We recently played a game of Settlers of Catan where for the first 3 rounds none of us got any brick at all, so there was no road construction at all and it dragged a little. I'm not looking to reduce the randomness, but a slight alteration of the game setup could probably do the trick.
Here's what I've thought of:
- Give players more starting resources. If everyone began with 2 of everything things could get going faster.
- give everyone an extra free road at the beginning.
Are there any other good ways to give Catan a bit more of a jump start? I find if one player gets a slow start in the beginning (like no brick) they can get screwed for most of the game. Different players being strong in different resources is core to the entire game, but a tiny early lack of wood can make one player suffer through the entire thing.