By Rick Teverbaugh
The Herald Bulletin
— Fluxx is one of the greatest gateway games into this wonderful and rich hobby and it is now ready to reach a milestone.
For those who aren’t acquainted with it, Fluxx is a card game where the rules change at the drop of a card. As a result, games can be 10 minutes or 45. There is no long-term strategic planning, but rather short-term tactics because the goal of how to win might change several times between your turns.
Fluxx 4.0 is the game to begin this most enjoyable journey, but after that, purchases can be tailored to the interests and age spans of the players.
The young ones will love Family Fluxx, a game that will work for gamers as young as 6 years old.
Then there are; Pirate Fluxx, Zombie Fluxx, Monty Python Fluxx, Martian Fluxx, Star Fluxx, Eco Fluxx and even the most recent Oz Fluxx.
On August 17, the date of GenCon in Indianapolis, the 10th version of the game will be released. It is Cthulhu Fluxx. From Looney Labs, here’s the description:
“Explore the dark and horrifying mysteries of the unknown as you battle insanity and fiendish cults in Cthulhu Fluxx! Follow the wild-eyed Poet, the obsessed Artist, and the expeditions of the Professor as they investigate Eldritch Secrets no mortal was meant to discover. Someone has stolen the Necronomicon from the library at Miskatonic Univeristy, and a Farm in the hills is undergoing a horrifying Metamorphosis. Meanwhile, unspeakable abominations stir in Penguin-riddled Tombs beneath the ice. Are you Inevitably Doomed to a lifetime of Nightmares in the Sanitarium, or are you, in fact, a Secret Cultist, worshiping the Minions of Darkness?”
Fluxx has maintained its popularity and strength in the gaming community because, like the Munchkin series from Steve Jackson Games, it delivers a consistently enjoyable experience without some of the mind-numbing complexities that can come with some tabletop games.
The series is a wonderful way to put two or more players around a table and get laughable interaction that still has enough meat to entice the more competitive gamers.
At some point, you might think that, with all of these versions, that Andy Looney is simply producing the same game over and over with new card names. But that simply isn’t the case. Each game feels a bit different from the others and does a remarkable job of capturing the feel of the setting chosen for that version.
That is really the brilliance of this gaming creation – that these different offspring can all be captured within the framework of one ruleset. Though each game has its own flavor, if you know Fluxx, picking up any of the different versions is quite easy.
To know Fluxx is to love Fluxx in one or more of its flavors. Cthulhu Fluxx is a landmark release, but hopefully it isn’t the final step in what has been a most enjoyable journey.