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Subject: Layout generator program rss

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Ken Brooks
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Caswell Beach
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I have in mind to write a computer program to generate interesting random layouts for Catan games. Not to play the game, but merely to create layouts, which the players can then copy as they lay out the physical tiles and number tokens.

Why? Because a computer can generate layouts that are random but “nicely” random, maintaining certain desirable properties. Such as, the 6 and 8 tokens don't clump together, no resource is starved, etc. I also might throw in variations like making the island's coastline somewhat irregular.

Before I do it, I want to know if anyone has done it already. Anybody seen such a program?

Ken
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ɹǝsɐɹɟ
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Has the latest edition changed the rules for the distribution of the number tokens?

In our, quite old set, you start with the A on one of the outside edge land tiles and then work your way around spiralling in (skipping the desert of course). There will be no clumping of 6s or 8s.
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It sounds like an interesting and manageable task for a programmer, but is it really a useful tool?... After all, players can randomize layouts as they build the island and change whatever they want before rolling for starting player.

As for random number token placement, it's pretty easy to implement rules for valid number token positions while dealing out the tokens randomly. It's possible to end up with nowhere legal to place the last token, but it's very rare.

Karlsen wrote:
Has the latest edition changed the rules for the distribution of the number tokens?

In our, quite old set, you start with the A on one of the outside edge land tiles and then work your way around spiralling in (skipping the desert of course). There will be no clumping of 6s or 8s.

Some people prefer random number token placement. I don't really like the idea most of the time, and prefer to do it your way, but to each their own.

Yes, clumping of 8s and 6s is always illegal, even if you are playing with random token placement. Even the video game sticks to this rule (thank goodness).

Edit: typo.
 
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Lutz
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Karlsen wrote:
Has the latest edition changed the rules for the distribution of the number tokens?


The 4th edition almanac has a variable setup option that says:

Quote:
Alternatively, you can use a fully random set-up. Place 1 token on each land hex. Start at one corner of the island, and place the number tokens in random order. In such case, the tokens with the red numbers must not be next to each other. You may have to swap tokens to ensure that no red numbers are on adjacent hexes.


BOb
 
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I think it would be useful. Especially if the UI lets you specify properties.
 
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I think it would be great if you could design totally random ones or choose your own as well. Something that could give you output like

 
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Chris Tettamanti
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There are two catan layout generators for the Android, although I have not used them and don't know how they run or what they do other than generate a random setup.
 
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kjamma4 wrote:
I think it would be great if you could design totally random ones or choose your own as well. Something that could give you output like

(image)


That would be a great idea. I hadn't heard of this promotional pencil & paper version. I doubt I know anybody I spend enough time with to get use out of a pencil & paper version, but I'll look at it anyway.

As for the generator, if there are people who would ever play a pencil & paper Catan game generator, then it'd be worth it I'm sure.
 
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Gerard W
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I wrote a PHP script to do this. Available at http://settlerssetup.sourceforge.net/.

Why? Because it's a hassle to through shuffle the tiles!
 
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