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In the Catan Explorers and Pirates expansion, settler ships can convert to settlements upon discovering unexplored territories. Can settler ships also convert to settlements on the starting island?

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As long as you observe the usual Catan distance rule (2 paths between settlements) you can use a Settler Ship to build a settlement on any unoccupied intersection where all the adjacent hexes have been discovered.

This is set out in the rules for Scenario 1: Land ho! on page 5 of the Catan: Explorers & Pirates rulebook:

Building a Settlement with the Aid of a Settler Ship
If either end of one of your settler ships points toward the corner of a terrain hex, you may build a settlement there.

The additional note on the same page relating to building settlements upon discovering unexplored territories is just noting that Settler Ships are the only way to gain a foothold on the newly discovered territories.


If either end of one of your settler ships points toward
the corner of a terrain hex, you may build a
settlement there

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