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  7. Schotten Totten 2 – Review of the new work published by Iello

Schotten Totten 2 – Review of the new work published by Iello

Schotten Totten 2 – Review of the new work published by Iello

Reiner Knizia revisits the classic Schotten Totten in a very interesting asymmetrical version: a game to pack for the holidays!

Finding a good title specifically for two players, perhaps not too long to spend half an hour in company, is always a challenge. For this we were immediately intrigued by the new title of Reiner Knizia, published by Iello and distributed in Italy by Mancalamaro, Schotten Totten 2, and we couldn’t be happier to tell you about it in our review. As the name of the game suggests, we are faced with the successor of the classic of the same name Schotten Totten, only this time the duel – set in Scotland – will be asymmetrical. Will you take on the role of the chicken or the cook? Either way, get ready for a fun-filled card fight.

A wall to break down (or to defend)

In Schotten Totten 2 one of the two players will be the chicken, with the aim of defend the walls of your castle; the other player will be the cook, dedicated instead to break down the opponent’s wall. The setting, to be honest, is not fundamental or particularly heartfelt; it is a abstract and that’s absolutely fine. The duration of a match is approximately 20 minutes / half hour and given the asymmetry inherent in the title, the author recommends playing two games in a row with reversed roles, inserting some playoff rules if the winner is always the attacker or defender.

Components, materials and graphics

Wanting to cover all the various aspects of Schotten Totten 2 in our review, it is also important to talk about the materials: few, functional and of good quality. In the small box (very convenient to carry around) we find a deck of cards, three wooden tokens in the shape of a cauldron, the weave wall And two cardboard tokens representing the roles, chicken and cook, who have no other use than to remind each player which faction he is playing. The graphics are clear and the illustrations are very nice and nice to look at. For more details on the contents of the box, please refer to our Unboxing video.

The game mechanics

As mentioned above, each player chooses whether to attack or defend the wall; the tool used to do this are the cards, of five different suits, each numbered from 0 to 11: each card is unique. The purpose of thestriker will, alternatively, damage 4 portions of the wall once and damage the same portion of the wall twice. The purpose of the defender instead, it will be alternatively to arrive at the end of the draw deck without the attacker having won and to arrange in defense all the cards required by each portion of the wall without the attacker being able to declare control of any of these (after many games not has this ever happened to us).

The wall tiles are then arranged, in the order indicated by the rules, between the two players. Each tile has two sides: an intact part and a damaged part. At the start of the game, all the tiles will be facing intact side. The tiles also have symbols that basically indicate two things: how many cards are needed to complete a so-called “complete training” in that portion of the wall, both on the attacker’s side and on the defender’s side; what kind of formations are taken into account to determine who controls that portion of the wall (the formations are similar to those of poker: straight, flush, identical cards, but also sum of values, lower or higher).

Each player starts with 6 cards in hand and the attacker makes the first move. The turn takes place in a very simple way: each one in turn chooses a card from his hand and places it, on his side, under the portion of the wall he wants to defend / attack; after that, he draws a card from the deck to replace the one just played. Naturally both attacker and defender will try to play cards in order to make the strongest possible formations among those allowed in the chosen part of the wall.

On top of that, at every turn the attacker will be able retire, that is to discard the cards played under a particular piece of wall (perhaps because mathematically he can no longer win there). Also, at any time during his turn, he can claim to have control of a portion of the wall: to have control, he must have placed the exact number of cards required in the chosen spot, and must also demonstrate that his formation cannot mathematically be beaten in any way by the defender, using as proof the cards played and the cards discarded. Having control involves discarding all cards played from both sides and damaging the wall, which is signaled by turning the affected tile and discovering the new play requirements. If it is the second damage to the same portion of the wall, the attacker wins.

The defender, for his part, he cannot withdraw his formation once the cards have been placed, so he must pay particular attention to what he places. However, this has the possibility of discarding the first opponent card placed under a piece of wall by discarding a cauldron token (as if it were pouring boiling oil). There are three tokens and each can only be used once per game. The game continues in this way until the victory of one of the two factions according to the conditions that we have already illustrated at the beginning of the paragraph. There are also tactics cards, which can be used to vary the game after a few games in its normal version. Surely they are a good addition, even if already basic it did not seem to us that this title has longevity problems, indeed.


We didn’t get to try the first one Schotten Totten to be able to make a comparison, but we liked this second version a lot. It is a simple but absolutely game not trivial and extremely tactical. Playing from the attacking side may seem easier at first (for this reason, especially at the beginning, it can be useful to play two games in a row with reversed roles), but both factions present their own challenges. Obviously the defender must be more careful about what he plays and where, since he will not be able to change his mind later; on the other hand, even the attacker will have to think twice before risking to waste good cards, especially considering that every card drawn from the deck is nearing the end of the game. A bit of alea is present in drawing cards, but nothing decisive. Ultimately, as you have probably understood from our review of Schotten Totten 2, we were very satisfied with every game we played, an experience that in the company of a friend will offer unforgettable games to say the least.