Martina's Bane: The Arab Conquest of the Levant A.D. 636-656
Publisher/Brand: Vae Victis
Product Code: VJF039
After several defeats at the hands of the new Arab Caliphate, the aged Byzantine emperor Heraclius presides over an empire nearly cut in half! Nevertheless, far from giving up, the emperor is determined to continue the struggle at all costs. Tensions are high. In addition to the military struggle, Heraclius’s health and the strain of war makes the issue of succession more important than ever. The Empress Martina is his second wife and mother of nine of his eleven children. Two sets of children will only complicate the succession and compromise resistance to the Arabs!
Despite the early Arab victories, Syria remains unsubdued and casualties, from combat and plague, have been high. Both sides stand to lose if they are not careful. While the Byzantine armies rally in both Asia Minor and Egypt, the Arab soldiers are bogged down besieging cities and ports throughout Syria.
Can the Byzantines rally themselves to turn the tide with one smashing blow? Can the Arabs parry the attack and complete the conquest of the Levant? This game pits two armies trying to recover their balance. The Byzantine player must both try to recover Syria while preventing the loss of Egypt and Asia Minor, while undergoing a succession crisis! The Arab player, likewise, must try to secure complete control over the Syrian terminus of the Meccan trade route, the Egyptian grain chamber, and, if possible, Constantinople itself.
Note: Players will need to supply one 10-sided die for play, it is not included with the game.
- Two 59 x 41 cm maps
- 1 counter sheet
- 1 Player Aid Card
- Rule book including scenarios