The small island of Catan gets protection from stampedes, earthquakes, and escaped T-Rexes.
The hexagonal board of Settlers of Catan is part of the classic German game’s real genius. Each time you play, it changes randomly, forcing players to adapt to things like wheat shortages and inconveniently located sheep deposits that hadn’t been there the last time you played. But the modularity of such a board comes with a major disadvantage: Much like a glass of water precariously balanced on the dash of an abandoned car in a dinosaur theme park gone awry, the slightest tremble can often portend disastrous consequences for the island.
Enter The Catan Board (seventeen years late to the game, but hey, who’s counting?) an official play mat that finally introduces some sorely needed discipline to those brilliant, yet unstable little resource zones. There’s even a way to expand the island with a nifty table-leaf-style mat addition if you’re one of those fancy-pants people with more than three friends who needs the 5-6 player expansion
Of course, it will be sad to see the days of my favorite strategy, the “Oh, you took longest road from me, oops I bumped into table with my knees while standing up” technique, fade into memory, but technological progress demands sacrifice, I suppose. No word yet on a release date or price, but the Publishers of Catan have made it clear that you can just buy the mat for your current set, without needing to invest in a whole new copy of the game.
Source: Settlers of Catan Facebook Page