Chrononauts Redux

I’m a big fan of Looney Labs’ Chrononauts. It’s got a little bit of Fluxx to it with collecting artifacts and playing cards that monkey with the rules, but there are different mechanics in manipulating historical events to create an alternate timeline. And it centers around one of my favorite story elements: time travel. There’s even a bit of roleplaying as each player takes on the identity of a time traveler trying to return to their own particular future.

Just published on Looney Labs’ web site is an announcement of a new edition of Chrononauts. Most of the changes are cosmetic: packaging the game in a dual well box that all Looney Labs’ games have switched to and some card text modifications. It also has four more cards: the Beatles Reunion Album artifact, which was originally a promo card; Sarah the Triceratops, another dinosaur; a new patch for the 1945 nexus called Tokyo Nuked — not sure what happens there; and an extra Restore History card.

Not terrible for freehanding, I think.

Not terrible for freehanding, I think.

Now, being as big a Chrononauts fan as I am, I find myself with a dilemma. My current set has all the promo cards, so the only things I’d lack would be the new patch and Sarah the Triceratops. I’m not sure if those alone are worth a whole new Chrononauts set. I can’t even excuse it as replacing a worn out deck because I sleeved my cards and then decorated some white card boxes; one pictured right. Nebbishy and amateurish.

So what interests me more was the simultaneous announcement of a mini-expansion: The Gore Years. It’s a twelve pack of cards which extends the timeline to 2008, adding patches and identities. That’s something I’ll cheerfully throw down for, because ten years after publication, the original timeline’s end at 1999 is starting to look a little dated. Looney Labs even got over the hurdle of black and white bordered cards, which is reportedly what kept Lost Identities strictly to missions and identities, so if The Gore Years sells well, perhaps it will prompt more mini-expansions in the future.

The new edition of Chrononauts and The Gore Years release October 23rd. Looking forward to seeing them at the local game store!


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