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Subject: Next level after Ticket to Ride? rss

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Richard Turner
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I have a small gaming group which is me, two male friends and two female friends.

The games we play a lot are Citadels, Bohnanza, Ticket to Ride, Settlers with the odd game of things like Shadows over Camelot and Mystery of the Abbey.

We all like Ticket to Ride and the whole train and connection game is good fun. I was wondering what would be a good step up from this in terms of adding more complexity to a train game.

What would be important is not too long, 90 minutes max and fun rather than taxing.
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Quentin Fox
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Another one you might like is Thurn & Taxis. It's not a railroad game, but has some similarities.

I don't know that I would necessarily call it a different "level" as far as complexity, but the thinking is different. (45 min)

Power Grid is another city linking game. It adds resource and bidding elements. I think I would call it a step up. (120 min)

My last suggestion would be Age of Steam... another railroad game that is a step forward in complexity. This title is coming back into print. (120 min)

Good luck!
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james napoli
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hi,

don't muck around...go right to puerto rico. there is a reason it's #1 on the geek. it has a mass appeal and is a great intro to eurogames.

i would also suggest el grande, it's a very approachable area control game and the new edition has a beautiful board and nice components.

You probably should also look into an auction game. Every group needs some :-).
Ra is a good start. Personally i love modern art, but that's not for everyone.

while i'm sure some will argue...i put thurn&taxis right next to ticket to ride as being very similar. There are certainly nuances that seperate them, but those claims that t&t is a gamers game i think are simply bogus. you pick up cards, collect a set and play them out.

You may also want to look at for sale as a good little filler. It's another good intro to auction games and it's been a fan favorite with all i've introduced it to. It's cheap and plays in 15 minutes.

Good luck, let us know what u end up with.

cheers
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Brad Fuller
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check out On the Underground, my wife is a T2R fiend and this is her new favorite.
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C Lloyd
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I'd suggest looking into Thurn & Taxis and Power Grid as well. Maybe even something like Tikal, although that's a bit different style of game.
Also, don't forget about Ticket to Ride: Europe and Marklin. Different maps and (some) rules from the original.
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C Lloyd
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fullerbd wrote:
check out On the Underground, my wife is a T2R fiend and this is her new favorite.

Hmm... I've heard good buzz about this one. Might need to check it out for my wife as well!
 
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Richard Turner
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Thanks for suggestions. El Grande + Puerto Rico I have. EG I just don't like and PR we have played but I am not sure it is everyones cup of tea.

I am looking very specifically for a train game (I probably didn't make that clear) so that I can introduce it as TTR with nobs on.
 
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Sven Dye
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I would say Railroad Tycoon its in between Ticket to Ride and Age of steam in complexity so I have heard. I have not played AoS or Railroad Tycoon. But I have played all the Ticket to Ride Series.
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Hi,

I would go with THURN UND TAXIS and POWER GRID also. Good and fun games. I dare to suggest you also a new game: HERMAGOR. It's very good, very fun and very pretty.
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Preston Fuller
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Hey Richard,

TtR but more complex but in the same time to play?


Elfenland (this is an older Alan Moon game that certainly shows early elements of TtR. While it plays like a train game it has s different theme and much more clever moves them TtR; in that you can build off of other players routes and at the same time shut down thier routes. A little bit more of a racing tension as well.

Elfenland is a nice jump from TtR.

Hacienda is another one.

Also TtR Marklin.

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Richard Turner
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We play TTR in under an hour, as everyone knows what they are doing.

I do have Elfenland which is certainly a neat game, although I think a bit dated and clunky now. There is so much fiddling around each turn with the tiles.

I'll try a geeklist search under "train".
 
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William Bussick
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I highly recommend Attika. Seems to meet all of your criteria.
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Marshall Miller
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Here is a good progression: (of train games I've played)

Ticket to Ride (collect sets, some blocking)
Ticket to Ride: Europe (more forgiving of blocking but adds terrain effects)
Transamerica (shared rail systems and terrain effects)
Empire builder (route and money management, terrain effects, shared routes, pickup and deliver, lots of expansion maps[although sold as seperate games, e.g. eurorails, lunar rails, iron dragon])
Railroad Tycoon (shares, terrain effects, route and money management, shared routs, pickup and deliver)
Age of Steam (shares, terrain effects, route and money management, shared routs, pickup and deliver, bankruptcy, lots of expansion maps with flavorful rules changes)(my current favorite)
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Jim Patterson
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It's too bad Union Pacific is out of print at the moment (and a bit out of reach in terms of used prices). I like that a fair bit better than TtR as it feels (to me, anyway) like Advanced TtR. Not surprising, I guess, given the common source in Alan Moon.
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Robert M
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RCTurner wrote:
Thanks for suggestions. El Grande + Puerto Rico I have. EG I just don't like and PR we have played but I am not sure it is everyones cup of tea.

I am looking very specifically for a train game (I probably didn't make that clear) so that I can introduce it as TTR with nobs on.


Empire builder or Eurorails are good train games, but will be about twice as long. There is a lot to think about at times, but nothing too bad
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Peter Marchlewitz
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I'd go with On the Underground if you like connection type of games. It's a little heavier than T2R. You could also check out Streetcar or Metro as light connection games.
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Larry Baxter
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A few ideas come to mind...

- Railroad Tycoon - train theme, quite a good game, and distinctly a 'step up' in complexity from TTR, adding an economic aspect to the game. (Age of Steam is an even more complex version, longer) RT actually plays best with 5, and this would be my choice if you could handle 90-120 mins.

- On the Underground - train theme, also 90 mins, similar enough to TTR folks will learn quickly, different enough to be worth getting. One caveat, the downtime for 5 players (which you seem to have) can be an issue depending on whether they tend to play quick or overthink

- expand TTR - go with the 1910 expansion for TTR or get the Marklin version. These would be a small step up, smallest change in game play obviously.

- Union Pacific - a train-themed stock market game that works for 2-6 and takes 90 mins. It can be hard to find however.

Others I think would not suit what you're looking for
- Thurn and Taxis - decent game, some like it more than TTR, but I wouldn't call it a 'next level'. The game plays in about 1/2 the time as Ticket to Ride, and there's nearly NO player interaction.
- Power Grid - you said 90 min max otherwise I would highly recommend this game. I love it, as do the friends in my gaming group, but for us it's about a 2.5 hr game.
- Tranamerica - still a train theme, has an almost cooperative feel to it via sharing track (since you like Shadows over Camelot, I thought I would point it out). It plays very quickly, about 20 minutes, and suites 5 players well. It's not expensive however, and you guys might like it as a "train fix" filler game on a night when you're playing something different?!

Now, without the train theme if you ask what's a great next game for 5 players who like TTR and the games you mention, I would point out:

El Grande, Princes of Florence, Amun-Re, Acquire, Medici.
Each of these are great games, excellent with 5 players, and work in 90 mins.

Good luck - Tell us what you end up picking and how the group liked it!
Larry
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Frank Strauss
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RCTurner wrote:

I am looking very specifically for a train game (I probably didn't make that clear) so that I can introduce it as TTR with nobs on.


That has to be Railroad Tycoon, less complex than AOS and playable in 2 hours. ( And it looks good )

Or maybe you like a game for free ( Just print & play ):
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/23239
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Jason Woodburn
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I would second the recommendation for Mr. Moon's Union Pacific. If you watch some of the European Ebays, you might be able to find a fairly inexpensive copy of the Dutch 999 Games version.

Also, perhaps check out Volldampf, another train game from Martin Wallace, the designer of Age of Steam. This is also a little hard to find, as it's been out of print for a bit. It is a connections game, similar to Age of Steam, but lighter and faster.

Games like the aformentioned Thurn and Taxis, while not train games, touch on many similar themes and mechanics. Another game in this category would be the Ragnar Brothers game Canal Mania. This really echoes the feel of a train game, featuring contracts (routes) to be completed, building cards for different terrain types, and a pickup/deliver aspect. I like it fairly well as it is, but they've said they will come out with a new version, I think next Fall, so it might be worth waiting, if you're interested.

Moving up to the crayon rail games might be worth a thought. The early games would take some time, but once you get used to the system, a game like Eurorails might not take a terribly long time. Of course, there's no plastic trains, but it's still all about making connections.

Good luck, and have fun
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Darrell Hanning
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If what you're looking for a strictly a railroad game revolving around the establishment of routes, you might want to try the "crayon rail series" - Empire Builder, British Rails, European Rails, etc.

In these games, you draw delivery cards, telling you what good is wanted in what city, and what delivery will pay. Goods are marked on the map, at various locations. Your job is draw rails to connect the source to the destination, paying for the rail you put down, then picking up the goods with your train, and moving it to the destination. These games are pretty much as easy to learn as TTR, but with perhaps a little more to think about, in planning out your rail system on the map. Be forewarned, however; most of these games do take longer to play than the TTR games.
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Alan Turniansky
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While personally I quite enjoy Empire Builder and the other related "crayon rails" games, given that the OP asked about games for 5 players that could be completed in "90 minues max", the crayon rails series might not be the ideal way to go in this case.
 
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Nick Fisk
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If you're looking for "Ticket to Ride with knobs on" ....

Railroad Tycoon: This is the one that you're after. However, you;re going to need a considerably bigger table, and you might have trouble finding a copy nowadays ... but find one!

Canal Mania: This is also a good route-making game, although it's canals and not train tracks, but otherwise it'll fit the bill. Again hard to find ... the first printing is pretty much gone, but another printing is on its way.

On the Underground: IMHO, this is a much heavier game that the TtR series. It can go a little slowly as the game goes on, with more and more tracks on the table. However ... it is still an excellent game, a lot of fun, usually very close, and who doesn't love the underground map ?


N.

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Larry Baxter
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Just saw a post by a game blogger (Midnight Gamer) about a railroad-theme day they had - you might want to check it out at:

http://boardgamecafe.net/community/blogs/the_midnite_gamer/a...

In a nutshell he had these four 'levels'
1. TtR - best gateway game, 90 mins, will hook you

2. Railroad Tycoon - "The best game to show gamers what's next after Ticket to Ride. This game is a step-up from TTR yet does not burn too much brain and offers good fun for 2-3 hrs. This is also the perfect game to introduce them to the mechanics of Age of Steam should they decide to make that move-up."

3. Age of Steam - for a more seasoned group. The plus side, it plays smoothly in 2 hours.

4. 1856 (18xx series) - really deep - "You are practically running a railroad business"

His honorable mention to:
- TransAmerica - lighter than TTR
- Union Pacific - another Alan Moon OOP game that I've been eyeing (out of print)
- 1830 - the game that kickstarted the 18xx series.

Also, I wanted to echo the comment above, you'll need a *large* table on which to play Railroad Tycoon
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Richard Turner
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Well thanks guys I really appreciate all the time people have put in to answer.

It would seem that Railroad Tycoon is the game I should look into.
 
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Sifu
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Yay for Union Pacific! But keep in mind that the stock element is foremost. Still, extremely fun game.
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