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On the Front Burner -- In the Oven -- Still in the Cookbook

A Planning Report from the Chief Designer
June 2004

People always like to know what new things we're working on, and we enjoy being open with our plans. This document is an overview of the many new products and projects we're currently working on here at Looney Labs. This list ranges from games we're almost ready to print, to others that are very much still on the drawing board. Many of these projects will require extensive development time, not to mention investment capital, and some may never emerge at all (as you can see by looking at older versions of this document). There is no guarantee we will actually follow through with anything on this page; this is just a list of things we're thinking about and planning for at this time. Everything here is subject to change...

(since March 2003)

On the Front Burner

Fluxx 3.1: The next time we reprint Fluxx, we plan to make a couple of tiny changes. The idea is that you shouldn't feel the need to upgrade if you have Version 3.0. All that will be different (aside from slight updates to the box) is that we'll be dropping "I Need a Goal" and inserting a MicroCatalog. We're also going to take out "Trade Hands" and replace it with a New Rule called "Curiosity Bonus" (which works just like the Borders Bonus).

Fluxx Jr: It's smaller, it's cheaper, it's easier, and it comes in an oversized box. That's the plan for the new Junior version of Fluxx we've been contemplating for quite some time. It will feature an all-new set of kid-themed Keepers and Goals, with just the really easy and most important New Rules and Actions. It will come in a box that not only gives the retailers the bigger footprint they've been requesting, but also gives the fans something they want: a bigger, stronger box that can hold not only the new cards but your old Fluxx deck and even a bunch of your Fluxx Blanxx creations:

If you'd like to know what's in my current playtest deck, ask me at Origins.

Looney Pads: These are so close to ready it's ridiculous. We made up these packets of fun notepads using artwork by Alison and myself, and this is what we gave to family members and assorted close friends as our holiday gift last year. Unfortunately, we never got around to getting more made and sending them out to our rabbits, like we usually do, and now of course, the holidays are long gone. Oh well. Sorry! Anyway, one of these days, these will appear in the Dangling Carrot. As for the next issue of the Geronimo Inquirer... that probably won't get done until the next holiday season.

New Promo Cards: Every year, we create a few cool new cards which we get printed solely for the purpose of giving away to fans. This year, we have 4 new cards for Chrononauts which we'll be giving away at Origins, at GenCon, at DragonCon, and at several summertime hippie festivals. After the shows are all over, we'll make packets containing the leftovers available in the Dangling Carrot, and while supplies last, all old promo cards are available for free with a SASE.

In the Oven

Amsterdam Coffeeshops: Andy and Russell, having just returned from lengthy research trips to Holland, are now working a coffeetable book about the coffeeshops of Amsterdam. The idea is to use numerous photos and detailed descriptions to convey the experiences of visiting and exploring these fascinating establishments. Most folks know about the Dutch Coffeeshops at this point, but very few indeed really know what the scene is like. The purpose of this book will be to share that experience with those who are curious but cannot make the journey for themselves, and thus, hopefully open people's eyes to the superiority of the Dutch system.

Christian Fluxx: For a long time we've been kicking around the idea of creating a little 5-card packet of new Christian-themed Fluxx cards to give away to church groups as a form of advertising, but now we're thinking to go ahead and publish a full stand-along version of Fluxx, with different keepers and goals and such, kind of like Stoner Fluxx but using the smaller deck and bigger box design described above for Fluxx Jr.

ÜberChrononauts: With the release of Early American Chrononauts, it becomes possible to play a double-timeline game we call ÜberChrononauts. As soon as you start playing it, though, you begin to crave yet more lost Identities and even more new Missions. EAC contains one special character, another super-evolved cockroach, named Spa Fon, who needs events on both the EAC timeline and the original timeline, but obviously, there could be so many others. A whole new range of Missions are also possible, requiring a combo of Artifacts from the two editions. Given all of this, we're planning to eventually release an expansion kit which includes a bunch of crossover Missions and Identities (and yes, we plan to have another short story contest, so start writing now) along with reprints of all the promo cards to date and even a few new extras. It'll come in a large sturdy box, big enough to hold both decks and then some. It'll also come with a book, featuring selections from the Mysteries of the Timeline essays (a whole bunch more of which I now need to write!).


Volcano: The next in our series of standalone boxed Icehouse games will be Volcano. The set will feature 5 standard stashes (orange, yellow, clear, purple, and green) with a special set of 5 small caps. These caps will be opaque, bright red pyramids. Though the boxed set will contain just smalls, full stashes of this exclusive new color will be available in the Dangling Carrot. The Volcano set will include a new vacuum-formed Volcano board, the engineering of which is the primary bottleneck on this project.

Still in the Cookbook

Zarcana: The project has totally stalled, but Alison and Petra have been working on art for a new tarot deck. Someday, when they finish it, we plan to publish the Petralison Tarot in two formats: as a standard tarot deck, and as an official Zarcana deck. The later would then be included in a Zarcana boxed set, which would include black pieces along with 3 cool new colors: gold, silver, and copper. But such a product is a distant dream, so in the meantime, you can see more Petralison art samples on older versions of this document (in particular March 2003 and March 2004).

Homeworlds: My vote for the 4th boxed Icehouse set is Homeworlds. I envision it being a standard 4 color Icehouse set, accompanying by 6 Good/Evil cards and a special Binary Homeworlds carrying case. The tricky part is the carrying case... I know exactly what I want it to be like, but in order to get them made, they might have to come with a free flashlight.

Hypothermia #16: Every now and then, we publish a free newsletter featuring new Icehouse Games. The next issue is long overdue, and there are plenty of interesting new games out there we could consider featuring, but we just don't have time anymore to playtest all the new games that people suggest. What we need is some mechanism by which the Icehouse community, as a group, can playtest, evaluate, and rate the new games, and then tell us which ones are the best so we can publish them in the next Hypothermia...

Of course, these are just some of the ideas we are currently contemplating... some projects are still secret, and others are just so far back-burnered as to not be worth mentioning at this time. However, if you're really interested, be sure to skim through the back issues linked to at the top of this page, as they contain all manner of ideas we may decide to use someday.

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