14 March 2013

Spartacus 3-player session

We managed to book a game soon after the experimental 2-player session, ended up with 3 players. The game is a blast and has the right amount of complexity in each step. We even managed to call for support to play out intrigue cards despite only being 3 players and being the cautious types. Bribes were paid for playing cards, the arena phase was twice rigged so that a gladiator was changed and most of the bets ended up being wasted. Not a great deal of backstabbing in this session, although support was called on a few occasions to direct intrigue cards against the stronger player.

I really like this game, and the two other guys also seemed to have a great time and there was not a single complaint about the mechanics or anything like that.

Batiatus ended up winning our game, as Tullius I had the largest hoard of gold but had been punished severely with influence drops during our session. We started on 4 influence which is the "regular" setting and the game took us a bit over 2 hours to finish not counting the introduction of the rules to our third player who was a complete newcomer to the game but who grasped it fairly quickly.


  1. I've been hearing a lot about this game recently and it was your brief write-up that convinced me to take the plunge and buy it!

    I just finished sleeving the cards and am working my way through the rules now.

    I'm curious - what's your take on the gladiator combat? Are there meaningful tactical options involved?

    1. The gladiator combat is really good. There is a lot of tactics in how you remove wounds in order to win money or gut someone else’s bets. There is also the possibility of swapping out the opposing gladiator using a special card. Basically if you reduce one of your stats to zero it is a "yield", two stats make it a "injury" and three stats make it a "decapitation".

      You don't have a lot to decide beside rolling dice, and using special abilities, but the combats end up being a lot more exciting than one would have thought.

    2. Awesome! I can't wait to bring this to the table!

      My game group is usually 3 myself - do you think it'll be better with 4 players?

      What are your thoughts on playing the longer game?

  2. I have played a 4 player game (AAR coming tomorrow, up as well as thoughts on the factions). I think the game is best with 4 players, it simply becomes a lot more dynamic and the arena phase is the most fun with more people involved betting money.

    3 players however work quite well so don't worry about only having 3 people (I usually also have a group of 3 with me included for our boardgame sessions).

    So far I have only played the "normal - influence 4" and "short - influence 7" games. Next time I really want to play a longer game starting on 0 influence. Out of the two modes that I have played the normal mode was more fun though slightly longer.

    1. I look forward to reading your AAR.


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