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Railroad Tycoon of Catan

September 2nd, 2005 by Troy Goodfellow · No Comments · Uncategorized

The thing about setting yourself up as an advocate is that people begin to call you on it. That’s what happened last week when I got an email from Bruce Geryk about a couple of games he’s really keen on that he thinks need more word of mouth. In short, he said “Advocate this!”

One of the games is Battlefront’s dogfighting card game Down in Flames, which I’ve played in demo. I’ll reserve further comment until I get my hands on the full package.

The other is Ticket 2 Ride, an award winning board game from Days of Wonder. There is a computer version online that allows you to play for free – you can join any game, but you can only host once you’ve paid up.

The post title really sums up what the game is about. You build railways across American or Europe and accumulate points based on completion of goals (“tickets”) and length of track built. It is a really easy game to learn since there are so few rules and very few pieces.

It’s certainly not heavy strategy. It’s a beer and pretzel game with probably less heavy thinking than Catan, but probably more than, say, Axis and Allies. (Of course, I hate Axis and Allies. ) It is a tiny, tight game that really shows the importance of good game design. All choices are important, you can’t do everything and you have to keep an eye on your own goals and not just react to your opponents.

The real beauty of it is that it plays very quickly. A two player game can be done in 15 minutes. Add a couple more, and you’re still looking at a game run through in under an hour. I will certainly put Ticket 2 Ride in my buy list and encourage all of you to try it out.


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