OBJECTIVE OF STRUGGLE FOR CATAN: Be the first player to earn 10 victory points

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2 – 4 players

CONTENTS:  67 Resource Cards, 42 Building Cards, 1 Destiny Card




Struggle for Catan is a resource management card game for 2 – 4 players.  Although it does not include a board or die, it does still capture the essence of the standard Catan board game.  In this game, players will trade resources, build their settlement with constructions such as roads and cities, and earn victory points.  The first player to earn 10 or more victory points wins the game.


Game components include 67 Resource Cards: 11 Brick, 11 Lumber, 15 Wool, 14 Grain, and 16 Ore.  Resources are used to build roads, settlements, cities, city expansions, and knights.

These constructions are represented with the 42 Building cards: 9 Road, 15 Settlement/City, 5 Knight, and 9 City Expansions.


 The number of cards used depends on the number of players.  There is a player count indicator on the Building Cards.  For a 2 player game, remove all of the cards with a three or four player count indicator.  For a 3 player game, remove all of the cards that have a four player count indicator.  A 4 player game uses all of the Building Cards.

Sort the Building Cards into four piles (road, settlement/city, knight, and expansion) and place them in the center of the playing space.  Make sure that the settlement side of those cards is face up as well as the A-side of the knight cards.  The city expansion cards should be stacked face up as well.

Shuffle the resource cards and place them face down as a draw pile.  From the resource pile, take five cards and place them face up in a row to form the market.  Each player is then given a hand of three resource cards.  These should be kept secret by the player.

Each player also gets on settlement, road, and building costs card.  The road card is kept on the table with the A side face up.  The settlement card is also kept face up on the table.  Each player begins the game with 1 victory point.

In a three or four player game, place the Destiny Card next to the space for the discard pile.  This card is not used in a 2 player game.


The oldest player gets to go first.  A player may perform these actions on their turn: trade, build, and draw.  The actions must be done in that order.


A player may trade one or more resource cards with the draw pile, the market, or with an opponent.  The number of cards a player may trade depends on how many roads they have with the A-side face up.  If a player does not have any roads with the A-side face up, they can only trade 1 card, and they must trade with the draw pile.  When the player has one or more roads with the A-side face up, they may trade a number of resources up to that amount.  For example, if a player has three road cards with the A-side up, they may trade 0, 1, 2, or 3 cards.

When trading with the draw pile, the player must first choose a number of cards from their hand and place them in the discard pile.  Then, they draw the same number from the draw pile. 

To trade with the market, the player takes the cards they want from it and replaces them with an equal number of cards from their hand.

In order to trade with an opponent, that opponent holds out their hand of cards face down.  The player takes the number of desired cards and adds them to their hand.  Then, the player returns an equal number of cards to the opponent.  The same cards that were drawn can be returned.

Players do not have to perform all of their trades with the same option.  For example, if a player wants to trade 3 cards, they can trade with the market, the draw pile, and opponent or any combination as long as they do not exceed their legal trade amount for the turn (which equals the number of road cards with the A-side face up).


Players place a building card face up on the table and pay the resource cost to the discard pile.  A player can pay three of the same type of resource rather than one that is required on the card as often as possible in order to play the building card.  A player can only build one of each building type on their turn.

When roads are played, they should be place in an overlapping column so that text and victory points are visible.  The first road card played should have the A-side face up.  The second road should have the B-side face up.  Road cards that are played alternate following that pattern.  Knight cards are placed in the same fashion as roads.

Eventually, all of the road and knight cards will be played.  When this occurs, players can still pay to build these things, but they get to steal one from an opponent.  After paying the resource cost, the player steals the top most road or knight from an opponent’s column.  If a player has a Church, their first knight cannot be stolen.  If a player has a Castle, their first three roads cannot be stolen.

Settlements can be built until there are no more settlement cards.  When a settlement is built, that player may flip the destiny card if they wish.  Once a player has a settlement, they may turn that into a city.  To do so, pay the city resource cost and flip the settlement card over.  After doing so, an event will occur that should be read aloud from the card.

City Expansion cards are purchased and placed on top of a city card.  A player can only build one of each type of expansion.


After a player has finished building, they may draw two resource cards from the draw pile.  For each knight the player has withe A-side showing, they draw an additional card.


During the game, players earn victory points depending on the cards they have played. 


The first player to earn 10 victory points or more on their turn wins the game.

Mark Ball
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