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Just bought Ticket to Ride (US)


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#1 Russ

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Posted 05 January 2011 - 03:54 PM

I figured I should try to spend a Border's gift card I got for Christmas before that chain finally goes underwater, so I spent my lunch hour navigating through rows of clearance books and browsing their depleted shelves. I hit upon the US version of "Ticket to Ride" and bought it. Now I just need to convince myself that we'll play it without it feeling like pulling teeth.

We love to play games, but it seems like most of the games we own are the Cranium-type games that involve some sort of drawing, miming or intuiting something. My eleven year-old, Ruby, got Scribblish for Christmas and we spent a couple of gut-busting hours with that one. Great game. For whatever reasons, we've never really taken to the elaborate strategy games, though. No Risk or Stratego or games of that ilk. If you want to activate the laugh track in my house, just say "Settlers of Catan." After reading the rave, universal laurels that game's received here and elsewhere, I bought a set. We played it through once while learning the rules, and it hasn't been out of the box since. I keep thinking when they're a little older I'll throw it back in the mix, but maybe I'm fooling myself.

Before I pull the cellophance off the box, am I doomed to repeat history with "Ticket to Ride," or is this one going to go over a little easier with the home team? What should I do to make this one a hit?

#2 Jason Panella

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Posted 05 January 2011 - 04:44 PM

I feel like Ticket to Ride is a better intro to Eurogames (as we grognars like to call 'em) than, say, Settlers is. I think it's a lot of fun, so it's worth a shot. Some folks just like the more trivia-oriented games, is all. (And they're wrong, muwahah!)

Still, even if you rip the plastic off, the game is worth its weight in gold for trades on BoardGameGeek.com. You can probably trade it for a truck full of Cranium-style games.

Oh, which Borders did you go to? The one at Northway? That place is always packed.

#3 CrimsonLine

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Posted 05 January 2011 - 05:11 PM

Yeah, "Ticket to Ride" is a strategy game for folks who don't play strategy games. My mother-in-law, and her mother both play it, and they only play Scrabble. :)

Edited by CrimsonLine, 05 January 2011 - 05:11 PM.


#4 Russ

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Posted 05 January 2011 - 05:35 PM

Yeah-- the "strategy game for people who don't like strategy games" line was what I was hoping to hear. Thanks. Jason, it's clear that what I needed to create a houseful of Catan-iacs was to have somebody with your level of enthusiasm and gamenerdery present. Maybe I can rope you into playing with us sometime...

I picked it up at the Monroeville store. We live pretty close to the Northway store, which is usually pretty well-trafficked, especially when you consider that they converted a significant portion of the lower level to remainders.

#5 Jason Panella

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Posted 06 January 2011 - 09:47 AM

Yeah-- the "strategy game for people who don't like strategy games" line was what I was hoping to hear. Thanks. Jason, it's clear that what I needed to create a houseful of Catan-iacs was to have somebody with your level of enthusiasm and gamenerdery present. Maybe I can rope you into playing with us sometime...

I picked it up at the Monroeville store. We live pretty close to the Northway store, which is usually pretty well-trafficked, especially when you consider that they converted a significant portion of the lower level to remainders.


Not to get off topic, but my wife and I swung by Northway Mall / Ross Park Mall / etc. last week, and I was just bummed at the state of Northway. I remember when there used to be a couple of sweet mom and pop places there; I remember the movie theater (my parents took my brother and I to see, of all movies, End of Days there after Christmas in the '90s); I remember a sweet arcade with the Ninja Turtles game. Now there's a pet store, Marshalls, a Verizon place and lots of tumbleweeds rolling through stores. Don't people realize Northway was the first indoor mall in Pennsylvania? At least Ross Park has glitz and glamor.

#6 Russ

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Posted 06 January 2011 - 02:06 PM

My dad's family was from Oakland, Brentwood and Castle Shannon, and my mom's family was in Coraopolis and Moon, so I don't have any North Hills experience or nostalgia predating our move up that way in 2005, so Northway's always been on the decline in my frame of reference. I did see some movies at the bargain theater after we moved that way. Remember when they started devoting one of their four or five screens to a daily screening of a modern Bollywood film? I guess the theater ownership had changed, or maybe the existing ownership just got market-savvy. (I would go with the former theory over the latter.) The one time I made it out to see a Bollywood movie there was The Ballad of Mangal Pandey. When I walked in there were just two or three young women in the theater, and when they saw me walk in, their faces contorted to say, "Wrong theater, white guy." I loved the thought of those girls having a little square in the middle of suburbia that they'd feel was their own; a tiny, private public space where they'd be left alone to enjoy a piece of their otherhome and laugh, talk and do what they wanted

Did you see the wall at Northway with the black and white photos of what that place looked like upon its opening and depicting some of the events held there? It's tucked away in the most obscure location of that weirdly-laid out joint-- at the foot of an escalator right next to an overlarge dollar store. It's pretty great.

Oh, but there is a pizza place there-- Mama Lucia's-- that has our favorite Sicilian pizza.

#7 Jason Panella

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Posted 06 January 2011 - 02:32 PM

We should rename the thread "Just bought Ticket to Ride (Pittsburgh)."

I didn't grow up in the North Hills, but living in Beaver Falls makes the McKnight Shopping Paradise a lot closer than where I did grow up (near Aliquippa). While I'm thoroughly a Beaver County man (born here, educated here, live here), I get shivers just thinking about driving down Route 19 and seeing the lights of Retail Mecca shine upon me. I didn't start shopping in the North Hills until two or so years ago, but now I try to go monthly, if only just to make sure my car is still working. I even intentionally took my GREs a mile from Borders just so I could go there afterward. Honestly, though, as pro-small-town-USA-mom-and-pop-store as I am, I really dig that whole 2+ miles of stores on McKnight/Perry. The Half Price Books there usually has a great selection, and I love Aladdin's.

And speaking of board games, there's a place on Babcock Blvd. (almost directly behind Borders) called The Game Masters. They have a fantastic board game selection, though it leans toward more nerdy games (they have lots of card games and RPGs too). They always invite me to game with them, but some of their regulars are kind of creepy.

I'll also have to check out the pizza place. Sounds awesome.

#8 Russ

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 02:05 PM

Wanted to report back that we have played Ticket to Ride and really enjoyed it. My wife and I and our oldest took it out of the box one Friday night and were up and playing within ten minutes. Thanks for the advice.

Edited by Russ, 15 February 2011 - 02:06 PM.


#9 Jason Panella

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 02:31 PM

Next, you and the family will starting playing Magic Realm! Make sure you set aside a few weeks to play.

On topic, I too just bought Ticket to Ride after finding a massively discounted copy at one of those seasonal mall game/calendar stores. I played a bunch of games of Bananagrams with my wife over the weekend, so I'm hoping I can get her to try this tasty, tasty gateway game drug.

Edited by Jason Panella, 15 February 2011 - 02:34 PM.


#10 M. Leary

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 03:06 PM

I am considering having more children for the specific reason of having people to play these games with.

#11 Russ

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 04:05 PM

Next, you and the family will starting playing Magic Realm! Make sure you set aside a few weeks to play.


Ha. Is that significantly better than just playing D&D? I've still got all of my old sets, modules and hardbacks.

On topic, I too just bought Ticket to Ride after finding a massively discounted copy at one of those seasonal mall game/calendar stores. I played a bunch of games of Bananagrams with my wife over the weekend, so I'm hoping I can get her to try this tasty, tasty gateway game drug.


We were too busy trying to complete routes to even think about strategizing to block others. I'm thinking that game is going to get really fun when we know what we're doing.

Edited by Russ, 15 February 2011 - 04:05 PM.


#12 CrimsonLine

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 04:07 PM

Has anyone played Dominion? A friend has it, and we've played it a couple of times, and we really enjoy it.

#13 Jason Panella

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 10:32 PM

Has anyone played Dominion? A friend has it, and we've played it a couple of times, and we really enjoy it.


Denes, we talked a bit about Dominion in this thread (I linked to its first mention). General consensus: awesome.

And Russ, stick with D&D. Magic Realm is like pulling teeth, minus any joy gleaned from flipping through old copies of Highlights in the waiting room.

#14 Russ

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 10:13 AM

Did you see the Community episode centered on D&D from a week or so ago? If not, you'll have to find it on hulu.

Not only do I still have my D&D detritus, but I've also still got my Star Frontiers sets and my copy of Gangbusters!, TSR's not-so-popular roaring twenties RPG.

I doubt that I can get my daughters interested in these games, but maybe I can kill two birds, etc. I've been trying to ensure that they put off dating as long as possible, and there's no surer way to do that than by getting them interested in RPGs, right? [/unfair stereotype]

#15 M. Leary

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 11:01 AM

Did you see the Community episode centered on D&D from a week or so ago? If not, you'll have to find it on hulu.

Not only do I still have my D&D detritus, but I've also still got my Star Frontiers sets and my copy of Gangbusters!, TSR's not-so-popular roaring twenties RPG.

I doubt that I can get my daughters interested in these games, but maybe I can kill two birds, etc. I've been trying to ensure that they put off dating as long as possible, and there's no surer way to do that than by getting them interested in RPGs, right? [/unfair stereotype]


Funny episode. But... track down this episode of the IT Crowd. One of the funniest things I have seen on TV.

And that stereotype can backfire. Girls that play RPGs are highly sought after.

#16 Jason Panella

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 11:33 AM

And that stereotype can backfire. Girls that play RPGs are highly sought after.


This is very accurate. Very, very accurate. (Nightmares commence.)

#17 Russ

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 11:50 AM

Yeah, I failed to account for the Nerdbait Effect. ;)

#18 M. Leary

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 12:05 PM


And that stereotype can backfire. Girls that play RPGs are highly sought after.


This is very accurate. Very, very accurate. (Nightmares commence.)


The good thing about forming your daughters for this mating population is: Once the RPG girl is attained, the RPG male is a. not sure what to do with her or b. too nervous to do anything with her. So there is a measure of safety here that is worth considering.

#19 Russ

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 02:04 PM

And then they construct elaborate matching steampunk costumes, and where are you then?

#20 M. Leary

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Posted 16 February 2011 - 02:27 PM

With all the locks and zippers and latches on that Steampunk crap, I hope that is all my daughter wears until she is 30.