Friday, November 02, 2012

Antike Duellum

Yucata recently added a new game: Antike Duellum. It's a game in the 'rondel' series. Rondel games work by having a circle with all the different actions listed in different wedges. Then on your turn when you're going to choose an action you can move clockwise 1-3 spaces. If you want to keep spamming a specific action over and over then you need to move as many spaces as possible each turn even if it means taking sub-optimal actions. Or you can go slow and do a variety of actions. It's an interesting idea but I've never really liked any of the games using it.

Having played Antike Duellum a few times now I'm really liking it. I like the rondel action wheel in this game which makes me think maybe the reasons I didn't like Imperial or Antike had nothing to do with the rondel itself. Imperial we didn't like because it felt like the winning strategy and the fun strategy were never going to coincide. Antike I didn't like because we played it with 3 players and combat was mutual destruction. So Robb attacked me, I traded my entire army for his in defense, and Pounder trounced us with his actual army to our nothing at all.

Antike Duellum seems to have most of the same mechanics as Antike, but it's only a two player game. Mutual destruction in combat makes a lot of sense in a 2 player game. It turns military into more of a tug-of-war game which can be interesting. You need to spend an action to get iron, an action to turn iron into units, and then actions to move them around the map. So defender has an action advantage (they don't need to move since they can spawn units in their cities before they get attacked) but someone who's making a lot of iron can certainly build more units and swarm in.

It's quickly become my game of choice on Yucata for the time being. I wonder if it'll be an event at WBC this year...

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