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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.


  • Fish purchase special abilities, as indicated on the Fishermen of Catan Summary Cards
  • You cannot “make change”: If the number of fish on your tokens is more than the purchase price, you lose the excess fish.
  • Multiple actions per turn are allowed: You may use fish tokens for more than 1 action during the same turn. However, you must perform the actions one by one and independently from one another. Example: You may not redeem 2 tokens with 3 fish each and that way move the robber to the desert (2 fish) and take 1 resource from the bank (4 fish).


On each fish token, 1, 2, or 3 fish are depicted.  During your turn, you can discard fish tokens in order to take certain actions.  You may discard multiple fish tokens to perform more useful actions.  The more fish you discard, the bigger the benefit.  Place the fish tokens you spend face-up next to the supply, in a discard pile.

Displace a Villain

  • Spending 2 fish allows a player to move one of the thieves, as if the production number was a “7.” However, you may not steal any cards (see below).
    • You may move the robber into the desert (not the Wasteland) or the pirate offshore or move a barbarian adjacent to a location whose hexes currently have no adjacent barbarians at any adjacent hex. The player who spent the 2 fish does not steal any resources from this movement.

Extend Movement Range

Even horses and cattle grow tired of grain all the time.  Sometimes, they enjoy some fried fish!

  • Players may spend 2 fish to move a knight an additional 2 spaces (as a substitute for grain).
  • Players may spend 2 fish to move a wagon an additional 2 spaces (as a substitute for grain).

Steal a Resource/Commodity Card

  • Spending 3 fish allows a player to steal a random resource/commodity card from another player, but only a player who has the same or more visible Victory Points than you.

Purchase a Resource Card

You may spend four fish for a resource card of your choice.  You may not purchase a resource token.  You may not purchase commodity cards or tokens with fish.

Fish for Trade Routes

In addition to the regular purchases a player can make with resources, you may spend fish to build trade routes:

  • Players may spend 5 fish for a boat.
  • Players may spend 5 fish for a road.
  • Players may spend 6 fish for a bridge, but they may not spend 5 fish and a brick for a bridge.

Draw a Development Card

Players may spend 7 fish to purchase a Development Card.  Progress cards may not be purchased.

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