Newest Review: ... way, even when we were kids - my parents obviously thought this was too complicated for children). Anyway, you accumulate points from the... more
Member Name: hanmillie
Date: 22/08/12, updated on 23/08/12 (90 review reads)
Advantages: Inexpensive, easy to play, can be played between 2 - 10 players, great fun
Disadvantages: None imy my opinion
This game is played using a large pack of cards of which there are 108 in each pack. The cards are presented in a small red box which mimics the size of the cards inside and is illustrated quite simply with three of the playing cards and a large yellow 'Uno' logo. These cards have the same dimensions as a normal pack of playing cards and this feature means that the box can slip easily into a handbag or rucksack should you want to take them away with you or to simply play them in the airport terminal. In addition to the cards, the box does contain a small set of instructions which introduce you to the concept of the game and ensure that each member plays it correctly.
The game is intended to be played by a group of between two to ten players and is suitable for children aged seven and over. In my experience this game is more fun when played with a larger group as it means that the room gradually gets more noisy and raucous as more cards are laid and subsequently picked up.
Similarly to a normal set of playing cards, Uno cards are in their own way split into suits which are based on the background colour of the card that being red, blue, green or yellow. A number on the front of each card tells you how many points each card is worth and for this reason it is usually best to get rid of the highest value cards first. As well as the standard playing cards there are a few random cards in the pack which definitely spice up the game in my experience. A list of these cards is as follows:
* Reverse Card - the reverse card is simply presented as a picture of two arrows which when laid this means that the direction of the game changes. For example, should the game start by opponents laying cards in a clockwise direction and then this card is laid the game will immediately switch to an anticlockwise direction. This is a particularly handy tactic when you have a person who shouts "Uno" as it prevents them from being able to lay when it would have been their turn. The reverse card has a coloured background meaning that it can only be played when a suit of that card colour is being laid.
* Draw Two - this card again features a coloured background be it yellow, red, blue or green and therefore can only be laid when the suit colour is being played. The draw two card is a nifty way of ensuring that the player after the card is laid has to pick up two cards from the deck. It therefore increases their hand of cards and reduces the likelihood of them being able to shout 'Uno'.
* Miss a Turn - this card is similar in looks to the national speed limit sign, that being a circle with a line across it and simply means that when laid the next player has to miss their turn in laying a card. This card too has a background colour which relates to one of the four colours and thus you are limited when laying it to the cards that have been played in the run up to your turn.
* Wild Card - The wild card differs to the other random cards in that it has a black background as oppose to a coloured one and can therefore be played at any point during the game. This card simply means that the owner of it can change the colour of the suit being laid to reflect their hand of cards. For instance, should a player have a large hand of green numbered cards they may want to switch the suit to green so that they have a chance to use up their cards.
* Wild Draw Four - In my opinion the best of all the random cards (and in our house the most contentious), this card allows the user to lay it and make the next player pick up four cards from the deck. Again this card has a black background enabling it to be played at any point during the game.
~~How to Play~~
In my experience, it is best to play this game around a large table or flat surface to enable all the players to be able to see what has been laid and have the ability to pick up cards easily. To begin this game, the deck of cards is shuffled and the cards dealt to each of the players in turn giving each player seven cards in total. The remainder of the pack is then placed face down in the centre of the table. We usually turn over the top card in the remaining deck to start the game and to allocate a starting colour and the game can begin.
Aim of the Game
The aim of this game is to get rid of all your cards as quickly as possible. Whoever lays the final card in their hand should then tally up the points from the remaining opponents cards and this score acts as the amount of points that the winner accumulates and takes over to the next round. The first player to reach 500 points wins the game.
Playing and Rules
The rules of this game are simple, lay your cards as quickly as possible and try to avoid being dealt random cards which mean that you have to accumulate more cards. The colour of the round being played can be changed either by laying a wild card to change the suit or by laying a different coloured card over the current colour using a card that has exactly the same value as the one most recently laid. For example, playing a green 'nine' on top of a red 'nine' will change the suit from red to green. In cases where you are unable to lay a card, the player simply picks up a card form the spare deck and the next player continues. Once down to one card, the player must shout 'Uno' to notify the other players that they have nearly finished and thus avoid picking up two cards which is the penalty for failing to shout Uno. The cards are all worth different points and scores and it therefore makes sense to lay the higher scored cards as early as possible.
As with a bog standard set of cards, each card in this game is worth differing amounts of points which can add or retract from the value of your hand:
* Numbered cards (as the name suggests) means the number printed on the card is the value of the score of that card. I.e. a card with the number 'six' printed on it is worth six points.
* 'Reverse cards', 'draw two' and 'miss a turn' cards are worth twenty points each.
* 'Wildcards' are worth 50 points each.
The significance of the value of these cards is that the total of them will be given to whoever lays the last card and therefore you all play to get rid of high cards as soon as possible.
In my humble opinion, this is a fantastic game which offers fun entertainment for the entire family and a chance to be sociable as oppose to each person doing their own thing. The Uno card game is easy to play and you find that you quickly pick up the rules and try and think of strategies to out do one another. Although I enjoy playing this game as part of a large group of people it is worth mentioning that the cards in the middle of the table do go down very quickly with a large group and therefore we find we are often turning over the played cards pile to top up the spare deck. In addition, it is quite difficult to get rid of all your cards quickly when this game is played between a large group of people as the suit changes so often that you find it difficult to lay a card. In some cases in our house it is not unheard of for a round to take 30 - 40 minutes to complete.
~~Price and Availability~~
When we got our cards a good few years ago now, they were priced at around the £5 mark, a quick check online reveals that they currently being sold on websites such as Amazon for as little as 60p plus postage and packaging, which when combined gives a price of just over £5.00. This marginal price means that they are well worth buying in my opinion, especially as even if you find that you don't like the game you do not feel you have wasted money. Additionally, should you like or indeed love the card game as we do you are able to buy variations of the game and gradually build up a more expensive set to wheel out on occasion.
Overall this is a highly enjoyable and competitive game, and has given my family years of fun particularly at Christmas when everyone gets together. Although our cards are beginning to look a little worn around the edges now, it will not cost much to replace them and I can therefore feel a trip to Amazon coming on.
As this is such a fun game, it scores five stars from me and I cannot recommend it highly enough. Indeed I would go as far as to say you have missed out if you haven't played this before.
Thanks for reading! x
Summary: A fast paced and fun game for the entire family