Anno Urbis – The Fight for Rome by Fengi Games
EDIT: The Campaign is Live!
If you like ancient Rome, fighting, and a game with lots of kick-ass pieces, then Anno Urbis may be exactly what you are looking for. Fengi Games has attempted to create a historically accurate, and visually compelling board game. While my knowledge of Roman history is lacking and I can’t verify the historicity of the details, I can fully appreciate how thematic this game is. So far, all of the components, rules, and images are compelling and make me want to play it even before I’ve read the rules. As they say in the restaurant industry, people eat with their eyes first. Obviously those people don’t work at Burger King. But I think this applies to Anno Urbis as well. Skimming their draft Kickstarter page, I was instantly interested based on what I saw, and I think that will translate to gaining backers rapidly.
Reading through the rules, Kickstarter page, and other resources three things caught my interest. First, there is a lot of replayability to this game as each time the scenario and setup change. This requires new strategies for all of the players. Second, you have to manage resources, fight a war, and win arena fights. This will give you a ton of interaction with other players, and many of the components can help in two of these areas. That means a lot of hard choices and room for being crafty. Third, the arena fights are done on a mini-board that plays on top of the primary board. And that’s just cool.
The price of the game is less than $70 (plus shipping) for early birds. That seems to be very reasonable considering everything that comes with the game. They also have some great stretch and social goals that will improve the quality of the game and add new resource and divinity cards. Overall, they seem to have a very strong Kickstarter page that is compelling and has me very interested. While they have one successful Kickstarter campaign under their belt already, it was for a small game with only 52 backers and less than $2,500 pledged. In contrast, Anno Urbis is a very large game that’s going to require almost 15 times that to be successful. After reviewing everything I can find about the game, I give it 50/50 odds for a successful campaign. But that’s based on the amount of pledges required, their past experience, and my assessment of their marketing. Not on the game design. While I’m giving this only a 50% chance of success, I hope I’m wrong as I really want to add this game to my collection!
We’ll check back once this goes live and update this page with a link to the Anno Urbis Kickstarter.