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Subject: Next 18xx game to get rss

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Paul Schorfheide
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I am on a somewhat strict board game budget by my wife, but recently got some birthday money and am looking to expand my collection. I currently have 1830, 1860, and 18AL. I am already on the preorder for 1846 from GMT games. I was thinking of a couple of options:

- 18OE: I've heard that the scenarios are fun for 2-3 people which is an advantage for me and it seems like it has some replayability.
- 1861/7: The merger concept seems interesting to me and it is orthogonal to other games I have
- 1844/54 + something else: two games for the price of one

Do those seem like reasonable choices for a ~$150 budget? I am ok with a tamer stock market in favor of replayability.
 
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Andrew Denison
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I have played and own 18OE and it is really fun. I have a half play of 1844 in and that game was crazy with all kinds of stuff going on. If you want the biggest bang for you buck I would say 18OE.
 
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J C Lawrence
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What do you value? What type of thing would be ideal?
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Joel Gabelman
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Of the ones you already have/played, which did you LIKE?

While there is a blend between financial manipulation and engineering (route optimization), there are plenty of games in the "1830 camp" (stock manipulation) and the 1829 camp (operations).

With '46 on preorder myself, I did NOT want 44/54. The reviews I read, and friends who've played, told me I probably wouldn't like it as it's MORE of a route optimization game vs. financial. 18OE I understand is in the same camp - more of a route optimization game. Also, OE is ~$250 CAD (~$180) and I don't know if shipping is included. This might pop you out of your price point.

Games on MY want list include:

1) 1889 PNP - really a streamlined 1830...
2) 1849 (PNP or buy)
3) 18NEB
4) 18NY (I hear this is fun)
5) 18MEX
6) 1822 (maybe)
7) 1817 - out of your price range (and I will have a hard time finding locals to play it) so this is on my "want" list, but near the end unless people in Cleveland start playing more 18xx...

Let me know what you decide to do!

 
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Paul Schorfheide
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Of what I have played, I like 1830 the best. I played 1889 once on rails but I'd rather just get 1830 on the table than 1889 when I have a chance.

I enjoyed 1860 as well but I thought the map was very tight with 3 people. I don't like agonizing over tile choices as much as the train purchase flow and stock market shenanigans. As a 2 player game I think it's much more enjoyable.

I have heard great things about 1817 but given the length I doubt it would see play often. One thing I like about 18OE is having a short scenario for a week night game but still having the full game for once a year or so.

Although I like 1830, I'd rather have some diversity than a very similar game like 1889. I play with some people who hate stock shenanigans so I'd rather have an 18xx I like less but that I could play with them instead of a truly nasty game I only get out once a year.

18AL is a good intro game but with a spreadsheet to help with the ORs I would always angle for 1830 instead unless we're quite pressed for time. I'm also hoping 1846 will fit in that tighter time slot.

Thanks for the feedback, I really appreciate it.
 
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JR
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I still love and highly recommend 1862: Railway Mania in the Eastern Counties. The replay value is through the roof.
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Ben Foy
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pschorf wrote:
I am on a somewhat strict board game budget by my wife, but recently got some birthday money and am looking to expand my collection. I currently have 1830, 1860, and 18AL. I am already on the preorder for 1846 from GMT games. I was thinking of a couple of options:

- 18OE: I've heard that the scenarios are fun for 2-3 people which is an advantage for me and it seems like it has some replayability.
- 1861/7: The merger concept seems interesting to me and it is orthogonal to other games I have
- 1844/54 + something else: two games for the price of one

Do those seem like reasonable choices for a ~$150 budget? I am ok with a tamer stock market in favor of replayability.


1856 and 1870 are reasonably priced and are both good games.
 
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J C Lawrence
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pschorf wrote:
I enjoyed 1860 as well but I thought the map was very tight with 3 people. I don't like agonizing over tile choices as much as the train purchase flow and stock market shenanigans.


Play 1860 more -- it has those aspects in spades, far more than track management.

Quote:
Thanks for the feedback, I really appreciate it.


My main thought is to not bother. Really, it isn't worth it. Just play more 1830, at least another 50 games or so and then start considering what second game you might also play. Repeat with that game before adding a third, etc.
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Joel Gabelman
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Interesting - I hated 1862. Granted, the group I played with took 6.5 hours, and there was A LOT of downtime. Lots of mergers, 3 different types of trains to keep track of, I believe 2D stock track... To each their own. I recognize I should play this again, but it didn't sing to me.
 
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Paul Schorfheide
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clearclaw wrote:

My main thought is to not bother. Really, it isn't worth it. Just play more 1830, at least another 50 games or so and then start considering what second game you might also play. Repeat with that game before adding a third, etc.


That's a good point, when you're getting into a hobby there is always the pull of the new and shiny. Every time I play 1830 with experienced players there's a moment where I say: yep, now I'll lose the game. Never saw it coming. There is a ton of game there to master (or perhaps just journeyman.)

I like 1860 as a 2 player option, but maybe the person I played it with just wasn't nasty enough. If someone lets me run a better railroad, I'll happily do it until the end of the game. With a better player it would probably play very differently.
 
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Paul Smith
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pschorf wrote:
I enjoyed 1860 as well but I thought the map was very tight with 3 people. I don't like agonizing over tile choices as much as the train purchase flow and stock market shenanigans. As a 2 player game I think it's much more enjoyable.

18OE has less stock market shenanigans and more tile agonizing than 1860. It strongly encourages building good routes and companies (as does 1846).


If instead of sitting back and watching what happens your players attack and wrestle tempo and position away from the leader, then each game of 1830 and 1860 should reveal a little more about how to play. This exploration tends to last dozens of games and should keep things "fresh" for a year or more.
 
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Paul Smith
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pschorf wrote:
Although I like 1830, I'd rather have some diversity than a very similar game like 1889. I play with some people who hate stock shenanigans so I'd rather have an 18xx I like less but that I could play with them instead of a truly nasty game I only get out once a year.

I think those people are going to love 1846. They might not want to play anything else for a while.
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jrebelo wrote:
I still love and highly recommend 1862: Railway Mania in the Eastern Counties. The replay value is through the roof.


thumbsup on 1862.

but you can also check 1860: Railways on the Isle of Wight

 
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J C Lawrence
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pschorf wrote:
That's a good point, when you're getting into a hobby there is always the pull of the new and shiny. Every time I play 1830 with experienced players there's a moment where I say: yep, now I'll lose the game. Never saw it coming. There is a ton of game there to master (or perhaps just journeyman.)


Given your other comments then, I'll recommend three games: '24, '35 and '41.

'24 arguably has the fastest and most severe train rush of any 18xx...and yet doesn't clearly fall out as a revenue, density, or capital-control game. Not an amazingly brilliant game, but solid and a bit of a sleeper; very easy to play with the trains only trundling along. A nice change of pace while sitting on the powder keg holding a lit sparkler.

'35 is a ridiculously simple and light and fast 18xx. A quiet and subtle game of thin margins. Of course it needs a variant for the broken opening (there are many; I've used either Clemen's or Todd van der Pluym's to good result). '35 can be played, start-to-finish, in 45 minutes, but is more reasonably a medium length game of 4 hours or less (it isn't very hard to make shorter but somehow a lot of people think it a 7+ hour game...and they're being unusually silly). The kicker is that it seems like it has no real hard decisions, no big events, no denouement -- and yet it is a game of skill, there are real decisions and they are notably subtle, and the better players will win every single time while seeming to have done nothing unusual or much different or even noticeable...and yet they win again and again and again. And the scores will always be close in percentage terms, and yet still they always win. Identifying those thin margins and correctly evaluating them is a significant skill that stands in good stead in many other games.

I wouldn't rush into '41, but when you do hit it, hit it hard enough and long enough that you can reasonably conceive of the 3Ts running once before they rust, and either the 4Ts rusting before they run and the 5Ts also running only once before they rust, or the other way around...and how you could set that up and how you could viably survive it. The game sure doesn't have to go that way, but that's well within the standard range of expression (do not look to Calandale's videos as a reasonable example of the game). I also suspect you're going to adore it...but build up to it. '41 takes some work to appreciate.
 
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Glenn Martin
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elmsley4 wrote:
Granted, the group I played with took 6.5 hours, and there was A LOT of downtime.


LUXURY! In my day it took 12 hours to just auction the privates! AND we had to do it whilst kneeling on gravel in the pouring rain with feral dogs nipping at our backs!
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Jason Begy
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elmsley4 wrote:
Of the ones you already have/played, which did you LIKE?

While there is a blend between financial manipulation and engineering (route optimization), there are plenty of games in the "1830 camp" (stock manipulation) and the 1829 camp (operations).

With '46 on preorder myself, I did NOT want 44/54. The reviews I read, and friends who've played, told me I probably wouldn't like it as it's MORE of a route optimization game vs. financial. 18OE I understand is in the same camp - more of a route optimization game. Also, OE is ~$250 CAD (~$180) and I don't know if shipping is included. This might pop you out of your price point.

Games on MY want list include:

3) 18NEB



18NEB is very much a route building game.
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Jimmy Okolica
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I'm one that still loves 18OE for it's short scenarios. However, even the short scenarios are 4 to 6 hours. 1817 is probably 6 to 7 hours. IF I had the choice between the two, I'd suck up the extra hour and play 17... ALWAYS. However, after 30+ plays, I'm still learning something new almost every play. My only caveat with 17 is it's better with at least 4 players. It's ok with 3, but there's too much money and one person I play with feels like it's too scripted.

OE is a great game, but it's mostly a "run good companies" game. There is a bit of stock market shenanigans but not much. If you like laying and running routes and having token wars, OE is great. If you like the investment/stock market side, it's ok but there's better out there.

1861/67 is right now the one I'm most interested in. For a fairly simple, short game (figure 3 - 4 hours), there's still a lot of room to explore. Timing the train rush in this one is a large part of the game, but the mergers/acquisitions is neat and there is more interesting stuff on the stock chart (less than 30 or 17 but more than OE). Based on your interests, and if 17 isn't a realistic option, this is what I'd recommend. It's also different from '30 and '46. While I'm way past the "gotta own them all" stage, I still like some variety. I feel like 61/67 (and, yes, I'd buy 61 + the 67 expansion) is a good mix.

BTW, I've played '60 and like it, but feel like it's a 3-player only game. The only game I like as a 2-player game (excepting my own) is OE ('62 isn't bad either).

I have played the new 44/54 game from Mayfair but not enough to have a strong opinion. After one play of each (and a previous play of 44), I thought '44 was way too long for what it was. I'd play OE over it every time. '54, on the other hand, had some interesting things and that's a game I'd like to get to the table again.
 
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Jimmy Okolica
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elmsley4 wrote:

With '46 on preorder myself, I did NOT want 44/54. The reviews I read, and friends who've played, told me I probably wouldn't like it as it's MORE of a route optimization game vs. financial.

7) 1817 - out of your price range (and I will have a hard time finding locals to play it) so this is on my "want" list, but near the end unless people in Cleveland start playing more 18xx...


Joel, I agree with your assessment of '44 but I found '54 to be more interesting. I think there's a fair bit to explore on the stock market side (when/if you split, yellow strategy, buy/sell trains to chain stock value, etc.) as well as a little bit of interesting stuff on the track laying side (tunnels to avoid dits). Not saying I'd suggest you buy it, but if you can try it, you might like it. '44... not so much.

As far as '17, you know Dayton is a short ride away

Seriously, you may want to contact BGG user, sirgalin. He lives in the Cleveland area and I suspect would love some more plays of 1817. Also, have you heard about Ohio Heavy Con II ? With any luck we'll get 17 played at least once there.
 
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Paul Schorfheide
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Thanks everyone for the help. Since it sounds like 1846 will be a good fit for a week night friendlier game I think I'll bite the bullet and go for 1817 with an "if you build it they will come" mentality.
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Rebecca Carpenter
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'17 is my favorite, and can be finished with experienced, fast players who don't take many shorts in 6 hours, but just barely. '17 can take 12+ hours too. I've been in a 1.5 hour SR and a 4 person game with so many shenanigans that we didn't finish in 12 hours and it was too close to call. The other players in both cases had each played more than 75 games of '17, and I would consider some of the top '17 players, so play time doesn't necessarily shrink with experience.

I like all of the suggestions above, and you've made your decision, so apparently to be a jerk I'll suggest 1822: The Railways of Great Britain. It's new and so I'm not sure if many people have played it yet. It's closer to your budget than '17. I cannot say it's better than '17, but it is easier to finish in 6 hours and my '17 group has been playing it nearly non stop for a month. My first impression of '22 was that it was fun. Now that we've gotten good at the game I'm actually kind of scared of '22; it can be so difficult and test your problem solving skills and greed. There's a random set-up (still perfect information) that combined with different player counts can make each game radically different. The designer is releasing free expansion maps soon that I'm certain will be expertly play tested. I think your group would prefer '22 to '17, at least for now. Something about it seems welcoming at first. Like the witch's gingerbread house. Then it will get you, my pretty! /cackles

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Paul Schorfheide
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1822 looks interesting, but I still think I'll go with 1817 for now. I like the idea of the minors rolling into majors mechanic (what interested me about 1867) so it might come down to a game length question later on. I think I will get a lot of mileage out of 1846 and 1817 so it might be a while before I go on the prowl again. Added '22 to my ever growing wishlist.
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Forrest & Ryan Driskel
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1862: Railway Mania in the Eastern Counties, once you wrap your mind around how the trains work, is still up there as one of my favorites. It is quite different from the games you listed as owned, and is much more interesting merger-wise than most of the other merger games I have played.

I found 1861: The Railways of the Russian Empire to be a major yawn fest. Very procedural. But, lots of people love it.
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