All roads are said to lead to Rome, but do I really have to be the one building them all? Roads to Rome is a love saga set in a cute fantasy version of ancient Roman Empire. Caesar gives you the task to expand the empire peacefully, and painstakingly inches by inches. Those looking for a real time strategy game in the vein of Age of Empires are sorely disappointed, as this is more about managing time and tasks than weapons.
To perform a task you tap on it, and if there is any free, and fed worker available he will perform it. If not you have to wait until there is food, or someone is free. This means that there is no queue system for tasks, and hence most of the time management aspect of the game goes out the window. Instead it is a game where you have to constantly make sure workers are running about sawing wood, building roads and carrying food. Paired with a rather low level of difficulty the game is more of a casual way to spend time than actually getting me strategically challenged.
More and more facilities are unlocked as you go, and tactics starts to revolve around what to upgrade first. Do I need more food, or more wood now? Still I have managed to complete levels without breaking a sweat no matter how I have prioritized. That is up to level 17 where the game is currently broken. You are supposed to pick up a crystal that is covered by the zoom icon in the shape of a magnifying glass. A glaring issue, but a patch has been promised soon to fix it.
The presentation is really beautiful with lovely maps, nicely detailed characters and a general sense of polish. The music is bombastic, and ambient at the same time and I actually found myself enjoying it. Overall it is a much better presentation than the earlier Island Tribe series from the same developer. The only thing I had some issues with right away is the small font used. I kidn of gave up on the story aspect due to this. I don’t use glasses, and darn it if a game forces me to go get some.
Roads of Rome is a micromanagement game where the works have no own will, and no memory for queued actions. It is light on strategy, and the gameplay tends to become all about tapping. The level 17 bug also hurts the game significantly, but I can only assume that the gameplay doesn’t improve past that. The great graphics, and casual nature of the game can still attract quite a few players.
Roads of Rome $2.99
Seller: Realore, JSC
Roads of Rome HD $3.99 iPad only. A better choice, as there are no reports of issues with level 17.