||While the game is fairly lightweight, it does have enough interesting decisions to keep a more serious gamer interested. Do I build a route this turn, or collect more cards? Who is building in the same area? Will they block me? Should I try to block someone else, even though the route won't help me with my current tickets? Should I draw more tickets when I've completed the ones I have, or will I end up with tickets I can't complete, and lose points? Should I keep the longer tickets, for more points, or the shorter ones because they're easier to complete?
There is a certain luck factor involved in the game, affecting which tickets and train cards are available to each player, and whether two players' routes will overlap, resulting in a lot of competition for specific routes. However, there are enough decisions involved that luck is unsually only a significant factor on an occasional turn, and it does not drive the game.
What I like:
- This is probably the perfect gateway game: It's easy to learn, and the concept is pretty clear, but it's still fun for more serious gamers.
- It plays well with anywhere from 2 to 5 players.
- My wife enjoys it. (Always a key factor!)
- It plays quickly: A game often runs less than an hour, and there is minimal downtime between turns.
What I don't like:
- The cards that come with the game are small, and can be a little annoying to play with.
- The game, ultimately, has limited depth. It's good enough that I expect I'll always be willing to put it on the table for a game or two, but it doesn't scratch the "gamer's itch" the same way that something like Puerto Rico or Race for the Galaxy will.
(It's worth noting that the Ticket to Ride: USA 1910 expansion provides larger cards, and adds more tickets that provide some nice variety - I'd strongly recommend picking this expansion up.)
Rating: [5 of 5 Stars!]