Wow, so this is what you get for 100 pieces of gold.
Rob, Gary, Trevor and I showed up at Jean's' house, where we started the day off with Ticket to Ride. Jean went first (followed by Rob, Gary Trevor and myself), began collecting a whole bunch of cards, then built track out of L.A to Las Vegas to Helena then Chicago. He also put down the 6 blue line from Portland. Jean's initial draw was Hel-LA (8), Ptl-Phx(11) and LA-Chi(16). Then with about 10 trains left after he made it to Chicago, he said, "Well, I'm either going to win big or lose big", since he drew three more tickets and kept LA-NY (21). He ended up making that route.
Trevor started with LA-Mia(20) and Sea-LA (9). Trevor started from Seattle, built to LA then built to Miami along the bottom of the board with the 6 black, 6 green, getting to Miami through the 5 blue line first before playing the 6 red track from Miami to New Orleans to contend for the longest train. However Gary ended up with the longest train.
Gary had Dul-Hstn (8) and Dall-Mtl(11) and simply built a big circuitous route along the board. Unfortunately, when he announced that he had one train left, I built a 1 track line to Houston and Trevor built a 1 track line to Houston, sealing Gary out! So Gary lost 8 pts for his Dul-Hstn line.
Rob started with Van-Mtl (20) and Mtl-Atl (9), but had to take a long way round through Winnipeg to Chicago to connect to New York. This was because I started with Dul-ElP (10), SSM-Nsh(8) and SSM-Okla(9), had built from S St. Marie to Toronto, then Toronto southwards towards Atlanta. I made a later draw of NY -Atl (6) and Chi-S.Fe (9). After seeing Jean's success (I knew he had drawn the LA-NY line), I decided to see if lightning would strike twice, but I drew three destinations that I could not make. So I kept the lowest of the three, Wph-Hstn (12), which was one of Trevor's starting tickets he threw out. We had shuffled the deck, since Rob had accidentally drawn a destination ticket instead of a colored train, so I ended up with someone's discarded train ticket. Hopefully that didn't change the game too much. This was Jean's fourth win in a row!
Scores: Jean 117 (61 track, 56=8+11+16+21 destination)
Trevor 112 (83 track, 29=20+9 destination)
Rob 100 (71 track, 29=20+9 destination)
Norbert 91 (61 track, 30=10+8+9+6+9-12 destination)
Gary 85(72 track, 3=11-8 destination, 10 longest train)
We had a short discussion on why Ticket to Ride isn't a gamer's game. Gary has suggested the last couple of times of splitting the tickets into a long, medium and short pile. I still enjoy the game since it is light and can be played with non-gamers. I always enjoy the challenge of getting 3 short north-south routes (and yes, I do realize that pitching one of them if they do not really fit well with each other is probably best, but this game, I felt all 3 of the short routes were close enough to each other )and trying to make something work out of it. It hasn't happened yet, but one day I will be successful!