Uno Boost is competent, but missing some key features
Uno Boost takes the classic family card game and jazzes it up with a new strategic element: the ability to substitute cards from sideboard into your hand at key moments. The game calls this boosting. It’s not a privilege you can use freely, but eventually one you have to spend your hard-earned (or hard-purchased) virtually currency on. All of the cards available from the sideboard tend to be among Uno‘s most powerful, though: skips, wilds, draw twos, and the dreaded draw four wild. The ability to boost adds some interesting strategic possibilities to Uno on Facebook, but there are also things missing.
Most notably, Uno Boost contains no multiplayer content as of this writing. It doesn’t contain any social mechanics beyond simply comparing your high scores to scores from your friends. In Uno Boost, you can only play two-player games against AI opponents. You gain experience for winning games and can slowly level up, unlocking more challenging opponents. Certain special opponents can also be purchased with virtual currency. Generally as opponents get more challenging, they can draw a broader variety of cards and personality quirks you need to plan around as you play.
In practice, the boost mechanic occasionally lets you get a big win you wouldn’t get otherwise, but the AI opponents simply aren’t skillful enough to make the mechanic feel necessary. You’ll also quickly run out of the initial selection of boost cards you’re given, forcing you to buy more with virtual currency if you ever want to use boosts. It’s quite easy to build up long winning streaks without bothering to boost at all, though. When you strip the social components out of Uno by making it a one-on-one game, it also becomes a very simple game whose outcome is easily manipulated without needing to put more powerful cards in your hand
Uno Boost is an unimpeachable game on a technical level, running smoothly without any issues with load times or memory leaks. The game’s visual style is extremely simple, but still appealing. Though some of the art for your opponents is not particularly well-drawn. The sound effects are a bit obnoxious, but the background music is catchy and pleasant to listen to for awhile. The game doesn’t leave an overwhelming impression, though. Games quickly begin to feel repetitive. There’s some very bland and basic about it.
Uno Boost has the fundamentals of a good social game in place, but it badly needs a multiplayer game mode. The boost mechanic could be extremely entertaining in bouts with friends, especially if Uno Boost introduced modes that let up to four people play at once. The lack of multiplayer in Uno Boost feels strange, because previous Uno games on Facebook have featured both multiplayer and chat. There’s a serviceable single-player game in Uno Boost, but it seems to miss much of the basic appeal of Uno itself.