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Subject: Strategy of 5 and 6? rss

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Hunga Dunga
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I read somewhere that concentrating on building routes requiring 5 or 6 cards anywhere on the board is more profitable than completing tickets.

So, would it be smart to keep the two shortest tickets I draw at the beginning of the game, and complete those (avoiding end of game penalties) while concentrating on completing as many 5s and 6s as I can? (Hoping that I get the added bonus of potentially getting in the way of other players by doing so?)
 
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Brent Mair
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This strategy doesn't always win but it will win often enough to try it. If I know you are doing this when the game begins I should be able to plan accordingly.
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Hunga Dunga
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Spielguy wrote:
If I know you are doing this when the game begins I should be able to plan accordingly.

How would you counter this strategy?
 
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Brent Mair
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I wouldn't really counter the strategy, I would just adjust to it. Part of the strength in a large route strategy is that the player forces the game to end earlier than others want or expect it. That leaves the other players with less points from routes and more negative points because of unfulfilled tickets. I would react to that by choosing tickets with that information in mind. A few long completed tickets certainly compensate for your extra score from the 5 and 6 segments.
Also, I would try to starve you of the cards you need once the strategy is apparent (but only if they are cards I can use).

I've only seen a few players try the long segment strategy locally. It isn't game breaking but can certainly win a fair amount of times. I expect others with more experience countering this strategy will have more to add.
 
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Stephen Sanders
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I haven't tried to do this exclusively, but I have only won when I did a fair amount of building long routes. What I see being most important for scoring is choosing extra Tickets. However, timing and position seems to be critical in selecting them, and I don't have enough plays to really speak from experience.
 
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Simon Lundström
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I tend to do both: I select tickets where I see I have like 2 choices of building at least 2 fives or sixes in order to reach them. The tickets I see I have to chime my way there with a lot of 1s and 2s, I discard. Then I try to go for the shortes route to my destination with the longest possible routes.

Then again, I've only played the USA version on 2 players, so it's not that cramped usually.
 
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Stephen Sanders
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I would imagine the winner of the strategy report for 2007 for this game would be worth looking into. See Aldie's front page postings for the link.
 
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Hunga Dunga
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caltexn wrote:
I would imagine the winner of the strategy report for 2007 for this game would be worth looking into. See Aldie's front page postings for the link.


That's for TtR:Swiitzerland, though. Can that apply to original game, too?
 
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Drake Storm
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Hungadunga wrote:
I read somewhere that concentrating on building routes requiring 5 or 6 cards anywhere on the board is more profitable than completing tickets.

So, would it be smart to keep the two shortest tickets I draw at the beginning of the game, and complete those (avoiding end of game penalties) while concentrating on completing as many 5s and 6s as I can? (Hoping that I get the added bonus of potentially getting in the way of other players by doing so?)


With inexperienced players, almost anything will work. Laying down a bunch of 5ers and 6ers and ending the game quickly (ignoring your own tickets) before they realize what is going on will win you the game most likely.

The problem?

Any decent player will also be trying to lay down 5ers and 6ers AND be trying to complete their tickets. There is no way you can get enough cards and claim enough big routes before your opponents claim a few themselves evening out your advantage (assuming a 4 player game).

So now as you mentioned, you try to complete 2 small tickets and then claim big routes. This is a good strategy IF there are going to be any big routes to take. Like I said, with experienced players you will be competing for them. So your next option is try for the big routes first and then finish your tickets up later. This will work if you don't get blocked and can connect your tickets.

But you basically have the right idea. If you had to boil TTR Strategy down to one point, that point would be - Don't draw new tickets and connect your tickets using the biggest routes possible. [Obviously there are exceptions, but you should master this one point before worrying about all the exceptions].

Example - If you have Duluth-Houston, do NOT go Houston-Dallas, Dallas-Oklahoma City, Oklahoma City-Kansas City, etc. The best route is Houston-El Paso (a 6er), El Paso-Phoenix, Phoniex-Denver (5er), Denver-Omaha, Omaha-Helena (5er), Helena-Duluth (6er). That path gives you a bunch of large routes and doesn't double up a color, you use Greens, Whites, Pinks, Reds, and Oranges. From El Paso you could goto Oklahoma City then to Denver, but that uses Reds which then you won't have any to go from Omaha to Helena which means you would have to settle for Omaha to Duluth which is a wimpy 2er!

Of course you will have a 2nd ticket and might not get the perfect path you want, but the idea is the same - use the biggest routes possible to complete your tickets, then when you are done, either try for longest (for the +10) or lay down big routes anywhere to end the game quickly.

Good Luck.

[This advice has been provided free of charge by your friendly TTR competitive player, currently ranked 37th in the World on USA map, 13th in Europe, 19th in Swiss, #1 in Mega and Big Cities, #10 in multiplayer.]

Edit: Ignore the TTR:Swiss strategy article, its useless unless you plan on playing with your 4 year old cousins or something.




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Simon Lundström
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DrakeStorm wrote:
If you had to boil TTR Strategy down to one point, that point would be - Don't draw new tickets and connect your tickets using the biggest routes possible.


I'm not contradicting it, but it's worth mentioning that if you play Nordic or Swiss, the most number of completed tickets will get you the extra 10 points. It's not much, but considering you're also taking away the "longest route gets 10 points", many smaller tickets do have a larger value in those 2 versions than in the original.
 
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Hunga Dunga
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DrakeStorm wrote:
If you had to boil TTR Strategy down to one point, that point would be - Don't draw new tickets and connect your tickets using the biggest routes possible.

Excellent post, DrakeStorm. Thanks for the insight!
 
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Justin
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Hungadunga wrote:
Excellent post, DrakeStorm. Thanks for the insight!


ditto. thanks, drake! i only wish it were in a separate thread for increased exposure.

if you feel the desire to post more, do know that the time you put into it is appreciated.
 
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Drake Storm
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Zimeon wrote:

I'm not contradicting it, but it's worth mentioning that if you play Nordic or Swiss, the most number of completed tickets will get you the extra 10 points.


First, what I said I was mainly referring to the USA Original Map, not Europe or Swiss or even the 1910 Expansion (those all play different).

Second, I don't know anything about the Nordic Map, but on the Swiss map (at least online), you get +10 for longest route, NOT +10 for most completed tickets.



 
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David Tegenfeldt
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My last ttr 4p win was against a player that tried to do long routes and drawing no tickets he even got longest road +10 and lost by 2 points to me

I finished 8 or was it 9 tickets in the middle of the board and won the game.

Spent the first few turns drawing throu the route deck while all else was taking tickets.

But i agree just trying to make long routes and forcing early game end is a wery strong but also very boring strategy.
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Simon Lundström
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DrakeStorm wrote:
Second, I don't know anything about the Nordic Map, but on the Swiss map (at least online), you get +10 for longest route, NOT +10 for most completed tickets.


My apologies. The +10 for most tickets is very true for the Nordic version (I bought it for Christmas and was surprised at that rule change), and I heard another version had the same rule. I was confident it was the Swiss map, but it must have been the Märklin, then. Then again, it's only what I have heard (see my thread about differences between versions), so that might be wrong.
 
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merkill wrote:
Spent the first few turns drawing throu the route deck while all else was taking tickets.

Say what? You mean you draw through the ticket deck (searching for good tickets that could connect to each other) while all else were taking train cards? Because if everyone was drawing tickets, no wonder you won.
 
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If you try to follow this strategy every time it is quite easy to block. I'd suggest using it every now and again based on the tickets you initially get. Only if you get two very short or easy to complete tickets should you try this tactic.

As others have said the most important thing about this strategy is that it finishes the game quickly therefore harming the score of those who cannot complete their long tickets. You are far better served by finishing now and taking a 7 point penalty for an uncompleted ticket than waiting two turns and possibly allowing someone else to finish their 20 point ticket (a 40 point swing against you).
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