Wednesday , May 22 2024

Card Game Review: ‘Star Trek The Next Generation Fluxx” from Looney Labs

Star Trek The Next Generation Fluxx from Looney Labs is a bold take on the classic card game with the ever-changing rules. With so many different properties being incorporated into the Fluxx world, including a Fluxx for the original series Star Trek, an unknowing glance would guess that each version is just a skin over the original set. Yet Looney Labs creates new rules and shuffles the numbers of different kinds of cards to give each edition its own flavor. The former ST:OS Fluxx focused on a rapid spirit of adventure, for example, while the ST:TNG Fluxx captures the themes of cleverness and diplomacy like the new series.

Star Trek: TNG Fluxx follows the base rules of Fluxx where nothing is predictable. The game begins simply: each player takes a turn drawing a card and playing a card. As the cards go, however, the rules change. Players may add a new rule changing the numbers of cards drawn or played, limiting the number of cards held in the hand, or even swapping playing a card for drawing a new one, much like a character taking a pause to think before taking their dramatic action. Through the game, players collect Keeper cards, which may be combined to meet the conditions of a Goal and thus win the game.

Features from the TV series are clear in Star Trek: TNG Fluxx with Keepers showing tools like the Phaser and the Holodeck and favorite characters like Data, Geordi, Guinan, and of course Captain Picard himself. They pair up to make Goals, with Data and the Holodeck being the conditions to win with Elementary, Dear Data. There are also plenty of Creepers, cards that prevent a player from winning unless special conditions are met, such as Q and the Romulans. Several Creepers attach to Keepers, like the Borg and a Malfunction, rendering the Keeper a hazard until discarded.

Beyond the iconic elements, Star Trek: TNG Fluxx reflects the thematic mood of the series as well. The new rule Darmok! enables players to draw extra cards in they spend their turn speaking only in proper nouns and numbers, a great boost for a dedicated Fluxx player. The most strategy comes with playing on the Creepers, playing Actions like Creeper Reassignment to move a Creeper to another player or Distress Call to prompt everyone to draw a card with those players suffering Creepers drawing even more. By slyly changing who is being attacked by the Cardassians, a player may go from what would be considered last play to victory in a single turn.

Star Trek The Next Generation Fluxx is a card game for two to six players aged eight and up. Games are usually fairly short, lasting about twenty minutes, although the actions of clever players can rapidly speed up the end with swift moves or extend play by stopping another player from winning with a sudden shift in the game.

To add further excitement for Trek fans, Looney Labs also offers a Star Trek Fluxx Bridge Expansion deck with a suite of new cards that combine ST:TNG with the Original Series Fluxx. Goals match captains, science officers, Enterprises, and the Past and Future themselves.

About Jeff Provine

Jeff Provine is a Composition professor, novelist, cartoonist, and traveler of three continents. His latest book is a collection of local ghost legends, Campus Ghosts of Norman, Oklahoma.

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