I scored big off of my Forum two rounds in a row. My nephew tried bleeding me by taking out most of my character cards (including my Mercator), but I was able to add another Forum, and Templum as well. After a few more rounds, I was up to 24 VPs while my nephew only had 6, leaving 5 in the stockpile. My nephew finally was able to place a Forum, but could not afford to activate it since that would deplete the VP stockpile and end the game in my favor.
While my nephew had been able to knock out several characters, he had no luck against my buildings. However, he had been able to stockpile gold and cards, while I didn’t have a whole lot of either since activating a Forum takes an extra action die. Through skillful use of a Consiliarius and a Praetorianus, he was able to block one of my Forums two rounds in a row (each round he selected the right one since I would’ve been able to activate them each time). The game finally turned when I depleted my last 9 gold to place a Centurio to deliver what I thought would be the killing blow. However, my attack failed and my nephew pounced on me the next round. After he rolled his action dice, he placed and activated an Essedum (knocking all my defensive values down by 2) and a Legionarius right across from one of my Forums, and activated his Velites as well. His Legionarius was able to knock out my Forum, and his Velites knocked out my Centurio, leaving me with 3 blank spaces.
I was able to stop the bleeding a little when I hit my remaining Forum in the next round, but it wasn’t enough. I tried putting cheap replacements on my empty slots, but he had too many attack cards and would promptly take ‘em out. He soon was able to place and activate the Nero character card and my last Forum was gone, leaving me with a now useless Templum and Basilica. I kept getting bled 2 to 3 VPs each round while trying to build my hand back up, while my nephew was finally able to cash in on his Forum and overtake me in VPs. A couple of different times, I had fallen down to just a couple of VPs, but was able to stave off defeat. It even looked like I might be able to reverse things with just one or two more turns. However, my nephew was able to activate his Tribunus, taking a VP from me, and he also knocked out another of my character cards, leaving me one empty slot too many and bleeding my VPs dry.
Even though I had a bit of tough luck and lost, it was a lot of fun. My nephew mounted a huge comeback when it looked like all was lost and, even when he turned the tables, I thought I still had a chance until the end. I’ve now gotten a lot more respect for the Consiliarius; my nephew used him to great advantage, enabling him to salvage what could’ve been bad rolls of the action dice. Great game!
Final Score: Jamie 20 VPs, Mitch 0