Board Game Reviews: Ticket to Ride India and Switzerland

Ticket+to+Ride%3A+India+and+Switzerland+provides+Ticket+to+Ride+fans+with+two+new+maps%2C+each+with+a+few+special+rules.

Nikhil Vyas

Ticket to Ride: India and Switzerland provides Ticket to Ride fans with two new maps, each with a few special rules.

This week, we’ll take a look at an expansion for the renowned family board game, Ticket to Ride. This expansion adds a double-sided board depicting India on one side and Switzerland on the other. Each board in Ticket to Ride: India and Switzerland follow the same rules as the original game with a few new twists. If you don’t know how to play Ticket to Ride, you should check out my review on Ticket to Ride: Europe where I explain how to play the game and then come here to find out what is new in this expansion.

How to Play

The gallery below explains the new rules for each map. Afterward, I’ll share my final thoughts and compare these maps to the Europe map.

 

Final Thoughts

This is an expansion for Ticket to Ride after all, so there is no surprise that I like this expansion. I like the India map slightly more than the Europe map, but I like the Switzerland map a little less than the Europe one.

I especially like the India map because it makes you think about building circles with your trains, which is something that you wouldn’t see any purpose in thinking about in Ticket to Ride. However, the decision to go for the Mandala bonuses is very interesting because it is an extremely competitive board, where everyone is bound to get blocked somewhere. Firstly, you have to think about how hard it is to complete your ticket again on entirely different routes. Next, you have to consider which specific routes on the board you need to claim and how likely it is that another player will block you. Lastly, you have to figure out whether it is actually worth doing.

While, that may seem like a lot of conditions that need to go right, going for the Mandalas is actually more effective than expected because you can sometimes get multiple Mandalas in a single train loop or figure eight. The game also encourages players to try this new scoring bonus by having most tickets be worth less than 10 points, so they are not valuable enough to score a lot of points on their own. This map also consists of mostly short routes of one to two spaces and only a few long routes that are six or more spaces long, so the strategy of just building long routes to get points that way is less valuable. Overall, I like this map a lot because the scoring is very balanced. It always feels like the map is too small for the number of players, which is something I prefer over the less interactive maps. However, that viewpoint will differ among gamers.

The Switzerland map is good in every way that regular Ticket to Ride is good, but there are a few aspects of its design that make it fall below the other Ticket to Ride maps. The first flaw I have is that there are duplicate tickets. I like the idea of having tickets where players need to connect two countries or a city with a country. I get that the game wanted to emphasize these country to country connections and encourage players to draw tickets since they could get a ticket they already have, but I’m disappointed that the game included duplicate tickets for all the country to country routes instead of adding some more city to country routes or just standard routes.

The second criticism about this map is that many of the destination tickets all fall into the same part of the board. If you happen to figure out where that is and are the only player to be building in that part of the board, you can blindly draw more and more tickets because you’ll usually get at least one that is in that area.

The last major point about this map is that it is only for two to three players. I usually find that Ticket to Ride is a more interesting game with more players and is fast enough that adding more players doesn’t drag the game length. However, if I am going to play Ticket to Ride with two or three players, I think this map does a good job creating the same atmosphere as the higher player count maps because there are fewer total routes to claim on the board.

All in all, Ticket to Ride India and Switzerland is a good expansion for Ticket to Ride. If you like Ticket to Ride and especially like the smaller maps, then you definitely need to check this expansion out. The India map is excellent and the Switzerland map is okay, but these are all comparisons within the amazing Ticket to Ride series. Therefore, this expansion is essential for Ticket to Ride fans, and I give it an 8 out of 10.

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