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Ticket to Ride: Rails & Sails» Forums » General

Subject: Common complaints rss

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Rob van Tol
Netherlands
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I have read and watched almost all I could find about this game and see a lot of complaints about the game taking too long and that you will draw random cards mostly and therefor more lucky. I am still looking forward a lot to the game and don't get these complaints, because they seem easy too house rule.

If you want more options of cards to pick, put out 8 open cards in stead of 6.

If you want to speed up the game, just pick up 3 cards every turn in stead of 2.

Has anyone already played it and tried this? I am wondering how they would work. I think it makes the game a bit more accessible, but am worried what it would do to the game balance.

I am very eager to play that and can't wait until my FLGS has it in stock, but I am keeping these house rules in mind if my girlfriend likes it less than the other Ticket to Ride games.
 
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David B
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Well I am personally not about to buy a game, much less an expensive one, where I know house rules may be needed in order to enjoy the game or mitigate something I know has been a general issue. How do you know the house rules won't create a whole other set of (usually balance) issues? Rules like that need to be thoroughly play tested to ensure playability and balance. There is no way I would take a risk like that because there are tons of games I could buy instead that I know don't need instant house rules right out of the box.
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Richard Sampson
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Ann Arbor
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8 cards won't solve the starvation problem. You will just end up with 8 ship cards that no one wants instead of 6.

Drawing 3 instead of 2 will only increase the luck since locomotives are so powerful that getting 3 in one turn could be game breaking. Tom already said that getting two was a huge swing.

None of the stuff your have suggested fixes the larger problems of the game that people are reporting which is significant added complexity (2 cards types, multi-step tickets, multiple card usages, harbors) that doesn't seem to add depth to the game. Instead these mechanics seem to only amplify the luck and lengthen the game.

Try it before you buy it, but from what I have seen, it's not worth trying to fix.
 
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Daniel West
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Eugene
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I really wonder why they decided to blend the two rows instead of having a train row and then a separate boat row, and then each turn a player decides to take all cards from one or the other. That's what I expected coming into this, but when I heard how it actually plays, I'm quite disappointed and will probably not pursue a copy.
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David Martin
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From what I've seen in other version of TTR, you can run into situations where the 5 face-up train cards are all colors nobody wants, so people just keep drawing from the deck and things get tedious. Sometimes I've noticed that taking a few of those cards I don't need helps to get the market moving again, and speeds up the game for everyone - including for myself. I'll have 2 cards I don't care about for now, but that might be useful later, and if it saves me endless turns of drawing random cards, it might be worth it.

Not sure if that situation comes up more with the train/ship cards in the new game, but if I see it, I'll try this strategy and see if it helps.
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Sven F.
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murlough23 wrote:
From what I've seen in other version of TTR, you can run into situations where the 5 face-up train cards are all colors nobody wants, so people just keep drawing from the deck and things get tedious. Sometimes I've noticed that taking a few of those cards I don't need helps to get the market moving again, and speeds up the game for everyone - including for myself. I'll have 2 cards I don't care about for now, but that might be useful later, and if it saves me endless turns of drawing random cards, it might be worth it.

Not sure if that situation comes up more with the train/ship cards in the new game, but if I see it, I'll try this strategy and see if it helps.


I fully agree. One way of looking at it, is that if you need a card of one specific colour, let's call that colour "red", you could either take two blind cards and hope one of those two are red, OR take one non-red card from the face-up cards, which reveals one additional card. You might then choose either that new card or take a blind one, thus also in this scenario getting two possibilities of the correct colour. (The chance for a locomotive becomes smaller, however.)
 
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David Martin
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Fomalhaut wrote:
I fully agree. One way of looking at it, is that if you need a card of one specific colour, let's call that colour "red", you could either take two blind cards and hope one of those two are red, OR take one non-red card from the face-up cards, which reveals one additional card. You might then choose either that new card or take a blind one, thus also in this scenario getting two possibilities of the correct colour. (The chance for a locomotive becomes smaller, however.)


I should also add that it depends on the number of opponents and the map we're playing. If you take two of the cards that are showing in a 2-player game, and your opponent doesn't go for either of the new ones revealed, it might not gain you much, but in a 5-player game where it's clear that no one wants anything that's showing and you reveal 2 new cards, there could be quite a bit of turnover before it gets back around to you again. If it's a map where I need a lot of locos to get things done (like UK or Europe), I've got more incentive to keep drawing random cards from the deck, but it's a map where locos are hardly ever needed, just nice to have (like USA or Pennsylvania), I've got more incentive to just focus on collecting sets of matching cards, that I can use to lay down longer routes even if they don't contribute to getting my tickets done.

Rails & Sails ought to be interesting because there are no ferries, so theoretically you never need wild cards, but since the chance of getting the exact card you're looking for on a random draw is lower, having a few locos handy for the cases where your card just isn't coming up could really speed things up for you.
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Chris Delphin
Australia
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I had no complaints about how long the game took.

I'll be honest, I struggled with the number of cards in my hand (there are so many different types in each colour). I think I personally need some sort of card rack. I was EXCEPTIONALLY lucky in my destinations cards, (for example, I built my harbour in the WRONG CITY, only to pick up THREE destination cards with that city on it). I ended up getting MAXIMUM harbour points and scoring a MASSIVE 215 points with a truck load of trains left over ! (That was the Great Lakes game)

I like this game
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Chris Delphin
Australia
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Wanting one particular colour is one thing, but if there are no cards that match what you want, doesn't mean that there won't be harbour cards that you could take instead. It would be VERY unlucky for no one to want any of the cards and no harbour cards on display either. If that was the case, I'd be going nuts picking up random train cards (note that no ship cards are wild cards ... something I wasn't aware of) in the hope of hitting wild cards.
 
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David Martin
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Now that I've played it a few times, I do think there are some weaknesses. This is just my initial analysis after 5-6 games on each map, so I could turn out to be wrong about some of these later on.

Waiting for the right color to come up, from the right deck, seems more painful with 6 colors in each of the 2 decks than it normally does with 8 colors in 1 deck. Sure, you should pretty much always give yourself something else to do while waiting for a certain color to come up, unless you need it for an absolutely crucial link that might get blocked, or the game might end soon. Particularly when you need a specific color of ships, there are no wilds in that deck, so you either have to draw ships until you get the right color (your chances are 1 in 6 each card, all things being equal), or draw train cards hoping to get wilds.

I've noticed that when drawing cards near the end of the game, fewer with the anchor symbol are available. People tend to hoard these early on and try to avoid spending them. That could just be bad strategy on our part - not getting around to building them until it's late enough in the game that the one last anchor card is really hard to find.

In general, there's so much multitasking going on that analysis paralysis can significantly slow down the game. I've got a locomotive! Do I use it to capture a key route early, or save it so that I have far less trouble building a harbor? I have two tickets to the same city - do I build a harbor there now, or draw new tickets hoping I'll be able to complete three to that city or some other one? I like all the new choices that you have to make, but especially on the World Map, the game seems to drag out much longer than it should as a result.

The "pair routes" on the World Map aren't a terribly well-implemented new element. There are so few of them on the board, and it already takes more effort to build train routes than ship routes of the same length, due to there being no double train cards in the deck. Making matters worse, when someone forgets the rule for what cards are required to claim one of these routes, they inevitably ask about it, making it far too easy to guess which specific pair route they're hoping to build based on their existing routes claimed. I don't see any reason why these routes can't just be tunnels. (I know everyone hates tunnels, but having only a few means they wouldn't be nearly as cumbersome as having to explain a little-used new mechanic.)

In general, a strategy that is more dependent on building a lot of train routes (i.e. across Asia) seems to slow the player down to the point where another player building long ship routes (which they can generally do relatively quickly) will win almost every time.

Pretty much all of the Arctic is useless, except when you're forced to go around someone who has blocked you. I think the only tickets to most of the farthest north cities are a pair of long and cumbersome tour tickets. Except in the extremely unlikely event that you get both, you'd never have much of a reason to go there or build harbors there. It makes sense from the standpoint of these places being far less populous, but I think just 1 Arctic tour ticket and then some regular 2-destination tickets to each individual city would have made more sense.

Similarly, in Great Lakes, there's very little reason to go out of your way to reach far inland cities like Cedar Rapids or Rouyn-Noranda, short of building a long route purely for points, or being stuck with a bad ticket draw. Keeping tickets to any of these places at the beginning of the game seems like a losing strategy.

I still love both games. But I know if we bring World out, we'll probably only get through one session in an evening. We can squeeze in 2 on Great Lakes, no biggie, because that one only seems to take a teeny bit longer than a regular 45-train map. By the time a game of World is through, at least with 2 players, I feel like we're drawing redundant tickets over and over to the point of absurdity, waiting for someone to just decrease their count to 6 and trigger the end already. I wonder if it would be better starting with 55 pieces instead of 60.
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