Despite how most people around these parts feel about Slitherine [disclaimer: I used to work there -ed.], the announcement of their latest game is worth at least a mention. First of all, it’s designed by Turnopia, the developers behind the wildly underrated, and iOS 11 incompatible, Qvadriga. Secondly, it’s a game about ancient naval warfare, which sounds too cool for us not to take a look. It’s called Mare Nostrum and it’s coming to PC on Thursday.
Mare Nostrum [which isn’t the board game of the same name, much to my chagrin -ed.] is a war game set in the ancient Mediterranean, and focuses on the mayhem that occurs when fleets of war galleys meet in open water. Much like Qvadriga, the game uses a WEGO system which means everyone plays their orders simultaneously and then watch as they all fire off at the same time.
- From the dawn of history to the Roman Civil Wars, from Iberia to Cyprus, revive the ancient naval battles of the Mediterranean. 24 historic naval battles, including Salamis, the final defeat of Xerxes in Greece, and Actium, Downfall of Antony and Cleopatra.
- Classic WEGO system. Plan the actions first, then execute and view a simultaneous turn resolution.
- Battle AI adapts to the tactical situation and the historical settings.
- Configurable skirmish battles allows choosing of map, size, wind and opposing sides, using a point buy system.
- Multiplayer mode allows multiple historical and skirmish battles to be played by two players using Slitherine’s easy to use PBEM+ system.
- 14 ship types, from the swift penteconter to the massive deceres, equippable with devices like engines, towers, harpax, corvus, rodian firepots or sails.
- Historical tactics and maneuvers, depending on the situation and the ship type. Ram, rake oars or grapple and board. Arrows, artillery and fire.
- Squadron system with chain of command, the ships needs to be under command to be able to receive orders. Admirals and commanders has special abilities and a squadron range, lines of ships could be arranged out of this range to give command to all of them.
- Gameplay features include crew fatigue, atmospheric phenomena like fog, rain and a variable wind system and special rules for treasure ships, local command, plague, anchored ships and transports.
Unfortunately, unlike Qvadriga, it doesn’t appear that an iPad release is in the cards for this one. Tough luck, but that’s why laptops were invented. Mare Nostrum will be available on Steam this Thursday for PC only.