Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Tabletop Tuesday: Zombie Fluxx

Hello and welcome back to another Tabletop Tuesday!

Formerly a weekly post about tabletop gaming, Tabletop Tuesday has been resurrected as a biweekly series. New posts are published every other week. Older posts can be found under the Tabletop Tuesday tag, also linked at the top of the page.

To get into a spooky, Halloween mood, we're changing things up a bit - now through Halloween, we'll be sharing weekly posts showcasing a variety of zombie-themed games!

This week's game is Zombie Fluxx by Looney Labs. Fluxx is a card game where the rules can change with every card played. The game is won when a player reaches a goal by collecting certain cards, but as the rules change, so do the goals!

Hit the jump to read more!

Game: Zombie Fluxx
Manufacturer: Looney Labs
Ages: 8+
Players: 2-6

Fluxx is a card game for 2-6 players, and is recommended for players aged 8+. It retails for $15-$20 and can be found at hobby and game stores, or on Amazon for a discount. Different themes are available, from the family friendly basic version to Adventure Time to Batman to Monty Python! Different themed decks can have different rules and additional cards. In today's game there are zombie cards that players must either collect or defeat to win.

How to Play:
How do I describe the rules of a game where the rules are always changing?

The game begins with the base rules in play. The base rules are: everyone starts with a hand of 3 cards, and on a player's turn they draw a card and play a card. Depending on the card that is played, the rules might change immediately.

There are four kinds of cards in every version of the game: Goals, Keepers, Rules, and Actions. In addition to these, the Zombie Fluxx deck has special Zombie cards.

Goals: List a combination of Keeper cards that a player must have in play to win. There may be special conditions for a win, such as a combination of Keepers, but the player must also have no zombies in there collection. The Goal changes throughout the game, so it is a good idea to grab Keepers and play them. Only one Goal is active at a time, unless a special Rule card says otherwise.

In the Zombie Fluxx deck there is also an Ungoal - if this card is played and too many zombie cards are on the table, everyone loses!

Keepers: Certain combinations of these cards are necessary to win the game, depending on the current Goal. In addition to Keepers (good) some decks include Creepers (bad). These cards can prevent a win, or can be collected for their own Goals. In the Zombie Fluxx deck, the Zombies are the Creeper cards.

Fluxx Zombies: Keeper Cards

Fluxx Zombies: Creeper Cards

Rules: These cards introduce new rules to the game and take effect immediately. These rules can change the hand limit, the number of cards played in a turn, or the number of cards a player draws. Some rules replace each other, while others can coexist (for example, hand limits would replace each other, while draw and play rules do not interfere). Because these new rules take effect immediately, it is important for players to consider the order in which they are playing their hand. Some rules in this deck are Zombie specific, and add new, fun elements to the game.

Actions: these cards are played with immediate effects and then discarded. Actions include drawing and playing cards, stealing Keepers, discarding rules, and other game-changing effects.

There really isn't much more to say about gameplay, because it changes every time you play the game!

We really enjoy Fluxx and own three different decks (Zombie, Pirates, and Monty Python). It is very easy to learn to play - especially since the rules are laying right on the table for everyone to read! We also like the portability of each Fluxx game - we have brought Fluxx to conventions, on vacations, and when we have visited family out of state.  The number of cards in play at any given time does mean you need a large, flat playing surface though.

The different themes make it easy to find one that works for your group of players - adult jokes or family friendly, licensed characters or a more general theme. And each deck retails for $15-$20, making it an affordable gift.

As a two player game, Fluxx can be fun - but like any game where you can work with or against the other players by stealing their cards, it is much more fun with 3+ players. The replayability is very high for this game, because it is different with each new combination of players and rules.

As for the Zombie Fluxx deck... I would say it is my favorite of all our Fluxx decks. Ruining other players' chances of winning by passing the zombie cards around and changing the goals was especially fun! The artwork is very amusing, the goals and flavor text are hilarious, and there are plenty of chances to mess with or backstab other players.

The Zombie deck does have more going on than the basic version of the game, however, and even with all of the rules and goals laying on the table it is still easy to lose track of what move your making or where the zombies are. For that reason, I definitely recommend this game but would suggest new players either give it a try without the zombie cards (an option offered in the instruction book) or play a basic version of the game first to get used to it.

The Tabletop Tuesday series is my own personal hobby - I do not receive any compensation for these reviews. 
Thank you for reading! 

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