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Subject: Too many links? rss

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Philip Thomas
United Kingdom
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This was a four player game at Isleworth boardgames club on the North American map using the Basic ruleset and randomly determining Starting player (giving money to non-starting players as suggested). The players were me (Philip), Paul, Gareth and Scott. I was the only one who had played before (and only one game of Steam, though I have played several games of Age of Steam): though Gareth also has a copy and had read the rules.

Paul started with a link from Boston to Hertford through Worcester. I linked Albany to New York via Poughkeepied and built an extra piece of track pointing South-East from Albany (I had Engineer). Gareth connected New York to Philadelphia and Scott connected Maine to Boston. Most of us upgraded our locomotives and made a single 2 point delivery. Gareth made 2 1 point deliveries, I think Scott made a 1 point delivery and upgraded his locomotive,

In the second turn Gareth took the Locomotive tile, puttting him in the same position as everyone else. Scott developed another link from Boston to Hartford, this one via Providence, and Paul a link from Boston to Maine, so that they now had effectively the same track network. I completed my connection from Albany to Hartford via Bridgeport and Gareth linked Philadelphia and Scranton. I made a couple of 2 point deliveries and most of the others upgraded their Locomotive and made one delivery- Gareth was I think the only one who managed a 3 points one.

The third turn saw me link New York and Philadelphia, Gareth build out to Syracuse via Binghampton and beyond towards Ottowa, Scott link Hartford and Albany by the direct hill route and Paul urbanise and link to Romford.

I get somewhat hazy after that. Gareth did manage to link to Ottowa using City Growth to good effect several times, Paul Urbanised Rutland and drove through to Montreal and I also linked to Rutland and then Urbanised Burlington, linking through to Montreal as well. At one point Scott conducted City Growth for 3 Yellow Cubes in Albany, apparently out of spite. However, on the same turn Paul urbanised Sherbrooke into a Yellow city, meaning he had a 6 link route for the Yellow Cubes (we had all fully upgraded our Engines by then)- and he was able to place 2 more Yellow cubes in his new city. I happened to be going last witht he Engineer, so I build a Hill route from Rutland to Sherbrooke, giving me a 4 link route for the Yellow Cubes, which I proceeded to use, there being a dearth of cubes in the East...

Meanwhile Gareth was happily dominating the western side of the board, with Scott's push along the Mohawk fairly easily deflected. Paul built a couple of track sections linking Towanda into Gareth's network, on the principal that a link is a VP. I urbanised New Haven, linking it into Bridgeport and the game ended with much sharing of links between me Scott and Paul.

Scores were Gareth: 50
Scott: 40
Me and Paul: 46, Paul won the tie-breaker.

I should have used City Growth and Urbanisation earlier- but one of the problems I found myself facing was that my central line (Hertford to New York) was too long! I kept finding it would take 7 links to deliver a cube...
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