SNAP Review – Disney It’s a Small World
“You just won the first game at our family game night! What are you gonna do next?” “I’m going to Disneyland!”
Well, not exactly. But I can play It’s a Small World with you and we can pretend we’re going to Disneyland.
Okay Dad, just promise not to sing the song this time.
Today’s SNAP review is about Disney It’s a Small World, a game for ages 4 and up, published by Funko Games. Based on the beloved theme park attraction of the same name, It’s a Small World is a surprisingly excellent game for little ones and parents to enjoy together as they “join the happiest cruise that ever sailed ‘round the world!”
Before we get into the game itself, let’s take a moment to just admire the art and the components. Mary Blair’s art design for the theme park attraction is a timeless classic, and Funko wisely chose not to mess with it.
This is a flawless replica of its source material, and it’s an absolute delight to open this box, set it up, and soak it in. Look at how cute the animals are!
Everything is bright, colorful, and whimsical. This is a game for preschoolers and young elementary kids, and the components have a solid heft to them to make you feel good about their durability. The boats are even hard to tip over!
At heart, Disney It’s a Small World is a seek and find game, where your team works together to match the most picture cards to the scenes you can “see” from your boat.
Everyone who plays is split up into just two teams. That means there’s a lot of working together.
Like the actual theme park ride, in the game, your team’s boat slowly meanders though a series of rooms. You can only score a picture card if what you see on the card is also in the scene in your room.
On your team’s turn, you move your boat one space, and draw the number of cards shown on the space.
Most of the cards are pictures for you to find. But there are two kinds of special cards. One is the Clock Tower cards. These are the timer for the game. When the clock reaches 6, the game is over. The second type of special cards are flip cards. They let your team rotate the scene board so that now a different scene is visible in the rooms.
It’s the game’s big twist!
That’s right, a literal twist! So, your team matches as many picture cards from your team’s hand as you can, flipping scene boards if you can to make them visible from your boat, and then your turn is over and the other team goes.
The second team starts on the opposite corner of the board, so the two boats are never in the same room.
If there’s any negative to this game, it’s that you can’t see all the rooms from one seat at the table. But, this does encourage kids to get up and move around the table, and be a little active while playing.
So Dad, what did you think this game was going to be like when we first set it up?
When we first laid out the board, you might think it’s going to be a Disney-themed Candy Land – and I don’t mean that in a good way. The adults were expecting a slow-paced game, one that wouldn’t require a lot of thinking on our part, and would take way too long to finish.
[Sasha] And I thought it would be too hard for my little sister, and she’d quit.
Instead, we were surprised by what an absolute delight this game is.
It never feels slow because every turn, you always play as many cards as you can – not just one at a time.
And since it’s team-based, your turns are filled with a lot of interaction as you search for the matches. You can even use a little elementary deductive reasoning, because just like in the theme park attraction, each scene is themed to a certain geographic region, like Latin America, Southeast Asia, or Southern Europe. Asking your kids to think about the geography or even the color scheme of a card in their hand, can give them a clue about whether or not they’re going to find its match in the scenes in the room.
The game is also really quick! Funko says 20 minutes, but we often finished in 15 or less. Though the river on the game board looks pretty long, the clock tower cards come up so often that you frequently don’t make it past the halfway point.
The game is really engaging for the parents, too – we can especially try to help out with remembering what’s on the other side of a wall, or giving a three-second geography lesson as a clue. “Elephants do not live in Canada!”
We can’t say enough about how great this game is. It hits its target audience perfectly, in art style, durability, difficulty level, game length, and engagement.
We rate it 5 happy villagers out of 5!
The Family Gamers received a copy of Disney It’s A Small World from Funko Games for this review.
This post contains affiliate links, which do not change your price, but help support The Family Gamers.
SNAP review music is Avalanche, provided courtesy of You Bred Raptors?
Disney It's A Small World
Age Range: 4+
Number of Players: 2-6 (2 teams)
Playtime: 20 minutes (or less)