Sunday, 20 July 2014

I gave Fluxx another shot with the new Regular Show version

A couple weeks back I was contacted by Loony Labs about reviewing a new version of Fluxx they had coming out on July 25th called Regular Show Fluxx. I will fully admit I'm not a huge Fluxx fan but they called me 'qualified media personnel' and I was flattered. So I figured it was time I gave Fluxx another shot.

My history with Fluxx:

My first experience with Fluxx was way back when the Windsor Gaming Resource was just getting off the ground. We used to have events upstairs at a pub called The Kildare House. In addition to gaming, there was much imbibing of adult beverages. It was generally a good time. The night I first tried Fluxx was not one of those times.

Someone had brought along a copy of the original Fluxx and set up a 15 player game. Yes you read that right, a 15 player game. It was horrible. The first time around we played for half an hour and I didn't even get a turn. Something to do with player order changing or something. The second time I got to play two cards and the game was over. That's when I quit. Then the group played another game and it lasted over 2 hours! 

Since then I've seen a few groups play Fluxx at local events and they looked like they were having a good time. I've also been hearing generally positive reviews on blogs and on podcasts. Maybe I haven't given Fluxx a fair shot?

What the heck is Regular Show?

Now that I've decided to give Fluxx another go, I had one other pressing thing on my mind: What the heck is this Regular Show thing? According to the promotional materials that came with my copy of the game, Regular Show is the #1 show among boys 6-11 and #2 among boys 9-14 and it's on the Cartoon Network.

Well that didn't tell me much. To the Googles!

My Goo-Fu led me to this:

< Regular Show - Sandwich Of Death HD from Mordecai 2012 on Vimeo.

I don't know about you, but I found that pretty damn amusing. It seems that I like Regular Show. I'm also really hungry for a sandwich.

Regular Show Fluxx:

There are a lot of different versions of Fluxx out there. A lot. Family, Monster, Cthulhu, Zombie, Monty Python, Pirate, Star and probably 10 more that I'm not thinking of. Regular Show Fluxx is the latest of these and officially joins the mix on the 25th of July. 

The package I was sent from Loony Labs also included a small bonus pack: 7 New Cards From the Future. The MSRP on the main game is $20 (I like that price point) and the expansion pack has $2 on the front of it. The promo materials I got also noted that Loony has "Multiple promo cards and items lined up for product release."

Fluxx itself is a really simple card game with two basic rules. On your turn you draw one card and then you play one card. You do this until someone wins. That right there was me teaching you how to play Fluxx.

Okay there's a bit more to Fluxx than that. Here's a bit more detail: The goal of the game is to match the Keeper cards in your play area to a Goal card that is in play. If you do that you win.

Each turn you draw and play cards of various types. There are the already mentioned Goals and Keepers. Goals go in the middle and keepers go in front of you. Each goal lists two keepers on it and if someone has both of those keepers up in front of them, they win. There are action cards. These include a huge variety of things like letting you draw more cards and playing them right away, swapping hands with another player, stealing Keepers from other players, etc. Rule cards change the basic rules of the game. This is where the name Fluxx comes from. The rules are in constant Fluxx. That basic "Draw 1 Play 1" rule usually doesn't last one round of play. New rules can change how many cards you draw, how many you play, how you play the cards, and all kinds of other crazy things.

Regular Show Fluxx also has a new kind of card: Creepers. Okay I guess they aren't completely new.  While playing last night someone pointed out that Creepers were added in some of the other Fluxx versions. They were new to me.

Creepers are like bad Keepers. Cards you don't want up in front of you. Actually the cards specifically say: "You cannot win if you have this, unless the Goal says otherwise". There are two creepers in this particular version of Fluxx. One is the Destroyer of Worlds shown there to the right. You will have to buy/play the game to figure out what the other horribly scary Creeper is.

Since this is Regular Show Fluxx most of the cards are based on things from the show. All of the Keepers are characters, places and things from the show. The goals are combos of these things. Most of the rules are generic (and common over all versions of Fluxx) but there are some that are specific to the show. For example, the Yeahuh! Rule was very popular with the fans I played with last night. It requires players to say "Yeahuh!" every time they play a keeper and if they do not say "Yeahuh!" the person that points out that they forgot, get's the keeper instead.

So now that I've given it another go:

Okay I admit it: I had fun playing Fluxx. I brought the game out to one of our Brimstone Board Game Night events and played a couple rounds. There was plenty of laughs and we had a good time. The games didn't last 2 hours and I got to play plenty of cards and there was plenty of interaction. 

It ends up the game is only designed to play 6 people and I strongly suggest you listen to the guideline. I think playing with more than 12 people is what killed Fluxx for me all those years back. The games I played last night were nothing like those initial games that scared me off.

As for the theme? It was amusing enough. I don't really know the show well enough nor am I the target market for it. There was definitely nothing wrong with it mechanically. The fans of the show I played with were getting a kick out of seeing the various characters. As I noted above the show is most popular with younger boys, and I think younger boys would love this. Actually kids in general would probably really dig Fluxx. 

Having given Fluxx another shot I now think everyone should probably own at least one copy of Fluxx. It's dead simple to teach and learn and makes for a fun quick filler between more complex games. It's also a good party game for those times you are playing with non-gamers or when those adult beverages come out. You also can't complain about the price.

Lastly a thanks to Loony labs, for convincing me to give Fluxx another shot and for introducing me to the rather amusing Regular Show.

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