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October 12, 2014 / Jett

Ticket to Ride 10th Anniversary Edition Impressions

Ticket to Ride 10th Anniversary Edition

To celebrate the landmark release of Ticket to Ride in 2004, Days of Wonder has put out a special 10th anniversary edition of the classic board game. This premium package includes all of the content from the USA 1910 Expansion, larger cards, a double-sized board and new custom trains for each colour. It also comes with a premium price tag, as we got ours for about $80 before tax. For context, you can get the same amount of content by buying the original game for $40, the expansion for $16 and still have $24 left in your pocket.

Despite owning the original and the expansion, Steff and I have been waiting for the right time to upgrade. Thanks to a gift card that Steff received for her birthday, we now have this mammoth-sized game sitting on our shelf. Is it worth upgrading from coach to a first class ticket?

If you’re looking for impressions on the game itself, I suggest checking out my review on the phenomenal main game and solid expansion. In short, Ticket to Ride is my personal favourite board game and easily one of the all-time greats. If you haven’t played it, by all means give it a shot. The real question is, do you need to make your first trek with this premium version of the game? And for those who already own it, is it worth upgrading?

First thing you’ll notice about the game is that the box is huge. The size increase is to compensate for the larger board, larger trains and storage tins for the trains. Strictly from a storage perspective, it’s kind of a pain, as there isn’t a way to get it to sit on our Ikea Expedit shelf, which is where we keep most of our stash. This isn’t the end of the world, though something to keep in mind if your tight on storage space. photo 4(2)Inside, you’ll notice that the new board is massive. According to the Days of Wonder site, it’s 38 x 25.5 inches. We have what I would consider to be a very large coffee table in our living room and this board almost covers it. I never found the original game to be too small, but this resizing doesn’t hurt. I really like how they updated the visuals on the board to look more like a lively map. They’ve also added a second set of small numbers to the scoring track for cases where players score over 100 points, which is a nice functional improvement.

Ticket to Ride 10th Anniversary Edition TrainsBecause of the larger board, the coloured tracks are also larger. You could play with the original trains, though they will leave noticeable gaps between each other. Instead, you’re better off playing with the new trains that come with the anniversary edition. Unlike the original, where there was only one train design that came in five different colours, the anniversary edition comes with custom trains for each colour. Steff likes to play with the red ones that have tiny giraffes sticking their heads out over top of the cars, while I play with the yellow trains that are shaped like barrels because they remind me of Donkey Kong. These are a dramatic upgrade in terms of aesthetic appeal and build quality. Since they look so great and add an extra level of personality to the experience, I wish I could use these trains on everything, although they’re too big to work on the standard board. My only concern with these trains is the way in which the giraffe heads stick out of the trains. It does look like something that could break easily, so I’ll be looking out to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Ticket to Ride 10th Anniversary Edition TinAll of the trains are housed within custom tins. These are certainly an upgrade from the plastic baggies that housed the old trains. I love how each tin is custom designed to match the colour and theme of the trains they contain. They also make for a great place to keep your trains during gameplay instead of having them sprawled on the table in front of you.

photo 2(3)Adding all of the expansion cards to this edition of the game is a huge plus, but the cards themselves have also been revamped. Unlike the small ticket-stub cards of the original, the anniversary edition cards are bigger and made of a thicker stock. They’re not as big as the cards that came with the original expansion, but they work just fine here. All of the visuals have been redone as well. I like how they look, though I have a functional gripe with the new rainbow card. The old card featured a garish rainbow pattern in the background. In the new game, the main background on the rainbow card is black, with the rainbow elements worked into the borders. At a glance, it’s easy to get the rainbow card mixed up with a black one, though I see why they did it. Personally, I would have preferred the obnoxious rainbow card for its functional benefits, but I’ll probably get over it in time.

The Ticket to Ride 10th Anniversary Edition is certainly a fine piece of kit. For big fans of the game that are looking for the best version of it, you’re certainly getting your money’s worth here, as the build quality on everything is great. That said, does it make the standard edition obsolete? No. This version is notably more expensive while being incompatible with any other expansion maps due to how big the trains are. The decision to go with this version is going to come down to how much more you’re willing to pay for a higher quality version of the game that isn’t really compatible with other maps or expansions. I think most people will be just fine with the standard issue version, though I’m certainly thankful for having the 10th anniversary edition.

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One Comment

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  1. INK1ing / Oct 13 2014 8:48 AM

    What a whopper! I love the individual tins and customised carriages.

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