Have you ever wanted to play a pop-up book? Have you been searching for a game that is filled with magic and mystery? Is your gaming group looking for something quick and fun without pages and pages of rules? Look no further!
The Shivers is a truly one-of-a-kind tabletop experience that features the magic of hand-crafted pop-ups, combined with just the right amount of spooky puzzle-solving mystery and role playing.
Using our patent-pending modular pop-up system, the mystery will unfold as you and your friends explore a magical mansion, as one of the members of the Shivers family. Each episode takes about an hour to play cooperatively, with one person taking the lead as the Storyteller. Once players finish one episode, a quick change of the system reveals the next story which will be completely new and unique: filled with new clues, puzzles, room layouts, and foes to vanquish.
The Shivers is fun and challenging for young kids, teens, and even older experienced game players. While most games have dozens of pages of rules and take many hours to learn and play, Shivers players have just a couple simple rules, and can get up and playing in less than 5 minutes. Similar to an escape room in structure and feel (but on a much smaller scale), players can get immediately immersed in the mystery, discovering the right path forward as they progress.
—description from the designer
For each scenario, one player takes on the role of the "storyteller", which is akin to an RPG GameMaster (GM). They know the whole story, and facilitate the rest of the players as they play the game. They are not an adversary, as they can’t win or lose. Their goal is to make the game as fun as possible for the group.
This is the very first Kickstarter I have been disappointed with. First of all, I have had to pry apart the card slot for more than one pop up room. Not fun for my family to watch me struggle simply putting in a card for a room so that I can do the storyteller role. Come to find out this is a known issue.. as there is a video on their site suggesting to use a butter knife to allow the slot to be fully open. Which seems really odd to me. The pop up rooms don't really look all that great presentation wise. You have to mess with the structures until they're more or less upright. I guess perhaps that might be expected.. I just found it fiddly and annoying. Next I had a vase that fell off in one of the rooms. Which I had to research where it even fell off from and then had to glue it back on. Which was even more downtime as my family just sat around waiting to finally begin. We finally began playing the "game" and there is simply little to no direction. Someone can interact with something.. but if it isn't on the back of the pop up card.. then you have no idea what to say.. so you just awkwardly tell them to move along. Even if someone comes across something they need and they call it something else.. you can really screw up the narrative by telling them to move along.. when they actually needed something. I also feel it takes from the immersion to constantly have to write things down. Instead of getting an item, you just write it down. You better hope you write your clues down correct as well. Basically everything is being written down. Which just slows everything down unfortunately. Perhaps we just lack imagination. However I don't really feel like there is much game here. Which is unfortunate, because the art is great and I can tell that someone put some heart in to creating this. I could still see this being fun for the right group.. and perhaps that group has someone with more patience for set up. Regardless you will all need some deep imagination.. this game has you doing a lot of the work for it. I really think you need to study the room and clues beforehand. Which just adds more non gameplay time. I really am not sure how else to help the storyteller, so that they aren't getting up to look at what the players are interacting with. Maybe a mirror? So buyer beware is all I can say. You really need to understand this is a NOT a game in the traditional sense.
The Shivers is a very clever, very beautiful game. The Pop-Up motif is absolutely delightful on the table. I look forward to seeing the production version of this game.
This game has a significant "game master" role like a tabletop RPG. I think what you get out of this game will depend a lot on having someone interested in playing that role, and playing it well. The difficulty level and other issues others have brought up would be greatly reduced or eliminated by an experienced GM, I think -- depending on the players you can be throwing out hints or red herrings as needed while still adhering to the rules of the role. But this ability doesn't always overlap with board game groups. I think this game deserves props for doing something very new and different. Unfortunately I can't give it an enthusiastic review for two main reasons, one being I am not a great GM and don't really have one for playing this, and two there are a number of physical production issues with the popups. Like all popups they are fragile and difficult to repair, but in this case they are also really difficult to open the first time without damage, even if you are careful. I got about half of them open without problems, the rest needed some reglue-ing which I found to be a someone painstaking art.