Chris Baylis

An old family-weight betting game is receiving a fresh modern facelift and premium treatment thanks to Calliope Games and Kickstarter. Station Master, designed by Chris Baylis and originally released in 2004 by Mayfair Games, is back with a new look and streamlined rules, and it’s seeking funding right now. In this game for 2-to-6 players, locomotives are arriving at a station awaiting passengers and train cars. Each turn players may add either cars or passengers to a train, with each car either adding positive or negative points to a line. Once a line fills up with cars and passengers, each player who has passengers on that line will multiply their passengers by the total value of the cars to receive points and the player with the most points at the end is the winner.

“We have restored this timeless train game, creating stunning all-new artwork based on classic locomotives, railcars, and railroad history.  In addition, we have refined and streamlined the rules for modern audiences, as well as adding in upgrades and new material to create the greatest possible Station Master experience!”

It’s a surprisingly simple to teach and learn, but even more impressively quick to play as each turn is just a matter of adding a card or a passenger here or there. It boils bluffing and speculation down to easy-to-follow figures and formats, with a theme that disarms it entirely so that it may not seem to some that they’re even playing a betting game at all. This kind simplicity, ease of play, and well-executed theme is ideal for any family-weight game, and Calliope is taking it a step further by making it look great and giving this 15 year old gem the love it deserves. If you’re interested in learning more about this new edition of Station Master, check out the Kickstarter campaign page now for full rules, reviews, photos, and community feedback.