Footprints Game Review

14 February 2024
Footprints is a light-ish euro game that plays out in around an hour once you’ve got the hang of it. For a game of its length, it has more crunchy decisions than it has any right to. And better still, they’re housed in a ruleset that makes the game quick to teach but hard to master.  

Written by Chris Marling 

Play Footprints Game

The board is made of a long row of randomly placed hexes, with each player using an asymmetric preset deck of 14 cards each of which has a unique leader power. There are six of these decks to choose from, so when you also throw in random end-game scoring tokens, you can picture the high level of replayability on offer. This makes the low price point feel even more of a bargain.  

Unless the game ends early (see below), players will use each of their cards once per game to do one action. You’ll shuffle and draw four cards at the beginning, playing one and then drawing back to four at the end of each turn (if you have cards left to draw).   

Most cards give you two choices: move or improve your skills (plus a small move). Each character has four skills that match the four terrain types. Increasing your skill allows quicker movement on the matching terrain. Moving does what it says on the tin. This means you’re always faced with the move-or-make-later-moves-better dilemma, which is exacerbated by knowing exactly how many cards of each terrain type you have in your deck (it's all on your unique player board). 

In addition, some squares on your skill tracks and the board contain bonuses, which can be cards, resources, or points. Cards will either give bonus actions or a way to score bonus points. Resources open bonus areas on your scoreboard, or help you meet these bonus scoring requirements.  

The board itself incentivises you to move as far as possible, giving endgame scoring opportunities further along that are first come, first served. If a player makes it all the way across the board they can even choose to end the game early, which can also keep you on your toes. However, I’ve seen players win from both ends of the board. Everything, everywhere, is making you think all of the time. 

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Footprints Theming

As a sucker for prehistoric theming, I find Footprints thoroughly aesthetically pleasing too. However, it’s not all gravy. Some of the graphic design choices leave a little to be desired while the colours are both too similar and poorly matching in terms of the player board to wooden components. While a little annoying, you soon get used to it.  

My other bugbear is player count. The solo game is solid and it’s great up to four players. However, each new caveperson adds to the length and not the fun, making the thought of sitting around with five or six pretty painful.  

Footprints is a definite keeper for me. It is well-priced, packs a lot of game into a small package, and mixes up some great elements (puzzling, card actions, race elements) into an original package. One of my favourite euros of the year.  

Should you play Footprints?

An interesting eurogame sandbox puzzle with plenty of variability and paths to victory, slightly hindered by some poor production choices   

TRY THIS IF YOU LIKED: Lost Ruins of Arnak  

Cards restrict your options, there are lots of ways to score points, and you’re constantly reevaluating, giving you that nice tactics-to-strategy ratio. 


What's on the box?

Designers: Eilif Svensson, Åsmund Svensson, and Geir André Wahlquist 

Publisher: Chillfox Games 

Time: 30-60 mins | 1-6 Players: | Age: 10+ | Price: RRP £38.99  

What's in the box?

  • 7 Game board pieces 

  • 6 Player boards 

  • 144 Cards 

  • 103 Cardboard tokens 

  • 36 Wooden tokens 

  • 1 Scorepad 

  • 1 Rulebook 


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