Recommend
12 
 Thumb up
 Hide
4 Posts

Trains» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Trains review by Daisy Doodle Dice rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
mommy gamer
msg tools
mbmbmb
To see the full review with pictures go to http://daisydoodledice.com/2014/03/04/trains/#more-2724

Ever wanted to be a railway engineer? I haven’t either, but I do have fun pretending when I play Trains. This game is all about building railways in Japan. It’s a really fun deck building game.

Mfg Age: 12+

Our Age: 8+

Players: 2-4

Length: 45 min.

Game Play

As I mentioned before this is a deck building game, so if you’ve played a deck building game before, you already know the basics. If not, that basically means you start with a set number of cards, in this game it’s 10, shuffle them, draw 5, and use those 5 to take actions, and buy more cards. When you’re turn is over you place those cards in a discard pile until all of your cards are gone, reshuffle and start the process over.

I know it doesn’t sound very fun to just keep shuffling and reshuffling your hand, but it is. There’s a process of building up your hand and making it better, a lot like fun. Of course, sometimes it doesn’t work out and things go bad, but you can’t win them all.

This game has a good box insert. I love that they added foam squares as place holders so the cards don’t fall over when there’s a bunch of cards missing while you play the game.

It also comes with labeled cards to keep the game sorted nicely. Right now they’re in alphabetical order, which I’ll mostly keep the same. I’m planning to move all the cards to the front that you use in every game, and I want to keep starting hands in the front as well so we don’t have to find those cards and count them out each time. I know minor details.

There are 3 victory point cards you can buy. Be careful when you buy them because once they're in your hand they bog it down and make it hard to do anything else. There's also lay rail cards, station expansion cards, and two train cards that are your money to buy more cards.

The other 8 cards you play with are decided by the randomizer deck. You shuffle that deck and draw the top 8, and that’s what you play with. It’s nice because it makes the game different every time you play.

The randomizer cards are very well marked so you don’t get them mixed up with the cards used for game play, which I think is really nice.Last but not least is that there’s lots of cards in the randomizer deck, meaning it will be a different game every time you play it. You’ll have to rethink you’re strategy each time and see who can utilize the new cards the best.

That’s not the only way to change up the game either. It’s a two sided board. You’re strategy also has to be altered based on where stuff is on the board.

The only way to get victory points on the board is to have rails in the same cities as you have stations, or build rails on the special stars on the board with a number on them. You can have as many stations in a city as there are towers on that space. Some cities have one tower, some two, and a couple will have 3. The more stations the more victory points at the end of the game. Any player can build rails in the city, but it costs more if other players are already in the city. Sometimes it’s worth the cost though because both players get the victory points at the end of the game. You use your cards to build rails, and stations.

I also appreciate the nice artwork. You know me, artwork can break a game for me. Not so much make a game, because it has to be a good fun game or I still won’t want to play it, but it can break it for me. The colors on the board are very aesthetically pleasing and the scoring track is big and easy to follow.

What I think

I enjoy playing this game and I think it’s a great game to introduce others into the world of gaming, but I had a special experience with it yesterday that I want to share that will forever make this game special to me.

It’s crazy, but yesterday I got the game out to take pictures for this review and Seal wanted to play with me. I wasn’t too excited to play with him, he’s 3 (almost 4), but that’s a little young to play this game, but I figured I’d get us started and he’d get bored and then I could put it away.

It turns out we played the entire game together. I had to tell myself not to get frustrated and to remember I was playing with a 3 year old, but once I decided I was going to be patient and just enjoy our time together, it turned out to be a lot of fun.

Each turn I let him count his 5 cards and turn them over, face up so I could help him. He was constantly on top of building rails, and always had plenty of cities without any stations. He kept buying stations, against my advice, and no matter how many times the station came up for him, he always had a city to put it on. I’m not sure how because I had far less station expansion cards and yet I often had that card come up and no cities to place in.

I don’t want anyone to think I’d recommend they play it with a 3 year old because I have no intention of doing it again, but I do have to say it was really fun to watch him learn throughout the game. He totally understood that you could only place as many stations (he called them houses but I wasn’t going to argue with him) as there were towers on that space. So every time he placed his last station in a city he would tell me that’s all he could put there. He also learned quickly what the cards did based on color, and picture, and by the end of the game was almost able to play the game and make decisions by himself. He never did quite get when and why he could buy cards, but I would show him which cards he could buy and let him choose.

He did however find a card early in the game that was only worth one money, but it also gave you a victory point every time you played it. He loved moving his token up the scoring track every time he played that card, and he bought that card a lot of times. As you can see, he’s a lot farther in the game than I am. I didn’t think buying that card was worth bogging my hand down with one money cards, so I chose to build up my money instead.

The score at the end of the game was 66 to 60. He beat me. How embarrassing is that? I was helping him, but I figured with some of the cards he bought and the decisions he made on his own, I would easily catch up from his lead from his one point victory cards he kept using throughout the game. I didn’t.

It was crazy and fun to watch him play. I don’t always think I’m the best mom and I often tell the kids I’m too busy for this or that, but I’m glad I took the time to play this with him yesterday. He’s already asked to play it again.

That was a lot of talk about one time playing a game, but I also do enjoy the game. If I didn’t, I would have wanted to poke my eyes out playing a game with him for that long that I hated.

I’ve always liked deck building games and this one’s no exception. This one is similar to Dominion but has the added board and other ways to get victory points. I like both this and Dominion but there’s a few things I don’t like about Dominion that I feel this game fixes. It’s possible that with more expansions to Dominion, it might fix the problem, but if I had to choose right now between the two, I’d choose Trains.
15 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Anderson
United States
seattle
Washington
flag msg tools
Two Time Cancer Survivor - Never Give Up. Never Surrender. -Jason Nesmith from Galaxy Quest (1999 movie)
badge
Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl XLVIII Champions!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
mormonmommy wrote:
It’s possible that with more expansions to Dominion, it might fix the problem, but if I had to choose right now between the two, I’d choose Trains.


That's pretty funny because lack of expansions is one problem Dominion does not have.


3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Anderson
United States
seattle
Washington
flag msg tools
Two Time Cancer Survivor - Never Give Up. Never Surrender. -Jason Nesmith from Galaxy Quest (1999 movie)
badge
Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl XLVIII Champions!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb

Great story playing with you kid. I've got a 1 and a 4 year old. They will surprise you sometimes.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
mommy gamer
msg tools
mbmbmb
It's true it doesn't lack expansions but we only have Prosperity, so I just meant if we chose to get more than that expansion maybe it would fix our problem with it. At this point though I'd rather play Trains and not spend more money on Dominion. Although we have to keep both because my son won't let us get rid of Dominion, it's his favorite game.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.