Well, I've had Settlers for a long time now and I feel it's time I continue to review the parts of the game. This review will cover the new Kosmos edition.
So what does this add to the basic game then?
Some new hexes. Movable ports. Ships. Scenarios.
First the new hexes:
These are mostly only a few extras of the basic kinds from the basic game and a lot of Seahexes. The Seahexes are used to extend the board making it almost twice as big as the basic game.
There is also one more new type of hexes: GOLD! These hexes should be used with care, because they give their owner 1/2 resourses of their choise! This can quite easily throw a game off if someone manages to build a city or two on a gold hex with a good number.
In the basic game the ports were painted and fixed on the frames that surrounded the board. In Seefahrers you turn the frames over on their back and uses the all blue backs of the frames instead. But as this means that the ports dissappear, smaller movable ports have been added. They are not painted directly on the seahexes as in other editions of the game but should be placed over any seahex or frame part.
Then the ships:
Ships is like a road on land, but must be placed on the side of a seahex or a frame. The mostly works like roads on water, but it is possible to move a ship if it's not connected in both ends, either to another ship or settlement/city. You need to have a settlement/city to go from road to ship though, but the 'Longest Road' card does not differentiate between roads and ships otherwise.
And finally the scenarios:
A total of 9 new scenarios are described in the rules. All of them are not available in english yet (GG on offer for that translation) but the ones we have played are balanced and have always made for very exciting games of Settlers.
This is THE expansion for you who wants a little more variated settlers without too much added complexity. The only new choise you are presented with is whether to build ships or not. It also solves the problem of 'Too much sheep, too little to do with it' which is quite common in the basic game. The only problem as I see is the one noted above, when one player takes complete control over the gold hexes. That can turn a game sideways quite quickly.
Some of the scenarios add a little to the playing time, but I've never perceived this as a problem because most scenarios will still play in less than 1.5h.
My rating 10/10.
I never play without Seefahrers unless I'm teaching the game to new players, and I've made exceptions to that too.