- 1 Game Board
- 83 Tracks
- 35 City Cards In 5 Colors
- 6 Player starting markers
- 6 Player Locomotives for scoring
- starting player card
- 1 Rulebook
Place the game board in the middle of the table. Place the tracks as a supply for all next to the game board.
Each player chooses a color, places his starting marker before him (in his play area) and his locomotive as a scoring marker in the train house.
When playing with 2 or 3 players, remove the 10 city cards with dashed borders (2 per each color), placing them back in the box. These are not used in the game.
Sort the 35 (or 25 with 2 or 3 players) city cards by color, shuffle each color separately, and place each stack face down next to the board.
Each player draws 1 card from each color (1 red, 1 orange, 1 yellow, 1 green, and 1 blue), putting them in his hand and keeping them secret from his opponents. He looks at these cards to see what dries they represent. Place the untaken cards aside to be used in the next round, without looking at them.
The players choose a starring player. This player places the starring player card in his play area.
Object of the Game
Each player tries to connect his 5 dries with tracks.
When a player's 5 dries are connected, the round ends immediately. This usually happens on the player's turn, but happen on another player's turn. The other players lose points based on how many tracks each needs to place to connect their 5 dries.
After several rounds, the player with the most points is the winner.
The starting player begins and the others follow in clockwise order.
In each player's first turn, he places his starting marker on any empty crossing point on the game board. A city is also considered to be on a crossing point and players may place their starting markers on cities as well. A player's starting marker is the starting point for that player's track network.
Tip: it is generally not a good strategy to start your network to close to another player's starting point.
From these starting points, the players begin their networks.
Network building rules
Per turn, each player may either place:
1 or 2 tracks on unoccupied line(s) on the board (over flat land
1 track on one unoccupied double line (as a bridge over a river, as a tunneL through a mountain, or as a ferry over the sea
Each player may only place tracks adjacent to his starting marker or adjacent to another track that is connected through other tracks to his starting marker.
As the individual networks grow and connect to each other, a player's options grow, so that he can place track on what was other players' networks, but is now connected to his.
Each player must, in each turn, place at least one track.
When a player places a track, it may be placed facing in any direction at a crossing (or city), as long as it is placed on a single or double line on the board.
When a player places two tracks on a turn (both on flat land), they may be adjacent to each other or in different parts of his network.
A player may connect his network to another's at any time. After that, the player may place tracks anywhere from the combined network as though the entire network were his own (see example).
Tip: a player should not connect to others' networks too early in the round
End of the Round
When, after a track is placed, a player's 5 dries are connected to each other, the round ends immediately. The player shows his cards to prove this. If his dries are not connected, the round continues with that player's cards face up in his play area.
Exception: When a player places his first track (over flat land) and this connects an opponent's 5 cities, he may place his second track (over flat land) before the round ends.
Extreme cases: The round also ends when all tracks have been placed.
Scoring of a Round
Each player, except the winner of the round (the player whose 5 cities are connected), counts how many tracks he would need to place to connect his 5 cities. When counting the missing tracks, each player counts:
- 1 point for each missing track over flat land (with a single line) and
- 2 points for each track over river, mountain, or sea (with a double line) For each point counted, the player moves his locomotive downward one space in the direction of the red space ot the bottom of the scoring track.
All tracks on the game board may be used by a player when counting, so he can calculate the fewest number of missing tracks.
The players do not actually place missing tracks as they count them.
Locomotives can stand on the same space and can also pass each other on the scoring track without incident.
Preparation for the Next Round
Remove all tracks from the game board.
Each player takes his starting marker back, placing it in his play area. Again, shuffle the 35 (or 25) city cards by coLor, placing them in separate stacks next to the game board.
Again, each player takes 1 card from each stack, holding them in his hand. The starting player gives the starting player card to his left neighbor, who begins the new starting player.
End of the Game
The game ends after all players have scored for a round and at least one player moves his locomotive to or beyond the red space at the bottom of the scoring track.
The player with the most points is the winner!
If several players tie with the most points, they rejoice in their shared victory!