December 1982, I was 9 years old and the family movie E.T. The Extra Terrestrial was released in the UK – it was the first film I ever saw in the cinema, I loved it and I still do today – it’s a classic. There can’t be many that haven’t seen E.T. or at the very least heard of this infamous alien, his glowing red finger and the classic line “E.T. phone home!”
E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial is a film about a visitor from another planet that accidently gets left behind on Earth. He gets befriended by a young boy, Elliot, and forms a bond with him but he really needs to call home and be reunited with his family.
40 years later it is still a hit with family audiences and Funko Games have released a new cooperative adventure board game based on the film and getting E.T. home and I couldn’t wait to play it. He’s 3 million light-years from home … and needs your help getting back!
In the box:
- Game board (based on Elliot’s neighbourhood)
- Kid Mats (x4)
- Kid Figures (x4)
- Mothership Figure with Base
- T. Figure
- T. Heartlight Dial
- Agent Movers with Bases (x5)
- Cop Car Movers with Bases (x3)
- Item Tiles (x21)
- T. Power Cards (x16)
- Candy Tokens (x6)
- Dice (x6)
- Reference Mat
E.T. The Extra Terrestrial: Light Years from Home is a cooperative board game for 2-4 players, age 10 and upwards with a playing time of around 30 minutes. It is a cooperative role-playing strategy adventure game where players can play as their favourite characters from the film (Elliott, Gertie, Michael or Greg).
This is a cooperative game, so rather than playing as individuals, players must work together as the kids from the film. Players take turns to bike through the neighbourhood, using shortcuts and ramps to avoid the local cops and F.B.I agents whilst trying to collect items to build a communication device so that E.T. can phone home and get safely to the clearing in the forest to join up with his family before his heartlight fades. If the players can safely get E.T. to meet the Mothership in the forest clearing before E.T.’s heartlight fades, then the Kids win! If not, they will be captured and lose!
Setting up the game takes a few minutes as cards need shuffling, item tiles need placing, agents and cop cars must be added around the board etc. The instructions are very well laid out and easy to read and follow to help complete this and there is even a very handy video on the Funko Games website (I would recommend watching this before you play for the first time, it shows quite well how to set up the game and how to play).
There is a lot to take and grasp when reading the rules, the video helps but it might take a couple of reads through the game rules before you start playing to fully understand them. Once you start playing it is easy to play and a whole lot of fun.
Overall, this is a fun and enjoyable game once you get the hang of it. It is so much better than just moving playing tokens around a square board. You can move in different ways and take shortcuts whilst trying to avoid the police cars and the F.B.I agents that are hot on your heels, all whilst having to collect items to construct a communication device for E.T. to phone home. It is a cooperative game so players must work together, you can even combine players. You can move through the neighbourhood in different ways which makes it very interesting, engaging and fun. It is also a nice touch that E.T. fits in the basket of the bicycles so he can travel around the board with the Kids. The Mothership “hovering” around the board as you play is a nice touch – we loved it.
The game board of Elliot’s neighbourhood is quite detailed and is made up of 25 zones, 36 spaces, roads and shortcuts and looks great. The figures are also very well detailed, matching the actors from the original film, and the cards are beautifully illustrated, depicting much-loved scenes from the film. Everything feels good quality and well thought out.
It does take a little bit of time to grasp the rules and various movements of agents and the Kids, but once you grasp them it is an excellent and exciting game to play, only taking around 30 minutes.
I love the game, maybe more so because I grew up with E.T. and it was the first film I saw on the big screen but whether you have seen the film or not, are a fan of E.T. or not or even if you have never heard of it, you will love this board game – it is an exciting adventure with flying bicycles, friendly aliens and out of this world spaceships. As a co-op game it works extremely well as you take turns whilst at the same time having to work together and you either win or lose together. We and the children (10 and 13) have had a great time playing it.