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8 of 9 gamers found this helpful
“Get 'em fast!”

Hey there dudes & dudettes,

As you can read in my recent review (check it out :p) I recently bought ‘The Struggle for Catan’ and tried it out with my girlfriend. Even though I liked it as a filler or just as a quick game my girlfriend ended up not liking it all that much at the end of the night. Why? Well, I guess I could have had something to do with that…

If you don’t wish to have a tactic explained and want to search you own way, do not keep reading beyond this point!

We played with just the two of us, which means there are only 5 streets, 2 knights, 7 villages/cities and 5 city expansions (4 of 3 points each and 1 of 4 points) in play.

The first couple of games went quite well except for the occasional market flooding and my girlfriend winning all the time. Let me explain: When it comes to cards or dice my girlfriend is so lucky that I’m happy we’re not living in old Salem :/.

In the last game I thought of trying out another strategy:
Of course we both started with a race to build streets so we could trade resources with the market and to train a knight so we could draw an extra card each turn, and soon I started building villages. 5 of them to be exact, leaving 2 for my girlfriend.

She started steeling my streets, but I didn’t really care ’cause I was too busy upgrading my villages to cities and saving up for my first city expansion: The university which lets you pay 1 resource card for another resource once each turn.

By doing this I was able to build more city expansions quicker and finally I stole my streets back until I had 4 of them (meaning 2 points), built the city walls (3 points and it protects 3 of my streets from being stolen), bringing me to a total of 8 points.

My next step was building the church, protecting my knight from being stolen and preventing her from building it and protecting her knight, so I could steel it on a later turn.

I can hear you think ‘What the &#$^%, the game only ends when someone has 10 points!’. True! But if you count well my girlfriend had 2 villages which she converted to cities for a total of 4 points. She couldn’t steel any more streets from me, she could train an extra knight (mine!) for 1 point, bringing her total to 5 points, and city expansions could only bring her up to 8 points in total (the left over 4-point expansion and a 3-pointer would replace the 4 points of her cities) leaving her no chance whatsoever to win.

She immediately claimed the game was broken, which in a way is true. This certainly is a dominant strategy in 2-player games, yet I would not recommend it in games with more players as I think you simply can’t pull it off :/.

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