Daily Illuminator

September 12, 2016: All Mixed Up? Good!

Mixing Munchkin

One of the strengths of the Munchkin games is that you can shuffle them all together and play a big "mashup" game. This is especially true for the various fantasy-themed decks, such as Munchkin Legends (and its Guest Artist Edition), Munchkin Oz (and its Guest Artist Edition), and the newest addition, Munchkin Grimm Tidings. For the benefit of people who have never tried blending a Munchkin smoothie*, here are some comments about how this would work.

First, because all three sets have the same card backs, you can very easily just shuffle them into a single big pile without worrying about advance knowledge of which sets have cards coming up in the stacks. (Mashing up games with different designs may make this more difficult, but you can use our Munchkin-themed card sleeves to obscure the backs, even then.) You may want to split the Door and Treasure decks in half and let people draw from either one (especially if someone has not put enough points into Dexterity), but that's easily enough done.

All three of the sets listed have classes, and by and large, different classes, so there's decent variety. Legends and Oz both have Wizards, and Legends and Grimm Tidings both have Thieves; if those duplications bug you, leave the extra Class cards out of the blended deck. Only Legends has races, which will make them a little more valuable when you come across them and will make the Curses and Bad Stuff that remove races that much nastier.

Of course, all the sets have fabulous monsters and horrid Treasures – or vice versa – so you shouldn't have any trouble where those are concerned.

We very highly recommend the Listening at the Door faster-play rule for mashup games. (It's on p. 6 of the Legends and Oz rules. It's not in the Grimm Tidings rules, but if you aren't mashing that game up, you don't need it.) That rule gets more cards into the game in the early stages and makes it more likely that even players who don't kill monsters and take their Treasures can stay competitive, by letting you get a free Treasure if you don't fight a monster on your turn.

In the end, of course, the reason you might want to try a mashup game is simple – it's fun! Getting to play a Super Tailor/Professor Elf Princess with loot from Oz, medieval fairy tales, and modern legends is close to the legal maximum amount of silliness allowed in a single game . . . and playing with the fantastic guest art from Mike Luckas (Legends) and Katie Cook (Oz) alongside John Kovalic's inspired Grimm Tidings art is quite possibly a violation of the laws of your city, nation, and physical universe. We recommend trying it today!

* We do not actually endorse making a Munchkin smoothie, especially if you are making it out of Munchkin cards. On the other hand, it can't taste any worse than kale.

-- Andrew Hackard

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