by A.J. Coltrane
Title: Starship Catan
Game Type: Exploration/ Euro-style resource allocation, shares traits with the other Catan titles.
Number of Players: 2
Complexity of Rules: Low-Medium/ Medium
Time to Play: 60 minutes
The Concept: Each player controls a spaceship. In the quote box is further explanation from boardgamegeek (I can’t improve on it, so here it is) –
Players explore randomly shuffled decks of cards [ed: star sectors] looking for potential colonies, good trading deals, opportunities to help planets, and either avoid or combat pirates. Players can upgrade their ships’ systems, including weapons to combat the pirates, thrusters to be able to explore further each turn, scanners to see (and avoid) cards that are coming up, and several others. Victory Points are earned by establishing colonies, building upgraded ship’s systems, having the most friendship points, and having the most hero points. The first player to 10 Victory Points wins.
Why I Like It: Like many of the other Catan and Euro games, it’s about the tradeoff between what you have, what you want, what you need now, and what you’re building towards. As the sectors are explored, the pirates get bigger and nastier, and the danger ramps up.
The game features good-sized cardboard cutouts that represent the ships. You can see it in the picture below. The yellow token attaches to the back of the ship and represents an engine. The blue pointy token goes in the front and represents cannons. The arrows in the middle of the ship point to how much of a particular resource that you have. The squares represent different bays of the ship that can be upgraded for a cost. There are also the Colony and Trade pods at the back. Collect resources by exploring the sectors and upgrade as you think is appropriate. .
The boy cat was interested in playing too:
Starship Catan is now out of print. The going rate on ebay is $22-34. We recently purchased a 2nd copy on ebay with the idea of keeping one “nice” copy. As it turns out, the one purchased on ebay is in better shape, so it’s now the “keeper”. Highly recommended.