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Tame the American Continent! The Civil War is over! America strives to connect sea to shining sea with iron horses and steel rails, opening the vast untamed lands to millions of adventuresome citizens weary of war.

This strategic railroad game extends from the muddy Mississippi to the coast of California. Each player takes the role of the President of a Railroad, building across the vast plains, high mountain ranges, burning deserts and dense forests of the Western US, crossing the Continental Divide!

Continental Divide is not a game of luck or chance, but a competitive struggle of wits, savvy and guile. Many decisions await the creators of these railroads, including what routes to build, how to capitalize, and what goals to set -- both short and long term.

This modern classic has all the challenges faced by the empire-building capitalists that created a modern superpower.


  • 1 Game Board
  • 288 Railroad Cubes, 36 of each of 8 colors
  • 80 Shares of Railroad Stock, 10 for each railroad
  • 1 Red Turn Order deck with 6 cards
  • 1 Blue Turn Order deck with 6 cards
  • 8 Charter cards, 1 for each railroad
  • 1 Game Turn Locomotive
  • EGG Money
  • Instructions


Lay out the game board. Give each player money:

  • 3 players - $80
  • 4 players - $60
  • 5 players - $48
  • 6 players - $40

Place the Game Turn locomotive in the Game Turn 1 box on the game board A.

As many Turn Order cards (of red and blue each) are used as players in the game, return any extra Turn Order cards to the box. Shuffle the Blue Order cards. Each player takes one randomly, placing it face up in front of themselves. Play begins with the player with Turn Order 1.

Game Play

The player with the Turn Order #1 card has a chance to buy stock and then build track.

Then the player with Turn Order #2 card goes, etc., until each player has had a turn.

  • Buy Railroad Stock
  • Build Railroad Track

After each player has had a turn, then these general functions are performed in this order:

  • Pay Dividends
  • End of Game?
  • Advance Game Turn Locomotive
  • Determine Turn Order

Buy Railroad Stock

A player may buy share(s) of one railroad stock. This may either be the first; share in an unstarted railroad (a railroad with no shares in player hands) or one or more shares in an existing railroad (a railroad with shares in player hands).

Buying a Share of an Unstarted Railroad

The player decides the railroad's starting city: Chicago, Memphis or New Orleans. The player places a railroad cube of that same color in one of the 3 hexes comprising that City.

The player takes another cube and places it on the Railroad Income track on the game board at the 0 box A.

The player decides how many shares that railroad will issue (minimum 3, maximum10). Any extra shares are removed from the game at this time. The player takes one of the shares for themselves.

The player takes one of the cubes and places it on the Issued Shares track C at the correct number. The cube will remain at that location for the remainder of the game.

The player decides the Stock Value of the railroad stock (minimum $10, maximum $50) and places that much money with the stocks. Note that every Stock Value must be different, two railroads may not have the same stock value.

The player then takes a cube and places it on the Stock Value at the value paid D. The cube will remain at that location for the remainder of the game, Stock Values never change.

On the railroad's Charter card, the player leaves the unsold stock in the certificates area E and 12 cubes in the Starting Railroads area F. The rest of lhe cubes will become available as the railroad builds west:, into the Central and Western Regions. Place 10 cubes in

the 'Available After Building into Central Region G and 'Available After Building into Western Region H areas of the Charter card. The railroad's money supply is placed in the Railroad's Treasury to the right of the Charter card.

Buying Shares of One Existing Railroad

The player may buy one or more shares of one existing railroad. The money paid goes in the Railroad's Treasury.

The minimum cost for one share is the Stock Value of that railroad (as shown on the Stock Value track) plus the dividend that would be paid at that moment.

For example, if the blue railroad has 10 Total Shares, an Initial Value of $32, and an income of $30, ($3 Dividend), the minimum cost is $35 per share. A player may elect to pay more than the minimum cost.

Build Railroad Track

The player may build track for one or more railroads. The player must be the Majority Shareholder (the player with the most shares) or tied with other player(s) for Majority Shareholder to build track for that railroad.

Each railroad has a number of cubes for building track. Taking a cube of that railroad from

the railroad's collection of available cubes and placing it in a hex shows that a railroad has built track in that hex. The track built must connect back to that railroad's Starting City using on that railroad's track. Each railroad may have only one cube in a hex.

Each hex has a build cost number (left) and an income provided number shown in the hex.

The track built during this player's turn must be placed in an unbroken straight line beginning at an existing built hex. The player chooses a hex that has a track cube of that railroad.

They may build track from that hex and the track built during this player's turn must be built in a straight line from that hex.

No more than 3 railroads may occupy a single hex. There is no artificial limit to how much track a player may have a railroad build.

The only limiting factors are the railroad's unused, available cubes and its available money. Only the railroad may pay to build track, not the players.

Starting Cities

Starting Cities (Chicago, Memphis and New Orleans) are groups of three distinct hexes.

A railroad may only occupy a single hex of a Starting City. Starting Cities provide no income.

Port Cities

Port Cities (San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle) provide a Transcontinental Connection, see below. A railroad may only occupy a single Port City. Port Cities may only hold one railroad!

Eastern, Central & Western Regions

The map is divided into three sections, namely the Eastern Region, the Central Region and the Western Region. These are delineated by a red line from North to South. All railroads begin in the Eastern Region.

When a railroad starts, it has 12 cubes for building track.

If the railroad builds in to a hex in the Central Region, it immediately receives 10 more cubes. These cubes may be immediately used to continue track building.

If a railroad builds in a hex in the Western Region, it immediately receives the remaining 10 cubes. These cubes may be immediately used to continue track building.

Across the Continental Divide

If a railroad builds into a hex on the western side of the Continental Divide, its Income is increased by $10.

Building into the Central Region unlocks ten more cubes. Building into the Western Region unlocks the ten remaining cubes. Crossing the black Continental Divide line immediately advances the railroad's cube on the Income Track ten spaces.

Summary of Restrictions

  • Maximum of 3 railroads in a hex.
  • Maximum of 1 railroad in a Port City hex.
  • A railroad may occupy only one Starting City hex.
  • A railroad may only occupy one Port City hex.
  • A railroad may only build track from an existing hex and only in a straight line.

After every player has taken their turn, it is time to Pay Dividends.

Pay Dividends

Every existing railroad pays dividends to the shareholders, keeping any remainder for itself. Dividends are paid from the bank to the shareholders and possibly to the railroad.

Divide the current Railroad Income (as recorded on the Railroad Income track) by the number of Total Shares. Round up. This is the amount paid from the bank to the shareholders for each share of that railroad that they possess.

It may be the case that not all of the possible Railroad Income is disbursed to the shareholders. Any remainder is kept by the railroad. It is also possible that all shares are held by players, and, due to rounding, they receive more income in total than the railroad generates in total income.

For example, the Red railroad has a Railroad Income of 15 and 4 Total Shares. Pete has one share, Dave has two shares, and one share remains with the Railroad. 15/4 = 3.75, round up to 4. Pete receives $4, Dave receive $8 and the Railroad receives the leftover $3.

For example, the Red railroad has a Railroad Income of 15 and 4 Total Shares. Pete has one share, Dave has two shares and Vince has one share. 15/4 = 3.75, round up to 4. Pete receives $4, Dave receives $8 and Vince receives $4.

After all dividends have been paid, it is time to check for the end of the game.

End of the Game

The game ends at the end of turn 8. If this is the case, the game is over and Victory Points are awarded.

The winner is the player with the most VPs. Ties are possible. Money is worthless, it was just a too

Award Victory Points

The winner is determined by Victory Points.

Each railroad stock is worth VPs:

  • 1 VP if the railroad entered the Central Region
  • 1 VP if the railroad entered the Western Region
  • 2 VP if the railroad crossed the Continental Divide
  • 1 VP if the railroad has track in San Diego
  • 1 VP if the railroad has track in Los Angeles
  • 1 VP if the railroad has track in Portland
  • 2 VP if the railroad has track in Seattle
  • 1 VP if the railroad has track in San Francisco
  • 1 VP if the railroad has no unsold stock

Advance Game Turn Locomotive

If the game is not over, advance the Game Turn Locomotive to the next box. It is now time to determine the new player order!

Determine Player Order

Two different sets of Turn Order cards are provided to facilitate this determination. One set will be in use showing the existing player order, with the cards face up in front of the players. The second deck will be used to show the new player order.

The player with the highest Turn Order number (#4 in a 4 player game, the player who went last) selects which Turn Order card they desire for the next turn. They take that Turn Order card from the other deck, discarding the old card.

This is done by the player with the next highest Turn Order card, and so on. The player who had gone first gets the remaining Turn Order card.

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