Ticket to Ride is a rare example of a board game that combines problem solving and theme in a way that is very satisfying. It’s a brightly coloured game with deceptively simple rules that has you plotting your turns ahead of time, all the while watching what the other players do. It’s jolly train theme hides the fact that this is a game about mapping resources and taking chances.
The game itself is pretty simple; you are trying to build train routes across the map. You do this by collecting enough cards of the correct colour. You have a hand of ‘routes’ that you need to complete, and the board is designed in such a way that you will always conflict with other players. The core game mechanic (collect cards, place trains) is simple enough that it pleases the part of your brain that likes to plan ahead and collect things.
The 15th Anniversary edition of Ticket to Ride Europe is what you’d expect from the deluxe edition of a well-loved family board game. All the types of train come in their own tin and have their own distinct look and design, making the game more accessible for those who have difficulty with colours. The board is broader and friendly, and the card and other pieces are prettier than the normal game. Ticket to Ride is a very pretty game at the best of times and they’ve gone all out here to make this a memorable game.
The Europe edition is seen by fans of the game as the most family friendly version; the use of stations makes it easier for players to claw back points if they’ve failed to get the route they wanted. This adds to one of Ticket to Ride’s core appeals; this is the sort of game you can play to relax. It’s for when you want to play a board game, but don’t quite have the energy to process something like Cursed City or Unfathomable. Ticket to Ride: Europe is a warm hug of game, it’s challenging enough to be pleasing and frustrating enough to be addictive.
This edition includes the 1912 expansion built in; this provides extra cards and allows multiple modes of play. Basically very short games or super long ones, depending on your tastes. This makes the set ideal for any style of play. Add this feature to the fact that the game is very friendly to all tastes and you have a perfect game for friends and family.