Settlers of Catan was one of the first German-style board games to become popular outside of its native territory and has seen huge success ever since its debut in 1995. Part of that success can surely be put down to its ability to act as a base game for all sorts of thematic iterations, much like Monopoly and Clue. This Game of Thrones version is merely a modern reimagining of the classic formula.
Set during the early days of A Song of Ice and Fire, Brotherhood of the Watch sees Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch, Jeor Mormont, looking to appoint a successor. To judge who is worthy, he’s tasked several members of the Night’s Watch to improve the infrastructure of the tract of land immediately south of the Wall, known as the Gift.
Much like traditional games of Settles of Catan, Brotherhood of the Watch will see players build settlements and “keeps” (the latter replacing cities) throughout the Gift, enhancing its resource production. They’ll earn victory points along the way, with the first to reach 10 winning the game. However, all will need to watch out for Tormund Giantsbane, who takes on the role of the classic Catan robber, as he raids and pillages.
Other Wildlings muster beyond the wall, acting as the ever-present barbarian threat, with three distinct clans offering their own unique problems. Shaking things up further is the hero system, which sees each player given one of several characters from the books to aid them. Jeor Mormont himself aids player one, while Samwell Tarly helps the third. Players can call on them and their powerful abilities just twice during a game, so they must be used wisely.
No pricing information has been released for Game of Thrones Catan: Brotherhood of the Watch as of yet, but we’re told to expect it on retailer shelves in the fourth quarter of this year. For those wanting an early look at it, demo games are slated to run during Gen Con, which runs from August 17 to 20.
If this game doesn’t strike your fancy, why not check out one of the 15 other great board games we recommend?