EXCERPTS FROM THE SUMMER 1998 GA REPORT
Reviewed by Herb Levy
FLUXX (Iron Crown Enterprises; $8.95)
Wouldn’t it be great if games had only one rule? Then, you could sit down and, right away, get playing. But what if the rule changed? Or a new rule was added? Or that rule suddenly changed? Then you would have Fluxx, a rather unique and chaotic card game, now published by Iron Crown Enterprises.
Fluxx was originally released by Looney Laboratories and created by Andrew Looney, a delightfully appropriate name for a game of complete lunacy! The game consists of a deck of 80 cards and instructions. For two to six players, Fluxx is a low complexity game with a playing time of less than half and hour – and sometimes as little as five minutes!
Play could not be more simple. The Basic Rule card is placed in the center of the pay area and the basic rules are: Draw 1 card per turn, Play 1 card per turn, no hand limit, no Keeper limit. From this simple beginning, strange things develop!
Four types of cards make up the Fluxx deck. New Rules cards, when played, are placed with the Basic Rules card. If they contradict any previously played card, those other cards get discarded. Keeper cards are placed in front of a player and represent items (like chocolate, money, cookies, the brain etc.) that are needed to fulfill victory conditions set by the play of Goal cards which explains which Keeper cards a player needs to win. Action cards allow players to do “something more” such as steal a Keeper from an opponent, negate a new rule, draw additional cards etc.
As might be suspected, anarchy reigns in Fluxx. Forget about long-range strategy or planning! With the rules and victory conditions constantly shifting, so will your plans and you will be constantly befuddled and baffled as opportunities appear and disappear with frightening rapidity. This might make the game “unpalatable” for the “serious” gamers but, conversely, opens up the game to non-gamers who might enjoy feeling like a ball bearing in a pinball game – not much control but a whole lot of movement!
The Iron Crown second edition of Fluxx keeps the game as it is except for the addition of color-coding to make identification of the four different card types that much easier, a welcome addition from the original’s black and white motif.
Fluxx may not be the first game you will reach for on “game night” but, when you do, you will find it delivers lots of “bang for the buck”. plenty of laughs and plenty of good natured frustration. The quick playing time is a plus too, making you want to try it “just once more”. Recommended. – – – – – – – Herb Levy
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Summer 1998 GA Report Articles