The official iPhone version of Settlers of Catan, the boardgame. It provides an extensive tutorial, multiplayer or AI play (good AI, BTW), eye-catching graphics, great period music, and a bit of personality. On the downside, it plods along at a mind-numbingly slow pace, the trade interface is just a teeny bit confusing, the dice can only be described as “goofy”, and there is very little add-on content. Even without expansion content, though, I do feel it is worth the price. The pacing, however, is rough. After each roll, every resource is given out to every recipient sequentially, instead of simultaneously and the map zooms in and out and pans around forever. While some will appreciate the detailed landscape graphics, I would much prefer simple, obvious symbols. The current graphics don’t scale that well, which probably warrants the auto-zoom, but with iconic graphics, they could have forgone the zoom. The Catan clone Kolonists had simpler graphics, but it was pulled from the app store, due to copyright infringement. I’m a big fan of the boardgame and, in general, they did a good job, but I hate the wait.

Update: One of my buddies told me that you can tap out of the move animations, which improves the game significantly, in my opinion, so my rating has been increased accordingly.

Rating: ★★★★☆ icon


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