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In Settlers of Catan, are players allowed to trade before they roll, or like most actions, should it happen after?

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No, you must roll before doing any trades or builds.

From the rules:

Turn Overview

On your turn, you can do the following in the order listed:

  • You must roll for resource production (the result applies to all players).
  • You may trade resource cards with other players and/or use maritime trade.
  • You may build roads, settlements or cities and/or buy development cards. You may also play one development card at any time during your turn.
  • After you’re done, pass the dice to the player to your left, who then continues the game with step 1.
  • Tip: For advanced players, we recommend combining the second and third steps. You can find more details in the Almanac under “Combined Trade/Build Phase.”
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Until you roll the dice (or play an expansion pack card that lets you set the values of the dice if that card is in your game) it is not your turn; it is still the previous player’s turn.

Nothing is stopping you making unsolicited trade offers to the player whose turn it still is but you may not make any offers to third players.

Once you have rolled the dice and distributed resources/accounted for a 7, it is your turn and you can trade as usual.

2
  • Do you have a source for this? According to the rules from Gendolkari's answer it is your turn and then you roll – jpthesolver2 Jul 1 '20 at 15:47
  • @jpthesolver2 What exactly do you want sourced? According to the rules Gendolkari linked, just a bit further down from the quoted part it says ‘You begin your turn by rolling both dice’. In the next column (section 2a, domestic trade) it says ‘The other players can also make their own proposals and counteroffers.’ It also says under Important: ‘Players may only trade with the player whose turn it is. The other players may not trade among themselves.’ If I missed any sourceable material please do not hesitate to point it out. – Jan Jul 2 '20 at 14:49

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