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Subject: There is too there. rss

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Paul Szilagyi
United States
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I know some people get crazy about this kind of thing, but let's be honest; The presence of a randomizing element (in this case the 'luck of the draw') is not anathema to the use of strategy to minimize its effect and maximize your potential for victory. Not all games are chess. But, then again, not all games are Fluxx.

For myself, having read the reviews here on BGG ahead of time, I went out specifically looking for this game, (which my FLGS had one copy left of (also one of Stoner-Fluxx, which doesn't appeal, and one of Eco-Fluxx which might, if the attration holds)) bought it, and played my first session with my wife tonight. I really like games with a dose of luck. So does my mostly-non-gamer wife. (I can't bring myself to throw a game...I just...can't. OCD? A bit, yeah. She's patient with me, though, so it works out.)

Here's how it went.
Score out of three games:
Me: Three.
My Wife: Zip. Sorry about that...
(Without a major helping of luck, that score would read 2-0, but those last two were all me. Well, almost.)

BUT, and this is huge: we both had fun.

The first game shouldn't really count. My wife decided to play a goal card (Milk and Cookies), when none was on the board because she had another one in her hand, and figured she'd replace it on her next turn. This was about 4 turns in (2 minutes? Yeah, that's about right.) I already had 1/2 of that goal (Cookies) showing... which was the attraction for her, thinking she'd kill my goal by playing it then replacing it (this is when we still only had one play per turn). I had the other card.
One to me.(She was thinking about it... THIS one was just luck.)

The second round, we got a good 15 minute game in. Everything progressed smoothly, with our first introduction to new continuing rules, and their outcomes (and also which order to play your cards in, as once my wife could have continued to play had she switched the order of her played cards). Plus, the more cards you play, the more you get a feel for how to really GET your opponent. Always fun. Finally, I got a goal to fit the large collection of Keepers I had in front of me (I think it was 6, at the time. The Keeper-Limit rules had gotten trashed (by me, specifically to enhance my odds of finding a compatible goal).
Two to me.

Round Three: 40 Minutes.
I'll admit, for a two-player game, that was a little while...but by then we were having fun. The game's good at keeping you involved (but doesn't play well with TV or a movie on in the background. At least not yet... I need to keep track of the rule changes) and in three rounds we'd already gotten the strategy of it down. (I won't retract that, please don't ask.)
Rule changes were being played when they'd benefit us the most, hands were swapped for good card bonuses, Keepers were exchanged, and shuffled, and the hand limit got reduced to kill a 5-card advantage. More importantly, fulfillable goals were killed and replaced with ones whose components were already buried. Good stuff.
Plus, and this is still a bonus in my eyes, my wafe gave as good as she got, forcing me to abandon (or just give her) cards I wanted, and generally wreaking havoc with my hand/plan.
We played through the whole deck, and a few turns into the second shuffle.
Finally, because I kept the "Draw Two and Play 'Em" action card, I was able to get play a new goal, followed by "Exchange Keepers" for the win.
AND, done for the night. (I hadda leave for work, otherwise we'd probably have played at least one more...after almost an hour solid of playing!)

Sure, despite all that I did, it could have gone the other way... but nobody ever feels like they're out of a game where there's always a chance to win on that next turn.
Give it a try. A cartoon isn't a Rembrandt, but they're still good for a laugh.

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