For some reason, when I read about this game here on BGG and on Titanic's web site, I thought it was a board game, or even a miniatures-style game. Instead, it turns out that Yetisburg is a card game, and a very cool one at that.
The concept is fairly straightforward... The battle of Gettysburg is being fought between Confederate and Union troops in the middle of the War Between the States. But in addition to men and horses, Yeti and Mammoths have been brought to the war front from the Great White North.
Each player plays with five columns of troops, each fed by their own supply line in the form of a draw pile. There are two rows of troops per side, with a fifth row between both sides representing the trench. Each player has a hand of five cards that match one of the troop types in the deck: Infantry, Cavalry, Artillery and Yeti. Additionally, there are Officer cards which act like wild cards from the hand. Players take turns playing a card from their hand, activating that troop type. Each troop of that type on the field activates in turn.
To activate, a chit is drawn from the cup. This chit has an arrow indicator and a number. The arrow is an indication of the direction in which the attack is made. The number varies depending on the activating troop. Infantry inflict 1 wound on the target X number of rows away, Artillery inflict X wounds on a troop X spaces away, Yeti inflict X wounds on a troop one row away, etc. These chit also double as wound markers, with a picture of meat on the back. Whenever a previously-activated troop takes a wound, it readies, and is once again to reactivate if you play a troop card of the appropriate type.
Each troop has an amount of wounds they can take before dying. Once a troop receives wounds equal to their amount, they are removed from the board. Artillery explode when they're removed, inflicting wounds on the troops located orthogonally from them.
The Yeti are the heavy hitters, and can inflict damage both on your opponent's troops, as well as your own. When yeti are activated, they rush to the trench, trampling and killing anything in their way. If a yeti moves into the position of another of your yetis in the trench, the old yeti is killed. If your yeti encounters an opposing yeti, the opponent is pushed back into the opponent's front line, killing whatever troop was behind it. Additionally, if your yeti takes a wound from one of your own troops, it readies for your opponent, and will fight for them until activated.
At the end of the turn, you may activate an officer. Officers can move your troops around on the field, or rally them, preparing them to attack on the next turn.
The goal of the game is to deplete one of your opponent's five supply lines. These decks are depleted in one of two ways: either by directly hitting them with ranged weapons, or killing your opponents troops in a column and forcing your opponent to reveal new troops from their lines.
The art is very cool, heavy in black and white tones, with the appropriate trace of blue and grey. The Yetis do not look out of place next to Lee, Grant, or any of the regular soldiers... There are even some Yeti officers thrown in for good measure. The cards are well laminated for smooth shuffling, and are of sufficiently sturdy stock.
The game plays quickly, and is quite fun. There is a high degree of randomness between a shuffled deck and the chit pulls from the cup to determine directionality and strength of attacks. The game oozes with theme, and is a great little Ameritrash filler. If you have a good sense of humor, and are not offended by randomness in your games, you will enjoy Yetisburg.
Oh, and I asked at the Paizo booth, since the full title of this game is "Yetisburg: Titanic Battles in World History, Vol. 1", would we be seeing Volume 2. I was told it is planned, and tentatively titled "Dismember The Alamo."