The Thing: The Settlers of Catan, Toronto’s current cardboard fixation
A time-tested antidote to winter-onset agoraphobia
Last year, Toronto got Snakes and Lattes, its first dedicated board game café. Skeptics called it a flavour of the month, nothing but a passing trend. A year on, it’s expanding. And it’s only one of dozens of cafés and bars around town that have a selection of games hanging around for their nostalgic, broke and pseudo-ironic clientele. In cold, dark January, that’s something we can get behind. Board games are everything wintertime entertainment should be—cheap, social, warm and familiar. We suggest picking up a copy of the city’s current cardboard fixation: The Settlers of Catan, a German game with a cultish following (you can’t throw a set of dice in Snakes and Lattes without hitting a group of overgrown kids playing it). The object of the game is for players to build settlements in a fictionalized world. Think of it as a pacified, agricultural blend of Risk and Monopoly. If you drag the game out long enough, it might be spring by the time it’s finished. $45. Mastermind Toys, 639 Mount Pleasant Rd., 416-440-0111.