I have played 70+ games of Catan. I've introduced many new people to gaming by starting with this game. Catan is a great gateway game. Whether its people new to the hobby entirely or people wanting to get a small feel for strategy this is your game.
3-4 players will gather resources, build, and trade to get the most victory points. The best things about this game is the high replay-ability. Every game the location of resources and the scarcity of those resources will change. Robbing other players and trade negotiations add a good amount of player interaction. 2 things some people might not like about the game is the passive agressiveness (getting blocked and having no way to retaliate or attack) and if the dice don't go your way and no one trades with you, you can sit idly until your next turn.
This game will take about an hour to play. Its a medium weight game for new players and a lightweight game for experienced players. 50/50 luck/strategy. Rules are clearly written, simple, easy to teach and understand. Artwork is good. Components aren't amazing, but no complaints either. I highly recommend for everyone to play at least a couple games of this. (It only gets better with expansions). 8/10 easy.