Ticket to Ride Reflex Review: Mobile Achievement Puncher

Ticket to Ride Welcome ScreenFamily trips when I was a kid meant loading up a backpack full of books, CDs, magazines, and those magnetic travel versions of board games. They came in all varieties from checkers to Sorry. You’d be bouncing around in the back seat, praying that the magnets held as you declared “king me!”

With tablets, we don’t have to deal with magnets and tiny game pieces. Many popular tabletop games now have tablet versions to take on the road. On my latest trip, I played the iPad version of Ticket to Ride with my husband on the plane.

Ticket to Ride for iOS has three ways to play. You can play single player, online, or pass and play. We played the pass and play version. It was a fun way to pass the time on the plane, although we both were hosed when we found out you can’t both take a double track on two player.

But what really got me hooked was when I started playing online or against the computer. See, there are tons of achievements to get in Ticket to Ride. And being of the “you get a gold star” generation, I want to get all of them. It’s more than that, though: when I try to get achievements, it forces me to adapt and get new strategies. I can’t use the same strategy to “get the 12 tickets punched” achievement as I do to get the “all your cars form one train” achievement, and having to play in these different ways makes the game more fun.

Overall, at $6.99 for iPad, Ticket to Ride gives you a lot of play for the money, although I was disappointed when the iPhone version ($1.99) wasn’t included with the iPad version. I’m looking forward to playing the tabletop game with my friends, with all of the new strategies I picked up from playing the tablet version.

Ticket to Ride is available for iOS and Android. You can also play on PC through Steam or on the web.

Reflex Review – Like a memorable meal, some games make a big enough impression that you’ve got to tell other people about them before they’re fully digested.

Nicole Zeckner is one half of powerful minds behind the culture blog, Pure Geekery. Follow her online @PurelyNicole