Tabletop Review: Command and Colors Ancients Expansion #6: The Spartan Army

Command & Colors ANCIENTS: Expansion Nr. 6: Spartan Army
Publisher: GMT Games
Cost: $55.00
Release Date: 12/16/2011
Get It Here: GMTGAMES.com

This expansion is the sixth for the basic Command & Colors ANCIENTS game introducing the Spartan Army which is one of many armies utilized in the Command & Colors series as a whole. It must be noted that in order to utilize this expansion, one must own the basic Command and Colors Ancients box game AND its 1st expansion, C&C Ancients Expansion Nr1: Greece and the Eastern Kingdoms.

This particular game utilizes a basic hex board map that comes with the basic game only and not found in the various expansions. The military units in the entire series of games are composed of simple wooden blocks of various sizes and colors that represent units such as light infantry, light sling infantry, medium hoplite infantry, warrior infantry, light bow units, light calvary, heavy infantry, auxila infantry, elephants, and so on. The basic games and the expansions will also contain the “sticker” sheets as I call them to place on both sides of the block the unit it will represent. Some blocks will be larger than others and are multi-colored. Each of the expansions will contain unit reference cards for easy access, a scenario booklet with numerous scenarios for that particular expansion, and a number of terrain tiles for those particular scenarios. I must reiterate that it is important to own the BASIC game AND the C&C Ancients Expansion Nr1 (Greece and the Eastern Kingdoms) for The Spartan Army expansion because that game contains the other essential items such as the special dice, the command playing cards and other foreign armies used in various battle scenarios.

As stated before, this expansion includes a scenario booklet that comes with 26 battle scenarios that primarily involve the Spartan Army and the battles they participated in from 669 BC to 331 BC. It is noted within the introduction that other foreign armies will be required from the basic set to participate in some of the additional battles contained in this scenario booklet. Some of the battles that are represented very well but not limited to are the Battles of: Megalopolis 331 BC, Nemea 394 BC, Piraeus 403 BC, Tanagra 457 BC, Thermopylae 480 BC, Sepeia 494 BC, and Thyreatis 545 BC. I must note that GMT Games does an awesome job in presenting these scenarios as accurate as possible, provide a very detailed background on the conflict in question, and present them as a viable scenario on a board. Scenarios on the average last a good 90 minutes to barely two hours per each scenario.

POSITIVE NOTES: The basic Command and Colors Ancients game and this expansion provide nothing but hours on hours of endless fun. The scenario book was nicely colored and presented very well. Easy to read and easy to grasp. The battles that utilize the elephants are very fun to play as opposing players stand in horror as their troops are squashed by the lumbering beasts. The price of this expansion is well worth the endless hours of fun that two players will have.

NEGATIVE NOTES: My only real negative issue with the Command & Colors game as a whole is the number of blocks and the time it takes to put all the stickers on them. In this case, since I was by myself, it took me nearly three and a half hours to place all the stickers on the 250 blocks with care and precision. My only advice is to have a friend or two to help you place the stickers on the blocks because that task alone defines tedious to the core. Ensure your friends know which stickers to place on which blocks.

OVERALL REVIEW: EXCELLENT, EXCELLENT, EXCELLENT. This is a very well done expansion. GMT Games ensures it takes great pride in supporting its basic Command & Colors basic games with excellent expansions. These games are great in every aspect and can be utilized in more than one way besides gaming. I have witnessed some of the expansions played in high school history classes as a way to enhance learning. Kudos to GMT for supporting a fine game. I will add that players of this expansion will find additional support on their site and other great material to support the game as a whole.

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