I really like Mayfair's Settlers of Catan and have been playing Gnocatan/Pioneers for a number of years...
There are two house rules I often play with:
Robber only steals resources when a soldier card is played. So the roll of a seven only moves the robber. This is fairly easy to implement, and I'm about 30% done.
Welfare dollars. With this option, on any non-seven dice roll where a player does not have a hex for that number gets a welfare dollar. Example: My hexes are 11,9,8,6,4,3 and 5 is rolled, I get a welfare dollar. In the previous example, if 6 is rolled, but the robber covers my 6, I do NOT get the dollar since I had the hex--even though it didn't produce for me. During maritime trade, I can trade welfare dollars equal to my victory points for a single resource.
I like these rules enough that I have begun to implement them in the latest svn. We'll see how it goes. I'm good, but my time is limited....
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