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Q: How does the in-turn action of You Can’t Take This Guy From Me interact with the power of Stolen Goods?

A: Well, this is really a doozy! Just to recap, the in-turn action of You Can’t Take This Guy From Me (YCTTGFM) is to copy the power of any Keeper on the table as though you had it. The power of the Keeper Stolen Goods is to be able to forcibly trade it for any other Keeper in play (except Serenity). Let’s say it’s your opponent’s turn, and they’re trying to use YCTTGFM to copy the power of your Stolen Goods.

So, there are two ways the person using YCTTGFM might be trying to have this scenario play out:

They could be trying to use your Stolen Goods as though you had it, and were forcing Stolen Goods to be traded with themselves (or a third player). This would look like you ending up with some other player’s Keeper, either theirs or that third player’s, and whoever you were forced to trade with would end up with your Stolen Goods. It’s most likely they’d want to make you trade your Stolen Goods with them, so that they would get some benefit from the play.

OR

They could have been trying to use Stolen Goods as though they had the Stolen Goods to give to a third player and then they’d take back the “exchanged” Keeper from the third player, leaving the third player with your Stolen Goods, and you down a Keeper?

I couldn’t figure this out on my own, so I consulted with Andy, and the correct way that should be played is the first option.

Q: Would Mix It All Up trigger You Can’t Take This Guy From Me? That seems really harsh!

A: Yes, we checked with Andy, and he rules that, unfortunately, Mix It All Up is a situation which could trigger You Can’t Take This Guy From Me (if the person playing the Surprise had Keepers that were being mixed, and not just Creepers).

We would agree — it is a bit harsher than average for Fluxx, but there it is. Fluxx cards can vary from harmless or ineffectual to… taking someone’s whole hand. It does tend to even out, in on the whole, we feel.

If you really hate the card, feel free to take it out of your deck. Totally your prerogative! Fluxx is supposed to be fun, so if this takes the fun out of it for you, then ditch it. We want you to have fun!

Q: Can I use It’s A Trap! if someone uses Zap A Card to take one of my Keepers into their hand?

A: Quick answer: Yes.

Obviously, the more generic Belay That! (counter Action) would work, but the question here is about whether Zapping would trigger the Trap. The card It’s A Trap! is intended to counter Keeper “stealing” in all general senses to include more than just the specific Action Steal A Keeper. It was originally conceived to counter Keepers with special stealing abilities, like The Captain or The Scientist in Star Fluxx, but it also works if someone is invoking Crime Happens (AKA Plunder) to steal one of your Keepers.

So, since Zap A Card essentially lets someone steal one of your Keepers, we would answer yes: you can use It’s A Trap in response to someone Zapping one of your Keepers into their hand. Of course, if they don’t have any Keepers in play themselves, you won’t get anything back, but you will still squander their Zap A Card, and prevent your Keeper from being taken.

Note that You Can’t Take This Guy From Me (Firefly Fluxx) has the same trigger, and can be invoked by all the same situations. Although there is no Zap A Card in Firefly Fluxx, there is a Plunder card, and Zap A Card is available as a promo, so it could be added to any deck.

Q: Would a counter-Surprise cancel It’s A Trap in full, or just the reverse-steal function?

[Note that in Firefly Fluxx, the Surprise You Can’t Take This Guy From Me has a similarly retaliative function as It’s A Trap, though the punishment is different. All of the same issues might arise with that card as with It’s A Trap!]

Player 1 played Steal a Keeper. Player 2 played It’s A Trap, then Player 1 played Belay That.

Player 1 believes that Belay That cancels It’s a Trap as if those two cards never got played, so the original Steal A Keeper stands, and Player 1 gets to steal a keeper from Player 2.

Player 2 thinks that when Player 1 played Belay That it should have then stopped Player 2 from stealing a keeper from Player 1, but that’s it. It should have been a wash and nobody got to steal from anyone.

A: Player 1 is correct in this case. Here’s how that works:

Player 1 played Steal A Keeper (an Action) to steal Player 2’s Keeper

Player 2 played the It’s a Trap (a Surprise) to prevent the steal and steal a Keeper from Player 1 instead.

Player 1 then played Belay That (a Surprise) to use its Surprise-countering ability to counter It’s A Trap. In this case, Belay That is not countering an Action, it’s countering a Surprise. It counters the entire card as if it had not been played, not just the counter-steal part of It’s A Trap, so Player 1’s original Steal A Keeper goes through unimpeded.

In fact, Player 1 could have played ANY Surprise to counter It’s A Trap, not just Belay That. They could have played Canceled Plans, or Veto, or That’s Mine, since all Surprises counter other Surprises. In fact, if Player 2 had had a second Surprise of ANY type, they could have played it to counter Belay That, and their It’s A Trap would have gone through unimpeded.

Q: How does It’s A Trap! work with Exchange Keepers?

A: After some discussion, we decided that Exchanging Keepers does not count as “Stealing” a Keeper.

Think of it this way: you cannot then reverse the action against your opponent. (What would that mean “and instead you [Exchange] one of their Keepers”? – that doesn’t really make sense.) So we concluded that Exchange is unstopped by It’s A Trap! Neither would you be able to use You Can’t Take This Guy From Me (a Surprise in Firefly Fluxx which has the same trigger as It’s A Trap).

What It’s A Trap! was designed to protect you against, in addition to Steal A Keeper, is any of those annoying other Keepers, like the Captain and the Scientist who can steal certain Keepers at will. One of my favorite things is to put out a juicy Crew Member and wait for the person with the Captain to try to take it, at which point, instead… It’s A Trap! and I get to steal their Captain instead!

Q: If you play a Keeper/Item that lets you take another Keeper/Item, can you immediately use that power to take the target card?

For example, in Star Fluxx, can you get the Captain and immediately use him to take the Scientist. Can you then immediately use the Scientist’s special power to steal, say, the Energy Crystals?

In Firefly Fluxx, can you use Zoe to take Wash, then Wash to steal Serenity, then Serenity to get Stolen Goods?

In the Back to the Future Card Game, can you play the Dust Jacket, and immediately use it to steal the Almanac?

A: Yes, you can chain Keeper/Item stealing-powers like this. It is a thing that can happen. While some feel this is overpowered, we don’t feel that it breaks the game, though. Not all of the cards are always out at the same time, and, of course, sometimes you might get screwed over mid-chain by the Surprise It’s A Trap (in Star Fluxx), or You Can’t Take This Guy From Me (in Firefly Fluxx). In the Back to the Future Card Game, of course, there’s only one Item that lets you steal another in this way.

Q: Does the Surprise card It’s A Trap! prevent special Keeper powers or Rules that might allow someone to take your Keeper?

It doesn’t show a specific type of card that it counteracts, but the wording is “Cancel any single game action in which another player is stealing a Keeper you have on the table, and instead you steal one of their Keepers.”

A: In fact, special Keeper powers that let someone take one of your Keepers is exactly the kind of situation that It’s A Trap was designed to counter. The wording is deliberately not specific to a type of card so that It’s A Trap can prevent ANY situation in which some other player may be trying to take your Keeper, whether that originates from an Action card or not.

I have often deliberately put out tempting crew members when I had It’s A Trap hiding in my hand, in the hopes that the person with The Captain would try to steal them, and I’d get to Trap their Captain instead. Or put out the Energy Crystals to try to trap the Scientist, for example.

Also keep in mind that most things which you can use It’s A Trap! to counter also can trigger You Can’t Take This Guy From Me (in Firefly Fluxx).