Conquest of the Empire

Milton Bradley, 1984, 2-6 players, 10 to adult. Another entry in the famous Milton Bradley "Gamemaster" series of games released in the 1980s, Conquest of the Empire is a straightforward war game set during the Roman empire. Each player starts out controlling a single province, a city, 6 generals and a Caesar. The more provinces you control the more money you earn each turn. Use your money to buy infantry, cavalry, catapults and ships. Build legions consisting of up to 7 troop pieces and a leader, move them around, take over more provinces, earn more money to buy more troops, etc, etc. The game ends when there is one Caesar left on the board.

We found this game to be the least entertaining of the Gamemaster series. Although it does have the expected nicely organized, easy-to-use rules and nifty playing pieces, we found that the sticky-uppy bits on some of the pieces tended to get broken off rather easily and that the game itself was pretty bland. There really isn't anything new or interesting here in the way of game mechanics, and this business of completely taking over another player's empire when you kill their Caesar is insane. In a three-player game I was totally mopping the floor with the other guys (earn money and buy catapults - thus endeth the strategy lesson), and I was about to take one guy out when he basically capitulated to the other guy (left his Caesar unprotected). Now instead of two weak enemies I'm faced with one super powerful enemy. Badda bing, I lose. This game sells for big bucks on eBay (generally right around $100 for a decent, complete copy) and that's exactly where my copy is headed.

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