Lame Excuse 1
Somehow when we were checking the 330,000 cards we received back in September and starting to assemble our games, we completely failed to notice that two of the Splat! cards were missing. Since one of these was a food card, and the other was 'Trip' (Play when someone dodges, they don't) the game ended up tipped badly out of balance.
That said, even with these cards the game was not really flowing the way we wanted--the ending was really not 'epic' and many of the food / card powers were far too complicated for the weight of the game.
Lame Excuse 2
So we fixed it.
We rewrote the game ending, introducing a "Him" card for Jeeves and using the moment when Jeeves is completely covered in food as the game end mechanism--clean players can throw at Jeeves, while messy players get to keep throwing at their cleaner neighbours.
We pulled out the worst offending of the complex cards such as the fiendishly complex "Sloppy" rule on the Chocolate Mousse, and even removed "Trip" because it created inconsistencies in the phase order.
We even removed my favorite rule (nobody starts with any cards) to improve hand / time management by taking away the draw some cards at the start of your turn and decide what to do with them mechanic.
AND WE PLAYTESTED, DAMMIT
We got superb results--the fixed game went like a dream! Kris, especially had great success--we ended up selling two boxes of games to Time Machine Hobbies (www.nehobby.com) based on the raucous laughter coming from her corner at Elliscon back in November.
And yet... somehow when I taught the game it still never quite worked out. The flow of the explanation seemed too hard as I found myself having to explain almost about every rule before the first card was played. I KNEW this game was working--I'd seen it during playtesting--but I just wasn't getting the same response.
It turns out I'd forgotten to tell Kris many of the new rules when she playtested at EllisCon and so she was playing a hybrid of the new and old versions.
You can find the latest rules here:
Kris has been through these and confirmed that they're the version that she played so the game should be working fine now, but given the number of changes we've made we're planning to run a couple more playtests before printing out a few hundred copies.
If you have a first edition of the game (without a 'Him' card) then please contact me and I will set up an exchange--we've changed the card distribution completely.
If you have a copy that does have a 'Him' card then all you need is a new rulebook--please let me know your address and I'll send one out.
Once we print the new rulebooks you'll be able to recognize them by the Chain Reaction section title.