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Ticket to Ride: Märklin
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Store:  Family Games
Series:  Ticket to Ride
Theme:  Train
Genre:  Connection, Set Collection
Format:  Board Games

Ticket to Ride: Märklin

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Product Awards:  
Games Magazine Awards
Family Game Nominee, 2007

Ages Play Time Players
8+ 30-60 minutes 2-5

Designer(s): Alan R Moon

Publisher(s): Days of Wonder, Asmodee North America

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Product Description

Ticket to Ride: Märklin is the third installment in the award winning series by Alan R. Moon. This train game, in which players attempt to connect routes between cities in Germany and surrounding countries, is widely hailed as the most strategic of the series. Adding new wild cards, two different types of tickets, and passengers, the Märklin version adds a new level of tension to the game, in which players must hurry to complete their tickets. Not only is their more competition between tickets, but players must also race to be the first to transport their passengers to achieve the lucrative points on the cities. Made to the high standards of all Days of Wonder games, Märklin is not just another version of the original game, but a tremendous strategic one in its own right.

While boardgamers may not be familiar with the Märklin name, train hobbyists consider it the premier name in the model train world. This German company has been around for over 140 years and is the world's leader in the miniature train hobby. Each train card in this edition will feature a different image (118 in all) of a Märklin model train car or locomotive.

Product Awards

Games Magazine Awards
Family Game Nominee, 2007

Product Information


  • 1 game board
  • 240 colored train cars
  • 165 illustrated cards
  • 5 scoring markers
  • 74 merchandise tokens
  • 1 Most Completed Tickets tile
  • 1 rules booklet
  • 15 passengers
  • 1 Days of Wonder online access number

Product Reviews


Average Rating: 4.8 in 4 reviews

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by John M.
GOOD Game, BAD Set-up!
April 15, 2007

I purchased this at my local gaming store a few months back, and then immediately played it with my friends Kevin and Chris. I forget who won that game but I think it was me?

Anyway, It's a great game with a new twist. Based more on the T2R: Europe version rules (rather than the original). The game is very well printed, gorgeous (thick) cardboard playing surface, and gorgeous, collectible playing cards. My only problem with this incarnation of T2R is the set-up, it's a pain in the ***! You have 4 color-coded die-cut cardboard counters that correspond to color-coded cities on the map. There is red, numbered from 1-3, yellow numbered from 2-4, white all numbered 2, and black (1 set only for Berlin) numbered from 4-7. You place them in stacks (going down in denomination) on the corresponding colored cities. This makes the set-up a bit tedious, but not nearly as bad as say, Axis & Allies, which can take up to 20 minutes to get ready. Once their set, each player decides on how many Route tickets they wish to draw from each pile (short and long routes). You may take as many tickets as you like with a minimum of 4 to choose from, then you MUST keep at least 2 before the game commences. Then shuffle the Train/Locomotive/Passenger deck, and deal each player 4 cards (I think?), and place 5 cards from the draw pile face-up where everyone can reach them. Later during the game if you finish your initial route cards, you may opt to take more, this time you must announce how many cards you want (at least 2, and from which route piles). After announcing this, then you must keep at least one from this draw, return the rest to the bottoms of their respective decks.

Ok so now you're ready to play, what's the object? To score as many points, and complete as many routes as you can. The mechanics of the game are EXACTLY like those of T2R: Europe. There is a new rule here that I don't think T2R: E has. That being, on the contingency that, if 3 (or more) Locomotive cards are in the "Face-Up" draw pile, you must trash all 5 face up draw cards, and draw 5 new cards. However again you may have NO more that 2 Locomotive cards face up at any time. I like this rule. There's a new Locomotive card the "+4 Locomotive", it has a distinctive look to it, "+4" appears on all 4 corners of the card. It can only be used on long routes of at least 4 or more spaces long; in other words you can't use it to make a 1-train car long route. I like this rule too, it definitely helps you complete the longer route tickets. It however is NOT like the regular locomotive cards, it can be picked up WITH another card, regular Locomotive cards count as 2 when you pick them up. Passenger cards are also counted as ONE card as well. You may also choose to draw 2 from the Face Up pile, 2 from the Face Down Pile, or one from each, which you can't do in T2R or T2R: E. I like this new mechanic a lot! There’s also the addition of the Passengers and Merchandise (the color-coded chits now on their respective cities). At the end of your turn you may place a passenger on any city, and then also move him, but it’s best to place him where you intend to make a long route, and move him AFTER you’ve made a fairly long route of your TRAINS. Moving the passenger is easy; you simply "Train" him from one city to another along YOUR colored Trains. As you pass over each city you take the top counter from each place he passes. You may NOT backtrack, nor visit a city more than once during his passing. If you come to an opponents route, AND! you have a Passenger Card; you can play the Passenger Card and pass over one length of an opponent’s route, the more passenger cards you have, the more routes of your opponent's you can pass over. Once the passenger reaches a dead end, or comes to a route (or city) he’s already passed over, his "passage" is over, and he’s removed from play. Now take all the counters you collected, add them up, and mark that score on the scoring track with your scoring marker.

Game play ends when one player has less than 3 Train Cars left, each player gets their "fair ups" after this, and final scoring begins. Final scoring is just like in T2R: E and the player with the highest score, is the winner. One thing I might have considered is penalizing a player for NOT using one (or more) of his passengers. As in T2R: E if you USE all your stations you lose 30 points, so I think for advanced players you might want to do the same thing here for any player who has an "un-traveled" passenger left over. I would think the 5 point-progressive penalty of T2R: E would work fine here as well. Meaning you loose 5 points for the first un-used passenger, 10 for the second and heaven forbid you have all 3 left over, 15 points lost on the third un-traveled passenger (for a grand total of –30 points).

I like this game a lot, but I like T2R: E a lot better, I think that it’s the best of the series. If you have the original T2R but hated it, you’ll enjoy this and T2R: E MUCH better. I give it 4 stars but, I took away one star because of the set-up, it really is a bit of a bother, if you can get over that (like me) you should really enjoy this version of T2R. Oh, and finally my only caveat about the entire series is scoring routes, I always get confused by it, since IT IS NOT logical. 1 = 1, 2 = 2, 3 = 4, 4 = 7 this always makes me think, why didn't they just multiply each route size by as they got longer? Oh well, what can you do?

Another success for Ticket to Ride!
November 21, 2006

Marklin or Europe, which one is better?

They both get 5 stars for sure but...

I like the idea moving passengers
takes longer to set up and clean up
I am a little annoyed with the little numbers that constantly falling!
10 extra points for more destination not the longest route!

I like having stations
What i didn't like in Europe was doing tunnels so I am glad that I don't have to do that in Marklin
I don't like getting 10 extra points for the longest route but you could easily ignore that rule
It is so much easier to find my destination in Europe than in Marklin

So which one is better? You can't go wrong with any of them! Even with 2 players these games are a blast. These are the games that you won't get bored with!!

Excellent - Builds to A Climax
June 21, 2006

Let me first say that I have only played this game 2-player with my wife. But it has turned out to be her (and my) favorite. It is really engaging! So simple to play and every round you get a sense of accomplishment (which my wife really loves) by acquiring good cards or laying down track. It flows quickly and smoothly without alot of analysis paralysis. It's a great combination of long term planning (through routes) and short-term resource acquisition (getting cards needed for laying track). We've had some (enjoyable) frustration at not getting the colored cards we need, and this adds to the element of excitement. We also are afraid that the other player will take the one track that makes our life easiest, which adds welcome tension to the game.

With two players, you have much more versatility in terms of movement; if someone blocks you, you can go around (though it cost you precious time!). We've found that every game has been pretty close; you can easily lose because you "didn't get to play one more move". That is the sign of a well-balanced game that ends up within reach to the losing player. Great game. Way to go, Days of Wonder!

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