Top positive review
9 people found this helpful
A solid 2-player Catan game
on 4 January 2011
This is basically a 2-player solitaire card game, but with the addition of dice and some board game elements that make it quite compelling.
You lay the cards spatially in front of you to form an empire with roads, villages, cities and associated buildings and heroes. Although you mostly focus on your own empire, there are a few attacking cards that mean you have to keep an eye on what your opponent is doing, and defend or compete as appropriate.
It's more complicated and fiddly than the basic Settlers of Catan board game--it has more rules and doesn't feel quite so elegant. But it does use many of the same mechanics and ideas as a starting point. I wouldn't strongly recommend playing this if you haven't experienced that game first.
It's also far more complex than the Catan Dice Game, another spinoff. It's good for travelling, given that it's just a deck of (small) cards and some dice and counters. But the way the cards spread out means it's not ideal for playing in airports etc.
Rivals of Catan is nicely balanced, with lots of ways to score points. Longevity comes from three different variants (ie decks of cards) which keep things interesting over multiple plays.
It's apparently very similar to the Catan Card Game it replaces, although I've never played that one. Components are nicely done, with wooden pieces and attractive (although slightly flimsy) cards.
A solid four-star game and well worth the £15 asking price.