Do you believe in yeti? Maybe you think, that those stories are plain crazy. But go to the Himalayas and wander through the snow for a moment. You do not even have to climb too high, the charm of the place will find you. And with it also faith. At first it will be just a distant feeling, like an idea, but the more time you spend in that snow-covered field, the clearer you will know. Yeti is real!
One such hairy creature, which apparently no one had ever seen, is playfully looking at us from the cover and suggests, that we should be silent. That’s because one of the scouts is just studying his footprints and he does not know, that Yeti is standing directly behind him. Himalayas are simply a land full of fun.
The box is waiting for us with stuff made of cardboard. Base has a point scale and a pentagonal hole in it. Now there is a place to place a mountain, which should be the first thing to do – build it and create its three floors out of boards and connecting elements. These plates have several footprints of yeti, creating a trail. This also includes other cardboard components, whether yeti figure or weather and equipment tiles. Two parts are used to build a photographic route and wooden figures of climbers and colored tokens are ready for players. In the box are also dice with different images and five cards with an overview.
At the beginning of the game, players create game board from two parts, place mountain in the center and put scoring tokens on it top (as many as there are players) in descending order. Besides the master plan, players use also helping scale of photographs and append to it pieces of equipment ordered by value. Each player chooses a color, gets one camp placed on the board on the ground, as well one figure of climber. Starting player gets action dice, but not all – some are passed to other players, so he could not profit from his first position. Yeti pawn begins the game on scoring position of fifty, while tokens in the colors of players start on a zero.
Players take turns using dice. Their rolling will determine, what will happen next. However, the actual setting of dice is governed by specific rules. In each round, players must put aside all the symbols of snow, that are rolled. In addition, they may also choose one image type and set all the blocks, that contain it, aside.
After doing this, they proceed to evaluation stage, where they will be able to use these icons. Pictures of coins can be used to purchase photos, but this is in this case only other name for transfer of funds into victory points or equipment. The price is always shown in the upper left corner of the tile. Portraits of sherpas on dice allow players to climb up the mountain. All are trying to be on top as soon as possible, because after successful climb to the top, player gains most valuable available tile.
In their quest for proving the existence of Bigfoot, players will get victory points also for tracks. Their value depends on how high their climber is located. This is the value of each footprint on the dice. The last option, how to do better overall, is to build tents. Only they allow figurines to remain in their positions on slope of the mountain at end of the round. Otherwise, figures go down and in the next round must begin his climb from the beginning.
Once someone reaches scoring box with the yeti on a point scale, end of the game is near. All participants finish playing that round and winner will be decided by number of points. Whoever gathered for their journey through the Himalayas most points is the winner.
Yeti is a pure dice game, and as such gives great emphasis on luck. Players do not get much chance to show their tactical skills. But this in itself does not mean, that the game should not be interesting or entertaining. To make such decision is still a long way to go.
Game tries to intrigue players especially with its spatial processing of mountain, that is there more or less nice, but serves no gaming mechanism. Although figures on the mountain romp up and down, there is really no need for any real obstacle on multiple floors. But the truth is, that it looks much better.
That does not alter the fact, that players actually have no chance to influence the game progress. Their only choice is to select dice and their setting aside. But as we know from other games, this little activity is not center of some tactical ideas. Later, that’s just about choosing the order of actions, but everything else is just a predefined icons of the dice. Players do not feel, they have control over something.
Thanks to these parameters, gameplay is directed mainly on family playing, but even here does not have good chance of success. What we like the most is ability to build tents as savepoints, because climbing is the main precondition of gaining points. Without the higher floors, chance to get high value for clues or achievements is slim. And without tents, you do not even have chance of winning.
The dice is certain element, that makes the entire game variable. This also is supported by weather tiles, which adds to the game another unpredictable element.
Understandable and somewhat predictable, advantage of this game should be its length. But rolling dice has no end. The game will take far over half an hour and often reaches to forty minutes, especially in four or five maximum. There is long waiting for the turn and it overall seems stretched.
Yeti is a game, that will not be better than another similar ones. To all this, we players actually have no chance to influence our options, but must blindly follow dice. At that moment, it is clear, that this game could attract only less demanding family. But even they would do better, if they look around elsewhere. Think twice, if you try to believe in Yeti this time.
Yeti is a disappointing game for us, we do not conceal it. The game looks very tempting, but the processing is only the first step to success. And gameplay does not fight for player's interest as aggressively. Dice game is from beginning to end about luck, which is absolutely essential for success. Despite its simplicity, it lasts seemingly a long time, because there is really a lot of tampering with the dice. And the players do not have much opportunity to play. Yeti is a game, that plays itself and players are only waiting for correct numbers.