We Play Catan Wrong

James Fulford
2 min readOct 1, 2021

…because we were disappointed.

A normal game of Catan. Photo by Galen Crout on Unsplash

I don’t like Catan. The game is alright, but I don’t love playing it. But it’s my favorite board game. Not because of the mechanics, clever game design, community, or graphics. Because of when I played it.

We used to have friends over to play Catan, several games in a row around the dining room table. The tragedy of discarding half your cards, the betrayal of the Robber, the irony of your dad’s wheat being denied because of the robber, and your sister’s pleading to not steal the one card she needed to get just 1 point this game. Once, I decided not to place the robber near my crush. When asked to explain, my words were somehow twisted into a proposal, and I’ve been teased to this day. I was 12, and my face has never been so red to this day. If that’s not comedy, I don’t know what is.

When I turned 13, I got the 5–6 player expansion. The biggest tragedy on my board game shelf is that I’ve only needed it once in the following decade.

See, it’s not Catan I like. I like playing with others, and Catan is a great facilitator for that.

Why not make a bigger map and have an even longer and more fun game?

Go on Colonist.io, try the free special map of the week. America, The World, England, you name it (except Black Forest, that’s great). Except for Black…