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Can you move roads in Catan?

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Any road that a player builds in Catan is connected to a city, existing roads, and settlement. If the player wants to build a new settlement, then they have to continue the road to where they want to establish their settlement.

During the player’s turn, a player can build as many roads as they want using the resources they have on hand. A player can build a new road anywhere, and they don’t have to retrace a route back to when they began their game.

So, can a player move a road in Catan? Yes, in the Cites and Knights and Helpers of Catan expansion packs it’s legal to demolish a road in the Catan game. If you demolish and move your own road, then you may immediately place it on the board, or remove it and replace it later on.

In the original version of the game, you cannot move the road or demolish and rebuild. This is an important distinction between the original gameplay and expansion versions. A player can only build a new road or extend the existing road if they connect it to your own city or settlement. 

However, they can upgrade their road and add a new piece to the existing road to lead to their new settlement or city. The road remains to the player who builds it until the game ends. 

Although players can upgrade their roads, the upgraded road cannot expand past someone else settlement. Answered below are frequently asked questions about moving roads in Catan, including how roads are upgraded and used to connect to settlements.

How many roads are in Catan?

At the start of the game, each player is supplied with 15 roads, and once they are built the roads remain on board until the game ends. Once the player builds all 15 houses of their color, they cannot build more roads in the game. 

In a single turn, a player cannot build two roads unless the roads are built in two separate segments. Furthermore, a player can build as many roads as long as they haven’t exceeded the limit.

Can you intercept or demolish roads in Catan?

Yes, an opponent player can build a settlement or city along an occupied intersection of a player’s road.

In addition, a player can demolish any road segment from the board. It can be the player’s or the opponent’s road. The cutoff road can be taken back to the game supply to be reused later in the game.

 A player can build anywhere on a vacant spot, including intercepting another player’s road. However, once the player builds a settlement or city at the end of that road, another player cannot continue along the road to develop more. 

A player can build a settlement or a city at the center of another player’s chain of road. If that happens, the second player can build another road to connect a settlement on the other side.

Settlement intercepts another player’s road if it appears at the end of the road if that road is coming to an end on that point. However, if the interception is in the middle of a player’s road, a player can build on the road from the other ends.

Longest road in Catan

The longest road in Catan is any route connecting two interactions with at least five roads of the same color that are not interrupted by pieces from another player.

When a player gets the longest road in Catan, they earn a special card found in Catan called the longest road card, worth two victory points during the game. Players claim the card when they get five or more continuous road segments between two points without doubling back.  

It’s possible to secure the longest road card using all 15 roads in a continuous formation because otherwise you run out of development cards. As a result, no other player can have a longer road if a player manages to arrange all their roads in a continuous series. 

Players cannot tie on the longest road because the first player earns the card. Furthermore, players can break another player’s longest road by building a settlement or city along the road, provided the intersection is not occupied.  

When the longest road is achieved, the other players need to connect more roads than the player who has the road. The longest road forms the two points of the ten that a player needs to win.

Catan road rules

  • A player must connect a new road built to one of their existing roads, settlements, or cities.
  • A player can only build one road on a path.
  • A continuous road with at least five roads of the same color that are not intercepted by any opponent game pieces forms the longest road.
  • The longest road earns two of the ten points a player needs to win the game.
  • An opponent player can build a city or settlement on another player’s road. When a settlement is built at the end of a road, no other player can build at that intersection. 
  • At the start of the game, 15 roads are supplied to each player. 
  • The player continues to own any road they build on the board until the end of the game.
  • If another player manages to build a longer road than the player who holds the longest road card, the ownership of the special card is transferred to the current player with the longest road.
  • A road can be demolished in the Cites and Knights and Helpers of Catan expansion packs, then moved somewhere else to connect a new settlement or city.
  • A player can build roads anywhere in Catan board, provided the spot is vacant.
  • Players can build another road to the existing road without necessarily going back to where the player began the game. 
  • When another player intersects the player’s road in the middle, the road owner can continue developing the road on either open side.
Can you move roads in Catan

Moving Roads in Catan: Conclusion 

A road in Catan is used to build a new settlement away from the existing ones. Players are able to demolish and move roads in the Cites and Knights and Helpers of Catan expansion packs to continue expanding the route to a spot they wish to establish their new settlement.

The longest road card is earned by the player who manages to connect at least five roads undisrupted by another player’s piece. They have to claim the ownership of the Longest Road Card, which is worth 2 points out of a possible 10 needed to achieve victory. 

If another player builds a longer road, the ownership of the card is transferred until another player gets more roads than them. The only guarantee for the ownership of the Longest Road Card is to connect all 15 roads you begin the game with.

A road can be built anywhere in Catan board, regardless of whether settlements have been established. However, the road must connect to one existing road, city, or settlement for the action to be legal.

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Justin C

Thursday 10th of March 2022

Evidently the Cities and Knights and The Helpers of Catan expansions do add this ability and it is important to understand that before an argument begins at some distant game night.