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Eternal Life: The Game Review by Brenda PrinceCreative Origins, LLC
7480 Churchill Drive
Hanover Park, IL. 60133-2605
Our family loves to spend time together playing board games. But sometimes, even games that are geared for younger children can have questionable content that might make a parent hesitant about including them into their game repertoire, especially ones that might have content that goes against Christian values and beliefs. My family has recently added Eternal Life: The Game to our family game time and have found it to be a great addition for any Christian home.
Eternal Life: The Game is a family board game designed for two to six players, ages eight and up. Included in the box is a large, full color game board, six plastic player piece bases, ten player pieces (representing various occupations and lifestyles such as a Homemaker, Police Officer, Skateboarder, Lawyer and a little old Grannie), play money in various denominations, a set of thirty World Encounter cards, a set of thirty Christian Encounter cards, six Heavenly Treasure pouches, six sets of Fruit of the Spirit cards, six sets of Armor of God cards, six sets of Crown cards and one game spinner.
The best way I can describe this game would be a combination of Monopoly mixed with The Game of Life, but with a Spiritual aspect to it. Each player selects a game piece and using a spinner, moves around the game board. There are two sections of the board, an outside path representing the worldly life and the inner path representing our walk with Christ. Throughout the game, players are confronted with situations where they might meet hardships or spiritual decisions or be rewards for good deeds or punished for wrong doings. Each player also starts out with $10,000 in play money with opportunities to either collect more money or lose part of what they have, as well as the option to tithe part of their earnings to the Church. Landing on particular spots on the board will result in the player drawing a card from a pile of Encounter Cards (separate sets for Worldly and Christian encounters) which directs the player to make additional moves, make charitable donations, or invites the player to choose to walk the path of a follower of Christ. Players may choose to continue a worldly path or to accept to follow the Christian path – however, they must choose wisely as they may not get the invitation to follow Christ before the end of the game. Once on the Christian path, players can also obtain Eternal Reward Cards that represent the Armor of God, The Fruits of the Spirit, and The Crowns of Christ. The goal of the game is the reach the final reward of reaching Heaven while achieving “points” by tithing to the Church and collecting as many of the Eternal Reward cards as possible. The game is very simple to play and my children (ages nine, ten and seventeen) quickly picked up the mechanics of the game with little help.
One of the things I really enjoyed was the option of tithing to the Church. Each player is given a Heavenly Treasure pouch in which to place their tithe so that the amount of their donation is not known to the other players. It was interesting to see how my children decided to “give”, my son was extremely generous while my two girls were both a bit stingy with their offerings. This aspect of the game creates a great platform for discussion as to why we give our offerings.
I also really liked that each of the Encounter cards began with a verse of Scripture that correlated with the scenario encountered on the card. Many of the verses my children were already familiar with and it allowed for them to see how those scriptures could relate to everyday temptations or decisions that they might encounter in their lives.
My only complaint in regard to this game is that there are spaces on the play board that are either not explained well in the game instructions, or not explained at all. For example, there are four “Stop” spots on the board and while the game play directions do explain that a player landing on these spots should draw an Encounter card, it doesn't explain what the Stop means or if there is anything special about these spots that would differentiate it from other spots where an Encounter card is draw. A second spot on the board is called a Prayer Spot but the directions make no reference to these spots for the player to know if anything special should be done if they land on these spots.
However, even with these two minor hiccups, we found this game to be quite fun with a high replay value. The kids enjoyed it each time we played and never seemed to grow bored with it. From a Spiritual aspect, it offers many teaching moments, from reading and discussing the scriptures included on the cards, the tithing aspect as well as learning to make the right decisions in our walk with Christ. This game would make a great addition to any family looking to add more Spiritual fun into their family game nights. Eternal Life: The Game can be purchased at www.CreativeOriginsLLC.com for $32.99.
-Product review by Brenda Prince, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, May, 2017