Arrived in Dallas early on Thursday and had lunch in the terminal at Tigin Irish Pub before wandering over to the Hyatt to check-in and pick up my registration for the convention. After dropping everything in my room, I went down to the convention area and found a table looking for players and started with a game of Ticket to Ride. And from there, more games and catching up with other gamer friends I only see in Dallas every November!
Ticket to Ride
I am always happy to play any version of Ticket to Ride. I played the US map with a couple of first and second time attendees. I hadn’t played in a few years and enjoyed reacquainting myself with the game. It is a great gateway game to introduce new gamers to the hobby or to pull out when you want to play something lighter with the casual crowd.
Chris and Julie Brooks arrived in the middle of the afternoon and played this 3D building game with dice. Innovative uses of dice in games has been an ongoing trend over the past several years and Cubist has delivered another interesting twist. The dice you roll are resources used in building available sculptures, or installations. When placing a die next to an existing die in your sculpture, it must be one higher or lower the existing die (e.g., only a 2 or a 4 can be placed next to a 3) and when placing a die on top of an existing die, it must match the die. I enjoyed Cubist a lot and if you like dice, 3D and spatial reasoning, you should give it a try.
Trains: Rising Sun
Trains: Rising Sun is a newer version of the game we played at last year’s convention. It has a different set of cards and new maps, including a couple of 2 player maps. It also adds route bonuses. We did not play with the route bonuses and I imagine this will make a subtle difference in the gameplay. If you like Dominion, you may want to give this a spin. It’s a board game and a deck builder…Dominion in a board game format. With the 2 player maps, this would be the version I would purchase to play with Jill.
Red7 is an unusual card game like nothing I have ever seen before. You might call it a reverse ladder game. The objective is to be winning the hand at the end of your turn. Otherwise, you are out of the hand and play continues until only one player remains. The current rule in play states what is required to be winning the hand and you play either 1 or 2 cards (a card to your face up area, a card to replace the rule or one to each) so that you are now winning the hand. Red7 is a simple card game with a lot of depth.