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Yomi is a card game designed by David Sirlin, a known champion fighting game tournament player and tournament organizer. It tests your ability to predict how your opponents will act (Yomi is the Japanese word for “reading,” as in reading the mind of your opponent) and your ability to judge the relative value of cards from one situation to the next. Also, it lets you do fun Combos and be a panda. There are 10 characters to choose from, each with their own deck, abilities, and style. Each deck also doubles as a regular deck of playing cards.
Players start with seven cards in hand. A turn has the following steps:
1. Draw a card. Many of the special abilities on the cards can be used after drawing.
2. Choose your combat card and the side of it you want to use.
3. Place your combat card face down on the table with the chosen side facing the opponent.
4. When both players have placed their combat cards, reveal them and determine the winner. After determining the winner, continue with combos and Jokers/bluff cards in applicable. Then discard all cards used in the combat.
5. Search for Aces (Aces represent the super attacks of the character) if you discard pairs, three or four-of-a-kind, or if you did a combo with three or more normals in a string.
There are four combat options in cards: attack, throw, block and dodge. The winner of the combat is determined in a Tactical Rock-Paper-Scissors. Attack beats throw. Throw beats block and dodge. Block and dodge beat attack. If both players block and/or dodge, nothing happens. If both players throw or attack at the same time, the faster choice wins. Attacks of the same speed both hit, but do not allow any continuation. Throws of the same speed negate each other.
If one wins with an attack or a throw, there is the option to combo. All attacks and throws have different attributes that show their ability to be used in a combo. Winning with a dodge allows the winner to automatically hit with one attack or throw. Winning with a block allows the winner to draw an additional card, and unless thrown, the user of the block returns the block card to his or her hand. The loser of the combat can use a face-down Joker to escape further damage or try to bluff by using a face-down normal card.
Despite it's seemingly simple Rock-Paper-Scissors style, there is a lot of thought and possibilities behind each possible choice. Do I want to make great combo strings? Knock the opponet down with just one throw? Increase my hand size to improve the power and amount of my options? What is the opponent going to choose? Also, every character has their own special ability that affects the play, and every deck is different, forcing you to adapt according to your own and your opponent's deck.
This card game provides examples of the following tropes:
- Combo Breaker: The two Jokers found in each deck can be used in this capacity. A joker used after losing the combat negates any damage not recieved from the card the combat was lost to.
- Crack is Cheaper: Averted HARD. In Mr. Sirlin's own site blog, he states his anathema to several other companies current Collectible Card Game business model. His solution? If you don't want to fight as a Panda, don't buy the Panda deck.
- Oh Crap: This is the reaction you get when you hit the opponent with an Ace attack or throw, especially if you hit with an attack requiring all four.