Doug, David, Tina, Debbie
After our first game of Apples to Apples, we split into two groups. Having eyed Stephenson's Rocket last week, I grabbed it and demanded that we have a game.
After clearing up the rules trouble that happened last week, the game ran a lot more smoothly. We got underway quickly as we'd all either read the rules or played the game before.
The game began with the purple and grey lines expanding in the north, while orange and yellow battled it out in the south. Eventually the tracks merged down to a huge grey thing in the north, and a huge orange mass of rails in the south. The blue track in East Anglia finally got moving about three turns before the end of the game, and turned out to be the last one running, as the grey and orange lines had merged and been isolated by curving back on itself.
I admit that the scoring was confusing, trying to remember what was based on share holdings and what was based on stations; the game also feels a little thin on sticking to the theme, as practically all Reiner Knizia games do. I felt that the two games this one most closely represented were Durch die Wüste (for the rules regarding placement of tracks/camels) and Euphrat & Tigris (for the scoring, which is where this game gets most of its complexity).
The game turned out to be close, unexpectedly, with David just managing to hang on despite all my attempts. Not that I really knew what I was doing.
My rating: Hard to say just yet. It didn't grow on me quite as quickly as Euphrat & Tigris, but I think it will probably prove better on a second playing. I give it a 6 for the moment.