Wednesday 28 November 2018

Ticket To Ride - Days of Wonder game review

We're finally back, after two weeks completely offline and a very dodgy internet connection even before that - did you miss us ?! - but luckily, I had several new board games to discover with the kids, including this one (Days of Wonder) from the Ticket To Ride series, which helped keep us smiling ! According to a label on the box, over 5 million Ticket To Ride games have already been sold, but I'll be honest - we'd never even heard of it before !

 It took us a while to read all the instructions but the concept is actually relatively simple - it's a cross-country train adventure game, in which you have to claim railway lines to connect various cities across the USA. (There are other geographical locations available too, including Europe, the UK, Heart of Africa and so on.)

When you start unpacking the contents of the box, it looks quite daunting but it's not as complex as we first thought and you soon get the hang of things once you've started playing. There are lots of different cards - 110 Train Cards, made up of Box, Passenger, Tanker, Reefer, Freight, Hopper, Coal and Caboose Cars, as well as 14 Locomotives. 

There are also 30 Destination Ticket cards, as well a few bonus cards, such as a Summary Card, a Longest Continuous Path Bonus card and a couple of promotional cards.

The board is made up of a series of interconnecting railway lines, that connect together some of the biggest cities in the USA : Dallas, El Paso, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and so on. The map represents North America at the beginning of the twentieth century.

The idea of the game is that, in honour of Phileas Fogg's epic journey around the world in 80 days, you must travel by rail to the largest number of American cities in seven days (and win $1 million, if that wasn't enough !) 

Each player takes a turn and decides whether to collect different types of train cards, buy Destination Tickets or claim routes with pre-owned train cards. You collect points as you go, for creating long tracks and claiming routes or for fulfilling Destination Tickets.

We love the way that the game relies on well-known and well-loved aspects of other famous "collecting games", like Happy Families or Rummy, while adding the excitement of dashing around all over the map (with the kids revising their geography without even realising it !). It looks complicated but is actually quick to pick up and, within a few games, our youngest player, nine-year-old Pierre, was happy to play along by himself and take on his big sisters !

Each game lasts about 40 minutes or so (closer to an hour the first few times) and I was surprised to see that there was absolutely no arguing ! That may be a sign that the Madhouse kids are growing up though rather than just down to the game itself. If your kids are getting older and you want to reinvest in some games for the toy cupboard, this is bound to be a great hit.

star rating : 4.5/5

RRP : £38.99 (currently £29.97 on amazon with free delivery)

Disclosure : We received the product from the Asmodee UK Blogger Board Game Club in order to share our honest review. Keep your eyes open - there will be more reviews coming up over the next few days !

1 comment:

  1. Sounds a good game and glad you're back!


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