Uno 52 Review


DSI has been making the most of its UNO license of late, cranking out one variation of the family card game after another. The latest is UNO 52 which attempts to merge the family-friendly world of UNO with the not so much so world of poker. Is it a marriage made in heaven or a case of strange bedfellows?

The basic play of the game follows the UNO model in that four players attempt to get rid of all of their cards by playing cards that match the color or number of the card on the top of the discard pile. Normal UNO cards are numbered from one to twelve, but in this case they've been replaced with standard playing cards. Well, not so standard because a normal deck of cards comes with two colors of cards, red and black, but in this game each suit has its own unique color drawn from the bright red, green, blue, and yellow of a standard UNO deck.

The poker aspect of the game comes into play during the discard phase of your turn. After playing your turn as you would a normal turn of UNO, you have the option of discarding another card onto one of five stacks of cards. These five stacks form your poker hand, with top card on each stack serving as one card in your poker hand. However you can't just put down any card that you'd like - any card that you place on a stack must match the suit or the value of the card currently on top of that stack. There is also another twist to this in that all players' poker hand piles are face-up and visible to the other players. If you've played UNO before then you know that the game is 95% luck and 5% strategy. The inclusion of the poker hands adds a bit more strategy to the game. Do you risk weakening your poker hand in an attempt to make it stronger? That depends on what other players are holding and are up to at the time.

Poker players take note: you're not getting a poker game with elements of UNO adding to the strategy of the game. Despite the inclusion of the poker element, the game is still primarily like UNO. Poker players may actually find themselves at a disadvantage since the cards come in four colors instead of the traditional two that they're used to seeing. Since the game is still pretty much UNO, your enjoyment of UNO 52 will depend a lot on how much you like plain old UNO. Personally the game is too chance dependent to hold my interest long and the inclusion of the poker element didn't add enough strategic depth to the game to change my mind. Still, if you love UNO, you'll probably enjoy playing this variant of the game.

In The End, This Game Hath Been Rated: 60%. Even the old standby UNO has fallen prey to the poker craze.