The Year of the III Caesars: The Roman Civil War of AD 69 is a 1-2 hour card driven political wargame. Your forces must get to Rome and seize it both militarily and politically before any rivals can successfully dispute your claim. Rome had been a Republic with Senators for about 500 years. Then came the line of emperors: Julius, Augustus, Tiberius, Calligula, Claudius, and then the sixth evil Emperor Nero. After the beast Nero committed suicide in AD 68 after a failed attempt to prove he was God incarnate, it appeared the Roman Empire had received a fatal wound to its head (leadership) which could not be healed.
Three Caesars: The Roman Civil War of AD 69 re-creates the struggle after Nero’s death. Galba, Ortho, and Vitellius engaged in a war where Romans fought against their fellow Romans to see who would become the next emperor of Rome. Historically, none of them succeeded, either militarily or politically. Can you succeed where they failed? If not, General Vespasian is on his way to Rome to proclaim himself emperor, and begin the Flavian Dynasty.
- One full-color 22″ x 32″ game map with possible Canvas upgrade
- Two sheets of 3/4″ double sided round counters (103 counters) on thick stock
- One sheets of 5/8″ double sided square counters (40 counters) on thick stock
- Eight rectangular mounted double sided Leaders with base
- Two Decks of 54 Playing Cards (108 total)
- One Rule book (with game charts and example of play)
- Two Six Sided dice
Nehe Brown –
Me and 2 friends played this. It seemed a little scripted as two of the three powers had to pay a certain number of card points before being able to move. Other than that, the dynamics of the game were interactive, and even though some powers could not move right away the longest one got to control the quasi-neutral northern legion and so was in the game from the start. Even the middle power could play, and did response cards. Well in our game I got my split legions to Rome after defeated Rufus with a campaign card. I was then trying to secure it politically, and having some success, when Ortho showed up and pretty much kicked me out and wiped me out. I was in ruins. He failed to secure Rome by the time Vitellius arrived with his veterans. Ha, ha! Battles are key in this game. We only had a few but they were important and worth playing battle cards for. Response cards, movement, and political cards are all happening – not just fighting. In the end Vitellius couldn’t secure Rome politically and the game itself, ie – Verpasian, became the next Emperor. We lost to the game, go figure. Once the game got going it moved fast and we were engrossed playing it. I feel I need to play it several more times to really understand more of the intricacies. Many of the historical cards did not happen historically as they were dealt to a different player who used them as ops points instead; myself included. I give 3 Caesars 4 out of 5 stars; a good 3 player game.
Scott Nedza –
Wow! For a three player game this hit the spot. Once the points were paid things really heated up. Each player has to get to Rome, secure it, then politically stabilize it – before another player throws you out of Rome! There is a garrison Legion under Rufus north of the Rubicon river which allows the red player to be in the game even through his veteran legions will not arrive until turn 5 or 6 (depending on response cards played and operation points played). The first player has two legions but they are separate by two colors (green / brown) and 5 points to active the brown legion. So either the green legion has to slip past Rufus of they have to unite on a campaign card. Otherwise Rufus is difficult to dislodge. Meanwhile, the blue player (Otho) is nipping at the heals of the brown/green faction (25 points to activate). Speed is important. Don’t sit on your hands. If neither green/brown or blue win then the red player with his German veterans is tough to defeat, but not impossible with the right battle card. The ability to gain courage and political points through military victory, and tributes, makes the addition of political points different every time. Their is even an assassination card, and multiple possible historical cards that might come into play. This game takes about 2 hours to fully play, but shorter if it ends earlier. It is hard finding a really good three player game, but Three Caesars did it well.