Prepare the Wooden and Cardboard Gold Tokens

Before you read this articleyou will need to know the following terms and definitions: 

Coin (-s): Noun. Singular or Plural. Dissambiguation: Refers to either a commodity card or a cash value of a gold piece.
Gold Piece:(-es): Noun. Singular or Plural.  Small, round golden cardboard tokens of two different sizes representing cash values called "coin".
Scenario(-s): Noun. Singular or Plural. A small set of playing pieces and instructions that can be added to normal Catan gameplay. It cannot be played by itself--it must be used in conjunction with a standalone (base) game. The "Oil Springs" scenario is a good example of this.
Variant(-s): Noun. Singular or Plural. A set of instructions for using the pieces from a Catan game or expansion in a new way. Most variants are fan-generated and require printing and cutting out new pieces.


  • Gold is a medium of exchange, and only purchases commodity and resource cards. These cards are then used to purchase other things that are needed.
  • The cardboard coins provided in Traders & Barbarians and Explorers & Pirates should be used to represent gold. However, there is some disagreement in the Official Rules regarding the value of the gold coins.
  • Although both expansion sets have two different sizes of gold coins (large and small), they disagree on how much they are worth. Traders & Barbarians says that the small coin has a value of one (1) gold and the large coin has a value of five (5) gold.  While Explorers & Pirates agrees that the small coin has a value of one (1) gold, it claims that the large coin has a value of three (3) gold.
  • Building a boats next to a river hex also draws 1 gold. Players must spend 1 gold to move boats away from a river hex. Boats can not be build on locations meant for bridges.
  • When using gold field hexes with Cities & Knights, the hex does not produce resources or commodities. Instead, players receive gold coins.

Helper of Catan: Marianne

Mary Anne has a big farm and a big heart. People who send the robber to her farm only temporarily fall from grace with her. It won’t take long until she offers a cup of her delicious apple cider again. It’s easy to imagine her controlling an extended family of twenty people comprising four generations, always staying calm and kind. She loves to build the Longest Road, because she wants to make sure that her farm always gets enough resources and commodities from Catan.


Mary Anne is not that often among the winners of the Catan Board Game, but she is always up for a game.


Mary Anne will accept to be called Marianne by her German friends.

Resource Balance:  Use this advantage on any turn (even the turns of other players).  If any production roll is not a “7,” and you receive no resources or commodities, take any 1 resource card of your choice.  You get to use this advantage before any other helper is used by one of your opponents.  You remain eligible to receive a Favor Token.


Because most players pay tolls of 1 gold, purchase resources for 2 gold, and receive compensation of 3 gold, it makes more sense that the large coin has a value of three (3) gold.  In addition, Explorers & Pirates goes so far as to actually print the 1- and 3-gold values on each size of coin.  Because Explorers & Pirates is a more recent release, it appears that the game designers intend large coins to be worth three gold

 Gold may not be stolen from players, and they don’t count towards your personal supply limit on a “7.”  Also, players may trade gold between each other or to (or from) the bank as though they were resources, or may twice per turn trade to the bank at a 2-to-1 rate without any harbors.  However, instead of trading 2 gold for one resource of their choice in this manner, the player may instead trade 3 gold for one commodity of your choice.  Both trades may be for commodities.  In addition, the Merchant token may be placed on a Gold hex, giving the player unlimited 2-to-1 trades for resources or commodities on his/her turn.


The large gold coins are worth 3, while the small ones are worth 1.  Up to two times during your turn, you may spend 2 gold to buy a resource of your choice.  You can spend gold the same turn you receive it.  You may also trade gold as if it was a resource—you can trade with other players, and with the bank at 4:1 (3:1 or 2:1 with harbors).  Coins cannot be stolen by the robber.  Coins cannot be taken by using the “Monopoly” Development card or “Candamir” Helper of Catan.  Gold does not count as a resource and is thus not considered when a “7” is rolled.  Gold cannot be taken by using a “Monopoly” Development Card. During normal play (when you do not have a Merchant Fleet development card), you may not trade two (2) of the same resource or commodity cards for a Gold coin.

Gold is important—it is used to pay for the movement along other players’ roads.  In addition, up to two  times during your turn, you may buy a resource of your choice for 2 gold….


Selling Commodities

  • Players may sell commodities to the bank for gold at a 2:1 rate. (i.e. Two cloth for 1 gold).

Prevent Destruction

  • If a player about to lose a city due to a barbarian attack, that player may buy their way out of the barbarian destructiveness by paying 7 gold.



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