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Subject: 4 newbies check it out rss

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Jeff Curtis
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Plainfield
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Dave had received the copy of Railroad Tycoon he had traded for so we set it up today and gave it a play. I had played Age of Steam recently but had not tried Railroad Tycoon. Dave had played once a few months ago, and we were joined by Todd and Mike, neither of whom had played RT.

Dave ran through the rules for us and reiterated the warning that players should not allow anyone a monopoly in the NE corridor of the map.

Bidding for player one on turn one was spirited as a railroad executive card was up for grabs. Unfortunatley for Todd, he had tuned into the meaning of that card, and even though he was the bidding at $10,000, he elected to build a link out of New York City. Dave went 2nd and also built in the northwest. He grabbed the railroad executive card and when another card was flipped it was a free urbanization card. For his 2nd action Dave urbanized one of the eastern gray cities as a black city. I looked over the distribution of the cubes and elected to start in Chicago. Mike also started a line in the NE.

I was feeling pretty good at this point that I would have the Midwest all to myself, but there is definitely some additional cost to starting in Chicago. I built my first line to Toledo and then connected to Detroit. This required the issuance of two shares of stock. Meanwhile the others were building links of one or two hexes and only had to issue a single share of stock. Todd even managed to deliver two cubes in the first turn taking the early lead. The rest of us shipped a single cube to get some revenue going.

Turn two saw more of the same, although Mike grabbed a New York City hotel card, which would pay off a few times during the game. I expanded my line on to Cleveland and Pittsburgh, with an eye on the Toledo-Baltimore major line card that was already available. Additional links between NYC, New Haven and Philadelphia hit the table, and everyone shipped at least one more cube.

The next turn saw Mike and I go to a level 2 engine. We were both able to make two-length shipments which definitely helped the income levels.

It was about the third or 4th turn that Dave and Todd began looking elsewhere to build track and they left the NE corridor to Mike. While it looked like the NE corridor was pretty jammed up Mike did an excellent job expanding north to Boston and south to Baltimore, giving him a line capable of a 5 delivery. Dave and Todd still stayed east of the Appalacians, but built further south. I connected to Cincinnati and increased my engine to a 3. I was still eyeing that Pittsburgh to Baltimore line, but at $20,000 is was price prohibitive to build without issuing many shares of stock. I did not think any of the other players would cut me off there so I waited patiently. I had plenty of 2 and 3-length deliveries to make;; which I did for the next several rounds. I was able to boost my income pretty well, as I now had all the track I would need for a while and I could just concentrate on the deliveries. Dave did build from Louisville to Cincinnati, but I was able to grab the black cube in Cincinnati and ship to Detroit before Dave to get it and claim the Louisville service bounty.

Todd was working on connecting Charleston, Savannah and Atlanta. Mike and I had moved out ahead at this point as we had level 3 engines while Dave and Todd were still at 2 and 1, respectively. I had forgotten the bonus for getting to a 4-engine first and about the time I remembered it, Mike got his upgrade first. At least I had gotten to the first 3-length shipment first and had received that bonus. Todd got the first shipment bonus. I still went ahead and upgraded to the 4 engine. My secret Railroad Tycoon card required me to have the most money at the end of the game for 7 points. Mike was trying to have the least shares issued. Todd needed to be the first to a 6-engine and Dave needed to have the most links.

Dave took the card for placing random cubes in a city and played it on Cincinnati. He was hoping for a black cube so he could get the service bounty into Louisville but both cubes he drew were red. This proved quite fortuitous for me, as I grabbed a Chicago hotel card and proceeded to move those new red cubes over three links into Chicago, paying off 4 victory points with the hotel.

Dave connected Louisville to Wheeling and Saint Louis to Chicago. This let me finally move a black cube from Wheeling to Louisville and he got the service bonus. He sure had to work hard for that one.

Those new connections gave me some opportunities to do 4-length shipments, even though one of the victory points went to Dave with each shipment. I had built up a bit of a lead when I was doing 6-8 VP's a turn in shipments, but Mike had finally kicked in his 5-engine and was doing 5-length deliveries up and down the east coast. I was able to get a Chicago hotel.

When we got up to 13 empty cities (the game would go one more turn after the 14th empty city), I finally had enough money to build the Pittsburgh to Baltimore link, completing the Toldeo to Baltimare major line. This netted me 7 points. Still, Mike was netting more points than me now on his shipments and I was looking to force the final turn as soon as possible while I had the lead. I had issued 7 shares, while Mike had only issued 4, so he had a 3 point advantage on me in the final calculations. Todd had urbanized an empty city which took us back to 12 empty cities but I emptied Detroit and a couple of more 1-size gray cities were also emptied, leading to the last turn.

I shipped a 3, build my own line from Cincinnati to Louisville. and then ship a 4 from Louisville to Detroit for a final 7 points. Mike had connected to Albany and washing shipping those cubes to his other stops on the east coast. It was going to be close.

In the end, I had the most money (over 60,000) and claimed my 7 bonus points. Mike had the least shares of stock (4) and got his 7 bonus points Dave and Todd did not get their bonus. Dave needed the most links but three of us tied with 8 links built, while Todd had 7. We subtracted off the shares issued (Jeff 7, Todd 7, Dave 5 Mike 4) and the final scores were:

Jeff - 58
Mike - 55
Todd - 30
Dave - 19

Maybe I'm one of the few, but I think I will be able to enjoy playing Railroad Tycoon or Age of Steam. Railroad Tycoon does not have quite the same level of tension, with bankruptcy not really being a threat, and the auctions are not as tense either.

The first player auction really did not mean much after the first turn. I think if there was a lesson to be learned from out first play, it was to build an integrated network, build up your engine and make the longer shipments. I might have tried the western link since I had control of Chicago, but having the bonus card that required having the most money kept me from pursuing that $30,000 investment.

Railroad Tycoon is defintely an enjoyable game I will look forward to playing again. Of course, I have Age of Steam coming up next weekend, so I'll get to compare the two again.
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Mark Biggar
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You appear to have play at least one rule incorrectly.
You do not draw new operations cards as they are used. The only time a new operations card is drawn is at the end of each turn and exactly one card is drawn at that time. Yes this means that cards are typically used up faster end they appear.
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Joseph Betz
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Yes keep in mind that each player gets three actions per turn and the card is only drawn at the end of the turn.So as mark said the cards get used up pretty quick once the game starts.
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Jeff Curtis
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Plainfield
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Thanks guys, we definitely played that rule wrong.
 
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J. David Koch
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Yeow Jeff,
You have an incredible memory.
I was there and was very impressed how much of the game you remembered.
Don't think I ever could have remembered it at anywhere near that depth.
Since I was teaching this week, I take full responsibility for missing that rule.
Looking forward to our next shot at this game and your next report.
P.S. Think you should have earned a lot more that 1 GG for this report.
Very nicely done.
 
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Steve
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McGuit wrote:
Yeow Jeff,
Looking forward to our next shot at this game and your next report.
P.S. Think you should have earned a lot more that 1 GG for this report.
Very nicely done.


That is odd, I agree with you. Decent report. More than 1 GG certainly.

I mean, seriously, what's better? Contributing an image of something photographed 100 times for RRT or contributing a good session like this? But that's a different topic for a different time I suppose...
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Jeff Curtis
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Actually, I got 2 GG. It does seem hard to get more than 2 GG for a session report though.
 
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