After Settlers was first released in 1995, a small but passionate following emerged. It wasn’t until a decade later that the game’s popularity began to blossom. “The start of the tipping point was 2008,” said Bob Carty, a spokesman for Settlers manufacturer Mayfair Games. “Settlers is three to five years away from being a household word.” Last year alone, the game’s sales grew 35 percent. Carty said that the game is mainly played by families, but it’s also popular on college campuses and as a team-bonding activity at companies.
Part of Settlers’ success can be attributed to its well-designed gameplay. Adam Weisberg, a finalist in the 2006 Settlers of Catan US Championship, notes that the game “is easy to learn because it draws on equal parts strategy, gamesmanship and luck.” The rules give you enough choices to keep it interesting, without so many as to make it overwhelming. As a result, says Weisberg, “with a little luck, a sharp new player always has a chance to beat an expert.”
Read more at The Atlantic [gadl/Flickr]