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  • September 24, 2009

    My First Game

    Benjamin Teuber

    It’s obvious – at some point I’ve tried to design a game too. I was just five years old when that happened. It is a beautiful story I like to reminisce about. Actually, the game still exists, which is why I have the wonderful opportunity to document this blog posting directly with the game map from back then. …

  • September 10, 2009

    Seafarers, Traders, and Wizards in 3D

    Vulkan 3D 200 Seafarers, Traders, and Wizards in 3D

    In late 2005, Klaus Teuber gave me one of the beautiful Catan 3D Collector’s Editions. During the following years, this fascinating work of art inspired me to create my own add-ons. 3D vulcano It all started quite innocently when I modeled a volcano as an April Fool’s joke in 2006. I got hooked, and – suggested by the soccer world championship that had taken place in Germany in 2006 – the next thing in line was a soccer field for the permanent champion of Catan, the soccer club Catania Elasund. 3D gold river This was quickly followed by the gold river, where gold-hungry adventurers could dig for gold. …

  • September 2, 2009

    Part 2: How Two Hobbies Become a Profession

    Gero Zahn

    Last time – in the first part of this blog posting – I told how in 1997, before “The Starfarers of Catan” was published, a friend and I designed our own “Space Settlers” scenario –  as a result of which Klaus and I stayed loosely in touch since fall 1998. …

  • August 20, 2009

    Part 1: How to Meet a Game Designer

    Gero Zahn

    On the “About Us” page here in the Catanism Blog or at, my (slightly grandiose) job title is “Web Content Manager” (or it least it was when this blog post was initially published). What exactly this means – apart from the obvious “rearing and nurture of websites” – will be the topic of another blog posting. What’s probably more interesting: …

  • August 10, 2009

    Can You Buy Fresh Strawberries on Catan?

    Peter Gustav Bartschat

    How does the perfect Catan lunch look like?  Lamb chop in puff pastry with a glass of sheep milk, sheep’s milk cheese with bread for dessert… but in the evening at least a wheat beer to wash it down with? You’d think that life must be rather monotonous on this island where only grain and trees grow, sheep are the only living beings apart from the settlers themselves, and wooden beams and bricks are the only available building material. …

  • July 31, 2009

    Sprechen Sie Catanisch? Do you speak Catanish? Parlez-vous Catanais? ¿Usted habla Catanol? Talar ni Catanska?

    Dr. Reiner Düren

    Illustration 1: Back to the roots The Catan games have been translated into many languages by now, Bulgarian, Chinese, and Hebrew being the most recent ones. Players from all over the world meet at world championships and in the Catan Online World to jointly settle the small isla. From there, they board their naves and head for new shores to find freundliche Nachbarn or even the legendary countries El Dorado and Catlantis. Sheep Oveja (Spanish) Schaf (German) Schaap (Dutch) Mouton (French) Får (Schwedisch) They defy sjörövare and struikrover, build osada and upgrade them to πόλεις or use рыцарь cards to set the salteador on each other. …

  • July 22, 2009

    Hello, I’m a producer …

    Arnd Beenen

    In his blog posting, Guido already commented about how challenging it is for him to give people he meets a description of his work. I can definitely relate to that – the same thing happens to me. It’s even a little worse, because the next thing for me to explain is my function in this company, given the fact that I’m apparently not a game author. …

  • July 16, 2009

    Catan – an Introduction to my American Journey

    Guido Teuber

    My wife Emily (then girlfriend) and I had arrived in Charlottesville, VA, the charming and historically significant city of Jefferson, Monticello, and the University of Virginia. Two days earlier, on July 23rd 1997, I had stepped off a plane in New York, arriving from Germany and ready to start my new life in the USA. …

  • July 8, 2009

    Favorite FAQ

    Benjamin Teuber

    “What does your father do all day long as a game inventor?” People have asked me different versions of this question all my life. Everyone who has ever used a rolling pin more or less knows how a baker works, and you don’t need to have a green thumb to know how the workday of a gardener might look like. …

  • June 29, 2009

    What do you do for a living?

    Guido Teuber

    “So, …what do you do for a living?” New acquaintances always seem to ask this kind of question. Over time, I have tried different responses. At first, I used to say: “I’m in the board game business.” Usually, people reacted with a wide-eyed “Oh ….” I always wondered what people meant by “Oh ….” Perhaps they meant to say, “Oh … I am so sorry,” or maybe, “Oh … can you really make a living this way?” Indeed, the more generously inclined often gave me a compassionate look, as though they were equating the board game business with a state of long-term unemployment. …


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