(this article first appeared in issue #6 of "Games
International" in June 1989. It is reproduced here with the permission of the
by Alan R Moon
This variant will open up the board quite a bit. While the new hexes are added to the
south map edge, the north is also increased in value by making it easier to run into and
through New York. This balances the value of all the corporations and puts the emphasis
back on the player to non the corporation in the best possible manner. In addition, all
the corporations, with the exception of the Erie, now begin in the east, and must make
their way west together.
- Add two more rows of hexes to the southern map edge as shown on the next page. The
Deep South hex on the mapboard becomes the new C&O base hex in hex K13.
- Treat the old C&O base as a normal grey city hex.
- The Norfolk & Western is added as the ninth railroad.
- It is available at the beginning of the game.
- Its base hex is Norfolk.
- There are nine shares; a 20% President's Certificate and eight single share
- The N&W has three tokens.
- The Pennsylvania's base hex is changed to a different, permanent grey hex. All
routes may be traced through this hex, the Pennsylvania base station does not prevent a
route being traced through this hex. Any corporation may begin or end their route by
counting the Pennsylvania station as in the nomral rules of play, but only the
Pennsylvania itself can count the base station as an intermediary stop on a run. The
station is considered to be anywhere within the hex, and this can change within a turn
from player to player or from turn to turn as needed.
New hexes and tiles:
- Baltimore and Boston have the same, new green hex.
- Baltimore and Boston have different, new brown hexes.
- New York has a different brown hex.
- Grey hex D24 is changed.
- Hex F20 is changed from a double small city hex to a single large city hex.
- There is a special brown tile for hex G17. When the Brown tiles become available, the
yellow tile in hex G17 (no matter which one was placed) can be promoted to this brown
tile. All routes run through this hex must count it as one city, value $20.
- Hex K3 is a new large single city hex.
- Hex K15 is changed to a river hex which which costs the corporation that initially
lays a tile $40.
- Hexes K11, L6 and L8 are mountain hexes. Each costs $120.
- Hex L9 is a mountain hex with a single large city. It costs $120 to build tile
- The Chicago hex is changed. Routes may now be run through this hex. It does count as
a city on the route.
- Hex M10 is the Coalfields. Each corporation which wishes to run into/through this hex
must pay the $140 blasting cost to build the route to the mines. It does count as a city
on the route, and any route can only pass through it once per run.
- Hex N 13 is the new Deep South.
- Add one more 4 train.
- Use the optional 6 train.
- Add two 7 trains (4-6-6-4 Challengers). They cost $710. These become available after
the first 6 train is bought.
- Diesels now cost $750 with a tradein and $900 without.
- Trains that become obsolete are not removed until after the owning corporation's
next Operating Turn.
- Add two yellow 57 station tiles.
- Add one green 14 station tile.
- Add one green 15 station tile.
- Add one brown 63 station tile.
Increase the number of certificates each player can hold by one, regardless of the
number of players in the game.
Optional rule: add $8000 to the bank. This will guarantee at least three more
operating rounds in the game and will make the decisions of whether to buy a diesel or 7
train more important.
Take a ride
This variant can also be used with the 'Take A Ride On The Reading' variant
published in the General, Volume 23, Number 6, to create 10 railroads, as follows:
- The Reading station is located and treated per the rules in `Take A Ride On The
- The Norfolk & Western now has only eight certificates: two 20% share certificates
(one is the President's Certificate) and six 10% share certificates.
- Add two 4 trains instead of one and two 6 trains instead of one.
- Increase the number of certificates each player can hold by two instead of one.
- Add a minimum of $4,000 to the bank. Up to $12,000 can be added if players desire
- All other rules in the first part of this article supersede those in 'Take A Trip
On The Reading'.
Another interesting variant would be to use both the Reading and Norfolk & Western
and drop the Erie from the game.
New tiles and board changes: coalfields.zip