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Play Settlers of Catan Anytime thanks to HTML 5

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Microsoft today released a preview for a free browser-based version of tabletop game Settlers of Catan that will work across any online device with a modern browser regardless of operating system.

Catan Anytime was built using the latest HTML 5 web standards with the help of the original creators of Catan, Mayfair Games and Bontom Games as part of Microsoft's Rethink "experiences."

The beta version of the game, which is live now, supports four-player games, turn-based asynchronous gameplay with auto-trade and auto-roll features and the ability to keep up-to-date on your game via email.

The Microsoft plans to release the full game, which will offer complete parity with the tabletop version, in August during Gamescom, according to Internet Explorer group product manager Justin Garrett.

Garrett's Windows Blog post promises that the game will run on a slew of browser-enabled devices, that includes smartphones, computers, even a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One.

"Catan Anytime is not meant to replace the board game experience," Garrett writes. "We wanted to adapt the essence of Catan to the best of today's mass market game mechanics. The digital version is meant to plug the game seamlessly into our daily lives and grow the way people can experience it."