Ancient Rome 2
Identical to Caesar, but not as pretty
This game is perilously close to being a complete ripoff of the beloved game I used to play, "Caesar." But the artwork and sprites look more like they were designed by an emoticon artist than anyone with genuine artistic skills.
That said, it's oddly compelling. Probably worth $6, but not much more. It doesn't have near the complexity of Caesar, with advisors and charts and graphs?and one of the first things lacking is temples for the gods.
Oh, well. It's cheaper than Caesar, but that's about it.
January 7, 2013
Need more focus on these games
I was excited to see this title. Seems like each month we get 29 days of Hidden Object stuff and two days of something else. This could have been great had they focused more on it. More details, better graphics, and harder challenges. People would buy more of this type of game if BF would ask for more developers to focus on them. Most sales go to HO games because most of the games are these. Would be nice to see some good time management games come out.. This is not one of them. :(
January 8, 2013
interesting, very interesting
Wow, was the music weird, not bad, just weird. I turned it down low and I didn't mind it after that.
At first I really wanted to like the game. I was hoping it would be closer to cradle of rome. No such luck.
I found this game to be slow and tedious. Not my cup of tea.
I'm sure that there are fishies that will like it. I liked the idea of it, but not the game it's self.
January 7, 2013
Ok I downloaded the patch and it does slow down the fires...but only for a while. As each level reaches the end the fires become NONSTOP. I just dont get their purpose other then as mindless busywork...and the firehouses dont seem to do anything to stop them either. And they are even in the Sandbox mode? Come on thats not fair. Sandbox is suppose to be a free building thing..but I had 6 fires in the first minute and I just gave up. This game had great potential..its just falls short.
January 29, 2013
Interface & game mechanics need improvement...
*sigh* I was so looking forward to this one...the rare resource management game with no timer. Sadly, there were too many interface and game mechanics issues to overlook.
1. The inability to move/rotate buildings caused repetitive "there are no roads to this building" messages. You had to delete and rebuild rather than simply move or rotate. Annoying.
2. Even though I always built a tax collector, that meter was always at zero. Apparently, no one wanted to pay taxes in my cities, or my tax collector was inept.
3. An "undo" button would have been great, especially when building roads.
4. The tutorial and instructions were sketchy, leaving you to figure out an awful lot on your own.
5. I had the sound volume all the way up, yet still always missed the sound meaning something was on fire. As a result, things often burned to the ground before I realized it. Also, at times I was unable to put the fire out myself by just clicking on it. When I tried, I was instructed to build another prefecture.
Overall, there were poor decisions made regarding which aspects were controlled by the game and which by the player. I can't recommend it unless improvements are made.
May 4, 2013
Ancient Rome 2
With the exception of way too many fires, I found this game to be fun. For those of us that have trouble with their hands though, this is not a good game and I do not suggest purchasing it. There definitely needs to be more time in-between fire outbreaks in order to help prevent hand fatigue.
January 21, 2013
Would be fun if it weren't for all the fires!
I was really excited to FINALLY see a new Time Managment game (getting really sick of HOGs) and I was more than ready to play this game. It started out just like any typical city planning TMG, but then........the fires started. In order to continue bulding your city, you need to put out fires immediately or your building burns down: but.....in order to put out a fire, you need to click like crazy (and for a long time)......it got so frustrating that I had to quit (which I almost NEVER do).
What a shame to ruin a good game with this senseless feature. i will not be buying this one!
January 8, 2013
Warm up your clicking finger & break out the magnifying lens
Ancient Rome #2, I have never played #1 so can not compare the two.
Requires 1024RAM 154 Hard Drive, Available for Mac&PC.
Slots for 7 players
Options: sliders for Music, Sounds, Music is a choir, repetitious loop. To me it did not seem to fit the game, but can be turned down/ off
Boxes to check /uncheck- you can choose to mute the talking but keep the nature sounds, Full screen, Screen resolution choices from 800X600 up to 1360X768.
Each beginning level taught you the basics, Instructions were given in a box but for the size of the box the lettering is tiny, since the box is a decent size they had room to make the font larger. This is going to be a major problem for players with vision problems. My vision is good but, even I, needed to bring the lap top closer. I imagine there will be players that need to bring out the magnifying glass when they play this game. The lettering is not just a problem during instructions but also once a building is built, for instance a cluster of 4 tents you must click on the cluster, to find out what other services need to be available close to a home...from wells, wheat, medical services & markets.
One area I found missing in the instructions were details like how close does a well need to be to a house or property to be used, or how often do you place a market? When building the various buildings do you have to have a road completely surround it or on 1 side? This answer seemed to change as they started one level with 4 groups of homes together in a square so each section had 2 sides with roadway available but when I placed a single set of 4 tents close to a section of water, road was on 3 sides the program had red square under it until you found an appropriate location then turned green, but when I placed it there, the program kept telling me that the homes needed additional services. I finally had to delete/move it to a new location.
Main Goals for each level are in upper Rt Hand corner. Example: Build 3 Homes to a level 4, but does not explain what makes it a level 4. Click house & read tiny lettering of what it needs.
As each task is finished it removes from the list. When certain items are gathered to send elsewhere you must click SEND once the supplies are together.
When level is completed your screen states "ANOTHER THRIVING CITY OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE IS HERE THANKS TO YOU!" then another screen loads where you create a villa one part of a task at a time. You can choose the order to complete but no choice of different fountains or building architecture. Nothing unusual or exciting about the space. Your building a property with Villa-25 levels, servants-10, Gazebo-5, Fountain-10, Stable-10, Fence-10, Garden-6. The beginning levels seems to give you 2 tasks for each level.
Then by level 6 the fires started, a lot of fires, that are put out by clicking the buildings very fast. If not fast enough, long enough or soon enough, it burns down.There is a fire tube next to the burning building showing how close it is to destruction and they seem to burn down fast.
The money aspect is another area that was not explained well enough, when I spent too much money, instead of my purchase being denied, Caesar gave me a loan, no penalty that I know of, so why bother with money if there is no limitations? Yes, they did advise to be more careful.
Over all the game was OK but nothing new or different, graphics were basic Roman Architecture, story line was forgettable literally, more information was needed in several areas even if just added on a help page. A zoom in/out was desperately needed. The choir music did not seem to fit the game. People had little detail that identified a person.
If you are desperate for something new and you have played all the other TM's and you have a pcc available then this may suit your needs ....but personally it made me just want to re-play, The World of Zellian's, and save my code and the frustrations that would come in trying to understand the rules and the small print instructions. The Zellian's you can actually tell what the little people's jobs were as the firemen/women carried their own hoses, doctors in lab coats & even mad men who rip up roadways in their fits before the doctors come and help them. Plus you use strategy to fit all the buildings into the allotted space. In Ancient Rome #2, I did not make it far enough to know if space planning would become an issue. In comparison the people in Ancient Rome #2, the people looked like little more than colored ants if even that and there are only 30 levels instead of the Zellian's, 45, so it is 33% shorter that World of Zellian's.
I will pass on purchasing or using a pcc but do try it for yourself and then try the World of Zellian's if you have not yet tried it for yourself.
January 7, 2013
I wanted to love this game. I really, really did. I played the first one, back when I had a PC and it was one I was sad I couldn't get for Mac so when I saw this I was very excited. I even played the whole demo hour, just hoping it would get better, even though I wanted to just quit after the first couple of levels. The controls are terrible and poorly explained in the tutorial, leaving you fumbling about, generally you have to figure stuff out on your own. When there is writing on the screen, either the "guides" speaking to you at the beginning of the level, or the various tasks that must be completed to finish the level, the writing is quite small. My vision is pretty good and I was straining, so I can imagine that anyone with vision difficulties would be quite challenged and that's not generally the challenge I would look for in a game. It's never really made clear how or when money comes in to buy/build stuff with. There is a tax collection timer but when it fills up sometimes the money is $0 and sometimes it's not without any clear explanation as to why. Then, by the third or fourth level, buildings start catching on fire, again with no explanation. You have to build a fire dept. of sorts and then you still have to click repeatedly on a flaming building to put out the fire. The last level I got to in the demo hour had something burning nearly constantly and was very frustrating to not be able to do anything other than put out fires. The graphics were lovely if you zoomed in but then you could only move around by holding the mouse pointer at the edge of screen, which would then scroll by very slowly... No click to grab-and-drag option. When you click on a house for info it will tell you what it needs, both in tiny writing and little pictures, to survive. But it doesn't tell you how much or how often, and there is no timer for when these various resources will be consumed. So it is impossible to know, other than trial-and-error how many of a production piece (farm, mill, bakery etc.) you would need per house. I do like that it's a more realistic ancient times game compared to say the Roads of Rome series and I do like the rewards that are offered for completing a level successfully. But I'm afraid that it falls far short from other games in terms of enjoyment and those two things cannot make up for all the things this game lacks.
January 8, 2013
GORGEOUS but unplayable.
I was completely stoked to see this game pop up on the "Tomorrow's Game Today" thing yesterday and downloaded it the moment I could today onto my Mac. I wish I could say that the game lived up to my hopes.
It's a really nice, refreshing, straightforward game. You're managing a series of cities for Ancient Rome. You get goals that you have to meet. There aren't really any time limits or other restrictions, other than the space provided in which to build. You finish the goals and move to the next city. As in "Palace Builder," when you finish a goal you get points to spend to build and improve your dream villa. The graphics are amazing, the sound and audio just superb, and this game boasts a resolution setting--you don't normally see that on a casual game. You can zoom in and out to get remarkable detail. You build houses for your little Romans, and they rely upon goods you produce like squash and bread. They want resource buildings like fire stations and schools, too, and roads to connect them all. It's a gorgeous SimCity-type idea and it is beautiful to behold.
Despite all of this, I found the game just about unplayable.
I could forgive the rather sparse tutorial and instructions, and I could even overlook how the player isn't told how far a resource building's influence extends (a rather standard feature on most city-builder games). I don't even mind that even after an hour I still don't know how trade buildings work--I never seemed to get my trade money from it, and any time I clicked on it it just asked me what delivery option I wanted, without any reaction when I tried to click on the donkeys. Each building has a pop-up label which is helpful but which has an "i" on it that I couldn't click so whatever information it's supposed to convey, I couldn't access. It's very mystifying but I imagine I'd have figured it all out in time.
No, what really makes this game unplayable are the constant fires. Fires everywhere, even if you have a fire station right across the street (their influence seems to extend 1" past their own building's border). Even two or three buildings over from a fire station, buildings caught fire constantly and they burned to a crisp. Fires destroy your houses and goods, fires ravage your city, and render whatever you're doing completely moot. Almost every 30 seconds, I got a new fire. I'm not exaggerating; I timed it. Apparently you can put out the fire by clicking zillions of times on the buildings "I'm burning!" icon, but whenever I tried that the fire went faster, so I'm not sure if I was clicking the right thing or what.
My cities' shocking flammability is a singularly frustrating situation. I'm not sure how I'm supposed to address this issue beyond building a fire station every other building, and if that's the idea then forget it, I'll just opt out. Those things are not cheap and you don't have unlimited land. I struggled through the 1-hour demo and a half-dozen cities that were in blackened ruins before I finally gave up.
I must reluctantly concede that I will not be buying this game.
I hope that the makers of this game see this review and realize how completely devastating this "feature" is to the game. I'm a history wonk and realize that Ancient Rome had a lot of trouble with fire, but this was ridiculous.
I do not recommend this game unless you're a lot more patient than I am. I might try it again one day if it's on major sale, but as things stand, I can't even imagine it. And that pains me to say, because this game has so much going for it that to see it wrecked by one completely out of balance issue is just heartbreaking.
January 8, 2013