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Subject: Catan + all 4 expansions is it fun ? rss

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miloboy gogogo
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our group play catan sometime
It's easy to play board game for 4 players (3 players is not fun IMO)
and I got 5 - 6 players expansion

my group like it
I'm going to buy seafarer next

but may be buy all of them

is it fun ?

full game + all expansion for 4 players / 6 players ?


best regards
-Milo-

 
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Mil Myman
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My favorite expansion, of those I've tried so far, is Cities & Knights. Be warned that is does make the game more complex - moreso that the other expansions like Seafarers.

I don't know which four expansions you're referring to. I'll guess you mean these:

Seafarers
Cities & Knights
Traders & Barbarians (I've never played with this.)
5-6 player expansion? (You have to buy these separately for different expansions. There's the 5-6 player expansion for the base game, but then there's the 5-6 player Seafarers expansion, the 5-6 player Cities & Knights expansion, etc.)

There's also:

Fishermen of Catan (didn't care for it much)
Event Cards (interesting)
The River (not particularly interesting)
and probably many more.
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Max DuBoff
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(The fourth expansion is Catan: Explorers & Pirates. Unfortunately, though, I haven't played it, so I can't review it.)
 
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miloboy gogogo
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Seafarers
Cities & Knights
Traders & Barbarians
Explorers & Pirates

all of them can be play together aren't them ?


A catan with full 4 expansions

is it a good game ?
 
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Ben Marks
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I have not played with Explorers and Pirates but I have played with all the other expansions together.... once.... I wouldn't play them all again. It was too much going on, seafarers didn't really features because people were too busy with their caravans or developing their cities.
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Graham Muller
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I havent played the expansions together, but have played them individually
They are all fun and I expect that all together will be alot to keep under management but will work.

Cities and Knights adds a coop side to the game but also adds what feels like more direct competition
Traders and Barbarians adds scenarios which add additional scoring or harming
Explorers and Pirates adds a less resource intensive, but more race like use of ships to add points.

I really enjoy the bigger expansions and expect all of them together would be great.
But make sure to get the hang of the rules with each individually first.
 
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Ryan Lynn
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I recommend C&K + Seafarers or Explorers and Pirates. Explorers and Pirates is not compatible with the other expansions
 
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C&K is fun. Seaf too. Never tried them both together though. Would like to, but on a scale of 0 - 5 where 5 is MUST PLAY vs. 0 neutral, I'm about a 1.5 there.

Consider adding the scenarios from Traders & Barbarians for more variety.

Last but not least, I prefer 3p games, as they go much quicker.
 
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Max DuBoff
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I an also heartily recommend the CK-Seaf combo.
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Raithyn
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T&B has several variants. Even inside the box, some work well together and some do not. Seafarers can be combined with any of them, depending on how you set up the board.

C&K adds depth where T&B adds breadth. The biggest implication of this is that where C&K often rewards long-term planning, throwing in T&B scenarios pushes you to do many different actions as fast as possible. It can be fun to combine them, but takes a few rules tweaks and may feel like a "point salad" if you don't like keeping track of many things at once. Multiple proposed rule changes are spread around the BGG forums. If you do combine them, Seafarers is almost required to give space for all the special tiles/islands that may form.

I have not played E&P, but combining it with other sets is possible, but also takes rules tweaks. Again, several different options are posted here on BGG.

I would also suggest World Wonders. It's a free fan-created PnP expansion that doesn't take much to make, but adds a lot to the game. It doesn't balance as well with C&K, but can fit just the base, Seafarers, or T&B nicely.

If you love C&K you should also consider looking into KGR, another fan expansion to include missing commodities and add two final Progress Decks.

Something else to consider is playtime. The list below is my experience with veteran players. I play anywhere from 3-6 players depending on who shows, so it's all a little mixed together here.

Times
Base: 30-60 min
Seafarers: +0-30 min
C&K: +30-60 min
T&B: +0-15 min
WW: +0-30 min
KGR: +30-60 min
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Glenn Darrin
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Phil Fleischmann wrote:
My favorite expansion, of those I've tried so far, is Cities & Knights. Be warned that is does make the game more complex - moreso that the other expansions like Seafarers.

I don't know which four expansions you're referring to. I'll guess you mean these:

Seafarers
Cities & Knights
Traders & Barbarians (I've never played with this.)
5-6 player expansion? (You have to buy these separately for different expansions. There's the 5-6 player expansion for the base game, but then there's the 5-6 player Seafarers expansion, the 5-6 player Cities & Knights expansion, etc.)

There's also:

Fishermen of Catan (didn't care for it much)
Event Cards (interesting)
The River (not particularly interesting)
and probably many more
.


The bold emphasis at end of quote is mine. All of these variants have been included in the Traders and Barbarians expansion. This is probably one of my favorites expansions because there's so many different additions and ways to tweak the base game that you can pick and choose from and all without having to re-learn a new ruleset.
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miloboy gogogo
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Thank you everyone

my question is not which expansion is better
it's
does full expansion is a good game ?


Thank you again and I still welcome more opinion
 
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Rusty Patterson
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I really don't see how or why you would play Seafarers together with Explorers & Pirates. I guess you could but they implement sea travel differently. In Seafarers you build a trade route just as you would a road but use different resources. In E&P you build ships that have movement points and they allow you to reach distant islands much quicker than building a virtual road. Since the main point of Seafarers is the trade routes to different islands I don't see anyone using that in combination with Explorers & Pirates where the primary mechanic for reaching different islands is so radically different. Of course, you can combine them by just using all tiles to make one gigantic map.
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Raithyn
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miloboy wrote:
Thank you everyone

my question is not which expansion is better
it's
does full expansion is a good game ?


Thank you again and I still welcome more opinion

I think most of us are saying that it depends on what you want out of the game.

Cities and Knights is really the first one you should add if you want deeper play because even if other expansions are included, the game will be defined by the C&K experience. If you really like C&K, I recommend KGR, he fan expansion, before anything else.

If instead you want a more variety in rules/building/focus after C&K add in Traders and Barbarians. Start by playing the variants and finding what your group likes, then gradually add them into C&K and see if it's still fun for you.

Seafarers is a good addition for all of the above, no matter what order you put it in. With 5-6 players, I really consider it a requirement.

I have not played Explorers and Pirates. You will probably get better feedback on the different combinations with it if you post directly in the E&P forums. It changes a lot of the base rules, so it takes some fiddling to combine with the others.


I enjoy 6 to 8 players (2 extra colors) with either:
1. C&K, KGR, Seafarers, River and Volcano tiles, Harbormaster card (~3hr)
2. Seafarers, Oil Springs (Main Island 1), River tiles (Main Island 2), one other T&B variant, Harbormaster card (~2hr)

For short games I play less people on a single island with World Wonders. (30-60 min)
 
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Jörg Baumgartner
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RustyInRT wrote:
I really don't see how or why you would play Seafarers together with Explorers & Pirates. I guess you could but they implement sea travel differently. In Seafarers you build a trade route just as you would a road but use different resources. In E&P you build ships that have movement points and they allow you to reach distant islands much quicker than building a virtual road. Since the main point of Seafarers is the trade routes to different islands I don't see anyone using that in combination with Explorers & Pirates where the primary mechanic for reaching different islands is so radically different. Of course, you can combine them by just using all tiles to make one gigantic map.


Actually, you have poked at how Seafarers and E&P are taking different niches in settling other islands. It is connecting a new island settlement that gives you the extra victory points in Seafarers, not simply reaching them.

A combination of the two naval expansions should have a starting archipelago rather than a single starting island. The discovery rules should apply to an overseas region unreachable by ship lines, beyond the inner frame divide.

E&P ships would be useable everywhere, but might be penalized in the shallow waters of the starting archipelago unless travelling along ship lines providing piloting. Using other players' pilots incurs a fee of 1 gold per section.

This makes it possible to permeate other players' ship lines which would block your advance in a regular game of seafarers.

You can use extra victory points from some of the scenarios in Seafarers, too. The Wonders of Catan wouldn't mark the victory of the game but a 4 VP achievement, for instance. That way, the weight of extra VP from Seafarers will match that of E&P.

C&K offers enough extra VPs through the progress tracks and the barbarians to compete With those of E&P.

T&B can only offer elements of the separate scenarios. Except for the Barbarian Attack, these are easily combined with all of the above.

Harbormaster: you would have to use at least special harbors for this to make sense. E&P sort of gives each player a mandatory 3:1 port for their starting harbor settlement, so why bother with more of these unspecific ones? Having more than one might give you better trade options like giving away two cards of one and one of another kind for possession of two unspecific ports, and three different cards for possession of three such harbors, and maybe substitute one card for gold for even more.

Fishermen can be used in the starting archipelago without much concern.

The Rivers awards gold for roads settlements or bridges on the rivers, and introduces bonud VP for the richestvand malus VP for the poorest settler. With so many other means to earn and spend gold, I would make the award millpoints (using the chits from Catan for Two) that can be spent or traded like normal gold, but not regained once given back to the bank, and link those bonus and malus VP to those.

The Caravans would be limited to the starting archipelago - they only make sense with ship lines and longest road VP in play. From my experience, few people bothrr to bid on them in combination games, leaving the placement mostly to the active player, so I'd pobably leave the out, personally.

Traders and Barbarians uses the wagons to collect bonus VPs and gold. With all the special hexes distributed in the starting archipelago, no extra rulings except about the use of rad barabarians are required.

This brings the question which robbers and pirates to use and to move when a seven gets rolled. I would use both pirates from Seafarers and E&P in their respective hunting grounds, with the Seafarer black pirate also able to block a harbor or a fishing ground, and subject to the knights from C&K. The highwayman road barbarians would be immune to the knights, and would be amphibious in the starting archipelago. The classical robber would be in play unless a variant of the Barbarian Attack is used. (I'd also use the Black Knight variant with a zero strength neutral knight that breaks the longest road until chased away by a C&K knight.)

A roll of seven would allow the active player to move two robber/pirate/highwayman pieces and to collect for both.

Barbarian Attack is the hardest to combine, especially with C&K on a fragmented archipelago. With the overseas area of E&P the need for a protected inner island is reduced, so that all of the starting archipelago could be targeted by the barbarians. Having the mounted knights moving freely on the waters of the archipelago does not feel right, though. One could simply leave them away, and treat the barbarians like extra robbers, affected by C&K knights.

Another solution would be a separate land mass where the coastal barbarians are, and where they can be chased away only by those mounted lancers. That land mass might have attractive bonus productions, extra harbors (or even all of them).

This would be anything but a quick flowing game. There would be a plethora of options how to get extra VP, and there would have to be an incitement to invest in a minimum of each of these. The board would be quite big even if you keep the available area quite minimal in order to accomodate all of the special hexes and meaningful distances between them. As a result, production in midgame might go up beyond normal, making trading unnecessary.

I have seen reports on epic games using all expansions (but E&P) in a serial manner, limiting the themes to different regions that get opened in the course of the game. In combination with the Impoverished Land rules from the Greater Caten scenario, that might be a way to keep things manageable. Opening a new section of the game might be worth extra VP to the player who did the deed, but would also activate new starting positions for all players, giving those left behind a new start and an opportunity to catch up.




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Derek Whaley
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miloboy wrote:
Thank you everyone

my question is not which expansion is better
it's
does full expansion is a good game ?


Thank you again and I still welcome more opinion


No one is really answering your question quite adequately. Simply put, you cannot play all four expansions at the same time. Period.

Seafarers and Cities & Knights can be played together without any real difficulty. Adding in components of Traders & Builders can be done, but the two larger scenarios don't really interact well with each other and neither can be played with Cities & Knights without significant rule changes. Explorers & Pirates is pretty much a stand-alone expansion that does not play well with any of the other expansions except some of the Traders & Barbarians components.

So to answer your question, no, playing with all expansions does not make a good game. It makes a chaotic mess of contradictory rules. The setup alone is nearly impossible. This is coming from someone who tried combining all elements of the first three expansions. While it can be done, it does not make for a better game and the rules changes are arbitrary.
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miloboy gogogo
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Whaleyland wrote:
miloboy wrote:
Thank you everyone

my question is not which expansion is better
it's
does full expansion is a good game ?


Thank you again and I still welcome more opinion


No one is really answering your question quite adequately. Simply put, you cannot play all four expansions at the same time. Period.

Seafarers and Cities & Knights can be played together without any real difficulty. Adding in components of Traders & Builders can be done, but the two larger scenarios don't really interact well with each other and neither can be played with Cities & Knights without significant rule changes. Explorers & Pirates is pretty much a stand-alone expansion that does not play well with any of the other expansions except some of the Traders & Barbarians components.

So to answer your question, no, playing with all expansions does not make a good game. It makes a chaotic mess of contradictory rules. The setup alone is nearly impossible. This is coming from someone who tried combining all elements of the first three expansions. While it can be done, it does not make for a better game and the rules changes are arbitrary.


Thank you very much
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Jörg Baumgartner
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Whaleyland wrote:
No one is really answering your question quite adequately. Simply put, you cannot play all four expansions at the same time. Period.

Not without changing rules - but then, that's the proviso for combining Barbarian Attack with Cities and Knights, too. The resulting game is neither C&K nor T&B:

Quote:
Seafarers and Cities & Knights can be played together without any real difficulty. Adding in components of Traders & Builders can be done, but the two larger scenarios don't really interact well with each other and neither can be played with Cities & Knights without significant rule changes.

Already the combination of Barbarian Attack (BA) with Seafarers takes a lot of writing if you take any other island shape than the standard hexagon. The concept behind BA is that coastal hexes can be affected, inland hexes cannot, and offer a safe haven.

I have tried a number of scenarios using mobile ships with other elements from Seafarers, and so have other German groups. As soon as you can start settlements without having to build a road network there, the game changes.

C&K is rather strongly reliant on the road (or ship line) network in order to place the knights on the board. In an archipelago situation, having ship lines to place knights on may make sense even with mobile ships doing the major share of placing new settlements.

Giving these stationary ship lines (or piloted waterways) a similar influence on the mobile ships as the roads do to the wagon in T&B Traders and Barbarians is a logical step onward. Limiting the piloted waterways to coastal waters and disallowing them on the open sea isn't that big a rules change.

There is no official scenario for the variable boardgame yet that has mobile units placing settlements on the land. The Settlers of the Stone Age and Catan Histories: Merchants of Europe limit such placement to pre-defined spots on a pre-defined board. Die Siedler von Nürnberg offers placement of settlements on pre-existing roads if you have at least one share in the road management (the toll bars in that game), and in the Alexander scenario the advancing army auctions off pre-defined settlement spots.

In these games (except Stone Age, which has technological challenges to overcome in order to expand out of Eurasia), there still is some form of road-building going on after placing the settlements, or in Nürnberg competition for the top influence on the roads. Adding a C&K element to these games would require a rewrite for the necessity and utility of roads.


Quote:
Explorers & Pirates is pretty much a stand-alone expansion that does not play well with any of the other expansions except some of the Traders & Barbarians components.

A couple of scenario concepts from Seafarers might be used in E&P games. The Wonders of Catan can be attached to any other game if toned down in importance (finishing a wonder won't finish the scenario), provided there are locations for the Great Bridge and the Great Wall. Giving a VP reward for connecting previously unconnected islands can be done with ship lines, but could also be done by placing a ship line marker on one of the overseas settlements or harbor settlements (e.g. one of the boats from Seafarers) after shuttling it over from the mainland, possibly at the cost of the regular mobile ship.

The Seafarers-extensions Die Siedler von Catan: Das Buch zum Spielen and Die Siedler von Catan: Schätze, Drachen & Entdecker offer more elements that can be used in an E&P environment (volcanoes, jungle, treasure chests, colonial goods, dragons/desert riders, canals).

Quote:
So to answer your question, no, playing with all expansions does not make a good game. It makes a chaotic mess of contradictory rules. The setup alone is nearly impossible. This is coming from someone who tried combining all elements of the first three expansions. While it can be done, it does not make for a better game and the rules changes are arbitrary.

I still say it should be possible to create an enjoyable Catan game with elements from all the official expansions, including both Seafarers and E&P. I've done so years ago with Transport Settlers or The Colonies from Die Siedler von Catan: Das Buch zum Spielen instead of E&P, in both cases toning down the "there is no metal on Catan, so import it" theme in order to start the game as a C&K game.

Using every available offical expansion might be feasible if you're limiting yourself to those published by Mayfair (even a few of the Geographies features might be inherited), but given the additional official expansions available in German (or Dutch), I don't see how to do a complete game, just a game with bits from almost everything.

The challenge is which elements to pick and combine, and then to present a clear set of rules for that combination.
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Whaleyland wrote:
So to answer your question, no, playing with all expansions does not make a good game. It makes a chaotic mess of contradictory rules. The setup alone is nearly impossible. This is coming from someone who tried combining all elements of the first three expansions. While it can be done, it does not make for a better game and the rules changes are arbitrary.

jorganos wrote:
The challenge is which elements to pick and combine, and then to present a clear set of rules for that combination.

This exactly. Most of us who own the expansions combine them in different ways and consider the game better for it, but you really have to test each piece separately, determine what you like, and try combinations from there. It is possible to combine everything and have a fun game (outside E&P I've done it), but it requires houserules that must be tailored to your group.
 
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Derek Whaley
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And if you note, I did not say it is impossible, only that it doesn't make a good game. I, too, have combined everything from the three previous expansions (not E&P) but did not find the game better for it. Between managing caravans, crossing rivers, flipping knights, transporting finished goods to castles, building sea routes to get ore (yes, I do that too to force the use of ships), and fighting off barbarian attacks (both from the barbarian horde and from the barbarian attack), it just is overwhelming and not all that fun. The rules required are arbitrary — Catan.com has not published official rules to include everything together simultaneously — and the set-up is extremely difficult and precise. Here's a map I made a few years back showing how it can be done:



Still, just because it can be done, doesn't mean it should be done. And for Catan, I think sticking with a few expansions at a time, one big and one or two small, is better for everyone. Seafarers & C&K is the only exception.
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jorganos wrote:
Quote:
Seafarers and Cities & Knights can be played together without any real difficulty. Adding in components of Traders & Builders can be done, but the two larger scenarios don't really interact well with each other and neither can be played with Cities & Knights without significant rule changes.

Already the combination of Barbarian Attack (BA) with Seafarers takes a lot of writing if you take any other island shape than the standard hexagon. The concept behind BA is that coastal hexes can be affected, inland hexes cannot, and offer a safe haven.
Well, eurogames are heavily abstracted anyways. Couldn't you just say that when the barbarians hit, treat ALL of your settlements and cities ANYWHERE on the board as if they were on the same "main island"?
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My preference is not to use all expansions at once. I prefer to just pick one or maybe two is including some of the smaller expansions. Adding more than that makes the game longer and/or more complicated than I like.

Also, the Cities & Knights expansion is probably my favorite... but I can fully understand why some people don't like it.
 
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Yes own most of Catan world...(and have one box to put them all in)

often try to combine them all and it is a lot of fun. And would Recommend using something from every box!

Base game ... must have
Seafarers... Gold hex is nice, but the Ships are not as good as they are in the new Explorers and Pirates.
Cities and Knights ... add's great Complexity to the game
Traders and Barbarians (many great things with this to add with games)
- Fish must have for any game
- wagon Trains fun part to have more ways to get Victory points
- Camels so much fun with the biding fighting over where to put them
- Barbarians kinda scary when they start to sink the island and every has to work together or all will lose
- Event cards cards ... awful cuz love the dice random part of the game
- The River takes some time to warm up too but still lacking
Explorers and Pirates... some fun 4 mission that work well alone or very well together

In the times we have used multiple expansions and people who know how to play them all... games have lasted 45-90 mins with of course upping the total victory points one would need to win. Epic games where everything comes out of the box is so much fun and so much space for everyone to do their own thing to try and win
 
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