Post Scriptum - Italy
Elfin Werks - USA
There are only 7 pages in the A5 size rules book, complete with text and pictorial examples.; this is brilliant for a game of this strategical magnitude.
CALIGULA, the Roman Emperor who married his sister and made his horse a member of the Senate, was all about chaos (no kidding!) and back-stabbing. This board game is based on 50% of the above, chaos being the loser .
The game begins with Caligula as the Emperor but plans and plots are a foot (or 30.5cm) to change that. There are no Conspiracy Theories, but there are conspiracies and yes, they are all out to get you, and you to get them.
This is basically a card game with auction overtones. Players bid face down SPQR tokens (values on their reverse) on Civitas cards (cards have a maximum number of bidding spaces) so that they control the cards actions. Each card has a numerical value which the winning bid must equal or exceed, otherwise the bid is cancelled and no one wins the card.
After the bidding on the Civitas cards has been completed the Sequentia cards are resolved. These cards are actioned in row order - left to right. After they have been resolved players may begin a Conspiracy in which they attempt to kill the Emperor; successful conspiracies may yield Victory Points.
There are two other types of cards, CONIURA and PUGIO. These cards are used during Conspiracies. The Coniura cards are used for plotting against the Emperor while Pugio cards are used for stopping the plots.
Conspiracies are also run in auction style with players bidding Coniura or Pugio until the current Emperor is assassinated or not.
Of these two decks there are two types, cards that have a single icon and thus can only be used for attack or defence, and cards with both icons that can be used for either attack or defence.
Like all good back-stabbing games players can conspire together and make pacts and promises. Like all good back-stabbing games players can conspire together and make pacts and promises, that they don't have to keep!
Clever players will gain both VPs and CPs as they all count at the end of the game.