Jan 2, 2014Bottom line: Very good singleplayer game, but lack of any decent multiplayer function limits its enjoyment.
Singleplayer: Good campaigns and scenarios, intelligent AI which can figure out what you're doing and adjust their strategy accordingly. Still, I didn't find it hard to defeat them even on the hard difficulty, even though I only have a few hours of total Catan game time (both virtually and physically). My main qualm with it is the excess of game messages which you have to click on to dismiss every time, which considerably slowed down already drawn-out Cities & Knights matches, when the computer would develop their Science area to lvl 4 to get resources whenever they did not get a resource on that dice roll, and every single time this happened I had to click OK on a pop-up message saying they could choose what resource they wished. The computer's taunts, comments and dialogues also sometimes appeared in pop-up form, further adding to the bother.
Multiplayer: The ONLY multiplayer available is hot-seat (multiple people on the same machine), and the only way it can work is if everyone else agrees to look away when it someone else's turn, or they would see that person's resources and Progress Cards. Since looking away is too much of a bother for most people, there is, in practice, no multiplayer whatsoever. For a board game, that's extremely disappointing and is the main reason for my lukewarm score.
Some things could be better explained, such as the statistics icons when a match is finished, which only show icons (with no tooltips) for each statistic and you're left to guess what they could mean.… Expand
Aug 18, 2013The game is very fun when it works right, but I did experience several crashes while playing the game, making it very hard to enjoy all the way through.
I also found some issues with the menus being in white text, making it hard to read at times.
Overall, it stays true to the board game, but still has a ways to go with it's interface and bugs. Wish there was an online as well, but as a single player experience it is still loads of fun.… Expand
Dec 10, 2013This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. As a fan of the board game; this PC game really hits the spot. It's difficult sometimes to get players together and actually play the board game and when that happens this PC version is my alternative. There are some bugs but in my opinion they were minuscule. I did experience one crash of the game so far in playing it for about 3 weeks but other than this I can't complain. Additionally, there are some that have rated it poorly because the game "cheats?" I'm having difficulty believing this and if you've played the board game you will know why I say this. The computer "does" adjust to your play style and to your strategies which is either seen as annoying if you want to be the winner all the time; or refreshing if you are an avid gamer. This is something I can appreciate because the games AI's definitely keep you on your toes. I would hardly call this "cheating." If you're having trouble getting resources well; it's just like the board game. Maybe you didn't place your settlements strategically enough to begin with or you just don't understand how to use your resources wisely. I had no trouble beating the computer on any of the difficulty levels however; I found it very challenging as you progress through the game and as you try the harder difficulties. A strategy for beating the AI? Do things that it doesn't expect. You can tell when it realizes what you are going to do or what your game plan is when it starts doing things against you to prevent it. This is the same with any other human player as well in the board game; that is "if" the human player is a good Catan player. When you realize that it knows what your game is; you only have to switch it up and do something unexpected to give the AI a brain fart. All in all, I loved this game and play it regular. It has good replay factor and the editor program ensures that. I would recommend it to anyone Catan veteran or new player alike. If you ever wanted to know how to play the board game and hadn't gotten around to it; this game would help any newbie understand the board game. Veteran players and novice players of the board game can reap the benefits of developing better strategies on the "real board" from interacting with this game. I give a 10 all around.… Expand