Fluxx is a card game, played with a specially-designed deck. It is different from most other card games, in that the rules and the conditions for winning are altered throughout the game, via cards played by the players.
Fluxx was created by Andrew Looney and first published by Looney Labs in 1996. The game was successful and was licensed a year later to Iron Crown Enterprises (ICE) for wider distribution. ICE went bankrupt two years later and Looney Labs has resumed publication and distribution. Looney Labs produced a revised version of the original game in 2002. Amigo Spiele, a German game company, licensed a German language version of Fluxx in 2003. Similarly, Hobby Japan licensed a Japanese language version in 2005.
Rules and gameplayEdit
The game starts out with just two basic rules, presented on a card placed in the play area at the start of the game: each player draws one card, and plays one card during his turn.
In addition to this Basic Rules card, there are four types of cards in the core game, New Rule, Action, Keeper, and Goal cards:
- New Rule cards can be played to change the rules or add other rules. Examples are Draw 2, Play 3, Reverse Order or even Inflation (formerly X=X+1), which increases numerals on other cards played (so Draw 2 becomes Draw 3). In versions 2.0 and 2.1 of the game there is also a card Final Card Random. When this rule is in effect, players must allow an adjacent player to choose the last card played on each turn. Since version 3.0, there is a similar card, First Play Random. (Final Card Random is now one of many orderable "promo cards".)
- Action cards, which allow the player to do one-time things like steal cards or eliminate rules. Examples are Draw 2 and use 'em, Jackpot! to draw three cards instantly, Let's Do That Again, allowing the player to search the trash pile and replay a card, and Rules Reset, which removes all new rules in play.
- Keeper cards, which are used to meet the goals below. Examples are Bread, Dreams, or Peace.
- Goal cards, which define what is required to win. Most goals require pairs of keeper cards, for example Appliances requires the Toaster and Television keepers, and Squishy Chocolate requires Chocolate and The Sun. A few goals are different, for example Brain (no TV), All You Need Is Love, and 10 Cards In Hand. In standard play, only one Goal can be in play at a time (though the New Rule Card Double Agenda allows two Goals to be in play at once, with a win being made by satisfying EITHER Goal's requirements).
- Creeper cards are included in version 4.0, the Zombie Fluxx, Monty Python Fluxx, and Martian Fluxx variants, and as certain promotional cards. When a Creeper card is drawn, it is immediately played and a replacement is drawn. Creeper cards don't count towards the per-turn limits. These include assorted zombies in Zombie Fluxx, as well as the promotional Radioactive Potato. Certain cards that WERE Keepers in previous versions of FLUXX are now Creepers, such as Death and War.
- Meta cards, included in version 4.0 and Martian Fluxx, are a hybrid between a New Rule card and a Basic Rules card, as these cards both define rules in the game but are permanent and apply throughout the entire game. The company compares Meta cards to "house rules". Their playing is agreed upon by all players before the game starts and last until it ends.
Fluxx Blanxx are semi-blank cards used to create custom cards to change gameplay further, and are sold in packs of five. Older Fluxx Blanxx booster packs included one booster card for Chrononauts (titled Beatles Reunion Album), a cover card, and a "microcatalog" card advertising other Looney Labs products. Current packs include only the cover card, but also include a new Creeper blank card in addition to one each of the other four card types.
The most recent edition of Fluxx, version 4.0, contains 100 cards, as compared to 84 cards in version 3.1 and 81 in the promotional deck.
Several expansions have been produced, including:
- Flowers and Fluxx (a gift set with a "bouquet" of six plush "Happy Flowers", a Fluxx 3.0 deck and an exclusive "Flowers" promo Keeper card)
- Fluxx Blanxx, a set of blank cards for creating one's own custom additions (see above).
- Jewish Fluxx Expansion Cards (a 7-card set adding Judaica elements to the gameplay, such as the Torah and Candles)
- Christian Fluxx Expansion Cards (a 7-card set adding Christian elements to gameplay such as the Holy Bible and The Cross)
- Castle Expansion Cards (a 7-card set for Monty Python Fluxx adding elements mostly centered around the Castle of the French Persons)
- Fluxx 0.5 (prototype)
- Fluxx 1.0 (first released version; monochrome, poker-sized cards)
- Fluxx 2.0 (new card layout, use of color, bridge-sized cards)
- Fluxx 2.1 (reprint of 2.0 with minor changes)
- Fluxx 3.0 (many cards removed and added, to improve balance)
- Fluxx 3.1 (two cards removed, one card added)
- Fluxx 4.0 (card number increased to 100, all color, introduction of Meta rule and creepers)
There are also versions of Fluxx that have been released using entirely different sets of cards while playing by the same style of rules.
- Stoner Fluxx (Technically Fluxx 4.20.)
- EcoFluxx v2.0 (Adapts the game to ecological concerns.)
- Family Fluxx (Initially solicited as Fluxx Jr.; a full-color "family friendly" edition.)
- Zombie Fluxx v1.1 (Adapts the game to a zombie theme; introduces "Creeper" cards. Art by Derek Ring.)
- Monty Python Fluxx (Released October 2008; mostly themed after Monty Python and the Holy Grail, with selected elements from the Monty Python's Flying Circus TV series.)
- Martian Fluxx (Released September 2009.)
EcoFluxx, Family Fluxx, Zombie Fluxx, Monty Python Fluxx, and Martian Fluxx can be combined with each other and/or one of the 2.x editions, 3.x editions, or the current 4.0 edition of regular Fluxx to make a "Mega-Fluxx" game (as all these versions have the same card back style).
Stoner Fluxx was produced in 2003 and had the same rules as the original but with a marijuana-based theme. The card backs on the game list it as "Stoner Fluxx" to differentiate it from the rest of the Fluxx variants they market (although functionally, the game could still be combined with any of the other variants). The company donates a portion of the sales to groups advocating marijuana legalization, almost $15,000 to date. Even though there was no significant controversy over the game, the company has decided on some changes for the release of the game's second printing.
The initial run of Stoner Fluxx cards is sold out, save for a few decks which periodically show up on eBay. According to Looney Labs official site for the game, a second printing is planned; however, it will be made under a new imprint for adult games called Fully Baked Ideas (aka FBI), so as to fully separate the marketing efforts for Stoner Fluxx and other future "adult-themed" games from the rest of their product line. FBI had planned to release another Fluxx variant titled Drinking Fluxx, but as of February 2010, the game had been canceled.
- Fluxx Español (Spanish Language edition with some new Hispanic-centric cards)
- German Fluxx
- Japanese Fluxx
- Dutch Fluxx
German, Dutch and Japanese Fluxx contain new art and graphic designs (but identical gameplay). The German version has the same card mix as Fluxx 3.0, plus the "Hide Keepers"-related cards from Fluxx 2.0. The Dutch version is identical to the German version, except with localized text. The Japanese version has the same card mix as Fluxx 3.1, plus the "Go Fish" card from Fluxx 3.0.
Looney Labs gives away promotional cards related to Fluxx at conventions such as Gen Con and Origins. They have given away cards such as Composting and Jackpot which later appeared in different versions of Fluxx; EcoFluxx and Family Fluxx respectively. They have also given away promo cards for Christmas to members of their online mailing list and in High Times Magazine. Mad Lab Rabbits, voluntary scouts for Looney Labs, give away promo cards to people interested in the game.
In addition, there are certain cards that can only be obtained by purchasing other items, such as the above-mentioned "Flowers" card in the Fluxx & Flowers set, or the "Pandora's Box" card available with the Pandora's Fluxx Boxx card storage cases.
Recently, Looney Labs has made many of these promotional and exclusive cards available for individual sale, where they aren't out of print. The list of available cards can be found at their web site.
Fluxx is available to play for free via the volity network and was also available to be played online via the CCG Workshop, using the gatlingEngine to adjudicate most of its rules automatically. However, CCG Workshop is no longer operating.
- Official Fluxx homepage
- The designer explains the Hand Limit rules
- Official Site for Fully Baked Ideas, publishers of Stoner Fluxx
- Home of the online community of fans of Looney Labs games who call themselves Rabbits!