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Subject: Desert Bazaar in Settlers of Catan rss

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Glenn Martin
Canada
Ottawa
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The desert is worthless in Settlers and avoided at all costs as a settlement site. I was wondering if settlements on it could be treated as 3+1/1 ports; that is three identical resources plus a fourth can be traded for any resource. Not as good as a 3/1 port but possibly useful when those ports are out of reach.
 
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John Schuster
United States
Edmonds
Washington
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I guess you could. But isn't the point of the desert to make some areas on the map less desirable and thereby adding to the difficulty? I do like the name desert bazaar though. Maybe add a second desert with the bonus surprise
 
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Wade Nelson
United States
Golden Valley
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There are two-player rules for Settlers of Catan here.

It introduces an interesting way to use the desert. Basically you get tokens, called "commercial chips".

For every settlement placed on the desert, you get two chips. For every settlement placed on the coast, you get one chip. This also happens during the establishment phase.

The two things you can do with chips:
1) You can pull two resource cards from another player's hand, put them in your hand, and give any two resources back (forced trade, basically).
2) You can kick the robber back to the desert.

The cost to do either of the above actions is one chip if you are not in the lead, two chips if you are in or tied for the lead.

Since the variant is designed for two players, it doesn't deal with how many chips should be spent if you are neither in last place nor the lead, but you could get creative.

Off the top of my head (untested):
* If in the lead, two chips to do either action.
* If not in the lead, two chips to force trade with anybody, one chip to move robber
* If you are in last place, one chip to do either action
 
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