10 Days in Telford (or Africa)

I’ve tried out 10 Days in Africa as both a 2-player and a 3 player over the last few days and here is my review of it. The components are very good, 2 solid wooden tile racks per player to hold the tiles which in turn are also solid card stock. The slightly strange (for me) bit is the game board of Africa which is a mounted map of Africa with the countries in in five different colours. The bit I find strange is that it is mounted, when the board is only used as a aid to the geography of the continent and not actually played on. I can’t fault it’s durability but maybe it only needed to be a paper map.

The game play is quite straight-forward, you start by filling your tile racks one space at a time with an eye to putting together a route through Africa with as little future alteration as possible. Once that is done the remaining tiles form a face down stack and three tiles are turned face up (a bit like Ticket to Ride or Elfenland from the same designers). Each turn a player can take one of the face up tiles or a face down one, which they can use to exchange for a tile on their rack. They then discard onto one of the three face up piles.The idea is to achieve a 10 Day journey around Africa by using a combination of walking, (to an adjacent country) by car (linking two countries by driving through another) and by plane (between any two countries that share the same colour as each other and the plane). The first player to achieve this wins.

In my first game after my initial 10 tiles had been selected I found myself only needing 3 tiles and it wasn’t long before I gained the first of those, the Ivory Coast tile. This tile matched nicely with the Burkina Faso tile on one side and the orange plane trip to Chad. A car soon linked me: Mauritania to Niger and before long a second Sudan tile came into my possession, which linked my journey to Chad. This left me needing any one of eight countries to finish (As the other Chad tile had already gone). I only had to wait another two turns and the Central African Republic tile turned up for me to win.

I’ve played 4 games of this now, one was a 3-player and the rest have been 2-player. I’ve experienced one game where after the initial 10 tile set-up I’ve needed two tiles to complete the journey and have also experienced the other extreme of having very little that connects. All the games have taken no longer than 30 minutes and I’ve enjoyed them, but I think it’s a little bland, It lacked player interaction and as you don’t know how well your opponent is doing it also lacks a little excitement. Overall I rate it 6.5/10.