Updated: Sep 19, 2019
In my opinion Traders and Barbarians is one of the best expansions for Settlers of Catan because the box offers a massive selection of new options, variants and scenarios. In fact there is so much stuff in the box, to try and talk about all of it in a single review would be a mistake. So over the coming year I will post up sporadic reviews of the various elements of the game.
This week I’m going to start with the four Variants included in this box. These are as follows:
The Friendly Robber
Now, I’d just like to say I haven't used this variant. “When a “7” is rolled or a Knight Card is played, the robber may not be moved to a terrain hex that is adjacent to a settlement of a player who only has 2 victory points. If, because of this rule, the robber has no valid terrain hex to move to, the robber moves to (or remains on) the desert hex. In this case, a Resource Card may not be taken from any player who only has 2 victory points. When using this rule, you still lose half of your Resource Cards when a “7” is rolled and you have more than 7 Resource Cards.”
The variant is really designed to be used for families with children, although parents who pick on children who are losing are really playing games for the wrong reason. To be honest this variant would seem to cause more problems than it fixes. Playing the robber on a losing player’s land is usually not beneficial. So as long as all players play tactically soundly the variant should have little effect on game play.