"Before beginning play, punch the counters out of the cardboard frames."
See, I wish this rule was in the book because we had a hell of a time just seeing the board, for starters. Getting a random roll out of the dice before they were out of the bag proved challenging as well.
Placement rules seemed a bit confusing for this one. Are the rivers they refer to in the rules supposed to be represented by the fold-lines? I felt the minimalist board design chosen by the artist favored art over functionality. If only this game included proper instructions for placement of the board, my first 5 plays wouldn't have been such a slog.
"Place the game board in the center of the table."
In retrospect, perhaps this should have been more obvious but we also own Niagara, so the mistake wasn't so clear. Northern routes were problematic to complete. In all fairness to us, the board was taking up valuable table real estate required for snacks, drinks, cats, etc.
Now, look: I had the best of intentions. By putting the board on the wall, I thought it might improve visibility. Some of the people in our game group suffer from shortness of stature and seeing the other side of the board involves standing on chairs, various optical devices and so forth. Nowhere in this frigging manual did it say "table." Maybe if it did, this tragedy could have been averted.
"A player may not purchase more than he can afford."
Well, this is just needlessly confusing. Lots of games remind me that I can't buy anything I can't afford but not this one! Sure it's really a basic, definitive quality of money but even though it's called money in the game, it's not really legal tender or anything. Besides, we all know: If it doesn't say it in the rules, it's not illegal. Sure, some games have loans but that just increases the amount of your available money. Nowhere does it say that if I'm out of money, I can't keep getting stuff. It's patriotic.