Review by Korubi
"UNO is a simple game that derives most of its enjoyment from the interaction you'll have with the enabled voice chat"
UNO is one of those card games that all of us have heard of, most of us have played, and none of us play religiously. Prior to the release of UNO the Xbox 360 Arcade has been plagued with simplistic and dry games with few exceptions. I can confidently say that UNO is one of the best Arcade games released to date, and is well worth the 400 points (about $5) it's worth.
For those unfamiliar with the basic rules of UNO you won't have any trouble understanding the game. A deck of UNO cards contains a few different types of cards. You have your regular numbered cards which have colors (ex. Red 7, Green 3), your wild cards, and then your skip/reverse cards. The basic concept is that for every card that is played, the next player must play a card that either has the same color, or the same number. Wild cards can be played on any number or color, and skip and reverse cards can either skip a player or reverse the order that the players play their cards. If you don't have a card in your hand that can be played on top of the previous player's, you must draw a card and move on.
Your objective is to get rid of your cards before anyone else at the table can do so--but there's a catch. When you get your hand down to one card you're obligated to call "Uno!" to let other players know you're one card away from winning. If you forget to call UNO (by hitting X) then your opponents can challenge your call by hitting Y and forcing you to draw two cards, thus prolonging your road to victory.
UNO's best quality is its onilne chat function. The core game itself can be fun, but you'll have the most fun when you're interacting with your friends online. UNO includes a single player game where you can play against bots as well as a ranked and unraked playlist online. You'll most likely enjoy the casual atmosphere of the unranked matches because few will play UNO competitively.
The rules are greatly customizable and also help the game feel fresh. For example, you can change the rules so that instead of drawing one card and advancing when you don't have one playable, you have to draw until you can play. This can get hectic and makes the games longer because people at times have to draw multiple cards, but at least the option to do so is there. Some other fun game types include Partners UNO where you play 2 vs. 2 and Elimination where if you don't have a playable card, you're out for good!
Another fun addition is the option to play with the 35th Anniversary deck. The 35th Anniversary deck tweaks the game a little bit by adding another type of wild card, but most of its value comes from its more festive music and theme. Overall the variety of options in UNO make an otherwise boring card game a lot more varied than you'd probably think.
Although you can play UNO by yourself against bots, you'll have the most fun when you're playing against real people fighting to get rid of that one last card! You can download UNO for less than the price of a regular deck, and and you'll have more fun because of its options and the fact that you can play with up to 3 friends online. All in all if you're looking for a fun and cheap downloadable game, UNO fills that requirement like few others can.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 08/30/06
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