Yetisburg: Titanic Battles in History, Volume 1

****( ) (based on 9 ratings)
Yetisburg: Titanic Battles in History, Volume 1

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Four Score and Seven Yetis Ago…

On the bloody fields of Pennsylvania in 1863, two great armies collided to decide the fate of a nation. The South rose, and the North responded with fervent mettle.

At the forefront of the battle stood the mighty Yetis, white-furred giants imported from the wilds of Canada to shred the opposing front lines. The great generals strode through the battle lines, engineering the destruction of the opposing forces while powerful mastodons hurled bombs into the fray.

Yetisburg is a fast-paced, two-player card game where the South is pitted against the North in brutal battle.

    Yetisburg contains:
  • Two decks of 55 cards each
  • 60 tokens
  • Initiative marker
  • One rule booklet

Yetisburg—This War's Anything but Civil.

Designed by Mike Selinker and Joshua J. Frost

For two players ages 8 and up.

ISBN 13: 978-1-60125-148-0

Yetisburg Rulebook

The rulebook for Yetisburg: Titanic Battles in History, Volume 1 is available as a PDF. - Download (913kb zip/PDF)

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****( ) (based on 9 ratings)

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Why no Vol. 2? Here's why.

*( )( )( )( )

Game is not playable with the components included (rule book fails at presenting a complete set of rules). However, if you play around with some possible rule sets you will discover that Yetisburg blurs the line between game and activity. In short: choose to attack with Infantry, Cavalry, Artillery, or Yetis. Result: entirely random. As such this doesn't really count as a game.

If you'll notice, the game insists that it's a Vol. One, and that Vol. Two (Dismember the Alamo) is on its way. You'll also notice that no such sequel has been published, nor ever will be published, because this simply fails as a game.

Not for everyone

**( )( )( )

I enjoyed Yetisburg, not 5-star enjoy, but enjoyed (probably a 3-3.5 review under normal circumstances). The game is fairly fast-paced and easy to learn, both positives for game of this type. The tongue-in-cheek background story adds to the ambiance as you imagine mastodon artillery and giant yetis swarming the battlefield.

Unfortunately, once you get past the shiny coating and fun story, the game itself is just a hair too random. While not obnoxious, this did bring down the overall appeal to the game for me. Strategy is important, but it becomes overshadowed by elements such as pulling to generals to the battlefield, poor drawing of actions you can take, and the completely impossible-to-estimate damage your own troops will do. I understand this is supposed to be one of the entertaining elements of the game, but I feel it just goes a hair too far.

The primary problem with Yetisburg though is that it failed the critical "Girlfriend Test." My gamer girlfriend was barely capable of playing one game and walked away with the comment, "you don't ever need to pull that one out again." Thematically she wasn't that interested, and the randomness screwed with the game so much she couldn't wait for it to be over.

On sale for $5 (as I've heard it does on occasion), this game could be worth it, but at $19.99 I'd suggest spending your gaming dollars on something with a lot more crunch.


****( )

I purchased this for $5 via Paizo's Black Friday sale. And for $5, it would be worth five starts. At $20, I'd say closer to 3.5 stars, but I'll round up to four.

The Pros:
a) fun two player game;
b) easy to learn (my girlfriend likes it!);
c) great/funny art;
d) original premise (Canadian yetis vs. mastodons in a civil war game? Now that's different!);
e) The "meat" tokens for marking wounds;
f) Exploding mastodons that can damage/take out enemy and allied forces when they explode, and the unexpected chain reactions they can cause;
g) It's pretty quick-paced;
h) Combination of luck and strategy required to win;
i) Shooting your own forces at random :-);
j) As a Canadian, I appreciate the nod from the game designers.

Things I feel could have been better:

a) Victory conditions -- it would make more sense to me if victory was achieved when the loser had completely lost one column, rather than when they were no longer able to replenish their front and relief lines. The victory conditions feel a bit anti-climactic;
b) Non-officer mobility between columns;
c) An option to bring some of the forces placed in your hospital back into your hand.

The game is fun, but can feel "the same" after a while, as the strategic options are quite limited--especially when bad luck rears its ugly head and you blow your own troops up (or your opponent sets off a chain reaction with unanticipated consequences that totally decimates your ranks).

Overall though, I recommend it. I really hope Titanic will release the sequel that had originally been planned -- I will definitely buy it, at full price.


The Night they Drove Old Bigfoot Down


(To the tune of The Night they Drove Old Dixie Down)

Joseph Smith that's me
And I served as elite cavalry,
Til Hancock let the yetis run free
And they went on a killing spree.
In the winter of 68,
All we could eat was mammoth steak,
By the time the first snowflake had fell
The South was a snarling, shaggy hell.

The night they drove old Bigfoot down,
And all the generals were scowlin',
The night they drove old Bigfoot down,
And all the yetis were howlin'
They went Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh!
Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! Gragh! RAWR!

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