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Subject: Mountain Railroading in Austria rss

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Matt Campbell
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Lincoln
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This game offers a number of things to separate it from the other 18XX offerings currently available.

Separate Mountain Map - There is a small map that represents a blow-up of 2 tiles on the main map. At the start of the game there are 6 local railways that operate solely on this map. They have their own set of trains available, are owned by one player with no stock market action and pay 50/50. This alone is unique, but add in the fact that these companies can merge to become Major Local railways once the first 5 train comes out and this becomes a difference maker. In particular, the merger closes the 2 locals that form the Major and puts the Major on one of the 2 hexes on the main map. Tiles are upgraded to allow for the home token of the new company. These now float on the stock market, have two 50% shares and can be valuable.

Tunnel Track - In addition to the normal track (1830 style) there are clear plastic tunnel overlay hexes that represent tunnels. These represent the problems that Austria faced when building in its mountains. In terms of gameplay it makes it possible to bypass many of the whistle stops and to get track to some places that are otherwise unreachable. Takes a bit of getting used to.

Train Mix - There are three train rushes to worry about in this game. The first is the normal train rush where 4's rust 2's, 6's rust 3's etc. The second is the local railway trains which are 1+, 2+ and 3+ and rust on a separate schedule. Finally, when the Major locals form they are able to buy only the obsolete trains from the public railway rush. They can never own a train that is currently available to publics and if they buy any 2's they will rust when a Major local buys a 4. This makes the trains a very dynamic part of this 18XX. It is a struggle to keep all the operating companies in trains.

Medium Cities - The last major difference is the medium city. These start off as 10 "hash" cities but can be upgraded to yellow circle cities and finally specialized 2 circle green tiles. The green tiles are susceptible to tokening which can really change the runs available.

Production Values - As with all the Deepthought games this one has quality components. The main map is in two parts of laminated stock on foam core board. The certs, tiles and charters are all laminated and uniformly cut. The plastic tunnel hexes are also uniformly sized and work great when stacked. The tokens are on wood and work great as always, heavy enough to stay put and light enough to not be a hassle. The only component that could be improved would be the minor local map, which is just laminated card stock. Not a big deal as it play fine as is.

Currently the 18XX game I am most likely to table.



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Guy Riessen
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Have you tried it with 3 players? Curious because 3 players happens more often than 4+ with my current group.

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Matt Campbell
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I haven't tried it with 3 players. My impression would be that it would work ok, but the competition over the minors/privates wouldn't be quite the same as with 4-5. That should make for more synergy with the majors or add some more cutthroat token placement on the big board.

Matt
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Bob Nash
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Between this and 1824, if you were getting only one game on Austrian Railroads, which of the two would it be?
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Gunther Schmidl
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Hm. They're both good in their own ways, but I found 1854 easier to "understand". It's a magnitude more complex than 1824, though.
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J C Lawrence
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nashesq wrote:
Between this and 1824, if you were getting only one game on Austrian Railroads, which of the two would it be?


They are sufficiently different games to be considered distinct. The fact that they and others treat the same geography is of no interest to me: they are interesting games and so I own both.
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Eric Brosius
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My favorite 18xx game for six players is two games of 1846 with three players each.
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You could also have mentioned the hexagon-based stock market, which is fairly unusual (though I'll admit it could be done with rectangles if you allow diagonal movement in some situations.)
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Eric Brosius
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My favorite 18xx game for six players is two games of 1846 with three players each.
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Sprydle wrote:
Have you tried it with 3 players? Curious because 3 players happens more often than 4+ with my current group.


My one play was with 3 players. I felt that it would have been better with 4 because with 3, the player who gets the yellow company is often isolated in the far west (which isn't necessarily an advantage.)
 
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