Please comment below your responses.
October 9, 2017 at 6:14 pm
PRACTICE GAME REFLECTION (written beforehand in my notebook):
My first impression: I am not good at this game. I feel like your success has a lot to do with the position of your settlements. I realized that the placement of the three granted settlements before official gameplay begun, is crucial to the rest of the game. Though I did think about placing my settlements between varying resources, I placed the initial settlements almost at random and did not go in with a concise strategy. Given, we could build settlements/cities later-on but that place is not guaranteed since another player can take it. Thus, a good spot is better claimed sooner than later. Also, I was not too compelled to trade my resource cards for what I needed, or was hesitant about spending them. I tried saving them but I did not plan that strategy effectively because the resource-rich spots were taken by the time I decided to build. On that note, I learned to just be more willing and that it is okay to be a little risky; it could pay off. Some of the world’s largest (but most successful) deals, whether relating to Business or national trade, involves taking risks. Also, I built roads near areas that I thought were good places to build in, so that another player could not build there. Though it was not accelerating my path to the top spot, it impeded theirs. Lastly, I rolled a number 7 a few times, thus releasing the robber. As the game progressed, I took note of which numbers were constantly being rolled and who is constantly benefitting from those specific tiles. I placed the robber where I felt there were people, other than me, continuously getting resources and in-turn planning to build and win. In conclusion, I do feel like I have a better understanding of Catan and hopefully, I grasp and develop more strategies to be successful in the next game.
October 9, 2017 at 8:22 pm
REFLECTION #2 (after actual gameplay):
At first, I thought that the evermore challenging game of Catan was based on opportunity and luck. However, as I played in the actual game, I began to think otherwise and noticed various tactics. To start, one needs to take note of not only the resources surrounding settlements but the probability of those numbers being rolled too. For example, if none of my settlements allow me to collect a “wheat” card, due to lack of variation in resources AND probability, it would be difficult for me to build or buy Development Cards since I would be depending solely on trade with other players to get that resource. In application to reality, trade and interdependence between nations are helpful but there should be a source of income in the home country for economic support and self-sufficiency. Notice earlier that I mentioned a variation in resources “AND probability” is needed. A strategy that I coined is that settlements should not only be on number 6’s or 8’s. Though they have a high probability, it does not mean that they are the only numbers rolled. Focusing merely on high probability tiles causes other valuable resource tiles to be vacant. Also, it would make your tiles an easy target for the robber and any plan you have can easily be ruined by the cutoff of a certain resource. Another strategy that I (tried to) use is building a lot of settlements/cities early-on, instead of aiming for the Longest Road Card. In preparation, I knew that I had to have a lot of ore and wheat, with not so much focus on bricks or wood. However, I kept getting ore, and not enough wheat which was hindering my plan. I did have a settlement on a wheat tile but it had a very low probability, and I had no other source. I had settlements placed on two of the same resources but I had no backup for this low-probability wheat tile. Thus I learned, that whether it is for more professional natured avenues or simply life, we should be prepared for anything and everything, and plan in accordance. For example, if I have a presentation, I should check beforehand that I have all the tools I need, my slideshow is saved and my sheets are printed. Likewise, since I aimed to build, I should have made sure that I would get an abundance of wheat with my placements, or have an alternative if that does not work (which I did thankfully). I just started noticing other people’s strategies and impeded them by building a road near a fruitful spot, placing the robber, etc. and targeting the top player without making it too noticeable. Figuring out other people’s strategy and foiling it while expanding became my strategy. If the top player asks to trade with me, there has to be an intent to expand and surpass the other players. I started to trade smart, not impulsively… and it worked! I came in 2nd place. In conclusion, there is a large difference between how I played in the first game, compared to this one. I am a lot more confident and have some tricks up my sleeve for the next game.
October 9, 2017 at 9:32 pm
The game Catan consists of strategy and probability. I wouldn’t say the game is pure luck however, if one places their first two settlements connected to cards that have numbers that are rarely rolled, then the game is simply difficult and not in your favour. If we talk strategy, you are most likely to be successful in the game if you place your first two settlements connecting to at least every resource. Thus, stating my first strategy. I decided to place my first two settlements connected to at least all the resources. My second strategy was to save up my lumber and bricks so that I can buy majority of my roads. Buying the roads will allow me to make longest road between my settlements, as well as reserve the corners for myself. If the game was not in my favour and I was getting other resources such as ore, wool and grain, I would start buying development cards which would help my game. When playing this game, the odds were not in my favour therefore having me use my second strategy. The next time I play this game, I will be sure to place my settlements in areas with all the resources as well as connected to numbers that are most likely to be rolled, for instance, numbers between four and ten were always being rolled during our game. If I was to relate this to actual international trading, I learned that the odds are not usually in every players favour, and that you are bound to make a mistake that will help you learn and encourage you to become a stronger and strategic player.
I only did truly play this game once since the very first time we played was practice. Thus, I do believe that if I were to play this game strategically for the second time, I would go in with the same mind set I did when I first played, which overall is to make use of whatever advantage I may have.
October 10, 2017 at 10:57 pm
Catan is a game I’ve played before with my cousins. It’s a fun game where you learn to strategize and communicate with other members. In the first game of Catan my turn was last, therefore the resources I mainly wanted to surround myself with were taken in an instant. I built two settlements and a city in the time we had. I also had received the “longest road” several times before a group member won it over, it was fun to play with friends over a competitive game since the initial idea was to gain the most points. The strategizes I attempted to use was building settlements a little far away from each other, hiding my cards and collecting resources, and using the “robber” to my advantage.
What i mean by that is when you place your settlements and roads in the beginning of the game, you want to put some distance between them to cover more resources, resulting in the probability of the number on the dice rolling to a number you have your settlements on. Also you need to keep some distance so when you have a chance you could build roads to connect your settlements creating the opportunity of receiving the “longest road”. Another strategy of mine was hiding my cards this allowed me to secretly gather my cards to build and develop the areas of my settlements. Lastly, when it came to my turn of using the “robber” I placed it on the number that had a high probability number such as eight or nine to cut off their supply of that resource.
The main resource I constantly got was “bricks”, the least frequent resources I had were “sheep”, and “ores”. It was helpful receiving the bricks because i was able to use “brick” and “lumber” (at the times i had them) to build roads. This game I understood the methods my group members used such as buying development cards which i regret not buying because it became of use to them such as when they received a “victory point” or a “knight”. Hopefully i use this strategy for the next game.
October 10, 2017 at 10:58 pm
In the second game I was placed myself in another group because of the absence of my previous group going to Camp Robin Hood. In this round we shared resources well and we all placed our settlements in good areas with resources. I don’t recall but I believe I placed my settlements near the “bricks, lumber and wheat”. This was great! Whenever the dice rolled on the numbers I had for my “bricks” and “lumber” it gave me the opportunity of building roads. The strategies I used were the same as the last game; I hid my cards while building settlements and roads whenever I could. I didn’t get to buy any development cards due to the lack of resources i had for “sheep”.
The resources that I regret not building around were the other two resources, “ores and sheep”. Due to the lack of ores I wasn’t able to develop my cities. Also because of my choice of not building near the sheep I wasn’t able to build settlements often or buy development cards.
This game I also used a new strategy I learned from the last game and that was to build roads as quick as possible to conquer more area, which allows you to obtain resources, and it would lead you to receive the “longest road”. The main resource I constantly got was logs, the least frequent resource I had were ores. I built a city and two settlements in the process of Catan. The game went well, although I had to leave during half the period for a game.
October 10, 2017 at 11:03 pm
Today was my third game of playing Catan with my group. It was great that we discussed more about the game to understand it better. In this round I won second place with a total of five points, two cities, and a victory point from the development card.
This game really surprised me. While I was trying to plan my own way to develop my community, I didn’t notice the various strategies my opponents used. One person in my group really surprised me. I thought she wouldn’t be able to do much since the other and I cut her off from connecting her settlements. I was wrong. She had four settlements with the roads connected to them and developed them into cities! Each city is worth two points, leading her to tie in first place with another member. I would like to use this strategy so I don’t need to rely on others for resources that I need. Instead of asking them, I could just build it in a spot with more probability, so if it rolls on that number I could receive the most amount of resources I could get. Another strategy I witnessed today was the use of ports; I initially thought there was no point in building near them because I could always trade with my opponent’s right? But I was stuck at a certain point in the game where I needed a resource but I was unable to trade. The people who built near ports used their ports as a last resource and traded for an item they needed and continued to build their community. It was very tactful.
In this game I finally bought a development card (a strategy I learned) which earned me a point that got me from four to five, it came to great use.
This game was a little odd as well. Although I placed my settlements/cities near the resources with a higher number of probabilities such as six and nine, the dice barely got rolled on those numbers. Instead it rolled on the least probable numbers.
The strategy I used this time was buying a development card, and trying to quickly buy roads when I could, connecting my settlements together. There weren’t many strategies I could use due to the lack of resources I had.
Overall this game got me to speak up and communicate more with the other members in my group which was great and gave me ideas for the next game.
October 10, 2017 at 11:39 pm
Catan is a game I’ve played before with my cousins. It’s a fun game where you learn to build and communicate with other members. In the first game of Catan my turn was last, therefore the resources I mainly wanted to surround myself with were taken in an instant. I built two settlements and a city in the time we had. I also had received the “longest road” several times before a group member won it over, it was fun to play with friends over a competitive game since the initial idea was to gain the most points. The strategies I attempted to use was building settlements a little far away from each other, hiding my cards and collecting resources, and using the “robber” to my advantage.
What I mean by that is when you place your settlements and roads in the beginning of the game, you want to put some distance between them to cover more resources, resulting in the probability of the number on the dice rolling to a number you have your settlements on. Also you need to keep some distance so when you have a chance you could build roads to connect your settlements creating the opportunity of receiving the “longest road”. Another strategy of mine was hiding my cards this allowed me to secretly gather my cards to build and develop the areas of my settlements. Lastly, when it came to my turn of using the “robber” I placed it on the number that had a high probability number such as eight or nine to cut off their supply of that resource.
The main resource I constantly got was “bricks”, the least frequent resources I had were “sheep”, and “ores”. It was helpful receiving the bricks because I was able to use “brick” and “lumber” (at the times I had them) to build roads. This game I understood the methods my group members used such as buying development cards which I regret not buying because it became of use to them such as when they received a “victory point” or a “knight”. Hopefully i use this strategy for the next game.
October 11, 2017 at 6:01 pm
After playing this game for the third time, I personally enjoyed it. This game challenges one’s ability to take advantage of what you are given, and make a decision that may best benefit you in the long run. However, your decision may also lead to some challenges along the way. Playing this game strategically for the second time, I decided to use my first strategy again which was initially to place my first two settlements connected to at least every resource, and hope for the best. I had gotten incredibly lucky since my settlements were connected to cards that had numbers rolled frequently like 6,11 and 8. My resources were building up fast. This had me avoid my second strategy of buying development cards due to not earning enough for settlements or cities. Midway in the game, I had the longest road as well as a couple settlements and a city. The game was going essentially well for me that I could start trading a lot of my recourses for ones that I had less of. For instance, I had two cities connected to ore hence every time someone rolled the number placed in the ore connected to my city, I would get 4 ores out of it. I probably had half the ore deck so I started trading for some of the cards that I had less of, such as wheat or brick. And because I was supplying my group with the ores and sheep’s, they were hesitant to put the thief on resources connected to my settlements. I did end up buying development cards near to the end simply hoping for victory points, and I got it. I do believe that I played a lot more strategic this time which resulted in myself getting first place at the end. To conclude, Catan was an absorbing game that challenged every member playing it to take risks, maneuver around possible disadvantages, and think critically for the best outcome for their game.
October 16, 2017 at 1:38 am
Playing The Settlers of Catan taught me many different strategies to win. I learned that if things don’t go the way as you planned to always have a back up. I placed my first two settlements on intersections near numbers with a high chance of being rolled but didn’t realize that I didn’t place them near different resources until I kept getting only Lumber and Ore. At that point, I decided to trade resources with people who needed those and immediately placed a settlement near wheat and bricks. Later, I saved my cards to be the first one to build a city. I believe that decision is what got me to first place. After being in first place, I decided to maintain the position by trying to get the longest road card. By doing so, I also got to stop other people from building settlements near places I wanted to build. When I first started playing, I focused more on trying to place my settlements near numbers with a high chance of being rolled, but as I continued the game I realized that I should also focus on the resources I’m placing them around. When I realized that I made a mistake, I had to think fast for a solution like trading my cards. In that particular game, it worked out for me as others needed my resources but this strategy would not always be effective. I learned that not everything will always be in your favour but if it’s not, you should learn from it rather than putting it aside.
October 16, 2017 at 2:12 am
This game went a different direction than the last. I decided to try something different by placing my first two settlements near resources rather than paying attention to the numbers and before I knew it I had too many wool and not enough bricks. It was quite frustrating as I was constantly stuck without being able to build anything. When I finally saved up my cards I was able to build a city which really helped me step up in the game. I built the city near bricks and found myself close to getting the longest road card. Although it was a frustrating game, I learned that you shouldn’t give up no matter what. You should always try to find a way to learn from your mistake rather than to letting it keep you down. Next time I will focus on both the resource cards and the numbers.This taught me that you should always take your time to think things through before making a big decision. I should take everything important into consideration before coming to a conclusion rather than rushing. But in some cases you have to think and act fast before it’s too late. Just like trying to get the longest road card. Before I could build more on my road, I was blocked. If I had acted sooner I could have got the card.
When I played this game for the very first time I did not know any of the strategies, but as I continued playing, I learned many new things along the way.
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