In "Cities and Knights" there is a city improvement which allows you to "collect a resource of your choice" if "you don't receive production on a turn."

Does this privilege apply when the following are true?

  • a number near which I have a settlement is rolled
  • the robber is on that hex
  • I own the city improvement described above

In other words, can I collect a resource card of my choice in this situation. According to the description of the privilege I should be able to because I received no production. A friend, however, is saying that I received production but the robber stole it away. Is there a definitive answer for this scenario?


4 Answers 4


From the original Catan rules:

Important: If the production number for the hex containing the robber is rolled, the owners of adjacent settlements and cities do not receive resources. The robber prevents it.

I think it's clear from that that a player doesn't receive production in the scenario that you outline, even if production in some sense occurs.

As such, you should be able to collect a resource of your choice from your improvement.

  • 2
    We always put the robber directly on top of the number for the hex, so it's really like the number no longer exists at all. The fact that there's a "5" under the robber is meaningless; that hex doesn't do anything when a 5 is rolled.
    – GendoIkari
    Apr 30, 2013 at 18:59
  • 1
    If these are the exact words, the rules are not precise even for the basic game. It should be "owners of adjacent settlements and cities do not receive resources for this hex field.". The city improvement which was referred to does not directly depend on any hex field, but only on whether the owner got resource/commodity cards in this turn.
    – Tim
    Apr 30, 2013 at 20:25
  • @Tim: Well, I think it's implied that "the owner of adjacent settlements and cities do not receive resources [for the hex containing the robber, that was just mentioned]". I see the ambiguity in the wording though, good call! Apr 30, 2013 at 20:38
  • 1
    @thesunneversets What I wanted to say with this statement is the following: The rule you quoted only affects one aspect of getting resources (having a city near a hex with the number that has been rolled). It does for example not affect the resources you get with an invention card. The city improvement in the question acts like half an invention card played whenever you get no resources in the production phase. No matter what the reasons are. The only exception to this is when a 7 is rolled, because then there is no production phase (instead the robber is moved).
    – Tim
    Apr 30, 2013 at 21:29
  • That's all true, but I think it's still worth answering what (seemed to be) the main thrust of the question: does having production stolen by the robber count as "receiving production". We agree that it doesn't! May 1, 2013 at 10:38

You receive your resource.

In the German version the aqueduct description specifically states that it does not work if the seven is rolled. In all other cases it works as usual. You can find this clarification In the largest German FAQ for Catan, but I did not find an English source.

This does however only apply if you did not get any resources and commodities this turn. So if you have a settlement near both fields with the number you will not get a compensation if one of them is blocked. You may receive progress cards without losing the aqueduct's function.


Yes, you may use the ability if the robber prevented your production.

The answer from the latest version of the Cities and Knights rulebook seems very clear:

Aqueduct (green): If, when the dice are rolled for production, you do not receive any resources or commodities, you may take one resource of your choice from the bank. You may not, however, use this ability when a "7" is rolled.

All that matters is whether or not you received any resources or commodities. It doesn't matter [i]why[/i] you didn't receive any, whether it was because of the robber, or because the resource pile was empty, or because you didn't build on the rolled number. As long as you did not receive any resources or commodities (and the roll was not a "7"), you may take one resource of your choice from the bank.


You can argue either side, here. The rule is the ambiguous as written.

My opinion is that getting production any time you roll a number that you don’t occupy is a large enough benefit and avoiding the Robber as well is too much of an advantage.

Make your own House Rule and avoid the long discussion

  • 1
    Have to disagree; I quoted the rulebook directly in my answer and I can't see anything ambiguous about it as written.
    – GendoIkari
    Jun 12, 2021 at 20:19

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