‘Quo Vadis’ by Reiner Knitzia.
‘Quo Vadis’- cue for a song – ‘Quo vadis, na, na, na na…..’ (to the tune of ‘Volare’) is Spiller’s game, bought for him by Kendall. Set in ancient Rome, players manoeuvre their Senators (?) through a series of rooms, collecting points on the way. Now these Senators need a bit of a mention, simply because the playing pieces are amongst the most bizarre. Anyone who has played the game will appreciate how accurately coined is the phrase, ‘Butt plug’. Butt plugs can get out of rooms if the player has a majority of Butt plugs in a room, or can negotiate a majority. Otherwise, they are stuck- enduring image, eh? - ed. They can also get stuck because rooms higher up the board are full.
Spiller starts followed by Kendall, followed by Spiller. Dicken smells a rat. Getting behind is not a good idea and getting a good position on the board is important too. In the past (and ‘Quo Vadis’ has had half a dozen outings) player’s have tried to go via the left and right channels and have come badly un-stuck. It seems best to concentrate on one side, maybe slipping someone up the other channel if there’s an opening - he doesn't mean anything by all this Frankie Howard stuff - ed..
Kendall quickly rushes Butt plugs between rooms and picks up the points counters (II – V) available. It’s obvious he’s winning. He moves Caesar after collecting a II + Caesar points counter. Caesar sits at a room exit, preventing Butt plugs from taking the points counter Caesar sits on. Caesar can be moved instead of moving a Butt plug.
Spiller and Dicken attempt to scheme a way back.
Unfortunately, this is where the game starts to unravel – and it may be why ‘Quo Vadis’ has not been regarded as one of Reiner’s finest moments. For some reason or other, stopping someone else winning feels irksome. The competitive thrust just isn’t there to make player’s want to ‘get’ the tall poppy. Even Paul would have difficulty …. ‘Get Steve! Get Steve! Et tu Brute!’ – I don’t think so. Early on the game is very neat and tidy, with enough subtlety in choosing routes and grabbing choice points counters. The transition to back-stabbing and power broking doesn’t feel right.
Consequently, rooms get full, corridors are blocked and Kendall moves smoothly on to victory.
There are advanced rules in which other counters are introduced to free up the system. Early runs at these introduced more chaos into the game, but failed to convince those playing. ‘Give her another chance!’ …. possibly.
Football is scheduled for a week on Friday against small, fast, young people. Better get the old metatarsi’s’ checked out.
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