Imagine yourself as the “keeper of the trains”, as opposed to yours truly, the “keeper of the games“.
You are a contractor, building the Paris Metro in 1900 and the city fathers have promised to pay you by the mile (ding!).
So you want your trip lines to be as long as possible and your rivals’ lines to be short.
There are 32 stations placed at the edges of a suitably dark (after all, this is the subway) 8×8 board, each with a departure track and one for arrivals.
Players’ color-coded trains are placed at pre-assigned points around the board.
They then take turns placing complex, multi-track tiles according to a couple of simple rules.
When a line is completed, its owner receives a point for every tile it crossed along the way (which freqently involves crossing the same tile more than once).
If a trip ends at one of the stations in the center of the board, points received are doubled.
When all tiles have been played, you tally up and c’est tout, monsieur!
Metro is a great game. Virtually everyone I’ve played it with has enjoyed themselves. It’s very easy to get into, (your newbie friends will take to it quickly) but there are enough interesting decisions to keep the most sophisticated gamer involved.
And there’s the nasty factor. One of my friends calls it ‘hosing your neighbor’! The best way to be sure your opponents don’t make long trips is to give them short ones. So every line that’s completed for 2 or 3 or 4 points, is one less that might go for a big score.
And someone could complete one line near the end of the game to score as much as 40 points ( so watch out for that guy in last place).
Metro is designed by Dirk Henn (Atlantic Star, Alhambra) and was just released in the U.S. by the boys at Uberplay.
The game plays well for up to 6 , though we preferred 2, 3, or 4-handed to minimize down time and allow you to plan a bit.
However, all is not perfect in the Paris underground. Several funsters complained that they found themselves, effectively, out of the game (all of their trips had ended) but having to still place tiles, giving their opponents more points along the way. That and the scoring track being a bit impractical leave Metro just short of “Major” but definitely Fun!