Pros & Cons of Controversial
"I bought Fluxx and Chrononauts about 3 or 4 years ago
and have since picked up a few more copies of Fluxx as gifts,
as well as adding Zombie and EcoFluxx to our home collection.
We LOVE to play and are looking forward to Monty Python Fluxx.
I also really enjoy your website and your messages about drug
use are very clear and educated. I am proud to support your company,
keep up the good work!" -- Angela W of Salem,
Rash writes about
the pros and cons of his new apartment
Introducing Meta Rules & Revising Old Answers
card game that changes is changing again! Previously there were
only 2 types of Rule cards in Fluxx: New Rules and the Basic
Rules. We've had a lot of fun with this structure, but I've come
to realize that we need a 3rd kind of rule card, which I'm calling
the Meta Rule.
Meta Rules are like regular New Rules in that they expand
and change the game, but Meta Rules are also like the Basic Rules,
because they are played at the start of the game and remain in
force until someone wins. Meta Rules are also unique because
everyone must agree on including them. Meta Rules are basically
formalized House Rules.
For example, a great Meta Rule is the one shown here, called
Rules Escalation. Each time the deck is shuffled, the Basic draw
& play numbers are each increased by one. We've been using
this rule for the tournaments at Origins
since the beginning (Keith
Baker came up with this rule when he ran Fluxx tourneys for
us at our
very first Origins). It's a fun, time-tested rule that we've
never been able to officially include in the game before, since
we lacked a mechanism for adding a rule that stays in force for
the full game.
Rules Escalation is just one of the Meta Rules that will be
included in the packet of Meta Rules we're currently in the process
of developing. (The pack will also include a blank Meta Rule
so that you can create your own.)
While I'm on the subject of changes to the rules to Fluxx,
I'd like to take this opportunity to announce a couple of official
retractions. During the past year, I've been grappling with a
pair of thorny (though interesting) rules questions. I've written
many emails and even posted LiveJournal
entries and a
YouTube video about these subjects. Both are loophole cases
that allow something neat, but which I've nonetheless decided
I need to officially rule against. I'm speaking of course about
these two questions:
- Can you choose to discard to the Hand Limit during your
- Can you choose to conduct Play actions before Draw actions?
Up until now, I've been giving a "Yes" answer to
these questions. Now I'm saying "Not without a Meta Rule."
Starting with Monty Python
Fluxx, and rippling through the other Fluxxes as new printings
and editions allow, all Hand Limit cards will henceforth say
"This rule does not apply to you during your turn"
instead of "You may ignore this rule during your turn."
It had never been my intention to allow the player to discard
to the Hand Limit during their turn; however, since I was sloppy
in writing the original text for the card, and used the word
may, I felt I had to agree with those who argued for a
broad interpretation. In a recent debate on the Fluxx mailing
list, Brian Stout put it this way:
"I can only conclude that the 'may ignore... as long
as' wording on the card allows the current player to apply the
Hand Limit at any point in their turn they want... even if Andy
didn't realize the implications of the phrasing at first."
Ultimately, I decided to allow it, since it really isn't a
very useful trick very often; however, it complicate things without
adding very much, so I've changed my mind again, and I'm revising
these cards to make my original intent the official version.
for that whole Play-Before-You-Draw debate, here at last is my
final answer. You must follow the turn sequence established in
the rules sheet unless a Meta Rule says otherwise. Which brings
us back to the beginning. For anyone whose group likes to allow
the option to Play before Drawing or who cares about the ability
to comply with the Hand Limit early, you can still do so via
Meta Rules, as shown here.
As I said, we're in the process of developing a set of Meta
Rules to include in a new product, and it's possible we'll decide
to feature one or both of these cards in that set; but I've got
other Meta Rule ideas too, so it's also possible that we'll never
actually make these into real cards. So if you want to use them,
feel free to print these images onto cardstock for yourself.
for higher-rez versions).
Thanks for reading, and have a great fortnight!
||It's been a hectic couple of weeks, but among other things,
we got the Looney Labs
office fully moved from Janet's
Attic to Alison's Basement,
we emptied out the storage space where we had hundreds of boxes
of stuff along with our 7 machine video arcade, and we sent the
card files for Monty Python
Fluxx off to the printer. Thanks so much to everyone who
helped us get all this done! To celebrate these many accomplishments,
I bought myself an iPhone. Woo-hoo!
||Although Kristin tried really hard to make it happen, we've
had to give up on the idea of making purple dice for Pink
Treehouse. It's a long, sad story which I don't really want
to get into, but suffice it to say that our previous dice supplier
went out of business and no other company appears able to make
custom-printed purple dice without doing a much bigger print
run than we need, and of course, making them in China. So we're
sticking with a standard color, and instead of expanding color
options, we're reducing them: future production runs of Xeno
Treehouse will also include black
dice, instead of white ones.
||It's fascinating being a dog owner after a lifetime spent
avoiding and disliking dogs. It's easy to see now, though, how
I came by and maintained my negative attitude about them. Molly
almost never barks -- except when she encounters a stranger,
at which times she can carry on with amazing ferocity, considering
how sweet she is otherwise. So if the only encounters one ever
has with dogs is when they're treating you like a stranger, you're
bound to get the wrong idea about them.