On the final night, of my final MBA class, a fellow student brought in Ticket to Ride. It is always exciting to find fellow gamers, though she was still just dipping her toes in the waters. She had gotten the game as a holiday gift and was somewhat underwhelmed at getting a random board game from a big box store. Then she played it and discovered, “hey this is pretty cool.” She brought it this particular night, so it could accompany her on a trip to Vermont, as what better way to spend downtime on a trip than with some Ticket to Ride.
This is blog about modern board games and gamers, so it is best we start at the beginning. There is no specific definition of a “gateway” game, but mine is games that can cause non-gamers to go that is pretty cool. These are the games that if you showed up at my doorstep and were willing to give a game a try, I would teach you. They tend to have simple and straight forward rules, relatable themes, engaging mechanics, and limited durations. They are usually readily available and often have a large amount of expansions and spinoffs.
Every Sunday, at least for a while, I plan on making a post about a gateway game. For those new to the hobby, this may help you decide where start. For experienced gamers, it may aid you in introducing others to modern gaming. Some people will try gateway games and learn board gaming isn’t for them. Others will experiment with gateway games, be happy and wish to delve no deeper. Some of us will move past the gateways and fall down a deep dark chasm never to return.
Eventually we will go venturing into the chasm, but for now, let’s start with Ticket to Ride.