First there was the island of Catan, now comes the countryside of Carcassonne. The game, which allows 1-4 players offline and 1-5 players across Xbox Live, has players placing 72 tiles to arrange roads, control pastures, surround monasteries and build castles. It also includes 12 tiles of the rivers expansion pack. Best of all, is that unlike the 30-40 minutes it takes to play Catan, reports have a Carcassone game lasting between 10 and 20 minutes. The game will cost 800 MS points ($10).

So, will Carcassonne have the same community as Catan? We can hope. What we do know is that Sierra is supporting Carcassonne with future expansion packs like Inns & Cathedral and The Tower. It'll also be nice to play the game with people offline. Now we're looking forward to expansion packs to Catan and the arrival of Alhambra, which we haven't heard anything about since it was originally announced last year. Catan and Carcassonne are Euro gaming goodness and we don't even care about the irony of having a $400 system to play board games. When you grow up and your friends are scattered to the four corners of the planet, this is a way to bring everyone back together. Plus, being offline playable against friends (unlike Catan), means easy no fuss clean-up after a game in your living room/bedroom/game lair/castle.

Update: GamerTalkHQ got a list of the game's achievements.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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