Barbarians at the Gate

This entry is part of the PBM List.

Costs: averages 2 GB pounds/turn
URL: [ dead link ]
Frequency: one per two weeks
Type: Historical Wargame
Last-Update: 2001Nov13
Keywords: commercial, closed-ended, www, computer, historical, wargame, economic, abstract


When the Romans left Britain, they turned out the lights. This is what happened before...

Barbarians at the Gate is a game about the fall of the Roman Empire. At the start of the game the empire still stands although it's already been divided in two and the entire effort of the Empire is devoted to holding the frontiers against the barbarian invaders beyond.

Barbarians at the Gate uses the same game system and software as Dark Age II and the same map as Medieval Empires, but it should play differently from either.

At the start of the game there are six Roman players. The Eastern and Western Emperors are based in Constantinople and Rome itself, and four Caesars (army commanders) control the armies in Britain, Syria, on the Rhine (Gaul) and Danube (Dalmatia - see note 1).

Huge lines of fortifications and garrisons extend the length of the Rhine and Danube and the frontier with the Persians.

Beyond the northern borders are the reasons for the fortifications. There are eight German kingdoms. From west to east, they are the Franks, the Burgundians, the Alemanni, the Vandals, the Visigoths and the Ostrogoths, with the Angles to the north and the Lombards to the rear.

Far to the east are some important reasons why the German kings will not be remaining in their homelands, as the Huns are pouring over the eastern map edge.

You don't want to get between some latter-day Attila and the riches of the empire, unless you fancy you can defeat him on the steppes before the hordes descend on Europe.

In addition to the sixteen start "kingdoms" there are eleven more that can be activated later in the game (players can swap to these the same way as in Dark Age). These are the Irish, Scots and Picts in Britain, the Norse, Danes, Swedes, Finns, Balts and Slavs in Northern Europe, the Berbers in North Africa and the Arabs in the Middle East.


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Greg Lindahl