What Ancients Begat is a complete (~15 hour) game of family generations surviving the rise of western civilization. Survival is the ultimate goal. The sub-goals, you choose, build their story. Experience an abstract telling of the lives of our earliest recorded ancestors.
User reviews: Mixed (329 reviews)
Release Date: Jun 7, 2013

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Recommended By Curators

"Multiple-choice interludes with long-term effects on your in-game family. Recommended for fans of choice and consequence."

Reviews

"An engaging combination of board game mechanics and pure storytelling, 7 Grand Steps is an addictive telling of one family's journey through history."
Gamespot

"...it’s so clever that you can’t help but love it."
Indie Statik

"7 Grand Steps hides a deeply strategic experience behind its deceptively simple and charming graphical appearance, ...immersive and engaging gaming."
GGS Gamer

"...entirely apart from the hundreds of games that have passed through my PC..."
Rock Paper Shotgun

"...I walked away from it as though I was telling a story that reached through time."
G4TV

"It's a simple looking game, but -- I found myself unable to stop."
KillScreen

About This Game

What Ancients Begat is a complete (~15 hour) game of family generations surviving the rise of western civilization. Survival is the ultimate goal. The sub-goals, you choose, build their story.


Experience an abstract telling of the lives of our earliest recorded ancestors. Part board game, part machine, part nod to computer games of yore, it begins with a simple mechanic. Spend tokens to traverse the wheel of life. Earn tokens by tempting the jaws of death. Then, like layers upon a pearl, game play expands, introducing fresh tactics and strategies which, turn by turn, drive a sophisticated, emergent narrative. How you play defines the lives of one family's generations through the changing ages.


An enormous tableau of ancient western culture awaits your exploration:


  • Core Mechanic - Back and forth tactics, across four social boundaries, to win legend points.
  • Family Strategy - Romance. Raise children. Rite of Passage.
  • Family Drama - Tales in the life. Sibling rivalry. Failed branches. Graveyard of ancestry.
  • Grand Legends - Earned over generations, they strengthen your family: Discoveries and Invention. Social Advancement. Heroics.
  • Ruling Games - City Administration. Warring Kingdoms. Imperial Senate.
  • The Challenges of an Age - Special for each social level. Survive and overcome, to enter a new age.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
    Minimum:
    • OS:XP
    • Processor:1GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:1024x768
    • Hard Drive:200 MB HD space
    Recommended:
    • OS:XP
    • Processor:1GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:1024x768
    • Hard Drive:200 MB HD space
    Minimum:
    • OS:10.5.8
    • Processor:1GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:1024x768
    • Hard Drive:200 MB HD space
    Recommended:
    • OS:10.5.8
    • Processor:1GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:1024x768
    • Hard Drive:200 MB HD space
Helpful customer reviews
15 of 19 people (79%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
18.8 hrs on record
Posted: January 10
Worth playing if only for the interesting game mechanics alone. It does strangely manage to capture the feeling of a family struggling to survive and prosper across the ages. Having your only child die is heartbreaking. Having two spouses who both love each other feels incredibly rewarding. But I don't see how they could sustain this across another game, let alone a total of seven.
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10 of 11 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
7.4 hrs on record
Posted: March 15
Not a very complex game - good for playing during slow times at the office or when multitasking. Don't ever purchase at full price or you will be sorely disappointed.
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10 of 13 people (77%) found this review helpful
8.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 28
The game is okay, but the price is absolutely ridiculous. I got this in a bundle and paid less than a dollar for it, and it's been worth that much. But there are literally thousands of other games I would buy before this one at full price.

Essentially, you control a family from ancient times as they make their way throug the ages. The entire game happens in this weird wheel segment, with tokens representing your husband and wife moving around on it. The game mechanics boil down to spend coins to move clockwise on the game board, and collect "legends", points that go towards earning discoveries, which can give you technological advances, earning you big chunks of coins, or help you move to the outer rings of the wheel, where you have more movement options. You have children, and spend coins to boost their skills. These skills help them earn more coins when they take over the family line. But as far as I can tell, that's about it. It's an endless cycle of earning and spending coins. The story elements aren't compelling at all, as they come in tiny fragments and don't seem to affect anything visibly. Like I said, mildly distracting, but far from addictive and not worth twenty bucks.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: January 29
This is a lot like a board game, in that it's pretty much a board game...I like playing it once in a while, never finish an entire game (unless I die), and it can become very repetitive, especially once you learn the rules.

That being said...
It's lightweight, turn-based, isn't stupid "new" old school graphics, and allows the player to make a lot of choices. Nothing bad to be said of it really, I haven't encountered any glitches or bugs. So hey, if it's on sale definitely pick it up; if you get bored, you just put it away until next time.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
5.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 5
Thumbs up for trying something new!
I loved the concept of this game, fun gameplay, awesome aesthetics and good unobtrusive music. However it does have a lot of downsides which stopped me wanting to play further.
The game is really punishing - there's no save, if you die you go back to the last generation which makes you so handicapped you might as well start again thereby negating the last 2hrs of play. The dialog is terrible and the "choices" you have to make have NO logic to them, it might as well be a coin toss - and that's the main problem with this game it's based too much on luck. All the time and strategizing you put in can all be undone by the roll of a dice.
Still worth playing but definitely not for 19.99
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