The Yawhg
Gameplay 7
Graphics 7
Sound 7

I was surprised at how short a single playthrough of The Yawgh is but with more than 50 endings you’ll definitely want to complete it more than once. The randomly generated story has a surprising amount of depth and the gorgeous artwork by Emily Carol is a definite plus. The Yawgh is best enjoyed with a group of other players so if you are a solo player the experience is just not the same.

Gameplay: Short and simple but with tons of replay value.
Graphics: Emily Carrol provides her signature artwork for the game.
Sound: A moody soundtrack that adds to the ominous vibe of the game

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The Yawhg

Developer: Damian Sommer, Emily Carroll | Publisher: Damian Sommer |Release Date: 2013 | Genre: Indie / RPG |Website: Official Website| Format: Digital Download

I am not quite sure what a “Yawhg” is, but according to the Indie title by Damian Sommer and Emily Carrol it is something terrifying. The game throws you into a situation where the arrival of The Yawhg is imminent, but your characters are blissfully aware of the impending doom.

Gameplay

What it all boils down to is a type of choose-your-own-adventure game which lasts only six turns. Each turn is a week in game time and you get to choose which of the eight available locations you want to visit. Each of the locations only offers a choice between two activities but the outcomes depend on your stats. As the characters have no idea what is about to transpire, all their options consist of everyday activities such as hunting, chopping wood, landscaping or boozing it up in the tavern. Depending on what transpires, your character may gain or lose points in stats such as physique, charm and wealth. The stat points also influence the outcome of certain choices, so a character with high magic might be able to zap a ghost out of existence, while everyone else will have to put up with it.

The game consists of only six turns, so it can basically be completed in less time than it takes to read this review. Usually short games bring up all kinds of questions about value for money, but The Yawhg does have randomization in its favor. Because the game is so short, it is perfect for playing with a group of friends that might otherwise have no interest in gaming.

The charming artwork by Emily Carroll will help draw players into the fantasy world of The Yawhg and the whole experience is over before anyone has a chance to become bored. As there are more than 50 unique endings, the replay value is also quite high although we did encounter a lot of repeats during our time with the game.

The Yawhg has quite an ominous vibe, but there is a surprising amount of humor as well. Most of the outcomes to your choices tend to be quite funny and this is what makes playing in a group so much fun. It’s hard not to laugh as your character gets a ton of stat points for doing something while your friend who attempts ends up with a character afflicted with all kinds of misery. While technically you can “win” or “lose” the game, the focus is more on all the randomized events and how the outcomes affect the gameworld.

You can play the game alone, provided you take charge of two characters, but as I’ve mentioned, it improves immeasurably when enjoyed with a group. There are four different characters to choose from and although there are no animations the artwork is very good. If you are not familiar with the illustrations and comics by Emily Carrol I strongly suggest that you check out her website (His face all red is a personal favorite of ours.) The game doesn’t discriminate, so the burly, bearded character is just as welcome to attend a ball at the palace as anyone else and has a nice picture to depict this act. The soundtrack is also very good, but as there is no speech you will have to read all the text yourself.

Despite how short the game is, we had a lot of fun with The Yawhg and can definitely recommend it if you regularly have friends over. Because there is no need to explain to everyone what stuff like mana and hit points are, everyone can just jump in and have fun. If you play on your own (the game has no online mode) there is still fun to be had but it is not quite the same. It will take a while to discover all the endings and despite some repetition we did discover something new during every playthrough.

If you can appreciate a game that dares to be different and don’t have a problem spending most of your playtime reading, you should try The Yawhg. If you measure the value of a game based on its length instead of how entertaining it actually is then you might as well just watch a YouTube video. The Yawhg is not the type of game that you play through once and then never again. Instead, return to it now and then to see what other mysteries it has to uncover.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows XP
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
  • Additional Notes: A resolution of at least 1280 x 720.
  • OS: Windows XP
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • DirectX: Version 9.0
  • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
  • Additional Notes: A resolution of at least 1280 x 720.

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