First Impressions: Eruption

Last week I mentioned that the folks over at Stratus Games had sent over a print ‘n’ play version of their new game Eruption for me to try out, so I did. Sadly, my printer did the artwork no justice whatsoever but I can still talk about how the game plays and whether or not it’s a good game.

Eruption is a family orientated tile laying game, featuring constructive thinking, adaptive decision making and direct conflict. In Eruption you control a village that is under threat of destruction by a volcano. On your turn you will attempt to direct the flow of lava away from your village and towards your opponents. Skilful play will reward you with both cards and resources.

Eruption features several mechanics that ensure all players will remain fully in the game. Losing players are given bonuses as the adrenaline drives their villagers to work harder. In addition as one player enters a new danger zone, he gets to start a new eruption location that heats up everyone else's villages to bring them more into line with the loser.

As well as directing lava in the game you can also build walls to help stem the flow and protect your village. You also have the option of playing cards to build walls, change the lava flow or simply cool your village down.

When the first village burns the game is over all the players have one final turn, the player with the lowest Heat score is the winner.


  • It’s Fast and Fun
  • It Looks Beautiful
  • Multipurpose Cards give you lots of options on your turn
  • It’s simple yet there is enough depth to keep adults entertained
  • The Rulebook offers three alternate play methods including teams, last man standing and a variant which allows you to choose your lava tile from 3 face up stacks.


  • There is an element of direct conflict with the other players. I don’t mind this but if you do this might not be the game for you.
  • The game lacks any variability other than the decisions made by the players so it could start to feel repetitive after a lot of plays.


  • The cards are very important to the strategy, which I like, however it can sometimes be difficult to get them in the mid game which can leave you feeling a little hamstrung.
  • I haven’t seen the final version yet so I can’t comment on the production quality. That said what I have seen looks great.
  • I’d like to see some more variants, maybe a co-op version or a version where the players play from a hand of Lava tiles.

So there you have it. Eruption is a fun family game, which does require you to conflict with the other players in order to earn extra cards and resources. It’s simple to learn and teach but it allows for tactical and strategic decisions to be made by players. Hopefully the nice people at Stratus will send me a lovely review copy to replace my poorly printed one…

Does it sound like something your family would enjoy, then check out more at Status Games today.