We love playing games and Wallace loves trains, so it was inevitable that we would end up with a version of Ticket to Ride. For Christmas 2020, they received the First Journey US version and we’ve only just gotten really into playing it. I also downloaded the kid’s app and play it more than they do, ha!
I was poking around on the company website and found they put out a free PDF Stay at Home game a little while ago. Fun idea! But, we don’t have any of the adult games required to use with it. I decided we would convert it to a kids version!
We started by printing out the playing board and the cards, cutting them, and taping the pages for the board together. Then we counted the different color train spaces on the game we have and cut 24 little rectangles of each color (more than we needed). They are larger than the spaces on the adult versions and we knew we would have fewer to work with, so it worked out. We also took out route cards that were only required one section of track and those that needed more than four to complete. We removed and route cards that used the guest bathroom.
Finally, we laid out all the little paper rectangles. That took a bit of time and patience in order to make sure we weren’t doubling up colors or making any of the route cards impossible. It would probably be really hard to play with four people, which is fine as we usually only ever get up to three players.
But what about Michigan?
I got to thinking about what else we could do and if people had made their own games of different places. I looked up Michigan and realized we could just use a map! I pulled out a 2008 Michigan road map and ordered us a replacement for our little collection of maps.
This took a lot more work because we were starting almost from scratch. We had to find cities that were far enough apart and make sure there were multiple paths connecting places.
I dawdled for a few days and worked on other things before coming back to finish it. I used address label stickers to write the city names on and cut them to size. Then we found some star stickers and used those to mark each city. The final step was writing up route cards, which took some debating and planning (and I would gladly share with anyone who wants to copy). I happened to have fancy perforated paper for printing business cards on, so we used that and aimed for about 30 route cards. I wrote them on by hand because I didn’t feel like dealing with getting the printer to format correctly for the cards.