Saturday, 23 January 2010

Rail Baron

Last night, Robert and Lenora invited us over to Robert's place for supper and to watch Alice. Well the PVR was screwed up so instead we played Rail Baron, a game by Avalon Hill from 1977.

Rail Baron is a roll and move game to some extent, as you move your train from one randomly generated location to another. After completing your trip, you get paid and you get the opportunity to purchase either an upgraded train or a track.

Every turn you move along a track that is not owned by anyone except you, you must pay a usage rate of 1000/turn. If the track is owned by another player you must pay them 5,000/turn you are on their track.

End game is when there are no tracks to be purchased and the cost of travelling on someone else's track doubles to 10,000.

Well the way the game broke out Brenda and Robert both got big payouts (and half decent dice rolls) and I got poor rolls (Lenora ditched us for a better offer)... They were buying all the big tracks and I was left buying the 4-15K tracks. When the end game arrived I was in the worst position financially, but had the most tracks, and owned most of the cheap tracks in the SE.

When you reach 200,000 you have the option of "declaring", which allows you to race for home. When you get there, if you still have over 200K, you win the game. Robert declared first and raced for home, unfortunately, Brenda had the fastest train in the game and caught him (which cost him 50,000). I steadily built up my funds and was at 228,000 when I declared. I made it home on my next turn, winning the game.

Brenda was 20,000 short but was heading home to complete a trip, if she would have made it home (on her next turn) the turn after that would have given her the win. Robert was still making a delivery and then was planning on declaring.

I found the game interesting, but I am not sure how often I would play it.

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