The Rome Artifact is a board of long standing, and has been available in both rocker and camber versions for years. While the latter is a must for bigger jumps – and for carving up the mountain away from the park – the former is the top choice if you’re looking for something forgiving and fun.
Despite the name it’s not a true rocker, as there’s a large flat section connecting the inserts. That’s certainly not a bad thing, though; this configuration offers better edge hold and stability while still floating well in powder.
Naturally there’s a relative loss of pop compared to camber, but it’s compensated by a single rod of fibreglass that runs down the length of the board. Another advantage of the flat is that you can really go to town on rails without worrying about hanging up, and the sidewalls can handle big impacts given their shock-absorbing properties.
The core has higher density wood in certain areas to give it even more toughness, and the base has been designed with strength, rather than speed, in mind.
With all this reinforcement, Rome have got away with thinning the area between the feet, which makes the board easier to manipulate torsionally – and lighter, of course. Fans of skate-style riding and urban rail missions will therefore get a kick out of this.
“Considering its profile, the Rome Artifact Rocker came across as a nicely versatile board. It’s definitely best suited to freestylers, however, and strikes a happy medium between full-rocker jib noodle and cambered kicker dominator.
The fiberglass really does deliver additional pop, while allowing for plenty of torsional flex and control. This gives it an overall buttery feel without reducing power too much off the hits; and the wide, blunted shape means you don’t feel too much like you’re pivoting wildly around that glass at middle point.
Maybe still not the one for you if you’re after heaps of snap and response though."
"The Artifact strikes a happy medium between full-rocker jib noodle and cambered kicker dominator"