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Catan: Seafarers» Forums » Variants

Subject: better with fish? rss

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origami freak
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Yesterday I played my first Seafarers game (New Shores) with 3 players total, and as in many of the other reviews here, the game seemed to drag.

The person who finally won did so with a solid land-based Catan strategy. There just wasn't much benefit to expanding to the outlying islands. Perhaps this was partly due to the fact that the main island wasn't really crowded.

Anyway, I'm trying to think of ways to make the boats more appealing. One thought is to use the Fishermen of Catan module, and place the fishing grounds on the islands. Also, then you get the pirate stopping fishing grounds, which would add a bit more "robber" action to the pirate.

Perhaps you could even specify that players may not collect fish until they have at least one boat present along a fish hex? (if they build to the fishing ground overland, then simply a settlement would not be enough, they'd need a boat, too)

Or how about setting up a few fish hexes together in the middle of "nowhere," simulating an offshore fishing ground? Then people might want to "build" out to it, even if they'd never planned to close it with a settlement at the other end...

You could somehow specify that more boats around a hex = more fish, the way more settlements = more resources, something like this:

1-3 boats = 1 fish tile
4-5 boats = 2 fish tiles
6 boats = 3 fish tiles

Any thoughts? Has anyone tried this?
 
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DC
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Most of the Seafarers scenarios have different board setups for 3 vs. 4 players. Are you sure you played the 3-player version? I find that those are usually designed to be tight and force you off of the main island.
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Agreed. The build that has a large central island in a triangle shape is virtually the only one we tend to play (unless we have 5-6 players, then we go with the multiple islands). There's a reason that the game suggests different maps - not all of them are so hot for 3 players.

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origami freak
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good 3-player scenarios?
Hmm. I wasn't aware that there are special maps for 3 players. I don't see references to this in the Game Rules and Scenarios booklet. Am I missing something? (I have the 4th edition)

We used New Shores because it was our first time and that is the recommended beginning scenario.

Can you give the 3-player scenarios you recommend, by name? I don't see any that match your description of a large triangular central island...

Here are the scenarios I have:

1. New Shores
2. Four Islands
3. Fog Island
4. Through the Desert
5. Forgotten Tribes
6. Cloth for Catan
7. Pirate Islands
8. Wonders of Catan
9. New World

Is it one of those?

Thanks in advance!
 
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I have only an older edition, but each scenario has a roman numeral after it. For example: Oceans III and Oceans IV. Those are the number of players it's intended for. Most scenarios have multiple versions. Do you have any of those? I don't recognize a lot of the scenarios you named -- sorry!
 
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EDIT: 5/22/08

First of all, 3rd and 4th edition have different scenarios available. origamifreak already covered the 4th edition scenarios. The 11 scenarios for 3rd edition are:
New Shores
The Four Islands III & IV
Oceans III & IV
Into The Desert III & IV
A New World III & IV
The Great Crossing IV
Greater Catan IV

.

Next, New Shores (NS) has been revamped for the 4th edition.
this is 3rd edition NS
vs the 4th edition NS


At quick glance, the overall board is smaller and the outerlying islands are closer to the main island

.

New Shores (at least 3rd edition) is a map desgined for 3 or 4p, just like in Settlers Of Catan. Concerning the 3rd edition scenarios above, the roman numeral suffix indicates how many players the map is designed for. If it doesn't have a roman numeral, the instruction manual will still tell you how many players it takes. In a pinch, the Great Crossing IV and Greater Catan IV have been played with just 3 playeres

.

origamifreak, I must ask just to be sure, you're positive you're counting any special victory points (VP) for building onto any of the smaller islands in New Shores (NS)? In the 3rd edition, you get get a special VP for building onto the expansion islands, but may only get up to one special VP for the whole game. That one VP can go a long way towards finishing the game quicker
 
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Simon Lundström
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When playing with Seafarers, we design the board ourselves, having a really cramped main island and the rest being unknown (discovered as we go).

ackmondual wrote:
In the 3rd edition, you get get a special VP for building onto the expansion islands, but may only get up to one special VP for the whole game. That one VP can go a long way towards finishing the game quicker


Ooh game's changing? As far as I've learned, you get 1 extra VP for building the FIRST house on a new island, but you can get this extra point a lot of times, if you are the first to build on a lot of small islands. And you play to 12 points.

Has this rule changed?
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These are all per-scenario rules. Some have one point per new island touched, some have two for the first island, one for the second, and zero after that, etc. Generally there are no special VP's if you have unknown tiles to be explored, because there's no way of knowing whether the land you just found connects to land someone else has found.

In 3rd Ed., every scenario has its own set of special scoring rules in the rulebook -- those are the best place to double check the rules.
 
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Zimeon wrote:
When playing with Seafarers, we design the board ourselves, having a really cramped main island and the rest being unknown (discovered as we go).

ackmondual wrote:
In the 3rd edition, you get get a special VP for building onto the expansion islands, but may only get up to one special VP for the whole game. That one VP can go a long way towards finishing the game quicker


Ooh game's changing? As far as I've learned, you get 1 extra VP for building the FIRST house on a new island, but you can get this extra point a lot of times, if you are the first to build on a lot of small islands. And you play to 12 points.

Has this rule changed?
hmmm, as far as I can tell, yes. U just reiterated what I just said. New Shores in 3rd edition IS a 13pt game, as well as The Great Crossing. Greater Catan is the only 18 pt game. Everything else is a 12pt map. In fact, when I play online, it's often amusing since players will play their VP cards to 12 on New Shores, only to realize they need one more point. However, a good # of times, they still win anyways.
 
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origami freak
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ackmondual wrote:
Concerning the 4th edition scenarios above, the roman numeral suffix indicates how many players the map is designed for. If it doesn't have a roman numeral, the instruction manual will still tell you how many players it takes.

My 4th Ed. booklet does not show any Roman numerals, nor does it address the number of players in any of the scenarios.

ackmondual wrote:
origamifreak, I must ask just to be sure, you're positive you're counting any special victory points (VP) for building onto any of the smaller islands in New Shores (NS)? In the 3rd edition, you get get a special VP for building onto the expansion islands, but may only get up to one special VP for the whole game. That one VP can go a long way towards finishing the game quicker

Yep, we counted the one VP for settling outside the big island. I was the only one who managed such a settlement, but it wasn't enough to catch up with the land-based player. She had both the longest road and largest army, and a bunch of development cards as well as her settlements and cities.

It was one of those games where one player somehow amasses lots of resources mid-game, and has a chance to spend them without losing any because no-one rolls a 7 at the right time.

I was just disappointed that the ships weren't more important. (I was determined to give the ships a try, so I started with an aggressive port and shipbuilding operation. wood/wool) It didn't help me enough to get the resources I needed in order to place settlements, though, since I had to trade to get any bricks or wheat. The numbers on the outlying islands aren't all that good, so settlements on them aren't so helpful.

Zimeon wrote:
As far as I've learned, you get 1 extra VP for building the FIRST house on a new island, but you can get this extra point a lot of times, if you are the first to build on a lot of small islands. And you play to 12 points.

In 4th edition New Shores you only earn that extra VP once.


 
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origamifreak wrote:
ackmondual wrote:
Concerning the 4th edition scenarios above, the roman numeral suffix indicates how many players the map is designed for. If it doesn't have a roman numeral, the instruction manual will still tell you how many players it takes.

My 4th Ed. booklet does not show any Roman numerals, nor does it address the number of players in any of the scenarios.
typo. I meant to say 3rd edition, NOT 4th edition. It's been fixed

origamifreak wrote:
Yep, we counted the one VP for settling outside the big island. I was the only one who managed such a settlement, but it wasn't enough to catch up with the land-based player. She had both the longest road and largest army, and a bunch of development cards as well as her settlements and cities.

It was one of those games where one player somehow amasses lots of resources mid-game, and has a chance to spend them without losing any because no-one rolls a 7 at the right time.

I was just disappointed that the ships weren't more important. (I was determined to give the ships a try, so I started with an aggressive port and shipbuilding operation. wood/wool) It didn't help me enough to get the resources I needed in order to place settlements, though, since I had to trade to get any bricks or wheat. The numbers on the outlying islands aren't all that good, so settlements on them aren't so helpful.
Among the above scenarios for 4th edition, assuming those scenarios are similar to 3rd edition ones with the same name, Four Islands and New World emphasize ships. Well, New World may be possible w/o ships since a string of land tiles may allow for just roads. Pirate Islands sounds like you should need ships to get through.

Among 3rd edition scenarios, the following in practice require ship building.....
The Four Islands - AFAI have seen, it's too tight on space to squeeze 6 buildings on those 2 smallish islands, espeically if you have neighbors of opponents trying to cut/block you off.
Greater Catan - 18 victory points on a Settlers sized island can work in theory, but hard when players are also competing for the same space

Among 3rd edition scenarios, the following are helpful with ships .....
New Shores
Oceans
A New World
The Great Crossing
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I've played the first scenario with some friends and we included the fish (and the extra harbour for that matter!) but we only used 5 of the 6 fishing ports (picked at random) and put them on the far sides of the islands so they would be hard to get at.
 
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Vince Lupo
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dcclark wrote:
I have only an older edition, but each scenario has a roman numeral after it. For example: Oceans III and Oceans IV. Those are the number of players it's intended for. Most scenarios have multiple versions. Do you have any of those? I don't recognize a lot of the scenarios you named -- sorry!


Oceans 3 and 4 looks like great fun. Those definitely encourage you to leave the mainland.
 
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