As someone that was a Latin major (and did a lot with Roman history), the first thing that really speaks to me is that the modeling of Rome is absolutely beautiful. While individuals will not completely know what Rome looked like over 1500 years after the empire declined into obsolescence, I have a feeling that Viva really did their homework when it come to Grand Ages: Rome. The game itself seems similar to Civilization, in terms of the city-creation aspect of things. The amount of information that one needs to take in is extraordinary, lest their city go the way of a Carthage.
Aside from keeping the city up and thriving, Grand Ages: Rome allows players to take on some of the major events that marked Roman history. For example, how will a player ensure that Spartacusâ€™s revolt is put down in a way that will ensure peace in the mother city? How will the Roman empire shape up as it pertains to the bases that are established in the barbarian territories? The reality of the game play has to be stressed; crop shortages, problems with different segments of society, and other disasters are all things that players will have to contend with during the game. Unlike a number of the different city-building sims that have been released previously o the marked, Grand Ages: Rome allows for online play. The addition of this play is simply fantastic: will players work together to create the best possible city, or will they work to ensure that only one city wins out?
Aside from the robust multiplayer side of things, Grand Ages: Rome also changes up the city-building landscape through the inclusion of lasting buffs. These benefits stick with a player much like real life; the support of a priest sect for example is not something that would simply be forgotten about during the next turn. Finally, the ability of a sandbox type feature is the addition matter that is really the cherry on top of this sundae: players can set up different conditions and obstacles which they can thus play through, even in ways that the game did not intend. Grand Ages: Rome is the best city sim that I have ever played.
Grand Ages: Rome (PC) / 2009 Viva / http://www.grandages.com