August 20, 2009

Roll Through the Ages and more Tales

by Susan Rozmiarek

Well, we didn't get to go to game night this past week. Ed had to take our eldest to soccer practice and I got to shopping. Yay. This full-time job gig is taking some getting used to. Oh Free Time, how I miss thee!

Last week, though, I got to play Tales of Arabian Nights again. Once again, I really enjoyed it. This time, I fared miserably. In fact, my first character died after finding a door hidden in the sands. Upon descending, she found a woman imprisoned below and tried to save her. An e'freet (sp?) jumped out of hiding and tore me from limb to limb. Not exactly a pleasant way to go, but I got rid of some icky statuses and started fresh with a new character which was nice. I had great fun again playing this and I'm looking forward to having my own copy. One funny thing - I'm finding that this game really stresses my vocabulary skills. I'm not all that familiar with the Tales and I keep running into words that I'm not sure how to pronounce. An example is "vizier." Who knew that this rhymes with "brassiere?" Not me, but I certainly won't forget how to pronounce it now! I swear I feel like I'm back in grade school again, nervously hoping that the teacher doesn't call on me to read aloud.

The other game that I finally got a chance to play was Roll Through the Ages. It's another one of those games that allows you to push your luck and re-roll dice to try and get what you want. This one captures the feel of a civilization game better than I thought it would and I did like it. What disappointed me though, was that you are trying to build things that give you special abilities and you hardly get to use them before the game is over. I haven't read all that much about the game but was told that this is a common complaint. I'd be happy to play again, but I'm not sure that it is worth the price so we probably won't be getting it.

Posted by Susan Rozmiarek at August 20, 2009 3:14 PM


Try playing Roll Through the Ages with the variant that Rick from Gryphon games taught. Play that the game ends if all the monuments are built AND one person builds five developments. It adds a couple of turns to the game, which isn't too much while allowing you to use some of the developments you've built.

Posted by: Bobby Warren on August 20, 2009 5:21 PM

If you play with the "Late Bronze Age" rules, you get to use your abilities more. They're free at

Posted by: Jeff on August 20, 2009 6:46 PM

Try playing Roll Through the Ages to 7 technologies rather than 5. You will have more time to implement your special powers.

Posted by: Clay B on August 21, 2009 9:13 AM

I'll second the recommendation for the Late Bronze Age variant, Susan. It adds quite a bit to the game and doesn't take that much longer to play.

Posted by: Larry Levy on August 28, 2009 8:47 PM

I've heard that complaint about Roll Through the Ages a lot too - it's good, just not great.

Posted by: Tao - Starlit Citadel on September 22, 2009 11:09 AM
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