Also be sure to check out All Fluxx FAQ for more general questions. If you don’t see your question answered among these, please email us at:
- Q: The Master Creeper says that it can be given away to “the player that has The Doctor” but what if there are multiple players who have a Doctor in play?
- Q: If my opponent has a Keeper in play which says “On your turn you may…” can I use that power on my turn, since it doesn’t specify who “you” are?
- Q: Can I trash someone else’s Doctor to get rid of my Dalek, instead of my own?
- Q: When a player is allowed multiple plays on their turn, are there any guidelines for timing between plays?
- Q: How should we treat the War Doctor with respect to the Blinovitch Limitation Effect?
- Q: When I play a Keeper with a power or special ability, must that be invoked immediately?
- Q: When I use a free power on a Keeper (or Creeper), is the Keeper destroyed?
- Q: How does the Future Doctor work in Doctor Who Fluxx? What about the Regeneration Goal?
- Q: If My Turn Next is played (out of turn) in the same turn as someone discards the TARDIS, who gets the next turn, and do they both get extra turns?
- Q: If I have Doctors 7 and 8, and another player has Doctors 3 and 4, and the Goal Regeneration comes up, who wins?
- Q: How do I handle Creepers which are dealt to me at the beginning of the game?
- Q: What happens if I play an Action that causes my turn to end immediately in the middle of Draw 3 Play 2 or Draw 2 & Use Em (or Fizzbin)?
- Q: Does countering a Surprise on my turn count as one of my plays? Can I also use it for the in-turn function if I do this?
- Q: Can I use Get On With It if I played my only card, but the Play rule says to play more? Does that count as “before my final play”?
- Q: Can a Keeper exchange (with Exchange Keepers) be stopped with the Surprise That’s Mine?
- Q: When we draw a Creeper, put it into play, and then “draw another card to replace it,” does that card replace the Creeper, discarding it?
- Q: What happens if you draw a turn-ending card when you use Wormhole?
- Q: What cards have effects that include ending my turn immediately if I play/use them?
- Q: Can the Stop That! Surprise counter the “free action” provided by some Rules or Keepers?
- Q: Can a Surprise be used to cancel a Hand Limit on your own turn?
- Q: If someone plays Trade Hands with me, and I have some Surprises (other than Stop That, which could prevent the trade) can I use them up with no effect, just so I don’t have to give them to the other player?
- Q: If multiple Surprises are canceled by each other, how do you figure out what happens in the end?
- Q: What are all the different cards in different versions where you get to draw the top card and play it immediately?
- Q: Could you clarify how many cards we can eliminate with Let’s Simplify? What does “up to half (rounded up)” mean?
- Q: Is it possible to win with a Goal that uses a specific Keeper even though it would be “immediately discarded” due to conditions with a mutually exclusive Keeper already in play?
- Q: Can you Get On With It or Swap Plays For Draws with your cards from an Action like Draw 3 Play 2?
- Q: If a card says “Your turn ends immediately,” but Play All is in effect, which takes precedence?
- Q: Is the third Surprise function (countering another Surprise) limited to in-turn or out-of-turn play?
- Q: If something is played where “your turn ends immediately,” does it mean that you are not subject to the hand and Keeper limits that turn?
- Q: What do I do if I draw a Creeper because of an Action?
- Q: If the rules are Draw 1, and I draw three Creepers in a row, how many cards do I redraw?
- Q: What does it mean when a card says its action is a “free play” or a “free action”? Does using a special ability listed on a Keeper or Creeper count as a Play?
- Q: Do Surprises work any differently in a two-player game than they do in a game with more people?
- Q: Can a Surprise card be played to stop a card played previously during someone’s turn?
- Q: If someone cancels one of my plays with a Surprise, do I get the card back, and still have that play to use?
- Q: If a surprise card can cancel out other surprise cards can a 3rd (or even 4th) surprise card be played consecutively?
- Q: With That’s Mine (That Be Mine, Twist Of Fate) played out of turn, if someone uses the Steal a Keeper card, will this Surprise card allow you to take the Keeper they have just stolen?
- Q: If I use the “during my turn” part of a surprise card on my turn, does that count as a play?
- Q: Can one ever use the out-of-turn function of a Surprise during one’s own turn?
- Q: Can you use the out-of-turn option on Canceled Plans to nullify a goal you are forced to play during your turn that would cause someone else to win?
- Q: With Canceled Plans played out of turn, does this card only discard a Goal that a player has just played or an existing goal on the table?
- Q: Can Canceled Plans prevent someone from winning the game? What about That’s Mine?
- Q: Does a counter-Surprise count as a Play for the person whose turn it is?
- Q: Can I use a Surprise from my set-aside hand to cancel a Surprise played on one of my Draw 2 & Use Em, or Draw 3, Play 2 (or Fizzbin) cardplays?
- Q: If a player uses Trade Hands, and their hand contains Stop That (which cancels actions) can the other player use it immediately upon receipt to cancel the Trade Hands?
- Q: Regarding Canceled Plans and Stop That, if you play them during your turn, it says “All other players must discard one Goal/Action, or a random card, from their hands.” Does that mean players get a choice?
- Q: For Actions that re/distribute Keepers and/or Creepers among the players, how are those dealt back out?
- Q: Does the Rule Mystery Play require one to play the specific card flipped up from the top of the deck?
- Q: Can I apply cards that work on Keepers to Creepers as well?
Q: The Master Creeper says that it can be given away to “the player that has The Doctor” but what if there are multiple players who have a Doctor in play?
A: The person with The Master can give that card away to any player with any Doctor in play.
Q: If my opponent has a Keeper in play which says “On your turn you may…” can I use that power on my turn, since it doesn’t specify who “you” are?
A: No. In order to use the powers of a Keeper or Creeper in play, it must be in your possession. “You/your” in this case refers to the owner of the card only.
Q: Can I trash someone else’s Doctor to get rid of my Dalek, instead of my own?
A: The Dalek says you can discard the Doctor from anywhere on the table. You’re not required to kill your own Doctor first, so, it makes the most sense, strategically, for your Dalek to target someone else’s Doctor.
Q: When a player is allowed multiple plays on their turn, are there any guidelines for timing between plays?
A: TLDR: Officially, no… BUT, when playing in any of our games which include interrupt cards which cancel a previous play (Surprise, Memo From Your Future Self, Stop Time) it’s good practice to play a little slower if you happen to be executing multiple plays, so that your opponents have plenty of time to play one of these cards, should they so desire.
Deliberately playing super-fast, “shotgunning” as one fan put it, is just rude, and, rather than avoiding arguments about interrupts, actually ends up causing them. So if you have someone who insists upon playing that way, feel free to implement a requirement of a full one-hippopotamus silent count between card plays. We think those worried about their second-to-last winning play being foiled by an interrupt will find that others are not as psychic as they feared. Read on…
So here’s a typical Surprise situation, which can cause a bit of controversy:
I recently won when the rules called for Play 2. I played my first card, a Keeper, and then a moment later I played a Goal card that caused me to win. My opponent then showed me that he had the Surprise card in his hand that could have stopped me from playing the Keeper, and we had a brief discussion about whether I should have left him more time to consider playing it.
In my opponent’s defense, I didn’t leave him much time to play his Surprise card that would have allowed him to take my Keeper for himself. In my defense, he didn’t really have any reason to play the Surprise card and take the Keeper – until he saw that my next play was the winning Goal.
So… are there guidelines on timing between playing consecutive cards?
Slapping them down so quickly that no one has a chance to do anything doesn’t seem entirely fair – but it also doesn’t seem strategic after playing a card to wait and look around at other players to see if they have any game response before playing the next card.
(Related question: A player doesn’t have to “announce” or “report” their play out loud, right? They can just play their cards and if other players aren’t paying attention, that’s the fault of the other players? We all want to have good sportsmanship, but you know how games can sometimes get, in terms of either other players not paying attention, or in terms of being very competitive!)
Here’s our response:
While we don’t have any official guidelines about exact timing of card plays, We recommend a slight pause between a two-card play like this when the active player knows it’s going to make them win. It’s rarely the case that the person with the Keeper-stopper will intuitively know that the necessary Goal is coming… until it gets there (or vice-versa: if they had the Goal-stopper, and you’d decided to play the Keeper last, they couldn’t know you’d have the winning Keeper to play after the innocuous Goal), so playing slow is often to your advantage, as the player who’s about to win.
In fact, playing casually, even pretending you don’t know what you want to play next, can be a great move. Playing slowly enough to allow a possible Surprise doesn’t have to mean broadcasting your impending win. (For example, looking significantly around the table as if expecting a challenge). Of course, announcing your your play is in no way required, but could even be part of your nonchalant act, depending on how you do it. (“Hmm… Well, there’s this Small Moon… and… let’s see… That’s No Moon, for the win!”)
That said, one often doesn’t have the presence of mind to think about deliberately hesitating. In real life, you’re usually just taking your play, and winning, at regular game speed.
Here is where the question is really about what your opponent was thinking, and they have to be honest about it: did it only occur to them to play the Surprise after you’d played the winning Goal? If you’d just accidentally played the Goal first, and then the Keeper, their Keeper-canceling Surprise would have gone through and prevented your win. But just as they couldn’t know your next play would be the end of the game, you couldn’t know they had a Surprise. For all you knew, they had the Goal-stopping Surprise, and it’s just chance which order you chose to play those two cards in. It’s not as though you deliberately played in such a way as to deliberately thwart a Surprise on your first play.
The thing to point out here is that, had you stopped playing after the Keeper, would it even have occurred to them to use the Surprise? Probably not, if they’re being honest. It’s extremely rare that one’s opponent is prescient or observant enough to realize that this play might be your second-to-last. People rarely want to squander a Surprise on the off-chance that your next play will be the winning one*. In the kind of situation you describe, the Surprise-having player usually just shrugs, and says “Darn! I had [the Surprise that would have prevented your second-to-last play], and I could have stopped that play, but it’s too late now… Oh well. Let’s deal again…”
Because, in the end, if they didn’t get that Surprise in after the applicable card, that’s the way it goes, and that’s the official ruling if people get – ahem – unruly.
*I mean, imagine it. If they’d canceled your Keeper before you’d played the winning Goal, your best reaction is probably simply to shrug as if mildly confused by such a powerful play, apparently for nothing, and make them feel like they just wasted their Surprise on a random Keeper play… heh heh. You don’t have to let them know they totally blocked your win. Meanwhile… you don’t have to get upset about missing that chance… it’s just Fluxx, and victory is snatched away at all the time in the course of any given game – usually completely by accident. Or you can let them know their spidey-senses were working, or congratulate them on how observant they are. It’s up to you.
Now let’s return to that “shotgunning” player who’s deliberately playing quickly so that nobody can slip a Surprise in on that penultimate play… It is, as the fan above pointed out, not entirely fair, and, moreover, it invites the argument “But you didn’t leave me enough time to play my Surprise!” If, on the other hand they had played it slowly, as described above, their opponent has no excuse to challenge the win, on the claim that they “were going to play a Surprise.” The opponent had plenty of time, but in the vast majority of cases, they won’t play the Surprise, because they have no idea what’s coming next. That’s part of the beauty of Fluxx!
Q: How should we treat the War Doctor with respect to the Blinovitch Limitation Effect?
A: The War Doctor should be considered Doctor 8.5.
Q: When I play a Keeper with a power or special ability, must that be invoked immediately?
A: No, you don’t HAVE to use it immediately. You MAY use it immediately if you want to, however.
Q: When I use a free power on a Keeper (or Creeper), is the Keeper destroyed?
A: Keeper powers do not usually destroy or take the Keeper out of play to use them – unless they specifically say they do.
A couple say you’ll have to pick the Keeper up and put it back in your hand when you use its power, and one or two say to insert the Keeper into the middle of the draw pile. Only a couple will cause destruction of the Keeper being used. In any case those requirements will all be specified on the Keeper in question.
Q: How does the Future Doctor work in Doctor Who Fluxx? What about the Regeneration Goal?
A: The Future Doctor is always exactly one higher than the highest numbered Doctor in the game (not the highest numbered Doctor in play, but the highest numbered one in the deck). So, for purposes of the Goal Regeneration, the Future Doctor consecutively follows the highest numbered Doctor in the game.
Imagine all the Doctors are waiting in a queue. The Future Doctor is always behind the last Doctor in line. So if Peter is the last Doctor in line, the Future Doctor is next in line behind Peter. And when Jodie joins the line, she’s behind Peter, and the Future Doctor is behind her.
Q: If My Turn Next is played (out of turn) in the same turn as someone discards the TARDIS, who gets the next turn, and do they both get extra turns?
…Player B starts turn, Player A puts down My Turn Next then. During their turn Player B discards their TARDIS in play for another turn. Who goes next, and do they both still get the extra turn?
A: They both get an extra turn, but, in this case, if there are only two players in the game, it’s going to look like nothing happens. If you’ve got more than just those two players in the game, the non-involved player/s will definitely notice that A and B got extra turns, no matter what order they went in!
So the order in which those extra turns play out depends on the order in which the extra-turn cards are invoked. Since Player A played My Turn Next before the TARDIS extra turn was invoked, the Surprise player gets the next turn… then the TARDIS discarder… then whoever was going to go next after that turn. If it’s only a two player game, that next person is Player A, which will feel like nothing happened. Otherwise, it’s whoever is usually after Player B, which may be Player C, D, etc…
In more detail for this situation:
(Presumably Player A’s turn was before this)
Player B starts turn
Player A plays My Turn Next
Player B discards the TARDIS, and does whatever else they may do on their turn
–> Player A gets their magical Surprise turn
–> Player B gets their TARDIS turn
The next player takes their turn.
If it’s a two-player game, Player A’s turn is next, and it will seem like nothing happened: (A), B, ->A, ->B, A… Though technically, those turns with arrows are extra, but since the two players continued to simply alternate, there’s no practical effect.
If there are more than two players, however, then (A) B, ->A, ->B, C, D, etc… and players C and D will notice that A and B got extra turns in there, out of order.
If, on the other hand, Player A played My Turn Next after Player B discarded their TARDIS, the turn order would go like this:
(Presumably Player A’s turn was before this)
Player B starts turn
Player B discards the TARDIS
Player A plays My Turn Next
–> Player B gets their TARDIS turn
–> Player A gets their magical Surprise turn
The next player takes their turn.
If it’s a two-player game, Player A’s turn is next, but the order will go like this: (A), B, ->B, ->A, A…
If more than two players, then (A) B, ->B, ->A, C, D, etc… Once again, players C and D will still notice the extra turns by A and B.
Q: If I have Doctors 7 and 8, and another player has Doctors 3 and 4, and the Goal Regeneration comes up, who wins?
A: Sounds like a classic case of two people meeting the winning conditions at the same time.
On the rule sheet itself, at end of the first page in “Notes” is the ruling for ties:
“The game doesn’t end until there is a clear winner. If for some reason two of more players meet the winning conditions simultaneously, the game continues until a single winner emerges.”
So, for your situation, the answer is actually fairly simple: there were two players meeting winning conditions simultaneously, so keep playing until a clear winner emerges. Note that the “clear winner” need not be one of the two originally tied. It could happen that the game state changes, and someone else wins instead of either one of them.
Q: How do I handle Creepers which are dealt to me at the beginning of the game?
A: Some versions of the rules deal with this explicitly, and some don’t, so we’re answering this here in the FAQ, just in case there is any confusion.
Creepers may not be held in your hand, so if you get a Creeper as part of your dealt hand, you put it on the table in front of you (play it pre-game, essentially) and draw to replace. If it’s another Creeper, continue until you have a starting hand containing zero Creepers.
Q: What happens if I play an Action that causes my turn to end immediately in the middle of Draw 3 Play 2 or Draw 2 & Use Em (or Fizzbin)?
…Since these cards are all played as part of a single play, would the player get to finish playing them out, or would their turn just stop? And if it just stopped, what would happen to any unplayed cards? We’ve been letting the player keep them.
A: The clear answer is that if you decide to play one of these turn-ending Actions first, of course your turn would end immediately, as you have been playing it. Of course, in the case of Fizzbin, you don’t get a choice as to the order of cards played, but that card most closely resembles D3P2/D2UE, since you set your main hand aside, and are working from a temporary hand of extra cards to execute the Fizzbin.
However, there is NO way that any remaining cards would go back into your set-aside hand. They are never intended to go into your actual hand at all, as indicated by the requirement to set your hand aside. Any cards left unplayed when you played the turn-ending card are discarded. If you wanted to play them, you should have done it before the turn-ending card.
Brain Transference: Discard remaining cards in your temporary hand and trade places with the player of your choice. Turn ends.
Time Portal: Choose a card as described and add to your set-aside hand. Discard remaining cards in your temporary hand. Turn ends.
What Do You Want: If you choose to take a Keeper or Goal out of the discard, it goes into your set aside hand. Discard remaining cards in your temporary hand. Turn ends.
I’ll Be In My Bunk: This card does not specifically say that your turn ends immediately, but you certainly can’t continue your turn if you “Excuse yourself from the game and leave the room for a few minutes.” Discard any cards remaining in your temporary hand. Leave the room.
Swap Plays For Draws and Get On With It, while they do involve having your turn end immediately, are New Rules, not Actions, so, as you can see from this answer, things would work a bit differently:
See: Can you Get On With It or Swap Plays For Draws with your cards from an Action like Draw 3 Play 2?
Q: Does countering a Surprise on my turn count as one of my plays? Can I also use it for the in-turn function if I do this?
A: If you are the active player, counter-Surprising does not use up one of your total plays for the turn. By the same token, however, this means you cannot use the Surprise for it’s function which would use a play. To wit:
You can only use a Surprise to do one of three things:
1) use it on your turn as a play, for it’s in-turn function
2) Use it to Surprise another player,
2a) on another player’s turn to cancel a play
2b) on your turn to counter their interruption of your own play (“counter-Surprise”)
You cannot do more than one of those things.
So if you’re using it to counter-Surprise on your turn (2b), you can’t also use it as one of your plays for it’s “in-turn” function (1).
Q: Can I use Get On With It if I played my only card, but the Play rule says to play more? Does that count as “before my final play”?
…I had one card in my hand, with Play 4 in effect. I played my card, an Action card which was then discarded. I wanted to claim to able to get 3 new cards because “Get On With It” which was on the table says I could since I had discarded my hand and had 4 – 1 = 3 plays left.
A: In order to take the option to Get On With It, you must be sacrificing (at least) one of your Plays, and you must be discarding a hand of at least one card.
The most obvious issue is that, at the point when you wanted to Get On With It, you didn’t discard your hand. You played an Action, and now your hand is empty. You have to have something to discard in order to discard something. Your hand has to exist in order to be discarded.
The second issue is almost a side effect. We would not consider you to “have plays left” if you have no cards to play. In this case your first play WAS your final play, so you can’t take this option because it’s not before your final play. In order to have a final play, you have to have a card to play.
The whole thing follows logically, since the card/s you could have played – but didn’t – will be remaining in your hand, and therefore among the cards you’re throwing away.
Q: Can a Keeper exchange (with Exchange Keepers) be stopped with the Surprise That’s Mine?
A: No. Exchanging a Keeper is not the same as playing it. The Exchange Keepers Action could be stopped with the Surprise Avast (Halt! Stop That) but not with That’s Mine!
Q: When we draw a Creeper, put it into play, and then “draw another card to replace it,” does that card replace the Creeper, discarding it?
A: It’s true, the Creeper card does say “immediately draw another card to replace it” but this doesn’t mean you replace the Creeper on the table, discarding it. This means “replace the Creeper in the number of cards you drew.” If you needed to draw 3 cards, and you drew them and one of them was a Creeper, you play the Creeper and draw another card, because that Creeper doesn’t count as one of the 3 cards you needed to draw (neither does it count against the number of cards you get to Play on your turn), so you have only drawn 2 cards, so you still need to draw a third.
You’re not replacing the Creeper from it’s place “in play” (i.e. on the table). You’re just replacing the card “lost” as part of your draw count because it was a Creeper. The idea is that Creepers go into play automatically, whether you want them to or not. They’re usually a problem for you, and you have to work to get rid of them (though sometimes you need them for Goals, otherwise, they hinder you).
Q: What happens if you draw a turn-ending card when you use Wormhole?
…It says the card played does not count as a Draw or Play, so does it still end your turn?
A: Yes, while that card you draw from Wormhole (or any of its analogues) doesn’t count against the Draw or Play count as shown on the rule cards, it’s still part of your turn, and the card still counts as being fully played. Whatever it says happens, happens. That’s the risk you take, pulling a card out of the Wormhole! Keep in mind that the turn-ending effect of New Rules is optional, so simply playing them does not end your turn.
Also remember you can take the Wormhole option at ANY time during your turn: before your Draws and Plays, in the middle of your Draws, in the middle of your Plays, or after both, if you like. That’s the only control you get to exert: WHEN and WHETHER you decide to play a card from the Wormhole.
Analogues of Wormhole (which is in Star Fluxx) include (some with slight variations such as conditional requirements for use):
Magic Shoes in Oz Fluxx
Shiny! in Firefly Fluxx
There are many other Wormhole analogues in other versions, but those versions don’t also include turn-ending Actions.
See also: Q: What cards have effects that include ending my turn immediately if I play/use them?
See also: Q: What are all the different cards in different versions where you get to draw the top card and play it immediately?
Q: What cards have effects that include ending my turn immediately if I play/use them?
A: Cards (Actions) that end your turn immediately if you play them:
Brain Transference: Star Fluxx
Time Portal: Star Fluxx
What Do You Want: Star Fluxx, Oz Fluxx, Doctor Who Fluxx
I’ll Be In My Bunk: Firefly Fluxx (This card does not specifically say that your turn ends immediately, but you certainly can’t continue your turn if you “Excuse yourself from the game and leave the room for a few minutes.”)
Cards (Rules) that end your turn immediately if you choose to utilize their ability:
Swap Plays for Draws
Get On With it
Since Rule-based Free Actions are optional, the player is not obligated to use their power, so simply putting them into play does not end the players turn immediately. However if any player chooses to use the powers of these cards, the effect is simultaneous with their turn ending immediately. Most notably, this means that if you draw any Creepers with your draws from Swap Plays or Get On With It, you’re stuck with them until your next turn, even if there are conditions which allow you to trash or give them away on your turn. Your turn ended immediately with the draw, so that window is over.
Q: Can the Stop That! Surprise counter the “free action” provided by some Rules or Keepers?
A: Those are not considered “Actions” in the sense that they are not Action cards, and Stop That (or Belay That) is intended to cancel out Action cards specifically. Nor will Veto! which cancels Rules stop this type of free action.
More broadly worded Surprises might prevent some of these, however. For example, Skullduggery is designed so that it can prevent Plundering (among other things), which is a “free action” on a Rule. It’s A Trap and You Can’t Take This Guy From Me are designed so that they can prevent special Keeper actions that let someone steal one of your Keepers.
There might be some confusion on Let’s Keep Doing That, since there is an Action card permanently in play, but it is intended to act as if it were a New Rule, so we would rule that it’s no longer stoppable by the Stop That! Anti-Action Surprise.
Q: Can a Surprise be used to cancel a Hand Limit on your own turn?
Player A plays a Hand Limit
Player B and C discard down to the hand limit
Player A plays Veto to cancel the Hand Limit for themselves.
Is this allowed?
A: Well, it all depends how Player A was trying to play the Veto. Every Surprise has two different instructions on it. One for when you’re using it to interrupt someone else’s play, and one for if you play it out of your own hand as a regular card on your turn.
First case (the out-of-turn function):
If Player A was trying to use the out-of-turn function to cancel the play of their own card, that’s not allowed. It’s their turn, so they can only use the in-turn function. See also: Can one ever use the out-of-turn function of a Surprise on their own turn?
Note that even if it were another person playing out-of-turn to cancel the card (let’s call them Player D) the Surprise should be played immediately after the card one wants to cancel: in the case of a Hand Limit, that would ideally be before anyone has discarded anything.
Moreover, even if everyone decided to cut imaginary Player D some slack about the timing, and they did let Player D play the Veto after some people had discarded, canceling the Rule would “prevent it from ever taking effect” and everyone would get to take all their cards back as though the Hand Limit had never been played. Long story short: you can’t Veto a rule just for you. The Rule applies to everyone, so when you Veto it, it’s Vetoed for everyone.
Second case (the in-turn function):
If Player A still had a play left on their turn after playing the Hand Limit, they could simply play the Veto for its in-turn function. What it does in this case is let them “discard [their] choice of up to 2 New Rules currently in play”. The Rules discarded don’t even have to be ones that were recently played.
In this case, those rules are not being “canceled” without ever having taken effect, they’re just being discarded. The Rules were played, they took effect for as long as they were in play, and then they were discarded. So if Player A did that, they could simply trash the Hand Limit before their turn ends, thereby avoiding having to discard down at all. Of course, this uses up one of their plays for their turn.
Q: If someone plays Trade Hands with me, and I have some Surprises (other than Stop That, which could prevent the trade) can I use them up with no effect, just so I don’t have to give them to the other player?
A: No. Surprises can only be played for an out-of-turn effect when there is an effect to be had. You can’t just play a Surprise for no effect just to burn it.
When used for their in-turn effect, of course, they behave much the same way as Actions, and, as such, may or may not have an effect.
Q: If multiple Surprises are canceled by each other, how do you figure out what happens in the end?
Player A uses That’s Mine for its in-turn function to steal a Keeper from Player B
Player B uses It’s A Trap! to cancel the steal, and instead steal from Player A
Player A uses Canceled plans to cancel It’s A Trap, since Surprises can cancel Surprises.
Does the original steal go through? Player B argued that there was no steal in either direction, as both That’s Mine and It’s A Trap had been canceled by subsequent Surprises.
A: The short answer is that That’s Mine is carried out for it’s in-turn function for the Keeper steal.
The long answer:
- That’s Mine is played in turn: Keeper is stolen
- It’s A Trap is played out of turn by victim: That’s Mine is negated and the Keeper steal is reversed
- Cancelled plans negates It’s a Trap, which had previously been reversing the Keeper steal and negating That’s Mine. This leaves That’s Mine un-negated to steal the Keeper as originally played
It’s not that cards just get put on the discard pile, covered and they’re gone. Think of each card as going into a “being played” area only into the discard pile when they are done being used, or when negated for good. There was sort of a little wrestling match out there in the “being played” area between all the Surprises, and It’s A Trap lost.
Here is a generic version of what a battle like this could look like. It can continue until you run out of Surprises. Keep in mind that it’s totally possible and allowed for some other player, for example, Player C, to jump in on either side, potentially confusing the toggle state of the original play. If things come to this, it may be very important to keep track of the original play being canceled, perhaps putting it in the middle and flipping it over to indicate which state it is in: effective, vs canceled.
- A plays some card X.
- B plays Surprise 1, canceling X.
- A cancels surprise 1 with Surprise 2, so X is in effect again.
- B cancels surprise 2 with Surprise 3, so Surprise 1 goes through, and X is canceled again.
and so forth. If there were more, it would look like this:
- A cancels surprise 3 with Surprise 4, so Surprise 2 goes through, canceling Surprise 1, so X happens.
- B cancels surprise 4 with Surprise 5, so Surprise 3 goes through, canceling Surprise 2, so Surprise 1 is in effect again, so X is canceled.
So far, the maximum number of Surprises in a version is 6, in Batman Fluxx, but here’s the page where we would update that info:
Complexity Factors for Fluxx editions
Q: What are all the different cards in different versions where you get to draw the top card and play it immediately?
A: There are many analogues to Wormhole (the first one we made) or Mystery Play (the most generic themed one). Some may require a token action (click your heels together to use Magic Shoes in Oz Fluxx, for example) or condition (if a certain card is in play) to activate them but they are essentially all the same kind of card.
Mystery Play in Fluxx 5.0 and SE
Wormhole in Star Fluxx
Shiny! in Firefly Fluxx
Allons-y/Geronimo! in Doctor Who Fluxx
Spontaneous Reaction in Chemistry Fluxx
Egads! in Batman Fluxx
Unknown Variable in Math Fluxx
Great Idea! in Stoner Fluxx
Magic Portal in Adventure Time Fluxx
Magic Shoes in Oz Fluxx (if you click your heels together three times)
Open The Door in Monster Fluxx (If the Spooky Door is in play)
Open A Gift! in Holiday Fluxx (if The Gift is in play)
Chemical X in Cartoon Network Fluxx (if at least one Powerpuff Girl is in play)
Time Doorway in Regular Show Fluxx (if the Time Machine is in play)
Q: Could you clarify how many cards we can eliminate with Let’s Simplify? What does “up to half (rounded up)” mean?
A: The wording on Let’s Simplify is as clear as we could make it. If we had said that you may discard up to half of the New Rules in play, and there were an odd number (for example, five of them) you wouldn’t know whether you could should round up or down. But we tell you that you should ROUND UP when figuring out what “half” is, so in this example, you know you can discard up to three.
Of course, you may discard up to half – you don’t have to discard three; you could choose to discard just one or two, or even zero if you want. Those numbers are all less than “half (rounded up) of five”.
Q: Is it possible to win with a Goal that uses a specific Keeper even though it would be “immediately discarded” due to conditions with a mutually exclusive Keeper already in play?
A: We’ve had this question in several different forms so far, so I’m tweaking it to make it generic. It really could go either way in our minds, but this was the original ruling, so we’re going with our previously set precedent.
Assuming all other conditions are already set correctly (Goal in place, other Keeper already played) the Keeper you’re playing for the win would be in front of you for a split second before it would have to be discarded, and that split second is long enough for you to meet Goal conditions and win.
Winning with a Goal which requires Bruce Wayne, but Batman is already in play.
Winning using Saffron or Yolanda when Bridget is already in play.
Winning with a by playing a Doctor if a later Doctor is in play with the Blinovitch Limitation Rule in effect.
Q: Can you Get On With It or Swap Plays For Draws with your cards from an Action like Draw 3 Play 2?
A: You could certainly put either of these New Rules (Get On With It, or Swap Plays For Draws) into play as part of an Action like Draw 3 Play 2 of them (D3P2) or Draw 2 and Use Em (D2UE), or Fizzbin, but you could not utilize their functions while in the middle of executing one of these Actions. While all three of these Actions do give you a sort of temporary hand, you can’t substitute it for your real hand to “discard and draw back up to 3”, for example.
You would either need to invoke Get On With It! before the Action with the temporary hand is played or after. The Playing of D3P2/D2UE/Fizzbin, and all actions as a result of it are considered 1 “Play”.
Q: If a card says “Your turn ends immediately,” but Play All is in effect, which takes precedence?
A: When you play an Action or use a New Rule card says “your turn ends immediately” it means it’s specifically overriding any Play rule that might otherwise require you to keep playing cards. You also end any option you may have to use Keeper powers or “free” Rule Actions. If it says “your turn ends immediately” then your turn ends immediately – so make sure you’re all done with stuff before you play/use one of these cards!
Q: Is the third Surprise function (countering another Surprise) limited to in-turn or out-of-turn play?
A: You can use the counter-Surprise function at any time, either during someone else’s turn or your own. Here are some basic examples:
On your own turn:
Someone cancels one of your plays with a Surprise. You play a Surprise to counter their Surprise. Note: although it is your turn, this does not count as one of your Plays.
On someone else’s turn:
They play a Surprise for the in-turn function. You play a Suprise to counter it.
On someone else’s turn:
They play a card. You cancel it with the appropriate Surprise. They counter-Surprise you. You counter-Surprise them!
On someone else’s turn:
Player A plays a card. Player B cancels it with a Surprise. You decide to counter Player B’s Surprise, for whatever reason motivates you.
(In other words, if there is a Surprise/counter-Surprise “battle” going on between two other players, as described in the previous example, you can jump in at any time on either players “side”.)
Q: If something is played where “your turn ends immediately,” does it mean that you are not subject to the hand and Keeper limits that turn?
A: No. Hand and Keeper Limits apply to you when it’s not your turn, so you would observe them as soon as your turn ends.
Q: What do I do if I draw a Creeper because of an Action?
A: If a Creeper is drawn by the active player, they must take the Creeper (play it in front of themselves) and draw to replace, such that all the cards they have drawn for whatever the Action indicates will contain no Creepers.
Q: If the rules are Draw 1, and I draw three Creepers in a row, how many cards do I redraw?
…I say it’s just one card, but my husband says it should be three, since three Creepers were drawn. Who is right?
A: For practical purposes, you are correct. If you have laid down three Creepers in a row like that, you are left needing to draw 1. After your draw phase, you should end up having drawn just 1 non-Creeper for your Draw 1.
If anyone is having a hard time wrapping their head around why this is, here’s a blow-by-blow description of what happens when you draw three Creepers in a row while trying to Draw 1.
You Draw 1. It’s a Creeper.
It goes in front of you, and you draw to replace it, hoping for a non-Creeper to satisfy the current Draw rule.
Your “draw to replace” is… a second Creeper.
It goes in front of you with the first, and you draw to replace it, hoping for a non-Creeper to satisfy the current Draw rule.
Your “draw to replace” is… a third Creeper.
It goes in front of you, and you draw to replace it, hoping for a non-Creeper to satisfy the current Draw rule.
Your “draw to replace” is… finally a non-Creeper, which you add to your hand, and you have successfully followed the current Draw rule, which is Draw 1.
As you can see, in some ways, your husband is right… but the thing is, the three cards that were “drawn to replace” did happen… they’re just over as soon as you draw 1 non-Creeper.
Q: What does it mean when a card says its action is a “free play” or a “free action”? Does using a special ability listed on a Keeper or Creeper count as a Play?
Does it count as one of your plays for your turn to do this thing?
A: No. That’s the whole point of it being “free”. It does not use one of your plays. Depending on the game we’re talking about (there are cards like this in Chrononauts and Back To The Future, in addition to many in Fluxx editions), you might only be getting one play per turn, and whatever this thing does won’t use up your play for the turn.
Q: Do Surprises work any differently in a two-player game than they do in a game with more people?
A: There is no reason Surprises would work any differently depending on the number of players. Surprises always counter Surprises in full, no matter what the function of the Surprises in question.
Q: Can a Surprise card be played to stop a card played previously during someone’s turn?
Example 1: Player A plays a Keeper, and then plays a Goal card to win. Player B plays That’s Mine (the counter-Keeper Surprise) to cancel Player A’s Keeper card hoping to cancel the win. Conversely, maybe Player A played a Goal, then a Keeper, and Player B tried to use Canceled Plans (the counter-Goal Surprise).
Example 2: Player A played the That’s Mine as an in-turn card and stole the Computer from Player B. Then Player A set down a Keeper. Player B then played a Surprise card, claiming that the wording on the card says it may be used on the Surprise card just played.
Example 3: Player A played Draw 3 Play 2 Of Them, drew three cards, and one of them is a Goal that let them win, so they played it. Player B then played Stop That (the counter-Action Surprise) to try to cancel the playing of Draw 3 Play 2, hoping to cancel the win.
A: In all of these cases, Player A’s actions stand, as the Surprise has been played too late. The counteractive Surprise must be played IMMEDIATELY after the card you wish to counteract. It also doesn’t apply to “the most recently played card of the target type played this turn.” Once another card of any type has been played, or a subsequent resulting action taken, it becomes too late to retroactively stop a previous card play with a Surprise.
Don’t be that person needing to ask for a special exception to the rules, and make sure the new players you’re teaching understand: Surprises need to be used in a timely manner. Whenever you have one in your hand, acquaint yourself with its power right away so that you can make a snap decision about whether to use it, since, if you hesitate too long, your opportunity is likely to pass.
So are there ever exceptions? It depends how relaxed you want to play, and how everyone is getting along. If Player B was a less-than-experienced player, it’s highly likely that it just took them a little while to read their own Surprise card to realize that it could be used in that way. If the results of a rewind are relatively inconsequential, one might cut them some slack. If Player A somehow anticipated that Player B was going to counter their play, and took their next action with barely a blink then that’s a bit rude. But if there was a heated disagreement, please do fall back on the official ruling. The ONLY reason you might choose to ignore it is if you wish to cut Player B some slack for being a n00b, or if you want to call shenanigans on Player A’s playing style for some reason.
Remember: it’s never appropriate to see the consequences of a previous card play, and THEN realize that you wish you’d stopped it before something else happened as a result of that play. In example 1, Player B probably didn’t realize that the first play would result in the win until the second card was played. In example 3, Player B couldn’t know when Draw 3 Play 2 was played that it would result in a win. Too bad. No exceptions for those cases.
This is where careful ordering of your plays and a good poker face are important so as not to broadcast your intentions. And people say there’s no strategy in Fluxx…
Q: If someone cancels one of my plays with a Surprise, do I get the card back, and still have that play to use?
… or does the card that was canceled go in the trash (or to my opponent in the case of That’s Mine), and my attempt has used up one of my plays?
See this answer in a video!
A: No, it’s that second thing you said: the card that got canceled goes away, and that play has been squandered. On the other hand, your opponent had to give up a card from their hand as well, so it’s not as though it’s without sacrifice on their part too.
Q: If a surprise card can cancel out other surprise cards can a 3rd (or even 4th) surprise card be played consecutively?
Q: With That’s Mine (That Be Mine, Twist Of Fate) played out of turn, if someone uses the Steal a Keeper card, will this Surprise card allow you to take the Keeper they have just stolen?
A: No. They didn’t actually play the Keeper card, they simply got possession of that Keeper by playing an Action. All you could do here would be to stop the Action itself using the Stop That! (Avast! Belay That! The Stars Are Wrong!) Surprise. Using that would not gain you the Keeper they were stealing. It would only stop them from stealing it.
Q: If I use the “during my turn” part of a surprise card on my turn, does that count as a play?
Q: Can one ever use the out-of-turn function of a Surprise during one’s own turn?
A: If you use the Surprise card as one of your plays during your turn, then you must use the “during your turn” functions. The “out of turn” functions almost always cancel some other card play, and it is not allowed to cancel your own play with your own Surprise. Thematically, consider this: it’s hard to really call it a “surprise” if you’re doing it to yourself in this manner.
The only time when you might not use the “during your turn” on your turn is when you’re using a Surprise to counter a Surprise played by another player against you during your turn.
Q: Can you use the out-of-turn option on Canceled Plans to nullify a goal you are forced to play during your turn that would cause someone else to win?
A: No. In general, you can’t use the out-of-turn portion of a Surprise during your turn, moreover the Canceled Plans card specifically says it is used to stop a Goal which another player has just played.
Q: With Canceled Plans played out of turn, does this card only discard a Goal that a player has just played or an existing goal on the table?
A: Only the Goal just played.
Q: Can Canceled Plans prevent someone from winning the game? What about That’s Mine?
Player #1 contends that he won the game because the rules say that as soon as a goal is achieved the game is over and no other actions/cards can be played. Player #2 says that no, the Surprise card overrides the general rule and cancels the playing of the goal and therefore the game does not end. Which is true?
A: Yes. If the Canceled Plans card played is played immediately, it cancels the Goal and play continues to the next person. That is the intent of the card.
It works the same way for That’s Mine. If the winning play is a Keeper, That’s Mine can be used to cancel that play, preventing the win.
Again, Surprises are meant to be able to work this way… but you have to be using the correct Surprise for the type of play you’re canceling – and you must play your Surprise in a timely manner: say, within a few seconds of the player playing their card.
For more nuanced suggestions about how to resolve some tweaky timing issues, check
When a player is allowed multiple plays on their turn, are there any guidelines for timing between plays?”
Q: Does a counter-Surprise count as a Play for the person whose turn it is?
If I play a card on my turn and another player plays a Surprise to cancel it, then I play another Surprise to cancel the first one, since it’s my turn, does mounter Surprise count as a Play for me?
A: It does not count as a play. It’s sort of meta-out-of-turn.
Q: Can I use a Surprise from my set-aside hand to cancel a Surprise played on one of my Draw 2 & Use Em, or Draw 3, Play 2 (or Fizzbin) cardplays?
Also, could I use a Surprise that was part of the subturn to cancel the attacking Surprise, and if so would that count as one of the plays?
Player #1 plays “Draw 3, Play 2 Of Them” and gets an Action, a Keeper, and a Surprise.
They play their Action and Player #2 plays Belay That [Avast, Stop That] to cancel it.
–> can Player #1 use the Surprise in their mini-hand to cancel that Surprise,
–> and if so do they still get to play their Keeper afterwards?
A: Yes, you can use a Surprise from your main hand, or from your sub-hand, to cancel another player’s Surprise during your Draw 3, Play 2 Action. Playing a Surprise to cancel a Surprise is a free action, so yes, you would get to play the third card if your second card is a Surprise that you use to counter a Surprise being used to stop your first card.
In the case of Fizzbin, you don’t have the option of using any of the cards in your temporary hand, you have to play them blind, in random order, so any Surprises that are in that temporary hand won’t be useful to you – but you can still use Surprises in your set-aside hand to counter Surprises played against cards played as part of your Fizzbin action.
Q: If a player uses Trade Hands, and their hand contains Stop That (which cancels actions) can the other player use it immediately upon receipt to cancel the Trade Hands?
In this scenario Player #1 has the Trade Hands and Stop That, and Player #2 is being forced to trade hands.
A: No. If the surprise were in Player #2’s hand, then Player#2 could use it to stop the Action, but if the surprise is in Player #1’s hand, then Player #2 does not have access to the card until after the Trade Hands Action has been resolved, by which time it’s too late to be stopped.
If you think about it too hard, you’ll realize it can ONLY work this way. If it worked the way you described there would be a paradoxical loop:
You used the Stop That you received in Trade Hands to stop Trade Hands, so you didn’t trade hands, so you didn’t have the Stop That, so you couldn’t use it, so you traded hands, but then you had the Stop That, and you used it to prevent the Trade Hands, but then you didn’t have it, didn’t use it, but then you traded and had it…
…and so forth to insanity.
Q: Regarding Canceled Plans and Stop That, if you play them during your turn, it says “All other players must discard one Goal/Action, or a random card, from their hands.” Does that mean players get a choice?
Or must you discard a Goal/Action if you have one, and a random card only if you don’t?
A: Players get to choose. They may either look at their cards and select a Goal/Action to give up, or they may select a random card from their hand to give up. Of course, if they don’t have any Goals/Actions, they can only opt to lose a random card.
Note that random means RANDOM. They don’t get to decide which card they give up in this case. They can do this either by mixing their own hand face down, and pulling one out without looking, or they can have you pull one from their hand as they hold it up facing themselves.
Q: For Actions that re/distribute Keepers and/or Creepers among the players, how are those dealt back out?
Do I get to decide who gets what? Do I get to decide how many to deal to each player? Do the recipients put them in their hands or on the table in front of them? Are they face up or face down? When I’m dealing them out, who do I start with?
A: First of all, only for Everybody Gets 1 (or Dreams & Omens) does the active player get to look at and decide who gets what. That’s a very different situation that the ones we’re talking about here. This question focuses on random (fairly even) redistribution along the lines of Share The Wealth.
The cards in question are shuffled or otherwise randomized so that the dealer does not know what’s being given out. They are then dealt out evenly, going around the circle clockwise, one card to each player in turn, continuing until the cards are all gone. Dealing starts with either the active player or the player to their left, with the intention of providing any possible benefit to the active player.
• So if it’s for Keepers, or a mixture of Keepers and Creepers, the active player should get the first card, because this is felt to be to their advantage, so they won’t get shorted if the number doesn’t deal out evenly. However, we would consider it an officially sanctioned house-rule if your group wanted to give the active player the option of starting with the player to their left instead of themselves. There could be reasons…
• For redistribution of Creepers-only, the card will usually say to start with the player to the left of the active player, because Creepers are generally considered a disadvantage, and this would mean that if anyone was going to receive fewer, it would always be the active player. However, as with other redistribution cards, your group may choose to let the active player decide whether they want to start with themselves or the person on their left. Again, we can think of reasons why someone might want to start distributing Creepers to themselves first.
Once dealt, all cards will be put into play immediately, so it’s OK to deal them out face up, but it’s sometimes better to deal them out face down, then have everybody reveal what they got all at once. As mentioned above, re/distributing by dealing will cause all players to end up with roughly equal numbers of cards. So if there are large discrepancies in the number of cards players had in play, this will even them out: players with a lot more than other players will end up with fewer than they had, and players with few or zero cards in play may end up with more. That’s the way it goes.
Here’s a list of redistributing cards, and their types:
Share the Wealth
The Grand Ball
Keepers & Creepers
Mix It All Up
It’s a Cyclone!!!
Return of the Dead
Jailbreak/removal of Arkham Asylum rule
Scramble Keepers, which is only in early versions of “Basic” Fluxx (1.0-3.x) is the only Action which is different. While you still shuffle up the Keepers and hand them back randomly and they go back into play, you don’t deal them out evenly, but instead give each player the same number of Keepers they had before. When we came up with Share The Wealth, we felt it was far superior, as we liked the way it leveled the playing field, keeping the game more competitive, to maximize player engagement.
Q: Does the Rule Mystery Play require one to play the specific card flipped up from the top of the deck?
My friends think you can add it to you hand, and play some other card from their hand.
A: You are correct, your friends are incorrect. You pull the top card off the deck, and immediately play that card. You do not get to add it to your hand, or play any other card from your hand.
Analogues of Mystery Play include (some with slight variations such as conditional requirements for use):
Wormhole in Star Fluxx
Magic Shoes in Oz Fluxx
Egads! in Batman Fluxx
Open The Door in Monster Fluxx
Magic Portal in Adventure Time Fluxx
Chemical X in Cartoon Network Fluxx
Time Doorway in Regular Show Fluxx
Shiny! in Firefly Fluxx
Great Idea! in Stoner Fluxx
Q: Can I apply cards that work on Keepers to Creepers as well?
For example, in Monty Python Fluxx, if I play Steal a Keeper, am I allowed to steal a Creeper instead?
Does a Keeper Limit allow me to discard creepers?
A: Keeper means Keeper, not Creeper. That’s why we changed the wording on “Trash a Keeper” to “Trash Something” so that it could mean both. But for “Steal a Keeper” it’s still just Keepers. Same with Exchange Keepers. It only applies to Keepers.
(I [Alison] wanted to name it “Trash a -eeper” but for some reason that didn’t fly.)
There is no limit to the number of Creepers you can have in front of you.