Note: This how to play guide applies to the 2023 version of UNO House Rules!. The 2023 version of the game is different from the 1998 version of the game with the same name.
Objective of UNO House Rules!
The objective of UNO House Rules! is to be the first player to get rid of all of the cards from your hand before the other players.
Setup for UNO House Rules!
- Choose a player to be the dealer. They will shuffle all of the cards.
- Deal seven cards facedown to each player. Players can look at their own cards, but they should let the other players see them.
- Place the remaining cards facedown on the table to form the Draw Pile.
- Flip over the top card from the Draw Pile to form the Discard Pile. If you flip over an Action card (any card that isn’t a number card), you will ignore its effect and flip over another card.
- The player to the left of the dealer starts the game. Play moves clockwise to start the game.
Playing UNO House Rules!
Playing A Card
On your turn you will try to play one of the cards from your hand to the Discard Pile. To play a card it needs to match one of the following three criteria:
If you have a card that matches one (or more) of these criteria, you can play it to the Discard Pile. Wild cards match any other card in the game so you can play them at any time. You may only play one card on your turn. If you play an Action card, you will take a special action. See the corresponding section in the UNO House Rules! Card Meanings section below for more details. Play will then pass to the next player in turn order.
Drawing A Card
Should you have a card in your hand that can be played, you can choose not to play it. In this case you will treat the rest of your turn like if you didn’t have a card that you could play.
If you do not have any cards in your hand that you can play, you will draw the top card from the Draw Pile. Look at the card that you just drew. If you can play this card because it matches one of the criteria, you can play it immediately. You may only play the card that you just drew. Should the card not match one of the criteria, you will add it to your hand. Play then passes to the next player in turn order.
If the Draw Pile ever runs out of cards, you will shuffle the Discard Pile to form a new Draw Pile.
UNO House Rules! Card Meanings
Number cards have no special effect in UNO House Rules!. You can only play a number card if it matches the number or color of the top card on the Discard Pile.
Draw Two (+2)
Draw Two cards have +2 in their corners.
When you play a Draw Two card, the next player in turn order has to draw two cards. They also lose their next turn.
You can play Draw Two cards on top of other Draw Two cards or on cards that match their color. If a Draw Two card is played against you, you cannot play a Draw Two card yourself to avoid having to draw cards and losing your turn.
One of the new cards in UNO House Rules! is the House Rules card. These cards look like a normal number card except that they have a speech bubble symbol in the corners. Numbers one through five have their own House Rules cards.
The first player to play a House Rules card for each number gets to create their own rule for the number. You can only change the rule by playing a Wild Game Changer card. When another House Rules card of a number that has a rule is played, the player who plays the card does not get to change the rule.
Once the player has chosen the rule for a number, the players will race to complete the rule every time a player plays the corresponding number. The last player to follow the rule has to draw one card from the Draw Pile.
There can be a maximum of five House Rules in place at a time.
Making a House Rule
When creating a House Rule you should follow these rules:
- The rule should force all of the players to “do something”. This could include things such as making a noise, standing up, or taking some other action.
- The last player to perform the action has to draw one card.
- You should not write down the rules. Players are supposed to remember them.
- The rules specifically mention that you shouldn’t create rules that change the normal rules of UNO or increase the penalty for being the last player to follow the rule.
The above rules are suggestions that the instructions highly recommended. If the players want to tweak the House Rules in a way that violates one of the above rules, you can as long as all of the players agree to changing the rules.
Reverse cards utilize an icon of two arrows pointing in different directions.
When you play a Reverse card, the direction of play will reverse. If play was moving clockwise, it will now move counterclockwise. If it was moving counterclockwise, it will now move clockwise.
You may play a Reverse card on top of another Reverse card, or another card that matches its color.
Skip cards use a symbol of a circle with a line through it.
When you play a Skip card, the next player loses their turn.
You can play Skip cards on top of other Skip cards, or other cards that match their color. If a Skip card is played against you, you may not play a Skip card to avoid losing your turn.
Wild cards feature all four colors inside an oval.
They match all other cards in the game. Therefore you can play them at any time. The player who plays a Wild card chooses the color for the Discard Pile. They can pick any of the four colors, including the color it was when they played the Wild card. The next player in turn order has to play a card that matches the new color.
Wild Draw Four (+4)
The Wild Draw Four card has a +4 in the corners.
Wild Draw Four cards are wild so you can play them at any time. The player that plays the card also gets to choose the color for the Discard Pile.
There is one restriction for playing a Wild Draw Four card though. You may not play the card if you have another card in your hand that matches the color of the top card on the Discard Pile. Wild cards are considered matches for the color.
When you play a Wild Draw Four card the next player in turn order has to draw four cards and they lose their turn. The next player can choose to accept that the card was played correctly. In this case they will draw the cards and lose their turn.
Challenging a Wild Draw Four
If the next player thinks the player played the Wild Draw Four incorrectly though, they can choose to challenge the play of the card.
When a Wild Draw Four is challenged, the player that played the card has to show their entire hand to the challenging player. This is done so the challenging player can check to see if it was played correctly. The player is looking to see if there is a card that matches the color of the Discard Pile.
If there are no matching color cards in their hand, the Wild Draw Four was played correctly. Since they failed the challenge, the challenger now has to draw six cards instead of four. They also lose their turn.
If there is a card that matched the color, the Wild Draw Four was played incorrectly. The player who played the Wild Draw Four has to draw four cards. The challenger has to draw no cards, and they get to take their turn normally.
Wild Game Changer
The Wild Game Changer card is unique to UNO House Rules!. The card looks like a Wild card but it has a speech bubble in the corners.
When you play a Wild Game Changer card, you can choose one of the House Rules that were put into place due to a House Rules card. If no House Rules are currently in play, the card has no special action. The player that plays the Wild Game Changer card chooses one of the numbers that have a rule attached to it. They will then come up with a new rule that applies to the number they chose. This new rule is in place for the rest of the game unless another Wild Game Changer changes the rule.
The Wild Game Changer is also a wild so the player that plays it chooses the color for the Discard Pile.
When you only have one card left in your hand, you should call out UNO as quickly as possible. This is done to alert the other players that you are close to winning the game.
If a player catches you not saying UNO, you will have to draw two cards. They must call you out before the next players begins their turn.
Winning UNO House Rules!
The game ends when one of the players plays the last card from their hand. The player that played all of their cards wins the game.
Scoring in UNO House Rules!
If you would like to play several hands, you can choose to use the variant scoring rules.
The player that wins a hand (plays all of the cards from their hand), collects all of the cards left in the other players’ hands. If the last played card forces a player to draw cards, the player has to draw the cards before the cards are collected. The winner of the hand scores points for the cards as follows:
- Number cards – face value
- Draw Two, Reverse, Skip – 20 points
- Wild, Wild Draw Four, Wild Game Changer – 50 points
You will keep a running total for each players’ points. The first player to score 500 or more points, wins UNO House Rules!.
UNO House Rules! FAQ
If you have any questions about how to play UNO House Rules!, leave a comment below on this post. I will try to answer any questions asked as best and as quickly as possible.
UNO House Rules! Components
- 19 Blue Cards
- 2 – #1
- 1 – #1 House Rules
- 1 – #2
- 1 – #2 House Rules
- 2 – #3
- 1 – #3 House Rules
- 1 – #4
- 1 – #4 House Rules
- 2 – #5
- 1 – #5 House Rules
- 2 – #6
- 1 – #7
- 2 – #8
- 1 – #9
- 19 Green Cards
- 1 – #0
- 1 – #1
- 1 – #1 House Rules
- 2 – #2
- 1 – #2 House Rules
- 1 – #3
- 1 – #3 House Rules
- 2 – #4
- 1 – #4 House Rules
- 1 – #5
- 1 – #5 House Rules
- 1 – #6
- 2 – #7
- 1 – #8
- 2 – #9
- 19 Red Cards (same distribution as blue)
- 19 Yellow Cards (same distribution as green)
- 8 Draw Two Cards (two of each color)
- 8 Reverse Cards (two of each color)
- 8 Skip Cards (two of each color)
- 4 Wild Cards
- 4 Wild Draw Four Cards
- 4 Wild Game Changer Cards
Year: 2023 | Publisher: Mattel
Genres: Card, Family
Ages: 7+ | Number of Players: 2-10 | Length of Game: 15-20 minutes
Difficulty: Light | Strategy: Light | Luck: High
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