This is placeholder Text!
Before you read this article, you 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.|
Standing on the coast, you look out across the boundless sea. Having tamed the wilds of your homeland, your heart yearns from greater adventures, greater conquests. Your people are ready to follow you, even into the unexpected dangers of the unknown. Nearby, seasoned dock workers are putting the finishing touches on your first great seaworthy ship. Soon, you will leave the settlements behind to join the ranks of explorers and conquerors. Soon, you will become one of the Seafarers of Catan!
When exploring the waters to the south, Catanian seafarers discover a new land they call “The Fog Islands.” Near the island stretches a mysterious sea, mostly covered by a thick fog. Fearless seafarers who have ventured into the fog-shrouded ocean tell tales of fertile hidden islands and a legendary land of gold. Thirsty for adventure, the Catanians load their ships with supplies and seeds and set out on a voyage to the mysterious ocean in the fog.
During these explorations, the Catanians come across small, inhabited islands. During the first encounters, it turns out that the strangers are speaking a similar language and know the same legends. It soon becomes clear that these people actually are descendants of a group of people whose ship got lost; a ship from a fleet that hundreds of years ago reached Catan for the first time. The reunion with the Catanian brother causes great joy, and they don’t hold back on neighborly help and gifts.
The magnificent cloth and resplendent garments of the “Forgotten Tribe” quickly attracts the Catanians’ attention. During the course of the centuries, the islanders acquired great skill in producing cloth. Since the clothing of the newcomers is not nearly as high in quality, a busy barter trade for the beautiful cloth soon begins. Maybe cloth counts as Victory Points, or commodity?
The Catanians are dismayed to discover, however, that their brethren have been tortured by pirates, who have invaded their island kingdoms. The battle-hardened buccaneers quickly sink the peaceful Catanians’ merchant ships and capture the settlements on the western isles. After expanding the captured settlements into fortresses, the pirates continue with their raids. Now they are threatening the Catanians’ homeland. Time and again, they attack the coastal settlements with their fleet and rob valuable resources from the Catanians. The Catanians decide to build a navy to stop the audacious acts of the pirates and drive them into the open sea.
Ships (should it be renamed “barge”?)
A ship costs 1 Lumber resource and 1 Wool resource to build (the same as building a boat). When you build a ship, you place it on a sea or coastal path directly adjacent to one of your Mills or Sea Ports, with the following conditions:
- You cannot build a ship next to any other type of building, except a Mill or Sea Port.
- You cannot place a ship on a sea path adjacent to an undiscovered hex, because building the ship there would immediately result in the discovery of this hex (see Discovering Unexplored Hexes below).
- If you want to build a new ship when all your ships are already on the game board, you may remove any 1 of your ships from the game board and build the new ship adjacent to one of your Mills or Sea Ports for the usual ship-building costs (1 Lumber resource + 1 Wool resource). Any pieces in the cargo hold of a ship you remove are lost (return them to your personal supply).
- You cannot place a ship on a sea or coastal path that is already blocked with traffic. A blocked path would have two items on it: Wagon, other ships, etc?
You are not allowed to trade, build, or purchase anything during or after this movement phase, except when you are “Building a Settlement with the Aid of a Settler Ship.”
- Ships only travel along paths—never intersections.
- You may only move your ships during the movement phase of your own turn.
- Each of your ships has 4 movement points. Moving a ship from a sea path to an adjacent sea path (or coastal path) costs 1 movement point. Unlike Wagons, which encounter various types of terrain, ships can travel smoothly on all sea paths.
- You may move a ship in any direction, and also change directions during its movement (e.g., you may move it forward and then back to the same space, if you wish).
- You must complete the movement of one ship before you can move your next ship.
- During your turn, you may purchase 2 additional movement points for a ship by spending 1 Wool resource. This may be done once (and only once) for each ship, each turn.
- Only 1 ship may occupy a given sea route.
- You may move your ship past another ship (even the ship of an opponent). However, the movement of your ship may not end on a sea route that is already occupied by a ship (even if that ship is your own).
- In order to move your ship along a sea or coastal route owned by another player (because a boat, bridge, or road is placed there), you must pay a toll of 1 gold. This is just like moving a Wagon along an opponent’s trade route.
Rescuing a Castaway
Due to severe storms and the barbarous villains lurking around Catan, a number of Castaways have washed up on the shores of various islands, clinging to bits of flotsam and jetsam. If you decide to provide for the Castaways and rescue them, they will be eager to help you in any way possible!
Once per turn, if either end of your ships with at least 1 available space in its hold points toward one of the coastal intersections with a Castaway token on it, you may secretly look at the face of the 1 Castaway Token. If you wish to rescue those castaways, you must immediately pay the resources depicted on the face of that token. “Immediately” means that you must pay the resources right away, without first trading/exchanging resources. Note that this is an opportunity given to you a maximum of 1 time per turn. If you refuse to pay the resources, you may not peek under another Castaway Token on this turn. Also, you are not allowed to use development cards, progress cards, friend cards, helper cards, Wonder abilities, or chest tokens at that moment. This is an exception to the usual separation of the Purchase Phase from the Move Ships phase.
- If you do not pay the resources depicted on the underside of the Castaway token, return the Castaway token face down to its original location. You may continue to move the ship, provided that you haven’t used all of it movement points yet.
- If you do pay the resources depicted on the underside of the Castaway token, reveal the Castaway token to all players and place the Castaway token in front of you. Then, place a Crew from your supply into the available space in the ship’s hold for free. Since this is the Ship-movement phase of your turn, you may not move the Crew (except for unloading it into the available basin of a Sea Port) on this turn.
After making this stop to inspect the Castaway token, you can move your Settler Ship as usual, provided that you haven’t used all of it movement points yet. In other words, inspecting a Castaway Token (and possibly loading a Crew onto the ship) does not end the movement of the ship. The rescue of Castaways may only occur using ships. You are not allowed to rescue Crews using Wagons, trade routes, buildings, villains, warships, or any type of knight.
Important: You may rescue no more than 3 Castaways during the game. Therefore, you are not allowed to receive more than three free Crews.
If you rescue 3 Castaways (meaning three Castaway Tokens have accumulated in front of you), you receive special Victory Points!
- If you are the first player to rescue 3 castaways, you receive 2 Victory Point Chits.
- Each other player who subsequently rescues 3 castaways receives 1 Victory Point Chit.
Ships transport various game pieces from one place to another in the ship’s hold. A hold can only accommodate 1 large game piece (settler, fish haul, Strong Knight on Horseback) or 2 small game pieces (Crew Members, Spice Sacks). Boarding items cannot "split" their movement points. Switching cargo between ships is only possible at your own port. Movement points are consumed when offloading and boarding a ship. The order of your turn is strict: move military, move ships. This prevents confusion, and also increases the importance of building foreign ports.
Loading and Unloading Ships
Loading and unloading a ship costs no movement points. You may continue to move a ship after loading and unloading, provided that it still has movement points.
Loading a Settler
If either end of your empty ship points toward one of your Sea Ports with a Settler in its basin, you may load the Settler onto the ship. You can move your Settler Ship just like a regular ship. Loading a Settler onto a ship does not end the movement of the ship. After loading or unloading a Settler, you may continue to move the ship, provide that you haven’t used all of it movement points yet. For more rules on loading and unloading pieces, see Transshipping below.
The transport of Settlers to their destinations can only take place via your own ships. You are not allowed to move Settlers overland along paths or roads.
Unloading a Settler
If either end of one of your Settler Ships points toward the corner of a land hex (example 4A), you may build a settlement there. The following exceptions apply:
- To build this new settlement, return both your ship and the Settler in its hold to your supply (example 4B).
- Place your new settlement on the intersection of the terrain hex, at no additional cost (example 4C).
- When you build a settlement with the aid of a Settler Ship, you must always observe the usual Catan Distance Rule (2 paths between settlements).
- A Settler may never be unloaded onto a land hex without being immediately converted into a settlement.
- A Settler Ship may be converted into a settlement on any eligible coastal intersection (it may not be built on an un-liberated Pirate Lair hex, for example)
- Should it be allowed for building on the same landmass you started on?
Loading a Crew
If either end of your empty ship points toward one of your Sea Ports with a Crew (or two Crews) in its basin, you may load the Crew (or two Crews) onto the ship. You can move your Crew Ship just like a regular ship. Loading a Crew onto a ship does not end the movement of the ship. After loading or unloading a crew, you may continue to move the ship, provide that you haven’t used all of it movement points yet. For more rules on loading and unloading pieces, see Transshipping below.
Unloading a Crew
If either end of your Crew Ship points toward one of your Sea Ports with space in its basin, you may unload the Crew (or two Crews, if there is space in the Sea Port’s basin) into the Sea Port’s basin. This does not cost any of the ship’s movement points (or the Crew’s, even though the opportunity for the Crew to move has already passed in Phase ___: Move Military Forces).
If, however, you wish to unload a Crew without a Sea Port, you may not do so during this phase. During Phase __: Move Military Forces of your next turn, you may move the Crew off of your ship (using some of the Crew’s movement points), but only if the Crew ship is properly positioned as follows:
- To allow a Crew to properly disembark from your ship, either end of your ship must point toward an unoccupied coastal or overland path/route.
Loading a Strong Knight on Horseback
If either end of your empty ship points toward one of your Sea Ports with a Strong Knight on Horseback in its basin, you may load the Strong Knight on Horseback onto the ship. You can move your Knight Ship just like a regular ship. Loading a Strong Knight on Horseback onto a ship does not end the movement of the ship. After loading or unloading a Strong Knight on Horseback, you may continue to move the ship, provide that you haven’t used all of it movement points yet. For more rules on loading and unloading pieces, see Transshipping below.
Unloading a Strong Knight on Horseback
If either end of your Knight Ship points toward one of your Sea Ports with space in its basin, you may unload the Strong Knight on Horseback into the Sea Port’s basin. This does not cost any of the ship’s movement points (or the Strong Knight on Horseback’s, even though the opportunity for the Strong Knight on Horseback to move has already passed in Phase ___: Move Military Forces).
If, however, you wish to unload a Strong Knight on Horseback without a Sea Port, you may not do so during this phase. During Phase __: Move Military Forces of your next turn, you may move the Strong Knight on Horseback off of your ship (using some of the Strong Knight on Horseback’s movement points), but only if the Knight Ship is properly positioned as follows:
- To allow a Strong Knight on Horseback to properly disembark from your Ship, either end of your ship must point toward an unoccupied coastal or overland path/route.
Loading a Fish Haul
You can catch a Fish Haul if either end of one of your empty Ships points toward a Fish Shoal hex with a Fish Haul (example 14A). Take the Fish Haul from the Fish Shoal hex and put it in your ship’s hold (example 14B), but only if your ship’s hold is completely empty. A Fish Haul is a large game piece, so it fills your ship’s hold. You can’t load more game pieces onto that ship until the haul has been delivered.
If you have moved your ship to a Fish Shoal hex and caught a Fish Haul (loaded it onto the ship), you may continue moving your ship, if that ship still has movement points left for your turn.
Unloading a Fish Haul
On a small island, the Council of Catan has a stronghold with 2 docks for unloading your fish hauls (indicated by anchor symbols). If either end of your Fish Haul-loaded ship points toward one of these docks, you may unload that ship. To unload the Fish Haul, simply return the Fish Haul to the supply and move your marker forward 1 space on the “Fish for Catan” mission card.
If you haven’t used all of your ship’s movement points yet, you may continue to move the ship after catching or unloading a Fish Haul.
Loading a Spice Sack
If either end of one of your crew-loaded ships points toward the corner of a spice hex (example 16A), you may place 1 crew on the village of the spice hex. In exchange, you load 1 spice sack onto the ship (Example 16B). In addition, if the spice hex has a legend on it, from now on you have a permanent advantage in the game.
- You may place only 1 Crew on each spice hex. In exchange, you may take or load 1 spice sack from that spice hex.
- Once a Crew has been place on the spice hex, it must stay there. It cannot be picked up by a ship anymore.
- You may not build a trade route on the spice hex’s paths (edges) or construct a building at its corners until you have befriended the inhabitants by placing a Crew on the spice hex.
- If you haven’t used all of your ship’s movement points, you may continue to move the ship after loading or unloading a spice sack.
Spice Hex Benefits
If you have placed a Crew on the village of a spice hex, you befriend the inhabitants of this village and may immediately (i.e., during the same turn) make use of the advantage depicted on the spice hex. For each advantage, there are 2 villages that confer its power (one in each of the unexplored areas—one with a Green moon on its back, and one with an Orange sun on its back).
- Swift Voyage: The inhabitants of 2 villages are experience seafarers and help the players to move their ships faster. The “Swift Voyage” advantage immediately increases the number of movement points of all your ships by 1. All of your ships now have 5 movement points instead of 4. If you are friends with both villages marked with the “Swift Voyage” advantage, your ships have 6 movement points per turn. If you pay 1 Wool resource, you can increase the number of movement points for a ship by 2 more points. Thus, the maximum number of movement points possible for your ships is 8. Note: The Swift Voyage advantage can immediately be applied to the ship that delivered the Crew to the hex, as long as the hex was not just discovered by this ship (in which case the ship’s movement points are forfeited).
- Pirate Bonus: The inhabitants of 2 villages are experienced fighters against the Barbarian Fleet, and increase your chances of successfully chasing away an opponent’s personal warship, the Black Pirate Ship, and the Privateer. One village depicts the face of a die with 5 pips, the other village depicts the face of a die with 4 pips. If you are friends with one of these villages, your Wagon and ships not only drive away an opponent’s pirate ship by rolling a “6,” but also by rolling the number depicted on the village. If you are friends with both villages, you drive away the pirate ship by rolling a “6,” “5,” or “4.”
- Fast Gold: The inhabitants of 2 villages are experienced merchants. They buy resources and commodities and give gold in return. If you are friends with one of these villages, once during your trade and purchase phase you may sell any 1 resource or commodity card from your hand for 1 gold from the supply (put your card into the supply and take 1 gold from the supply). If you are friends with both villages, you may sell 1 resource or commodity card for 1 gold each two times during your trade and purchase phase.
Unloading a Spice Sack
If either end of one of your spice sack-loaded ships points toward either of the two docks (anchor icons) on the Council of Catan hex, you may unload that ship. Move your marker forward 1 space on the “Spices for Catan” mission card for each sack you deliver. Place the delivered sacks out of the game.
Transshipping Game Pieces
Transshipping Game Pieces Between Your Ship and Your Harbor Settlement
If either end of one of your fully or partially-loaded ships points to a fully or partially-loaded Sea Port, you may swap the position of the game pieces in the ship and Sea Port.
Transshipping Game Pieces Between 2 Ships
You are not allowed to directly transship game pieces between 2 ships. However, indirect transshipping is possible if either end of each of the two ships points to the same Sea Port, and the Sea Port is used for temporary storage (see Example 5). This may occur whether or not the Sea Port is fully or partially loaded—it will simply require more swapping.
If you move your ship onto, along, or off of, a path or route on a hex that is occupied by an opponent’s personal warship, you must pay a tribute.
- The tribute costs 1 gold, and you pay it directly into the other player’s personal supply.
- You must pay a separate tribute for each ship you move in this way (e.g., moving 1 ship costs you 1 gold, moving 2 ships costs you 2 gold, etc.).
- Paying tribute for a ship allow that ship to move along, onto, or off of, any number of paths/routes on that hex during your current turn (you can even move off of and back onto).
- You must pay a separate tribute if your ship moves onto, along, or off of paths and routes adjacent to more than one opponent’s personal warships. Example: The blue player’s ship moves away from a hex containing the red player’s personal warship, then moves back. The blue player must pay 1 gold to the red player. Example: The blue player’s ship moves off a sea path that is adjacent to two different hexes: one hex contains the red player’s personal warship, and the other hex contains the green player’s personal warship. The blue player must pay 1 gold to both the red player and the green player.
- You may build a ship on a sea route adjacent to a hex occupied by an opponent’s personal warship without paying tribute, because building is not considered “moving.” However, if you then wish to move this newly-built ship, the tribute must be paid.
- You must pay this tribute, even if you already have spent 4 gold to buy 2 resources during your Trade and Purchase Phase.
Jump to the previous article!
Jump to the next article!