My Little Scythe is that mythical game that it seems like every parent is asking about on Facebook. “My 3 year old is advanced for their age, besides doing quantum physics in his spare time, what board games would be apt to introduce him into -the lifestyle-.” It gave parents a significant alternative to playing Apples to Apples or any number of other traditional (read:boring) kid-friendly games. Pie in the Sky is an expansion to My Little Scythe and it provides both an intuitive broadening of the base game but can also feel counter intuitive to the original release.
Where the original release was training wheels for tabletop toddlers, Pie in the Sky adds new characters(Foxes and Owls), new concepts and an airship to spice up the pie. When I say that the game can feel counter intuitive, one of the key teaching points of My Little Scythe was “breaking” players of wanting to take crystals or apples off the map and put them into a personal “stash.” Pie in the Sky lets players do just that, putting those items into the Airship Cargo hold. This has the additional hiccup of impacting the flow (and pace) of the game. Before, you could be placing items on the board and, at the same time, next player prepared for their move. Now, you want the other players to be completely done with their turn because of how the airship can impact your turn. This makes for slightly longer turns in addition to adding more “thinking” time before you make your moves.
The playtime is also extended because they have upped the requirement to win to five trophies instead of four (Another way to secure a trophy has beed added). Throw in new player mats with asymmetrical powers, chits that you drop on the board to impact gameplay, and they additional airship die that you roll and you might be wondering where that simple little game of My Little Scythe went.
However, I can imagine that, like myself, some core gaming kiddo's might have aged up since they received the base My Little Scythe game. If so, all of these additions are opportunities to teach new aspects and strategies in a game they already know. It's definitely not an expansion you need (or want) to pick up at the same time as the base game. Once they have mastered the orginal (and quantum physics) or even just grow up a bit, Pie in the Sky certainly has a place at the table...and inside the core game box, since the original came with Game Trayz that holds everything from the expansion...No, no hold on a second. For some inexplicable reason, the Trayz does NOT include a spot for the actual pie in the sky (The Airship). Well, that is embarrassing.
It's rare to find a game that can “grow-up” with your kids, but My Little Scythe can do that with the addition of the Pie in the Sky expansion. This relatively inexpensive add-on makes the "little scythe" a little bit bigger and more advanced. What it does add (read:teach) will also carry over to more "advanced" boardgaming titles that use similar mechanisms.
A review copy of this release was provided by the publisher.