Sunday Reading: Cabin Rules - UNO


No service, no WiFi, and a couple beers to lube the mind toward coming up with alternative sources of entertainment that don't involve your damn phone. In Washington, we like to play games that include everyone, even if by the end there are more hard feelings shared than pats on the back. While there are many games in the queue for team trips to Patrick McCarthy’s cabin, the gloves really come off for Uno. It’s our bread and butter and where a win is most highly revered. Our version of Uno has matured over the past three years to be best suited to the most conniving, suspect, snake-in-the-grass in the room, lady or gent who’s not afraid to throw their friends under the bus and hit the gas. Uno is not child’s game anymore, not with Cabin Rules.

I’m going to assume that if you’re reading this you know how to play the basic Uno game of matching colors, numbers and symbols with the intention of being the first to empty one's hand… blah, blah, blah, so I won’t waste the keystrokes. Following these general rules, here are our additions to the game to pepper in some strategy. Again, the general rules still apply and the intention is still to be the first to get rid off all your cards within your hand just add these rules below to normal UNO gameplay and enjoy.

Rule #1
Drawing cards. If you have no cards in your hand that can be played you will draw a card and continue to draw cards until you pick up a playable card.
Rule #2
Stacking cards. If you have multiples of any card you can place them all down on the discard pile at once as long as the first card you put down can play off the card that is currently on the discard pile. Example: A red 8 is in play face up on the discard pile and it's now your turn. In your hand, you have a red 6, blue 6, and a green 6. You can then place the red 6 down followed by the other two six cards on the discard pile in whatever order you please as long as the first card you put down matches the card that is face-up on the discard pile.
 
Rule #3
The zero card. If you have, for example, a blue Zero card, you will then be able to place all of your blue cards at the same time as long as the zero card you put down first can be played off the card that is face up on the discard pile. This rule applies to any color zero cards (blue, red, yellow, green). Also, if a player before you puts down a zero card with no other cards on top of it the next person can play off of it just as if it were their own.
Rule #4
The +2 (draw two) card. You are able to place multiple +2 cards on top of each other. When you do this the number of cards that have to be drawn accumulates. So if you put two +2 cards the next person will have to draw four cards and so on with however many +2 cards end up accumulating on the discard pile. If the person who goes after you has a +2 card as well they can place it on top of yours and the cards that have to be drawn are passed to the next person until there is an unlucky player who doesn’t have a +2 card. They will have to draw the sum of all the +2 cards that are now at the top of the discard pile. If that unlucky player then draws a +2 card and feels the need to place it that +2 card will not affect the cards that he/she still has to draw and the cycle will start over again with the next person only having to draw only two cards.
 

 

Rule #5

Wild Draw 4 Card. If a wild draw 4 card is played the next person is required to draw 4 cards for their turn. After drawing 4 cards, it is now the next person's turn to play a card. This card cannot be played off of one another in the same way that the +2 card can be.
Rule #6
The Wild Swap Hands card. In your deck, there will be wild cards that have large white space in the center of the card. This is the Swap Hands Card. If you have this card you have the ability to swap hands with any other player of your choice at the table. If they have a Swap Hands Card as well, they can block your attempt to take their hand although both of you will have to forfeit that Swap Hands Card into the discard pile. Be careful. If you use this card you HAVE TO switch hands with someone even if you don’t want to. The only exception to this rule is if it is your very last card in your hand and you put it down to win the game. When someone swaps hands with you it is encouraged to let the rest of the table know what cards they’re getting from you in the switch. It’s a ruthless world out there.
 

Rule #7
The 7 card. This one is simple. If a 7 card is placed on the discard pile all players must quickly put their hand over the discard pile. If you are last to do so, you have to draw four cards. If there is a tie, the tie is broken with a game of rock, paper, scissors.


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