A Game You Can “Settle” On

A Game You Can “Settle” On

A Game You Can “Settle” On

 With The Holidays fast approaching, I want to share another reason to pull out that Lifetime Card Table and Folding Chairs and gather family and friends together near the fireplace.  I would like to recommend another board game called “The Settlers of Catan”.
The Settlers of Catan”, which originated in Germany, is surprisingly light and enjoyable in its first play. Players take on the role of immigrants on the newly discovered island of Catan. The game “board” is obviously different. It is comprised of several hexagonal tiles randomly arranged into the shape of a large hexagon.  Since the tiles will almost certainly be arranged differently for every game, each game will be different.  Each tile represents a particular resource such as wood, brick, sheep, ore, or wheat. Each turn, a roll of the two dice determines which hexes produce resources.  By trading ore, timber, wheat, wool, and bricks, players attempt to extend and upgrade their settlements to earn enough victory points needed to win. Players establish settlements at the junction of land tiles in order to draw on the surrounding resources, which they can spend on new settlements, roads, soldiers, and more. Controlling a seaport tile gives a player the ability to convert plentiful resources into scarce ones without having to trade with other players.
The object is simple to understand and doesn’t take forever to achieve. The object is to be the first to earn 10 victory points, and everyone starts with 2. You score victory points for each settlement, city, longest road, largest army, and whatever you get from drawing development cards.
Writing this out makes it seem far more complicated than it actually is-- Settlers of Catan is user friendly for new players and because it is not designed for play with less than three, it is a good social game. Trading with others makes friendly competition more interesting and engaging.  An added bonus to the game is that no one is eliminated until the game ends so you will not have a guest or family member idly watching the others compete for first place.
For those with young children, there is also a spin-off of Settlers of Catan called “Kids of Catan” where the children help build their new village on the island of Catan by gathering different resources in their wagon.  The game is easy to understand and the wood pieces are easy for small hands to handle.  Our only criticism is that the wood game pieces are a little top heavy and one bump of the board can easily knock pieces over, but it doesn’t affect the overall play of the game, it is more of an annoyance.
Besides “Kids of Catan”. Settlers of Catan has several other spin-offs such as Seafarers of Catan, additional player expansions sets, and Cities and Knights of Catan.  Settlers of Catan requires 3 to 4 players, although you can purchase an additional expansion pack that will allow you to play with up to 6 players.  I believe the age recommendation is 10 and up but I think an 8 year-old wouldn't have a problem keeping up with the game play.  A typical game usually lasts about an hour and a half to two hours.  So, if you are looking for that last minute Christmas gift or are just looking for some entertainment during the holiday break, you will not be disappointed by settling with Catan.

 

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Jason

Jason

Name- Jason

Position at Lifetime Products- Product Marketing Manager for the Sporting Goods category.
 
My favorite products from Lifetime- Our current family favorite is the Big Stuff Hard Roof Play set.  The boys and their cousins LOVE it!  Since our home has the tendency to become a gathering place, we get the most use out of our large array of Lifetime Folding Tables.  We have our eye on the Ace Flyer for Christmas.  I have grand plans for The 60” Lifetime Mammoth Basketball System, I just need to first do a little backyard excavation for the play area. 

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Comments

sally

12/26/2008 1:17:24 PM

i really dont know the game

Reply

JoAllen

1/10/2009 8:59:09 PM

I have never heard of the game ,is it complicated to learn and play. How about some games for a cold day for a three yr. old and a seven yr. old. Both girls. Thank you.

Reply

Jason

1/11/2009 2:40:48 PM

The first time you play it and set up the game, you might find it a little more difficult than some games but once you play it once or play with someone who has played it before it's not very hard to pick up.  If you want a similar game to play together with your two girls the Kids of Catan would work great for your three year old, the seven year old would still have fun as well but past eight they might start getting bored with it and may be able to grasp the more advanced concepts in Settlers of Catan.  Hope this helps . . . have a great day!

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