Roma Victor

Roma Victor
Developer(s) RedBedlam
Publisher(s) RedBedlam
Designer(s) Kerry Fraser-Robinson
Platform(s) Windows
Release date(s) July 2006 To be retired in 2011
Genre(s) Historical MMORPG
Mode(s) Multiplayer
System requirements


  • Windows XP with Service Pack 2
  • CPU faster than 2 GHz
  • 1 GB or more of RAM
  • 128 MB 3D video card with Shader Model 2.0 or better
  • 56kbit/s or faster Internet connection

Roma Victor was a MMORPG based on the Roman Empire in Great Britain in the latter half of the 2nd century. Roma Victor was developed by RedBedlam Ltd. of Brighton and Hove, England. The in-game world is currently a 30x30km representation of a section along Hadrian's Wall, including several small villages and Roman forts.

Roma Victor was released by RedBedlam on July 14, 2006, with pre-order customers being let in 2 weeks earlier. In January 2010, it was announced that the purchase of new accounts would be blocked as of May 5. As of January 2011, the game servers have been shut down. [1]



Exploring the wilderness in Caledonia.

Roma Victor is set in the province of Britannia just before the decline of the Roman Empire, beginning in the year 180AD. Commodus has succeeded his father Marcus Aurelius as Emperor, and is exerting a tyrannical influence across the empire.

Since November 2006, the playable area encompasses the southeastern portion of Caledonia which is termed in-game as a playfield. As discussed by RedBedlam, there are further plans to expand this playable area and to create other playfields in different regions of the ancient world, if the server population should ever increase enough to warrant such extensions. These may include playfields such as Germania, Hispania, Italy and Gaul, or other areas of Britannia.[2]

In the current state of the game, the Romans begin life as a slave in the ancient regional town of Corstopitum over which modern Corbridge lies. The player population is largely scattered out among various player-built guild boards across the playfield. The barbarians live mainly in areas north the Wall, spread out in various small settlements. Barbarians begin in the village of Erring, which is directly north of Corstopitum.


Playable area and factions

A town meeting in Corstopitum.

There are two factions in Roma Victor, the Romans and the barbarians. Each faction has its own own unique advantages and disadvantages.

The playfield is divided in boards, areas with the size of one square kilometer in a 1:1 scale to the real world. Some of these boards are pre-built, but most are composed of uninhabitable wilderness. The pre-built boards represent the historical locations of Roman colonies and forts, although creative license was also used to create fictitious places. Wilderness boards can be made buildable if a guild hall is built on that board.

When a player character first begins the game, they are in attending status which means they cannot attack or be attacked by other players. They can be deattended instantly by a player who is the local magistrate, or by completing a difficult tutorial.[3]


Guilds are player associations, or "clans" and form the basis of much of the social structure in Roma Victor. Guilds in Roma Victor are exclusively made up of players—the numbers can be augmented by NPC members, which can be hired and assigned to various roles and tasks, such as protecting the guild's members, carrying out assignments, or simply acting as a merchant on behalf of the guild.

Roman guild types include Auxiliary, Legion, Vicus and Patrician House. Barbarian guilds include Tribe and Warband, and there are also religious cult guilds which can contain both Roman and barbarian characters.[4]

Every player also has their own household. Household is the collective term applied to all the buildings and NPCs owned, employed, and/or run by an individual player. There can be many buildings and NPCs within a household and using the built-in household management interface a player can set entry fees or rent fees on their property, assign NPCs to act as merchants or guards, summon NPCs as an escort, hire and dismiss staff, etc.

Skills and abilities

A player event in Erring, the barbarian starter town.

There are no character levels in Roma Victor. However there is a 'skill' tree which replaces this function. Character development in Roma Victor is designed to simulate real life. That is, if a player wishes to improve his woodcutting skill, he has to go out in the woods and cut some trees down. From those trees, he can then extract sticks and turn them into handles to train his preparing skill. Those handles can then be used by a smith to make simple tools.

Most items can be made and used by anyone, however there are certain items, like the platemail lorica segmentata[5] that can only be made and worn by legionaries. Several items, like the hideshirt[6] can only be made and worn by barbarians. There are no level or skill restrictions, but the resulting item quality suffers greatly when a person is not a master in the required skills to produce the item. A player wishing to make high-quality items must train his skills by practising menial tasks requiring that skill.

Skill areas in Roma Victor include carpentry, smithing, construction, combat, farming, animal handling and more. In the Roman faction, a slave character earns citizenship after gaining a certain number of skill masteries and reputations.


Roma Victor features a crafting system, in which it is possible to find resources and components that can be put together using the related skills.

Every item in the Roma Victor universe has a current quality level and a maximum quality level. The current quality level decreases as the item is used; the maximum quality level decreases as the item is repaired (bringing the current quality back up to the maximum quality level). If one forgets to repair the item and it will eventually break and be lost. A warning of breakage is issued randomly when quality reaches a low level.


Some player-built structures in Roma Victor.

Construction is largely the same as crafting, only with the greater need of materials and skills. When building anything from simple devices through to complex buildings like workshops, it is important to have a ready supply of skilled labour and a good supply chain to finish the job. NPC labourers can be hired to speed up the entire process, however it is possible for individual players to also provide a helping hand. Labourers can also "bulk-add" handcart-loads full of easy-to-add items, such as firewood, or even bricks to lengthly projects.[7]

Roma Victor features an open-ended 'sandbox'-style environment in which players can rent structures to live in, build their own, or let them out to other players. Any structure can be set as public or private.

The construction is basically divided between devices and structures. Devices are necessary in order to craft items, such as tools and weapons. Furnaces, workbenches, and kilns are examples of currently implemented devices. Structures are basically buildings that may serve as housing, storage areas, and advanced crafting workshops. Presently,[when?] the only buildable player-made structures aside from guild halls are roundhouses, animal pens, arenas, workshops, and horreas. Tents can also be made as portable structures that can be transported in a character's inventory before deployment.


Combat skills are structured in a similar manner to crafting skills, in that an untrained character is very unlikely to win in a fair fight against a highly-trained character, regardless of player skill and reflexes. A character automatically dodges and parries incoming strikes based on randomized calculations on the server, although blocking with a shield has both an automatic calculation and will happen if the opponent accidentally clicks on the player's shield. It is also possible to disarm an opponent's weapon during a fight.

Roma Victor features real-time combat, which is largely decided by character skills similar to the character 'levels' found in most MMOs. However, unlike some other games, there are several tricks that are harder to pull off than just pushing a button. Timing and tactics also play a big role in your character's survival.

Roma Victor has hitboxes for each bodypart on a player, so that clicking the attack button while aiming the mouse on a particular part of an opponent's body will attempt to hit exactly that part of the body. After the character's automatic chance to evade the attack based on skill numbers, the attack damage will be applied to the hit points in that bodypart if the calculations failed. In this way, a player can repeatedly click at the weak or unarmoured parts on an opponent.[8]

Death and the afterlife

Elysium in Roma Victor.

When the hitpoints of a particular bodypart reach zero, the player will become incapacitated. When incapacitated (i.e. knocked out) in combat, the player's character does not necessarily die straight away. He will be unconscious on the ground for a certain time (it varies), unless someone administers basic aid or a killing blow. If someone administers first aid, the player will be back on his feet and ready to fight in a few seconds, albeit severely wounded. If a deathblow is administered, then the player is taken away from the combat to Elysium, a small area for dead players. In Elysium, the player must walk toward an NPC that will return him to a designated spawn-in spot on the main gameworld. If a player was deathblown and has high skills, they may suffer decay. Player kills deal more skill loss than other forms of death.

Being deathblown is not the only way to die in Roma Victor. The current other forms of dying include drowning in a river if you run out of vigour whilst still swimming, bleeding to death after receiving a fatal wound without proper medical treatment, and suicide. If a player wishes to suicide in the game, they can do so at any time. One attribute (muscle, vision, agility, dexterity, intuition, or stamina) will be completely zeroed.

Roman provincial law

Certain areas are well-policed by NPC representatives of Roman law, such as legionaries, who will attempt to uphold the law and prevent violence. In Roman settlements, it is impossible to break the laws, while in others a player can attempt it at his own risk, since the NPC guards will, regardless of location, know of the act and respond later. The offending player will receive a "badge" upon his character marking them as a criminal, which will be removed upon death or after a set amount of time.

Barbarians north of Hadrian's Wall are beyond the reach of the law altogether, so the barbarian lands are effectively a full PvP environment. There are no negative consequences for attacking other barbarians; aside from a reputation amongst fellow players.[9]


There are no monthly subscription fees in Roma Victor. The game uses a variant of the micropayment economic model, which consists of buying in-game currency (known as sesterces) with real money through the VERM system. It is not possible to exchange virtual currency earned in-game into real world money. There is no trial period either.


Roma Victor has been sporadically 'in development' since its release in 2006. While there have been many patches and new content added, some intended gameplay features such as player-built roads and fortifications, territorial conquest, and mounts have not yet been implemented.[2] There are also a number of known bugs in game that have yet to be fixed.

The speed of development and occasional lack of customer support or communication has been attributed by the creators to a relatively low budget and small development team.


RV2, an overhaul of the current Roma Victor client featuring improved graphics and gameplay, was announced in August 2009 to be implemented sometime in 2010. The developers stated that existing customers will be transferred over to the new version without a fee, as will existing buildings, characters and their belongings.

In January 2010, it was announced that the current Roma Victor would be shutting down sometime the following year. It was stated that RV2 is still in development and may be released as soon as 2011, but the future of the project is uncertain.

See also


External links

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