«Through the Ages» review

Through The Ages Box Cover

«Through the Ages» is a civilization creating board game. It was developed by Vlaada Chvátil and designed by Richard Cortes and Paul Niemeyer.

Vlaada Chvátil is a game developer from Czech Republic. His unique style of rulebook is known by many people.

«Eagle Games» present you an unusual game which was painted by Richard Cortes and Paul Niemeyer! You can create your own history with astonishing illustrations!

Inside the box

«Through the Ages» contains following elements for the game:

  • gameboard;
  • rulebook;
  • two hundred seventy five wooden counters:
    • one hundred twenty yellow;
    • ninety blue;
    • thirty five white;
    • thirty red;
  • forty player cubes (10 × 4 Colors);
  • four player mats;
  • four reference cards;
  • three hundred forty one cards:
  • one hundred eighty five civil;
  • one hundred fifty five military;
  • one start player.

Gameplay

After you manage to understand this huge capacity of rules, this game is very good well and it absorbs you in its world. You start with a team of miners and farmers. «Through the ages» is the game for heroes!

The game goes from the ancient ages to the present time. There is only one measure of victory. It’s the capacity of culture your nation made during the whole game process. There are a lot of ways to make culture points: through religious system, literature, by making wonders, by cultural persons and etc.

You will face many problems like competition with your rivals. The victory in this game requires you to improve all of the aspects of your people constantly. You will have to increase the population and food production. You will want to develop new technologies to produce more food efficiently.

Through The Ages Main Board

Rules

The game uses cards as its main components. The rules can be complicated for the first time, but it’s easy to get used to them and enjoy the game! Players create nations by using these cards. Cards are divided into Civil cards and Military cards. They are also classified according to the Age in which they appear : Antiquity (A), Middle Ages (I), Age of Exploration (II), and Modern Age (III). So cards are divided into eight decks – a civil deck and a military deck.

Civil cards:

Leaders: famous people who can be chosen as a leader. Only one can be chosen.

Action cards: These have an instant effect and can’t be used in the same turn they are picked up.

Wonders: structures that provide bonuses to your nation but take time and resources to be built.

Technology cards: to play these cards you should discover them by paying a special quantity of points: Farm and Mining Technologies, Urban buildings, Special Technologies, Government cards.

Through The Ages Leader Cards

Military cards:

Political Action Cards: can be played during the political phase.

Events and New Territories: If a player plays an event or New Territory card, it goes to the Future Events deck face down as it is an Event that will change the course of history in the future. Afterwards, a Current Event is revealed from the Current Events deck. If it’s an Event card, do what the text says. If it’s a New Territory each players has the chance to colonize it by sending a military force (buy sacrificing units). Players bid in turns on the territory and the one who sends the strongest force, takes control of it. The strength of the colonizing force is the sum of strength of each military unit sacrificed and may be supplemented by discarding Colonization bonus cards. Once a player has won a territory, he sacrifices units and if necessary uses any colonization bonus cards and places the card in front of him. Colonies provide a permanent bonus, that applies as long as the player controls the Territory and an immediate effect that can’t be undone even if the player loses the colony.

Aggressions (brown cards). These cards are military attacks to an opponent and cost a number of military actions. The two player’s strength is compared to decide the outcome of the aggression. The attacker fist, then the defending player may sacrifice any number of military units in order to increase their strength. Moreover, the defending player may play Defense bonus cards.

Pacts: Player can propose a treaty to rival from which they will have good opportunities. If the opponent agrees, the pact card is placed on the table in front of the player who offered the pact. Each player may have only one pact active in front him. If he decides to offer a new pact and it is accepted, it cancels the old one.

Wars: They work similar to aggression cards but the outcome of a war is decided at the beginning of the next turn of the player who declared war. That means that the defender has a whole round to increase his military strength. Then each one has the chance to sacrifice units in order to increase their strength (first the attacker, then the defender)

Tactics cards: They give an extra bonus to your military strength when forming an army of the type indicated on the card (a specific combination of military units)

Wars and Agression Cards

Design

«Through the Ages» has an innovative design for a dice game with a strong civilization theme. Main board is so colorful that you can distinguish all events and cards in this game easily. Thanks to Richard Cortes and Paul Niemeyer.

Similar games

«Through the ages» has a lot of similar games in genre of economical strategy. For example, «Imperialism: Road to Domination», «Le Havre», «Nations», Sid Meyer’s «Civilizations». «Civilization» is the obvious similar game because it has the same gameplay with progress of society, wars and etc. If you ever experienced those games you would definitely like «Through the Ages».

F.A.Q.

This game has a lot of questions about the strategy you can use, cards and other useful things. Here we can see five most asked questions:

Q: If can, is it, you pay 1 CA to play Breakthrough, which will then immediately drain all MA if you have a revolution?

A: This has been discussed multiple times on lots of forums but I’ve never seen a clear, direct, official answer. My understanding is that you can play Breakthrough to trigger a Revolution if you have Robespierre in play; this costs you 1 CA (for the card) and all of your MA (for the revolution).

Q: Can I choose to discard a civil card from my hand?

A: No. However, at the end of an age all cards that are now 2 ages old must be discarded.

Q: What are science and culture ratings?

A: They note the amount of science or culture points each civilization scores during the Production and Maintenance phase. On the game board, they are the tracks with the + symbol.

Q: If your leader is assassinated, can you take a new one from the same age?

A: No. You may only ever take 1 leader from the same age, regardless of whether they are put into play or assassinated.

Q: Can you replace your leader with one from a lower age?

A: Yes. You may always replace your leader, as long as they are not from the same age. Also, you may never draw a leader from the card row if you already have or have had a leader from that age in play or in your hand.

Youtube

Conclusion

«Through the Ages» is one of the most interactive games that you’ve ever tried! It has a lot of features of economical and strategic genre such as choosing your leader, declaring war, creating the story of civilization all that crazy stuff. Maybe you want to build your peaceful civilization or wipe out the rest of the World? It’s up to you. Be sure, this game is for you! You can buy it here, just follow the link