How To Play: Antiquity

Antiquity is a complex board game where players must master resource management, pollution control, and strategic expansion. Winning requires careful planning, timely city growth, and overcoming challenges like famine. Our strategy guide covers essential tactics, from game setup to advanced strategies, preparing players to outwit their opponents and dominate the ancient world.

Hey fellow board gamers! Ever wandered into the intricate world of Antiquity and felt a bit lost? Well, you’re in luck! In this guide, we’ll cover not just the basics of How To Play Antiquity, but also dish out some top-tier strategies to keep your cities thriving and your opponents guessing. From the game’s rules to the best plays for victory, we’ve got you covered. Ready to become the master of your ancient domain?


What’s in the box

  • 1 rulebook
  • 4 player aids
  • 8 city sheets
  • 1 double-sided game board
  • 96 wooden houses (24 in each of the 4 player colors)
  • 16 wooden churches (4 in each of the 4 player colors)
  • 60 wooden people (15 in each of the 4 player colors)
  • 4 wooden grave markers (1 in each of the 4 player colors)
  • 140 food counters
  • 40 wood counters
  • 40 stone counters
  • 40 gold counters
  • 25 pollution counters
  • 100 famine counters
  • 60 resource counters
  • 30 luxury good counters
  • 100 building tiles
  • 1 start player marker

How To Play Antiquity: Rules Summary


  1. Choose your starting location and place your city. Make sure it’s in a strategic spot with access to resources.

  2. Each player gets a player board. This is where you’ll track your progress.

  3. Shuffle and place the game tiles. These tiles will form the world you explore and expand upon.

  4. Distribute the starting resources to each player. You’ll need these to kick off your civilization.


  1. Players take turns in a clockwise direction. On your turn, you can explore, build, gather resources, or expand your city.

  2. Managing your resources is key. Without them, your city can’t grow.

  3. Watch out for pollution and famine. They can stall your progress.

  4. Building universities allows you to gain new abilities. These are crucial for late-game strategies.


  1. The first player to meet their chosen saint’s victory condition wins. Each saint requires a different strategy, so choose wisely.

  2. Keep developing your city and managing your resources efficiently to reach your goal before the others.

Special Rules & Conditions

  1. Famine and pollution increase as the game progresses. Use strategies to mitigate these or they could lead to your downfall.

  2. You can change your patron saint mid-game, but it comes with a penalty. Think carefully before you switch.

  3. Unexplored territories might hold surprises, both good and bad. Be prepared for anything.

Remember, every game of Antiquity is different. Adaptation and strategic thinking will lead you to victory. Happy building!

Best Antiquity Strategies

Mastering the Art of Resource Management and Efficiency

To dominate in board games, nailing resource management is key. Here’s how my crew and I do it, cracking the code to victory. First, let’s break down the vital strategies.

Strategize Your Start

  1. Pick your starting resources based on your endgame. Think long term!
  2. Balance is crucial. Don’t overload on one resource type.

Mid-Game Momentum

  1. Keep an eye on your opponents. Adapt your strategy to outpace theirs.
  2. Trade smart. Sometimes, what you give up now pays off later.

Endgame Efficiency

  1. Focus on resources that boost your points. It’s crunch time!
  2. Limit waste. Every move should push you closer to winning.

By following these steps, we’ve turned many games around, proving that a well-managed resource pool is the key to securing that win.

Mastering Expansion: The Key to Victory

Expansion isn’t just about spreading out; it’s about smart growth at the right time. Here’s how to nail it:

Identifying Prime Expansion Opportunities

  1. Look for resource-rich areas early. Grabbing them fast gives you an edge.
  2. Watch your opponents. Move into areas they need before they do.

Timing Your Growth

  1. Expand after stabilizing your food supply. This avoids starvation disasters.
  2. Timing is everything. Wait too long, and you’ll miss key chances.

Controlling Your Empire

  1. Build roads to connect new areas quickly. Speed is crucial.
  2. Use outposts to exert control and monitor enemy movements.

Mastering Pollution and Famine: A Winning Strategy

Managing pollution and preventing famine are key to victory. Here’s how you do it.

Effective Land Use

  1. Rotate crops frequently to minimize soil depletion.
  2. Build in moderation to prevent unnecessary pollution.

Strategic City Placement

  1. Settle near resources but plan for expansion space to avoid overcrowding.
  2. Use water sources wisely, balancing expansion and natural cleanup.

Technology and Adaptation

  1. Invest in technologies that reduce pollution and enhance food production.
  2. Adapt your strategy based on current pollution levels and food stock.

Mastering the Art of Antiquity: Final Thoughts

Wrapping up, remember that Antiquity is a game that tests your ability to plan ahead, adapt, and outwit your opponents. From mastering resource management to timing your expansions perfectly, and tackling the challenges of pollution and famine, this game has it all. It’s not just about building; it’s about thriving in the face of adversity. Remember, every game session is a new adventure, a new challenge to overcome. So gather your friends, put your strategies to the test, and see who emerges as the ultimate architect of antiquity. Happy gaming!

Want to know what we think of Antiquity? Read our detailed review of Antiquity here

Jamie in his proper element: With all of his board games
Jamie Hopkins

With years of dice-rolling, card-flipping, and strategic planning under my belt, I've transformed my passion into expertise. I thrive on dissecting the mechanics and social dynamics of board games, sharing insights from countless game nights with friends. I dive deep into gameplay mechanics, while emphasizing the social joys of gaming. While I appreciate themes and visuals, it's the strategy and camaraderie that truly capture my heart.