Explorer & Pirates FAQ's

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"Fast Gold" - May I use the "Fast Gold" advantage in addition to the 2:1 trade?

Unfortunately, an error has occurred in the corresponding paragraph on page 15 of the game rules. The correct wording should be as follows: "If you are friends with one of these villages, once during your build and trade phase you may sell any one resource of your choice for one gold from the supply. If you are friends with both villages, you may sell one resource for one gold twice during your build and trade phase." This, of course, is possible in addition to buying resources for two gold.

Does a settler ship count as a victory point or does the settler ship have to be converted into a settlement to count as a victory point?

A settler doesn't count as a victory point, not even if he is on a ship. Only settlements, harbor settlements, and the mission progress count as victory points.

Fish Hauls and Spice Sacks - Is it allowed to place fish hauls or spice sacks from a ship into a basin, and from there load them onto another ship, like crews or settlers?


Fish shoal - If your ship has no more movement points left and is pointing towards a fish shoal hex, and then you successfully roll for a fish shoal, can you load it immediately?

Yes, you don't need movement points to catch a fish haul and load it onto your ship. The only requirement is that your ship either point to a fish shoal hex with a fish haul or stand on a sea route adjacent to that fish shoal hex.

Harbor settlements - Can you build roads off of harbor settlements?

A harbor settlement is simply another form of settlement, with the following differences:

- Except during the set-up phase, you can only build a harbor settlement by upgrading a regular settlement on the coast.

- You may build ships adjacent to a harbor settlement.

- A harbor settlement has a basin that can hold crews, fish hauls, spice sacks, and settlers; from there, you can load them onto ships.

- You may swap the position of crews, fish hauls, spice sacks, and settlers between a ship and a harbor settlement and vice versa.

- A harbor settlement is worth two victory points.

Regarding all other issues, a harbor settlement has the same qualities as a regular settlement.

If, as a result of the production roll, I only receive gold via the gold fields but no resources, do I get one additional gold?

Yes. Gold does not count as a resource, and a player who doesn't receive resources is always compensated with one gold, even if he receives other income.

Is it possible to purchase a settler during the build and trade phase, then load him onto a ship, move him, and then convert him into a settlement - all within one turn?

There is one general rule for the game:

- In the build and trade phase you can do things for which you need resources. 

- In the movement phase you can do everything for which no resources are needed (exception: if you want to buy additional movement points, you need wool). Therefore, you can discover a new island via settler ship and immediately convert the settler into a settlement, because you don't need resources for the latter. However, you cannot upgrade this settlement to a harbor settlement during the movement phase, because the upgrade would require resources.

Moving Ships - Is it allowed to move a ship along the edge between the starting island and the Council of Catan's stronghold?


Moving Ships - May a player who placed a merchant on the spice hex depicting the “Swift Voyage” advantage use the additional movement point immediately if his ship has already spent part of its movement points?

Yes, his ship immediately receives another movement point.

Sea Routes - Are only ships allowed on "sea routes" located between terrain hexes and sea hexes / frame, or may I also build roads there?

Roads may be built on all paths, both inland and along the coast. At the shore, roads can be parallel to ships, meaning that up to one road + two ships may simultaneously occupy a path on the coast.

Set-up - On page 19 of the game rules there is no number token in the pasture on the left (piece A1), the other scenarios have a "6". Is that a mistake?

Yes. A "number 6" token is placed on the pasture as well.

Spice hexes - Is there any advantage to having a settlement on the spice hex?

The settlement increases your number of victory points by 1 and can be transformed into a harbor settlement, thus earning you another victory point and possibly shortening the distance to the unexplored areas.