Days of Wonder, 2004, 2-5 players, ages 8 and up. In Ticket To Ride, players attempt to build railroad routes across North America. The board consists of various cities connected by potential railroad routes. Players take turns drawing "car" cards and then playing them in the proper combinations to link as many cities as possible. The longer the connection you manage to build, the more points you earn for it. Bonus points are earned for linking the two cities on "destination ticket" cards that you can draw. The rules for this game are just a couple of pages long and it's really easy to get started playing. Unfortunately, like most "simple" games, it's actually pretty boring. To make matters worse, this game falls into the dreaded "abstract strategy" category of game. And with the possible exception of Backgammon, I have never been a fan of abstract strategy games (Checkers, Go, Chess, et al). This game is a perfect case in point. The game mechanics and play really don't have anything to do with railroads. And brother, if you're going to make a railroad themed game, then it damned well should have at least something to do with real trains. Otherwise, what's the point? My final complaint is that this is one of those what I call "golf tournament" games where, yeah, ultimately you're all in competition with each other, but it feels like you're playing by yourself. We spent somewhere around an hour playing this game and barely said two words to each other during the entire course of the game. IE, there is virtually zero player interaction. And gee, that always makes for a fun social occasion.
I picked up this game based on the rather rabidly orgasmic reviews for it on boardgamegeek.com. Just goes to show you, don't believe everything you read on the web.