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The Grand Trunk Journey - Terminal 4 : Improving your Company

Claude Sirois
Quebec City
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Microbadge: Spielworxx fanMicrobadge: The Grand Trunk Journey fan!Microbadge: I play with red!Microbadge: Train GamerMicrobadge: Age of Industry fan
From gallery of Klode

The Grand Trunk Journey is a pick up and deliver train game where players are operators of their own railway, trying to be as efficient as possible delivering goods to cities and ports using their cards consisting of rail equipment and locations. The game features Hand Management, Time Track, Point to Point Movement and Pick up and Deliver mechanics.

Board Game: The Grand Trunk Journey
Author : Claude Sirois / Development : Uli Blennemann and Henning Kröpke / Graphics : Harald Lieske

You want to know more about The Grand Trunk Journey that will be published by Spielworxx in March 2020?

Just stop a few minutes at the next 5 Terminals where I will present the main features of the game.

If you haven't visited Terminal 1 : The Storyline, Terminal 2 : Operating your Train and Terminal 3 : Delivering Goods, you can do it right away before to read this post!

Terminal 4
Special Actions and Improving your company

From gallery of Klode

From gallery of Klode

When played, a City or Port card can be used for one if its two features:
As a City (or Port) to move your train to that city;
For its Special attribute shown in the central space of the card which can be a...
Railcar that can be added to your train to move goods (see the New London card on the right);
Free Action that you may play (in discarding the card) at any moment during your turn (see the Richmond card on the right). Some actions may cost time to play (in Days), as indicated by the calendar symbol on the card.

Every player has a personal set of cards, which have a different distribution of the same actions. Thus, as long as certain Terminals are not built, a player may not have access to certain actions.
From gallery of Klode

On player's personal decks, the following Actions are available:

HIGH CAPACITY RAILCAR : You can load a second Coal, Iron or Wood cube on a Railcar E

INFLUENCE DEMAND : You can swap any 2 City Goods tokens or 2 Port Goods tokens E

OVERLAND TRANSPORT : You can move 1 Steel between 2 cities directly connected E

RAIL YARD : You can take a Railcar from your discard pile and add it to your train E

RIGHT OF WAY : You can reduce by 1 day the cost of your train movement E


From gallery of Klode

Improvement of the company is done through the Development action, which proposes to :

Increase the Force of the Locomotive (top left) : Allows your train to move one more Railcar. The requirement to increase your locomotive is to have delivered a certain number of Steel.

Increase the Speed of the Locomotive (top right) : Allows you to reduce the length of your trip by 1 day. To do so you must have delivered at least 3 Coal.

Acquire an Improvement card (bottom right): When acquiring an Improvement card, you get a personal benefit that will improve your railway. The game features 16 different improvements, but only a limited number is available each game. Some Improvement are permanent, others can only be used once or once per turn. Here are some examples of Improvement cards :
Early Delivery (Permanent): You can fulfill a Special Delivery 1 Day before it is due
Coal Mine (1X) : Immediately take 2 Coal from the Stock and place them with your other delivered Goods
(1X per turn) : Hi-Roof Boxcar: Load a second Steel in a boxcar

With the Development action you can also Build a new terminal (bottom left) which will increase the available track network for all companies and add new City cards to your deck. You also score VP to do that.

End Game Scoring the players will get a number of Victory Points for each Improvement card they own, depending on the position of their marker on the Wood track.

From gallery of Klode


Special Actions were included in the game right at the beginning. But they were not coupled with a City or a Port. When you were delivering a good to a city, you could add temporarily to your deck an Action card that was orthogonal to the city where you delivered the good (see the image). At that step, cities were not on a board but cards.

From gallery of Klode

During the first few years of the design process companies were all different and had a certain profile (so special actions were different). Profiles were intersecting with each other for certain actions. In order, their profiles were :
redtrain The Moneymaker (good to raise money quickly, when there was money in the game)
purpletrain The Developer (more options to develop the company)
greentrain The Operator (better to manage the railcars)
bluetrain The Manufacturer (faster to add railcars to the deck)
yellowtrain The Shipper (better to ship goods and use other means of transport such as barge)

I decided to remove the profile of the companies in March 2018 when I did significant changes to the game that removed money and other stuff. Some of those actions could probably be recycled if I develop another map someday... whistle

In the current game, all companies are the same but have a different distribution of actions on their cards. For example, the Overland Transport special action is on the Burlington card for the Vermont Central and on the Peterborough card for the Québec and Richmond Railway.

Next steps

The last article of the series is coming in a few days! cool

To preorder the game...
In Europe : https://www.spielworxx.de/produkte-shop/
In US : https://boardgamegeekstore.com/collections/frontpage/product...

The Rulebook is available in the file section of the game page or at : https://www.spielworxx.de/downloads-regeln/

Thanks for reading!

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