Video games, board games, card games — I love them all. I’ve had my eye on the various Uno versions over the years. I have a classic deck myself, while my mom has Uno attack, which is pretty fun. I had the chance to play Uno Flash not too long ago, but I’m not sure that I want to play it again.
Uno Flash has a game device where your draw and discard piles sit. The device is bordered with six lighted buttons, and each player presses a button to indicate their spot. At any time during the game, you have to take your turn when the light is on. The randomization adds some excitement to a game that might get a little old if you’ve played it quite a few times, and who among us hasn’t played Uno many times?
There are two more buttons on the unit: the Uno/slap button and the start button. Once you start the game and claim your spot, the device determines who goes next. You play by the normal Uno rules, placing a matching number or color card or using a wild card. Special cards like Draw 2 also exist, but there’s a lack of Reverse card because it wouldn’t work with the electronic device.
An extra element of fun is that you can specify how long players have to take turns. If you don’t finish your turn in time, the device warns you and you have to pay a penalty by adding cards to your hand. Of course, you’re trying to play all of your cards to win, so those draw-4 wild cards or penalties can get frustrating. There’s no time for fooling around. You have to pay attention.
When you have only a single card left, you have to slap the Uno button as you yell “Uno.” Each player must slap his or her button, and the slowest person must draw two cards. A new card for this version requires you to slap the Uno button, and other players must press theirs as quickly as possible. The new Uno button adds some excitement to the game which I like.
However, it’s not done as well as I’d like. Ideally, the button could determine who is almost out, and phase out one player and his button/light, allowing you to progress the game until only one loser remains. I think that most people play Uno this way, rather than actually counting points. As it stands, Uno Flash is interesting but not as smart as it could be. As it is, you have to either end the game awkwardly or keep playing, which forces the winner to hit his or her button.
If the device were a little smarter when it comes to ending games, Uno Flash would be just about perfect. It’s fun now, but you can wind up in a never-ending game. Plus, the randomization means you can’t waste as much time socializing, which you can do with regular Uno. Still, it’s worth a play if you’re board.