Instructables
Picture of How to play UNO with regular playing cards
Running out of card games to play? Only have a boring deck of cards?This instructable will show you how to play UNO with regular playing cards. Instead of using the four colors, you use the suit (Spades, hearts, clubs, diamonds) Numbers 2-9 are just like UNO except 1 and 0. The suit cards are the action cards.
 
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Step 1: Jack

Picture of Jack
Jack cards are a choice between skip (skip the next player) or reverse (reverse order of players). Although when only two people are playing it doesn't really matter. You can play it when the suit matches, if the person skipped the person ahead of you or if they choose a reverse and you went before them.

Step 2: Queen

Picture of Queen
Queen cards are a pick up 2 card for the next person. They can be played when the suit matches or after another queen.

Step 3: King

Picture of King
King lets you change the suit. This can be played anytime.

Step 4: Ace

Picture of Ace
Ace lets you change the suit and make the next person pick up 4 cards. It can be played anytime.
Uno is played with a deck of 108 cards, which coincidentally is the same number of cards used in two standard decks of cards (incl. jokers). It's still common enough to find two decks of cards of different colors—these are typically used for games like Bridge.

The distribution of Uno cards is:

76 number cards (two of 1-9 per color, plus one each of 0)
8 Draw 2
8 Reverse
8 Skip
4 Wild
4 Draw 4 Wild

Using two decks as you suggest:

72 number cards (2-10)
8 Skip/Reverse cards (Jacks)
8 Draw 2 (Queens)
8 Wild (Kings)
8 Draw 4 (Aces)
4 Unused jokers

To better approximate the original Uno card distribution, I propose that you keep Reverse and Skip (Jack and Queen) and make half of the Kings be Wild and half be Draw 4 Wild. Typically we've done this by suit.

You lose the strategic zero card from Uno—a number card that is rarer to match and has no point value, but your jokers are still unused. You can just drop that mechanic and leave the jokers out of the deck, or you can assign the jokers to some special purpose. Either would be in keeping with the myriad themed Uno variants which often introduce cards which in practice really break the game and probably haven't been play tested. :)

In that spirit, I propose that the joker be treated as a limited wild card. A joker counts as any suit or wild card without changing it. If the current suit is hearts, the joker is considered to be a joker of hearts. If however you play a joker on top of a joker, you may declare a new suit as if you had just played a wild. I'd score a joker as 15 points, if anyone's bothering to keep track of card point values.

Naturally, I haven't play-tested this joker suggestion any better than Mattel tests its various themed modifications before unleashing them to the wild.
creasemaker2 years ago
I used to play this game when I was a kid. we called it "99". Then a couple of years latter it the game :UNO" came out. 0ddly some years latter after I met my ex-wife, who was from Joliet,Ill. that I learned her family knew the person who created "UNO" who was from a prominent family in Joliet.
Geli123 years ago
maybe another recommendation: play with 2 packs of cards,
2-9 numbers
jack: skip
queen:block
king:draw 2 (+2)
ace:(only you need 4 of them) wild-
joker (4 of them): wild +4
this is more equal to the real uno, but in this version there are no 0's
sub893 (author) 3 years ago
please vote in toy challenge


thanks!
FeniXb33 years ago
For me UNO is just a copy of a game called Mau Mau in english. I played Mau Mau (in Poland it's called "makao") in childhood and when my younger cousin came to me a year ago with this UNO game I realized that it's just like Mau Mau with special cards to play instead of normal deck.

I think games and toys companies love to make a few changes in rules and names. in something that is known as a good game/toy and than sell it as their own great and colorfull product.
sunshiine3 years ago
UNO was my favorite game to play as a child. Thanks for sharing.
lord_kian3 years ago
Good idea, I know a game with similar rules called "ocho loco" or Crazy eigth.
sub893 (author)  lord_kian3 years ago
How do you play?
mary candy3 years ago
I love UNO!
wilgubeast3 years ago
This is a cool idea. Hopefully the UNO people don't send you a cease and desist letter for undermining their whole business model of getting people to buy new, special cards when ordinary Bicycle cards do just fine.