Game-playing standards were broken when the youngest family member, age 5, not only learned HOW to play the game, but has mastered it and even claimed victory more than once.
A couple of weeks ago I was on Catan-overdose. "NO MORE SETTLERS!" I announced after a marathon game that wore my nerves to a frazzle. I've since recovered, and this afternoon when the cry of "Let's play a game!" went out, I knew what the popular choice would be. I was almost sure I could handle it.
Just to make things interesting, (and to preserve my sense of dignity and patience) I suggested "Let's play speed Catan!" You've heard of speed chess... same concept. Once the dice are rolled and resources are distributed, you have 60 seconds to complete your turn. Simple. Everyone agreed.
It didn't last all day and night, and there was a renewed sense of competition. When the winner was declared, we all happily put the pieces away and did't feel a sense of foreboding doom lest someone feel the urge to play the game within, say, the next 48 hours.