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Subject: Which version to play over the holidays? rss

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Benjamin Piehler
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Kansas City
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When asked what I wanted for Christmas this year, amongst a few other things, I said I wanted to play a board game with my family. I'm thinking one of the TTR games would be good. We'd likely be playing with at least 4 people, no more than 6. My father would love an excuse not to play, as he "hates board games". (He's only played Monopoly, Sorry!, Clue and whatnot)

My initial thought was just to get the original since its the easiest to learn (I think). Nobody playing will be under 20 years of age, but I'm thinking the easier it is to explain, the smoother the experience will be.

If I were picking one for myself, It'd be TTR: Europe. I'm not sure that would be a good fit considering the map and extra rules.

I'm really not familiar with the other releases though, and there may well be an ideal fit out there. Any thoughts?
 
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Bpiehler wrote:
When asked what I wanted for Christmas this year, amongst a few other things, I said I wanted to play a board game with my family. I'm thinking one of the TTR games would be good. We'd likely be playing with at least 4 people, no more than 6. My father would love an excuse not to play, as he "hates board games". (He's only played Monopoly, Sorry!, Clue and whatnot)

My initial thought was just to get the original since its the easiest to learn (I think). Nobody playing will be under 20 years of age, but I'm thinking the easier it is to explain, the smoother the experience will be.

If I were picking one for myself, It'd be TTR: Europe. I'm not sure that would be a good fit considering the map and extra rules.

I'm really not familiar with the other releases though, and there may well be an ideal fit out there. Any thoughts?
"Thematically" (and I use that term very loosely given the topic of Ticket To Ride), TtR Nordic Countries would best fit the holidays since the train cards have snow covered hoppers and other snow-covered train segements. But that only plays 2-3p. Plus, there are 50% to twice as many rules vs. US map (which is still dead simple to learn, but with some groups, ya never know).

US is the easiest. If you think people can handle a bit of extra complexity, then the next step would be TtR 1910 (in fact, if they can handle THIS, skip the destination tickets that came with the orig. US map and just use this add-on with the 1910 map instead) or TtR Europe.
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Pierre-Yves Caron
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I'd suggest the original game with the 1910 expansion. This will give you the vanilla TTR experience and added complexity to your liking with the expansion (big, cities, mega game, ...).

Or, you could get the original game with the Legendary Asia/Team Asia expansion. This way you could go up to 6 players and play in teams. Better for people who do not like direct conflict.

Finally, you could also get TTR Europe and gradually bring the new rules into the game (ferries, tunnels). There is also the 1912 expansion to go with it for added replayability.

I just got Team Asia for me and my family to play over xmas break. They really like the original TTR and do not really want added complexity. Asia will be just right and we'll also play in teams!
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Art C

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Base US map (assuming you are in the US) simplifying the geography for folks is just one less hurdle. The simpler rules make bringing it out with anyone that much easier. Once they know the base game adding other maps or variants is much easier. Personally I will be bringing the US map with 1910 and Asia but starting with US map and base 1910 routes. (I like the bigger cards)
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Peter Schott
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Roanoke
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If you're playing ticket to ride, use 1910 and the rules for drawing new tickets for that. It makes it a much friendlier intro game - good mix of small and large routes, chance to not get stuck, human-sized cards, and just a better experience. Base USA isn't bad but I think the 1910 expansion really makes the game better all around.

Be sure to check out the Family Games rankings for some other ideas. Reverse Charades, Word on the Street, Wits and Wagers - could be just the change that is needed while being a little familiar.
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I got TtR 1910 for the superset of destination tickets for the US map, but to many others, the larger train cards and destination tickets stood out much more.
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Peter Schott
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They're both worthwhile to me. Those small cards were/are a killer to hold for me. The extra routes, some smaller routes, and the rule change to Draw 4, keep 1 were major bonuses as well. Taken together, 1910 is a must buy if you have TtR USA. (to me at least)
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Sven F.
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I have found the original version is pretty boring (for some reason). Europe is better and if it's for introducing first-time players, Europe is nicer, as the stations induce some "forgiveness".

For complexity, if you have yourself learnt the rules and rehearsed a "rules lesson", every TtR version is easy enough to learn fast for almost anyone.
 
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Smilin' Stan
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I would definitely recommend US over Europe. My experience of teaching Europe to older-generation non-gamers was not as smooth as I expected. Stations and tunnels take up too much explanation time that I wanted to be using to discuss tactics and strategy.

If you only have one shot at getting people excited for more then the simpler the better.

Also, I find that if people get blocked they get annoyed but want to try again. If people get screwed because they misunderstood tunnels or stations they just moan that it's too complicated. YMMV
 
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Greg Cornell
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Corunna
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You're American. I assume your family is too. Play the American map as that is familiar to everyone.

People who try to find excuses not to play board games will certainly take issue with a map that might not be as familiar and with names which are hard to pronounce since they more closely resemble the original language from which they come.

I have introduced TtR to many people and everyone who plays it really loves it. I have only used the American map when I do so. Streamlined rules make it easier to teach, and some people will prefer it to other versions. My wife would rather play America because the other maps I own (Europe and India/Switzerland) "add too much confusion to a game that doesn't need fixing."
 
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Ed Neville
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Westminster
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For my "two cents" I'd suggest the downloadable "TTR North Pole". A fellow BGG made this up for the Holiday's and my family loves it. The base game is simple like TTR USA, and the Christmas theme graphics are amazing. I printed my map (matte) not glossy. TTR USA is very easy to play and my sister who "hates board games...aka clue, monopoly.. did love playing TTR USA. We just got TTR Africa and my wife and I enjoy the new board and terrain cards. TTR Nordic is still our favorite but is more challenging to new players. Go into the BGG fourm's and search TTR North Pole, you'll find the complete map/destination tickets.

Merry Christmas.
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Larry Buckel
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I like US with 1910 expansion and you can play team rules just fine on the US map if you have the 1910 cards also. Just need 9-12 extra tokens for the train pieces. I actually prefer team play on the US map verses the Asia setting but to be fair I've only played Asia map 2-3 times.
 
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