Rules for Pitengnaqsaraq
I. BEFORE STARTING THE
a. One player should be chosen to take care of
the food cards (food banker), and one to spin the
calendar and weather spinners (weather/time keeper). The
food banker should give each person two fish cards, one
other food card of the player's choice, one dog team
card, and one kayak card.
b. Players should agree on a month to start the game,
and each should choose a different colored playing piece.
Each should choose a home village, and place his playing
pieces on that village to start the game.
II. TO START THE
- Move the calendar spinner forward one space,
counterclockwise, (two weeks in time). This represents
the passage of two weeks; that is, one turn for all
players. Spin the weather wheel at least one full turn,
making sure that it is correct for that season. The
weather and calendar settings will remain the same for
all players, until each has taken a turn. The
weather/time keeper will reset them for the following
- The weather/time keeper takes the first turn. Then
turns will move to his/her right around the table.
- When it is his turn, each player rolls the dice to
determine his personal luck in hunting or gathering for
that turn. For example: it is during the first two weeks
of Kaugun (June), the player is in the village of
Tuntutuliak, and the weather is 'Avaituq' (fair). Looking
at the calendar, the player sees that the following
resources are available at that season: king salmon (6),
smelt (2), beluga whale (1) and seals (2). The player
looks at the resource labeled on the game board to see
which of these can be harvested in the vicinity around
Tuntutuliak. He sees the symbols for both king salmon and
seals in the area. Then he rolls the dice and looks at
the lower left hand corner of the board to determine his
luck. If, for example, he rolls a six, then he can choose
to get either six king salmon cards, or two seal cards.
If he rolls a seven or eleven, he can either take all of
what is available in that area at that season (six king
salmon and two seal cards), or double of any one resource
(that is, twelve salmon cards or four seal cards). If a
player rolls a three or a nine and has to give cards
away, or receives cards from other players, the players
who are to receive the gifts can choose what they want
from the giver. During his turn, a player may choose to
move to another location where the hunting/fishing
possibilities look good for the following turn(s). (See
Ill-A and B for restrictions imposed by WEATHER
CONDITIONS and TRAVEL RULES).
- After all the players have had a turn, the next round
starts. First each player gives one food card back to the
food banker. This represents the food which will be eaten
by the player's family and dogs during the coming two
weeks. If a player has two dog teams, he/she has to give
up an extra food card for each turn. Next, the
weather/time keeper moves the calendar spinner one space
ahead, and spins the weather wheel. Play proceeds as
described above, and should continue for at least one
full year to cover the entire subsistence cycle. A player
who 'starves' (see RUNNING OUT OF FOOD - Section lll-J)
must drop out of the game.
The point of the game is to survive and to help others
survive through the year, by a combination of wise
hunting/gathering choices, sharing and luck.
III. OTHER RULES
a. WEATHER RULES
1. Spring and Summer
AVAITUQ (fair)-All hunting, fishing, travel
and food storage possible.
ANUQA (windy)-No ocean hunting or travel; other
hunting and travel possible; food storage
ELLARAYAK (storm)- No ocean hunting or travel;
other hunting and travel possible; no fish drying.
ELLALLUK (rain)-Hunting and travel possible; no
2. Fall and Winter
PIRTUK (blizzard)-No travel or hunting.
QANIKCAQ (snow)-Everything possible.
ANUQA (wind)-Everything possible.
AVAITUQ (fair)-Everything possible.
ELLALLUK (rain)- No travel or hunting.
3. If the weather is bad for hunting or travel, then
even if a player has good luck when he rolls the dice, he
cannot hunt or catch anything, or travel. If the weather
is bad for drying fish, then even if a player rolls a
number which would otherwise allow him several fish
cards, he can only get one card. This card represents the
fish that he and his family would be able to catch and
eat during that two-week period, without being able to
b. TRAVEL RULES
Players need a dog team from freeze-up to break-up,
and kayak from break-up to freeze-up, in order to be able
to travel and hunt. If a player has only one dog team, or
is traveling by kayak, he may move a maximum of four
inches on the map, (the length of one card) in one turn.
If he has two dog teams he can travel twice as far in one
turn (up to eight inches). If his kayak sinks or is lost,
he can get another one by either trading with another
player, or making a new one. To make a new kayak, a
player must sit out one turn while he/she works on the
frame, and give up two seal cards for the cover. If a
player's team dies, he can get another one by trading, or
by rolling a three, which get him new pups. If a player
rolls a twelve, then he loses whatever means of
transportation he would be using at that season (either
his dog team, or his kayak).
During his turn, a player may offer to trade cards
with another player. Both players must agree on the terms
of the trade.
d. RAVEN CARDS
A player who rolls an eight has to pick a Raven Card,
and move to a new village, as directed on the card. The
player also has to give one card to the poorest player in
the game, to represent payment to the angalkuq (medicine
man/shaman) who sends him through the air to his new
home. It is to this new home that the player must return
by Uivik (December).
e. HOME VILLAGE
Each player must return to his/her village by Uivik
(December). If a player has been moved somewhere by a
Raven Card, the new village becomes his home.
f. WINTER CLOTHING
In Cauyarvik (November), each player has to have new
winter clothing. Each player has to return one furbearer
card, or two seal, caribou, or bird cards, to the food
banker. If a player does not have any of these, he has to
skin his dogs to use their hides; in other words he has
to give up one dog team card.
g. FOOD SPOILAGE
Foods can only be kept for one year. If the game
continues into a new year, players have to give back any
food left over from the same season a year earlier when
that season arrives. For instance, when herring season
starts, players have to return any herring cards left
over from the previous year's herring season.
h. HALF CARDS
If the calendar says a player can catch, for instance
one-half pike, or one-half ptarmigan, this represents a
one-week supply of that resource. The player should keep
the appropriate card turned upside down to represent
one-half of that resource. Players may combine one-half
of one kind of resource with one-half of another to make
one whole card of either type. The extra card should be
returned to the food banker.
i. NOT ENOUGH CARDS
If there are not enough cards for a given type of
resource, the food banker should substitute a similar
kind of game (for example, another species of
j. RUNNING OUT OF FOOD
If a player runs out of food, other players can
volunteer to give him food, if they wish. As a last
resort, the player can eat his dogs. After this, a player
can go without food for one turn, without having to drop
out of the game. If, however, he does not have any food
by then, he must 'starve' and drop out of the game.
1. English equivalents for Yup'ik placenames are as
Kuigpak (abbreviated KP) - Yukon River
Nunivaaq (N) - Nunivak Island
Kusquqvak (KS) - Kuskokwim River
Qaluyaaq (Q) - Nelson Island
Qanirtuuq (QN) - Kenektok River
Tuyuryaq (T) - Togiak River
2. The 'Nurnarqellriit' card refers to
different species of fish in different areas, as
KP - smelt, eels (Lower KP), loche
KS - smelt, loche
T - smelt, char, loche
0 - loche, pink salmon
QN - smelt, char, sole
Hooper Bay/Chevak - needlefish, loche, sole
N - sole, pink salmon