EILA AND SOMETHING SHINY
By Raymond "DuMeeple" Dumee on July 1, 2020
Once upon a time, a little bunny called Eila sees something shiny up on a hill. Normally, there's nothing shiny about that hill, so now, the bunny is curious. very curious. And you all know that, when that happens, you are in for a journey of a lifetime. From deep within the forest, floating out on the tide, this bunny travels to the Shiny Something on the hill. Will Eila find out what this shiny object is, or will our little bunny friend follow the river of death downstream? As you can probably imagine, the latter of these two options is not the one we're hoping for...
Eila and Something Shiny is a Legacy Story-driven Adventure in which you will have to choose your own path as you play as the above-mentioned cute little bunny called Eila, who spots something shiny on a nearby hill and becomes really, really curious as to what it could be. So naturally, from that moment on, there is no stopping her.
We received a prototype of the game, which was made up out of the tutorial and the first chapter of the game, so we could try it out for ourselves. When you get the final game, you will get your hands on the tutorial and five chapters with, all together, over two-hundred-twenty Event Cards. And it doesn't end there; the game comes with even more cards like Items, Support, Habits and Goal Cards. To house all those cards on your table you'll get a game board and a Card Stand, two dice and over a hundred shaped Resource Tokens. And, last but certainly not least, as any good Legacy game should, the final game will also contain some Secret Stuff (No, don't ask. I also don't know what it is. Yes, it is THAT secret!).
The game starts off with a tutorial Chapter to get you underway in this bunny adventure. It is basically drawing a card from the Card Stand and choosing what you want to do. Depending on this choice, your card will end up on the Past pile or on your Future pile. The outcome of the cards can make you gain or lose Resources, or even lets you exchange them for stuff. Other cards will make you add Blue or Red Event Cards to your pool and when a new round starts, your future pool gets shuffled and becomes your new draw pile. Cards in your Past pile won't be used for the remainder of the game. Every one of these Event Cards is beautifully illustrated and contains a piece of text that pulls you even further into the story.
After the Card Stand runs out, you go into the Night phase, during which you will have the opportunity to add up to two resources to the Goal Card. Then place an energy token on the Time Track, which runs out after seven days. Shuffle the Future pile and place it in the empty Card Stand, for a new Day phase and a new adventure! When you meet with all the requirements on the Goal Card, you have finished your chapter and you can continue by reading the Ending Comic.
The Final Verdict
Eila and Something Shiny just plays fantastically. Thanks to the well-written tutorial, this game is very easy to pick up. The theme is awesome and it is fun to play as a little bunny. The artwork by Roxy Dai is amazing and the quality of this prototype is already really promising. With every "choose your own path" Story-driven game there is, in my opinion, a limit to the replay value, but Ice Makes truly managed to mold this into a fine and intricate puzzle and with the two-hundred-twenty Event Cards, so no two games will be the same. You can also flip the Goal Cards to the advanced side, for those among us who want to have an even more challenging adventure.
Overall, I can only say that I really enjoyed Eila and Something Shiny by Ice Makes and, taking into account their earlier game Age of Civilization, I also expect this one to be good and look forward to seeing even more from them. Eila and Something Shiny is on Kickstarter right now, so make sure to check it out to see if it is Something Shiny for you.
EILA AND SOMETHING SHINY
Year of release: 2020
Designer: Jeffrey CCH
Artist: Roxy Dai
Players: 1 - 3 players, ages 7 & up
Playtime: approx. 40 minutes