Fluxx is one of the great card games that straddles the line between the devoted gamer and everyone else. It’s an easy to access game with simple rules that, once you get the hang of it, can become a game you’ll play again and again. Every fan of traditional games is familiar with it (and most have a copy) and it’s a very common ‘gateway’ game to introduce non-gamers to the joy of card games.
For the few of you who don’t know it, Fluxx is a card game where the actual rules change as you draw cards. They are (broadly) five card types: Creepers, Keepers, Goals, Actions, and New Rules. Goals set a win condition, usually ‘have x types of keepers in your hand’. Creepers modify this, making it harder to win. Actions do stuff like draw an extra card or reverse the order of play. New Rules increase hand size, or the number of cards you can draw and so on.
The Doctor Who-themed variant does pretty much what you’d expect it to. The goals are typically ‘collect a Doctor and their appropriate companions’, though they are some creeper-based win conditions that involve gathering the Master and his TARDIS or having lots and lots of Daleks. All the recognisable stuff is here: sonic screwdrivers, long scarves, robot dogs and so on. The game even attempts to future itself slightly by having a ‘Future Doctor’ card. Rules include stuff like the Blinovitch Limitation (which reduces identical cards and so on). The chaotic, constantly shifting nature of the game makes it feel like it’s designed for Doctor Who, but anyone who knows Fluxx will realise that they’ve just picked a very appropriate licence for the game.
The usual criticisms of Fluxx apply: It can be a little bland as this is a game that can fit almost any theme. Gameplay is chaotic and that will frustrate the strategic and logical thinkers amongst you. Play length is unpredictable but usually quite short. The art is nice enough; nothing terribly special or distracting but everything is recognisable for what it is. This is a fun game to pick up and to keep handy for gatherings of friends. Guaranteed to go down well wherever geeks gather, regardless of where you are in Time and Space.
DOCTOR WHO FLUXX / DESIGNER: ANDREW LOONEY / PUBLISHER: LOONEY LABS / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW