I’m not a hardcore gamer. I have friends who are, but outside of the increasingly rare session of poker, I don’t play video games or board games or card games or dice games.
But the times they are a-changin’.
Confession: I have a like-new copy of Carcassone sitting in storage somewhere. Or maybe I passed it along to my stepdaughter; I don’t remember. What I do remember is that when I bought it 10+ years ago, I gave it a trial run or two and it didn’t stick. Back then my idea of game night was hours-long sessions of poker: limit and no-limit Hold Em, Omaha, Stud, Draw, Razz, Badugi, and other variations. You name it, my buddies and I played it into the wee hours of the morning.
Forward to today: I don’t play much poker, but now I’m wish-listing, buying, and playing games like there’s no tomorrow. The latest and greatest addition to my collection was Ticket to Ride. Back in January I bought Pandemic and have played it dozens of times, but only as a solo game. My wife played it with me once, but wasn’t really into it. No problemo, since it played so well with one player. But when I bought Ticket to Ride last week, I was a bit nervous. What if my wife didn’t like it? The only solo variants I found online didn’t sound as good, since it’s not a cooperative game in which roles could be shared by one player.
Thankfully, my wife enjoyed Ticket to Ride. Success! We played three games over the weekend and had a blast. I had read many reviews (and watched the TTR Tabletop episode, of course) about how elegant and simple the game was to learn, and it’s true. It only took a few turns to get the hang of gameplay and after each game we discussed strategies and other nuances. Not only has it been a lot of fun, but it’s also quality time with the missus: a win-win, obviously.