My Cool New Board Game: OUTDOOR SURVIVAL – a game about wilderness skills

Survival blogs can get pretty serious sometimes so it’s nice to toss in a not so serious post every now and then.  I thought I would share with you the new Board Game I picked up a few days ago.  That’s right, I said BOARD GAME – old school, right?  But wait, it get’s better… you are going to be jealous.

Don’t plan on picking this game up at your local shopping center either – it’s from the early ’70s and looks every bit of it.  Believe it or not, the title is OUTDOOR SURVIVAL – a game about wilderness skills.  I’ll tell you how I got mine at the bottom of this post.

Does that look ’70s or what?  I haven’t even played it yet but I’m pretty stoked to sit down this winter and play a survival board game by the fire.  It doesn’t get much better than that.

That’s the back of the box.  You like how I threw the Wetterlings Camp Axe in the photo for general effect?

Produced and marketed by The Avalon Hill Company and Stackpole Books, this board game is 5 games in one.  Below are the awesome scenarios:

  • LOST: in which all players take the part of a most inexperienced woodsman and make survival decisions to get out.
  • SURVIVAL: places experienced woodsman in emergency situations.
  • SEARCH: a game of experience versus inexperience – three players trying to locate one who is lost.
  • RESCUE: searchers must not only find a lost party but return all to safety in good shape.
  • PURSUE: the hunted and the hunters, escape, people after people, or man chasing beast.

Sounds awesome, right?

The game board itself represents approximately 13,000 square miles of woods, rough terrain, mountains, plains, rivers and lakes that players must navigate through and around using survival knowledge.

The game even comes with what they call a SURVIVAL PRIMER which is a great little book about wilderness survival skills that covers the basics about shelter, fire, navigation, first aid, etc…  I looked through it and it’s actually some great information.


So it seems that actually knowing some survival skills will give you an ‘edge’ in the game.  I hope this means I never lose, but I doubt it.

A Quote from the box: What each player knows – or wants to learn – becomes quickly evident as he decides which way to go, where to look for food and water, what risks to take.

So by now you’re thinking, DANG – where can I get this cool old game?  I got mine on EBAY.  I was searching for some old survival books to throw on the bookcase at Willow Haven and came across this gem.  I can’t believe I’ve never heard of it.  Just search OUTDOOR SURVIVAL BOARD GAME.  As of when I wrote this post there were several available.  If they all get snatched up, just check back later as I’m sure more will come on-line.

So, now, I just need to find someone who wants to play a Wilderness Survival Board Game.  This may take a while…

Board Game + Survival Learning – why didn’t I think of this!

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,



  1. I played this back in 8th grade (mid-70’s)! I can’t remember if my Scoutmaster had it, or if it was one of my teachers. I played it whenever I could find someone else to play along (not a lot of interest with my friends, although they all had different Avalon Hill board games the I never wanted to play, either!).

    I remember enjoying playing it. I might pick one up for nostalgia, or, since I am now a Scoutmaster, have my Scouts play it when we next work on the Wilderness Survival merit badge.

  2. You’re right…I AM jealous! What a great find!! I’ll have to keep an eye out for it. Thanks for the info.

  3. There is a newly released swedish game called Wilderness that has many similarities to Outdoor Survival, but has been refined and streamlined into a very tense, realistic and fun gaming experience. It can be found at
    with more resources at

  4. Shadoglare says:

    Outdoor Survival: The board game that teaches you that the way to survive in the wilderness is to aimlessly wander around in random directions until you die. (Yeah, it’s not very good).

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