SPQR Opening Moves Guide

by MusCypricus

Hello everybody. This is my SPQR guide. The guide has been made while playing "Very Hard Level" but should apply to all levels. This guide is oriented towards players which are good at commanding battles on the battlefield, however it is still worth reading it even if you aren't a great general.

First I am going tell you some things which you should do while following my guide unless I say otherwise:

-All battles should by fought on the battlefield,
-Never click the "senate" button in the faction scroll,
-Always try to sell trade rights for 2000-1500 denarii,
-Send governors to every city as soon as he appears or a new city is captured,
-Enslave Population until you build the Pro-Consul’s Palace in Rome,
-If Gaul offers you "Become protectorate", accept it in exchange for no sum less then 7000 denarii
-Set all taxes to "Very High". Your cities cannot rebel, so milk them for all they are worth.

Ok, let us start. When you load game and look at your starting position, you would see all bad things: your economy is terrible, if you attack one of your allies, the rest will attack you, and so on. No chance of survival. That is not right at all as you will see while following my guide.

The starting the other way round from most (if not all) other factions: you have an very easy starting position. But it gets very tough when you get 3-4 cities when Gauls, Brutii and Scipii will raid you from all directions as you will see while following my guide.


-Move all your solders and generals into Rome.
-Take your Faction Leader, Faction Heir and all units but triarii to a spot south of Rome but still on your territory. (you would not be able to attack Capua this turn anyway.)
-The remaining general and triarii should protect the city in case the Julii attack.
-Fill in the recruitment queue with principes.


-Lay siege to Capua.

Alternative Ideas:
If you are really clever, you can wait before attacking Capua for for two or three turns until the Brutii have taken Apollonia. This will greatly increase their economy, but will draw some of their armies to there and turn their attention to Greece and Macedonia. In order to do so, DO NOT cross the border, or the Scipii ships will go south to Sicily. If that happens, they will be able to get reinforcements, before your army will get a chance to build a battering ram. (1 turn)


-Assault Capua (Try using only 4 infantry units, preferably hastati, and your Generals)
-When Capua is yours, move your injured principes below 45 men to Rome.
-Leave your injured hastati below 45 men again in Capua.
-Move the rest to Arretium, join the new principes from Rome with the main army.


-Lay siege to Arretium.
-At the end of the turn you will be attacked by a big Julii army. Withdraw and fight them when they attack you again.
-If not, then just assault Arretium next turn, and continue following my guide.


-Lay siege to Arretium,
-Reinforce your army with all you have got in Rome except for one unit of triarii and the General.


-Assault Arretium, (You may auto resolve the battle),
-Bring all injured units to Rome. Retrain them as soon as you have money.
-Now all your cities are making money and soon you will be out of your debt.


Using your battering ram, make 3 holes in the wall: destroy the gate and the walls either side of it. Divide your infantry in 3 groups; one for each hole. Before attacking, try to take down as many of the enemies as possibly with missiles (including the Pila), Remember to keep your general(s) close by to inspire your troops, and to reinforce them if needed.

This does not apply only to Arretium but also to other large towns without the stone walls. From here I cannot give you the turn-by-turn guidance, so it time for you to make your own choices. But it might be useful to read what I wrote below.


Always have a diplomat near Rome until you control the whole of Italy AND all the other Romans are destroyed so that you can make a treaty with them if they attack. As soon as you get a better economy, it is a good idea to send a spy and a diplomat north to Germania to make them your allies, and to spy on them. Assassins are always handy in all parts of the world but should be assisted by a spy. It is useful to have 2 or 3 assassins together in case one fails.


The buildings I advise you to build as soon as you are out of debt are first of all "militia barracks" (if possible), followed by "paved roads" (to allow your armies to march faster to defend your territories), and other economic buildings.

Do not build any other military buildings until you either took control of the whole of Italy or have finished building all I listed above.


In Rome, I advise you to keep recruiting principes unless you have to retrain your troops, which you should do at every opportunity. In your new cities train hastati. If you capture a city which contains a practice field or a stable you can train "velites" or "equites" in those.


From here I strongly recommend taking Ariminum and Segesta, but you must also prepare an army to aid Capua or Ariminum, and possibly Rome, in case the Brutii or the Scipii attack. You might have to go up and down to defend your territories from both Gauls and Brutii. When you control the whole of Italy (including Patavium and Mediolanium), you can expand both as Julii, Brutii and Scipii. Oh yes, watch out for Scipii, they still exist on Sicily!

Here is a totally alternative idea:

After you take control of Capua, march southwards towards the Brutii instead of going to Arretium. The principes which are are being trained in Rome will protect the city from Julii who will send stacks at you, believe me. Meanwhile your main army will sort out the Brutii threat.

When you capture Tarentum and Croton, your economic problem will be solved for a while. From here you can go north and take care of the Julii and the Gauls.