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

Game(-s): Noun. Singular or Plural. A standalone version of Settlers of Catan, which can be played right out of the box without making additional purchases. There is only one standalone (base) game of Catan.
Expansion(-s): Noun. Singular or Plural.  An Catan game that cannot be played by itself. It must be used in conjunction with a standalone (base) game. The 5 & 6-player expansions are a good example of this.
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.

 Whether you have one card or dozens in your hand, a holding tray is a great help. This wooden kind is gorgeous, and it has enough space to hold up to ___ cards without overlap, and nearly ____ with overlap. The slight tilt of the grooves ensures that you can see all of your cards at a glance, but your opponents won't see a thing. The felt feet prevent these beautiful card holders from scraping your playing surface, and the slots are thick enough to hold more than just cards: you can safely store cardboard tokens and cards, too. Not only does this card holder keep your hands free to do other things, but it eliminates the danger of bending the cards. It also lets your opponents see, at a glance, how many cards of each kind you have. You could also substitute Rack-O card trays or Scrabble tile holders (see images below).


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