Back in January, Mayfair Games announced that Catan: Junior will be hitting North America, but there were few details on how the game would change from its original Kosmos-published German edition, Die Siedler von Catan Junior. At Toy Fair 2012, I caught up with Mayfair's Director of Sales & Marketing, Bob Carty, to see an early prototype of this new Catan Junior edition.
The changes in this new version run the gamut of gameplay to theme. For one, all of the cards have been replaced with tiles (the sheets of symbols you see on the table are un-punched tile art), which makes more sense since this junior version of Catan doesn't involve stealing resources. The American version of Catan: Junior also incorporates a trade market which you can see has been built right into the game's board.
Thematically, the resources have received a bit of tweaking. Most notably, kids won't be collecting rum anymore, as those barrels have been renamed as molasses. Jack Sparrow might be disappointed, but I'm willing to bet at least a few parents will appreciate Mayfair's change.