Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Gaming Notes: Settlers of Catan #1

I have been doing quite a bit of gaming lately but I've been tardy in writing it up for this blog. I apologize - if you notice a great increase in the number of "Gaming Notes" in the near future, I haven't become unemployed, I'm just catching up.

It's been quite awhile since I've played Settlers of Catan. I recently got to do so in a five player game with my fellow Keystone Gaming Society members.
Sweet come-from-behind victory in Catan!
I guess you could say it started out on the wrong foot. We had a difference of opinion as to set up the board - the "prescribed" way or completely random. Completely random won out.

As any good Settlers player knows, initial placement is critical. You've got to find just the right mixture of board placement, probability numbers (high probability without duplication is best), and diversity of resources. Many a Settlers game has been lost before it ever began by poor initial placement. Well, when I deliberated for nary two minutes, the KGS fellas were giving me all sorts of grief. It gave me some satisfaction when Sam rushed his second pick only to realize that he had chosen the same numbers he already had.

From there, they complained about the board set-up, their lack of resources, and the slowness of the game. In my experience, the game was about an average length for a five player game - an hour and forty five minutes or so. I can never tell if they're joking or if they're serious...

Anyway, I persevered, monopolizing brick for myself and slowly expanding.

I won the game with a three point turn. Having one road left with which to build, I built a road, extending my chain to nine roads long and stealing Longest Road from Sam. In the same turn I also upgraded a settlement to a city, thus increasing my 7 points to 10 in one turn and winning the game. It was a good thing to because two other players were at 9 points!

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