Biff and I started joking around about capitalism during a game of Settlers tonight, and after the game we hashed out some ideas about how to play as the humble peasants of Catan instead of their lords and masters.
- Each player keeps track of two hands of cards: their own and their king's hand. A player can only use resources from their own hand, not from their king's hand. The game itself plays the role of the kings.
- Each turn, each city OR settlement in your color produces one resource-unit from each adjacent hex.
- Next, roll the dice, as usual. Whatever number is rolled, hexes that would normally produce will instead "eat" one resource of the appropriate type from your hand - this resource goes into your king's hand. Call this "tithing". Cities, though, eat two resources of each type from your hand.
- If you roll a 7, you can place the Robber on any hex you like; any player with a city or settlement bordering that hex takes one random resource from their king's hand and puts it in your hand.
- Each turn, check your king's hand to see if it can afford to buy any development cards. Buy all the development cards you can afford (using the king's hand only!) and play them as soon as possible (your next turn, I think). Lumber and bricks just sit in the king's hand (you must trade them with the bank or any available harbors, in order to collect as much wool, ore, and grain as possible - for development cards!)
- Development cards that award resources are instead tithed by that player to his or her king's hand. Those that award victory points work normally.
- When Knight cards are played, they are placed under the Robber's new location; this hex now produces nothing, but demands tithes when its number is rolled, and upon Robber-placement, a random resource is taken from an adjacent player's own hand and put into your king's hand. When the Robber changes locations again, such Knight cards return to the corresponding King's hand.
Not sure how victory points factor in or how I'd want them to be different. What I'm going for is some kind of end-goal of turning a city into a "free republic" a la the Italian Renaissance.
Help me develop this :)