When the Settlers of Catan were released, this wasn't the full version of the game, as Klaus Teuber had it in mind. This was due to marketing reasons. As the game has become such a success, the outstanding parts are to be released in February 1997 as an expansion set.
The following parts are to be included:
Ships are like roads: they may be built along the shore or between sea hexagons. Building costs are 1 wool (sail) and 1 lumber unit (hull). As long as a shipping line isn't completed, i.e. as long as it doesn't connect two settlements or cities on differents islands, it may be changed: You may take the leading boat and place it somewhere else. There are no building costs for this reconstruction.
Shipping lines must begin and end at settlements or cities. Ships and roads together form Trade Routes, so they both count when the Longest Trade Route is to be determined. When you play the Development Card "Progress" (Fortschritt), you may build ships instead of roads.
The gaining of special victory points depends on the scenario; e.g. you gain 1 special victory point, when you reach an island, where you haven't settled before, and build a settlement.
The rules book will contain several scenarios, it's not yet fixed how many. Some of them are to be seen on the photo-page. There is one that may be called "Die Entdecker von Catan" as you explore the game board as in Teuber's game "Entdecker". And of course you may invent your own scenarios. For instance according to Teuber's rules you are not allowed to build shipping lines leaving at the left edge of the game board and entering at the right edge. But if you play "Planet Catan" you may allow these "round the world" shipping lines.
The expansion set will contain material for 3 and 4 players - and a card with which you can order material for the 5th and 6th player directly from the published. The price of the expansion set isn't yet fixed.
The Settlers of Catan - The Sailor's expansion set by Klaus Teuber, 3+4 players, Kosmos-Spieleverlag
Until the announced seafaring expansion for Die Siedler appears on the market, it looks like we'll be spending a few more months on land. In the meantime, here is an interesting variation that was suggested to me at Essen by one of the good folks from Mayfair Games [This was probably Jay Tummelson (aka JayAtMG@aol.com), who writes on rec.games.board now and then. Jay explained the same variation to me at Essen. - KMW]:
Instead of the usual island surrounded by water shuffle all of the tiles, land and water, then lay them out in the fashion normally reserved for the land tiles. Turn the harbor tiles clockwise until all of the harbors connect properly with land. Now lay out the small, number tiles in the usual fashion. If two good numbers (from 6 and 8) come up side by side, swap them with a small number in such a way as to move them apart.
Now play as usual - with one new addition. To complement the "normal" streets, we now have bridges to cross over single water tiles. Use the normal street markers for bridges. The building cost is 1 clay, 1 wood, and 1 wool. Furthermore, the two tile side seperation rule for settlements is waived if the two settlements are seperated by water: it is legal to have two cities/settlements seperated by one bridge. [Bridges also count as part of the longest road. - kct]
This variation is very interesting. Because of the broken nature of the landscape there will be hardly any places to build that border three land tiles. Two tile places will prove essential. The spacing out of the land tiles also provides more places to build. My tip: try it out!
Jerry (Gerald Siek)