Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 25 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. Captures the essence of the board game beautifully (quick to learn but hard to master).
  2. I'm helplessly addicted...Catan is a god send of a game, filling a void in Xbox Live's offerings that will hopefully lead to more strategic board games in the near future.
  3. Throw in some nice bells and whistles such as calling up die roll results charts and reference screens and Catan really gives you everything you need to play.
  4. One of the best reasons for buying a game like Catan on XBLA—which comes with a cost of 800 Microsoft Points or about $10—is that you don’t have to know the rules and procedures that well.
  5. If you’re a fan of the board game or strategy games in general, there’s no better way to spend your Microsoft Points.
  6. Catan is a well developed version of "Settlers of Catan," and truthfully, I think Big Huge Games was just the right company to do it. It played very smoothly and is without a doubt is the next best thing — if not the best thing — to playing the original version of "Settlers of Catan."
  7. It’s not perfect, but overall this is possibly the most delightful surprise on XBLA since Geometry Wars came out of nowhere to be the platform’s killer app.
  8. Catan introduces videogamers to a classic strategy game that board gamers have enjoyed for quite some time.
  9. Catan is an odd choice to lead the board-game charge onto the Xbox Live Arcade, but Big Huge Games have done a phenomenal job of recreating the experience on the console.
  10. A superb addition to anyone’s library. Its accessibility and user-friendliness will allow people of all skill types to have a blast. Even if this wasn’t your type of game in the past, Catan may just make you a believer.
  11. Board-game geeks usually have to go to conventions like GenCon to find a mother lode of enthusiastic opponents. Xbox Live makes these playmates accessible around the clock.
  12. Catan translates surprisingly well to the Live Arcade, and this is mainly because of its smart design choices and addictive multiplayer offerings.
  13. Catan is a game that can appeal to almost every segment of the gaming market. If you’re young or old, fan of casual or hardcore games—it doesn’t matter.
  14. A solid Arcade game when you get good people to play with over Live. Those already enthralled with the world of Catan are likely too busy building their empires to read this, but those not should definitely give this addictive and highly challenging board game a shot.
  15. A superb strategy title. [Issue 21, p.116]
  16. Catan is a slow-paced, cerebral game better played with friends than against the somewhat wonky A.I. Convince a few like-minded "siedlers" to buy and play Catan with you, and a good time is guaranteed. [mar 2007, p.81]
  17. The minimal animation style underscores that this is the deepest strategy and most hardcore game on Live Arcade, if not on the Xbox 360. [Jan 2007, p.96]
  18. One of the best board games of recent decades, translated perfectly to Live. [Aug 2007, p.91]
  19. 80
    A top notch conversion of a great board game. A good match generally takes less than an hour and there’s no clean up after you’re done. Well worth 10 bucks.
  20. Catan is strategic, fun, and lets you screw over your friends, making it a perfect online party game. [July 2007, p.68]
  21. Catan isn't going to be immediately accessible to everyone, but it's a very good interpretation of the classic strategy board game, and the gameplay can be immensely satisfying.
  22. A deep and rich strategy experience, and for a mere handful of Microsoft points, it can be a welcome addition to any player’s arcade who is willing to spend some time learning the few simple rules of this timed release gaming experience.
  23. The lack of offline multiplayer is a real shame as it would have been much easier to recommend, even if it meant having to constantly ask other players to avert their eyes. Still, Xbox Live Arcade is very much in need of more games like this and it’s well worth checking out.
  24. 77
    The omission of Vision Camera support. Catan is a social game and is best played with a group of friends that you know. At the very least, you'll want to play with a group of outspoken and interested opponents. Playing the game with a mute bunch of people you don't know is hardly enjoyable.
  25. 75
    But we can safely say that even if you have the slightest interest in board games, it’s definitely worth the purchasing price, and we are definitely looking forward to some other big-name board games popping up on the Xbox Live Arcade in the future.
  26. Perhaps the biggest flaw though is that the controls never stop being cumbersome. With several important information screens requiring more than one button to be held to be seen (never mind a strange and convoluted "emoticon" system for multiplayer matches).
  27. If you're willing to put a little effort into learning the rules and nuances of Catan, you'll be rewarded with potentially endless amounts of strategic board game bliss. Although the AI opponents are remarkably interesting to play with, your Catan experience will hinge on getting your real friends to play with you.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 28 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 11
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 11
  3. Negative: 0 out of 11
  1. I.B.
    Jun 4, 2007
    The tool from EuroGamer who had a problem with (gasp!) holding down two buttons (the horror!) needs to get a freaking clue. Lack of local multiplayer does suck though. Full Review »
  2. Mar 22, 2012
    Uff, difficult, this game is good, but some parts of the game are boring, Catan is a good game, with some mistakes, is addictive, but is so strange. Good game, not excellent. Full Review »
  3. CalebMonday
    Apr 29, 2009
    The only complaint I have of this game is the dice randomization. I seriously had 8's being rolled every other roll. That goes with 5's too. I advance quick in the beginning of the game and the a.i. "coincidently" comes back and wins the game. other than that great graphics,colors, music, and playability. Even though I lose because the com cheats, I come back for more to throw it back in the com's face...if it had one. I'm an addict to this game. Full Review »