Just started playing Chrononauts (v1.5) and came up with some questions about Artifacts and Gadgets. I then proceeded to answer them myself and decided to post it all here.
Q1: With "The Most Toys" mission card in play, do Gadgets count the same as Artifacts, both for the total of the player with "The Most Toys" mission and for checking other players' totals?
A1: Yes, because a player with that mission would consider a Gadget just as much of an Artifact as a card labeled an Artifact. Besides, the fine-print on the Gadget card essentially says to treat it just like an Artifact except for certain specific situations.
Q2: Are the Artifacts and Gadgets cards that are played and laid out in front of the player considered not to be in the player's hand? There are cards that say to do certain actions with the players' hands, such as moving hands from player to player or shuffling them all together and re-dealing them.
A2: Played Artifacts/Gadgets are not in a player's hand. Unless a card specifically says you can do something with a played Artifact/Gadget, any action affecting a player's hand has no effect on played Artifacts/Gadgets.
Then, of course, there's the non-Artifacts/Gadgets question:
Q3: When playing a "... Miracle" card and you are required to use only the two cards you draw, playing one and discarding one, what if you cannot play either of the cards you draw? For example, what if you draw two patch cards neither of which can be played because neither year has been paradoxed? Do you discard both?
A3: If necessary, discard both. However, because you are discarding both, it's considered to be Killing Time and you get to draw one card to put in your hand.
A1: I am pretty sure Gadgets DO NOT count towards "the Most Toys". The Early American Chrononauts rules state that Gadgets do not count towards fulfilling Missions. My Chrononauts is an earlier edition, so did not include any Gadgets, so the rules don't mention them. The rules pdf I looked at online calls Artifacts "mission objectives"
A2 is correct.
A3: Killing time is only allowed if you choose to discard cards instead of playing a card.
Concerning your reply to A3, that's exactly what I'm proposing. If the instruction is to draw two cards and play one and discard one, and you cannot play either, then you must discard both. One is the card you're supposed to discard and the other is a card to play that you are discarding. In the second instance, you are Killing Time and should get to draw a card for your hand.
After Killing Time, your hand size is the same as when your turn started. After what you propose, your hand size is larger than when your turn started. It's not the same thing at all.
I can see your point that Killing Time should leave your hand the same size. But then, I'd like some ideas on what to do with the original problematic situation. You have an Action card that tells you to draw two cards, play one and discard one. If you discard both because you're unable to play either one, then you're disobeying the instructions. Should there be a penalty for that?
If you can't play either, then you just discard both. That's the risk you take with that card. Everybody has the same risk. It's not as bad as being forced to do something you don't want to do, which could also happen.