Uno is one of those classic games that everyone loved growing up, and many people continue to enjoy it into adulthood. In fact, Uno is the most popular non-collectible card game in the world, and the fourth most popular toy in the industry.
Part of the reason Uno is a go-to game for so many people of different backgrounds and generations is that it can be played by pretty much anyone. “It’s language agnostic—colors and numbers. You can play that with almost any two people around the world,” says Ray Alder, senior director, Global Games at Mattel, the company that manufactures Uno.
But according to Alder, “Someone [internally] said, ‘Actually, it’s not totally inclusive. What if you’re color-blind.’”
When the company realized the game was excluding a large segment of the population (an estimated 350 million people around the world are colorblind), they decided to do something about it. Because Uno involves matching colors and numbers, they had to find a way for people who cannot distinguish colors to identify them. They applied the Color ADD standard to the game, a design system that assigns symbols to colors. For example, yellow is represented with a forward-facing slash, while blue is a triangle.
You can purchase the colorblind-friendly version of the game on the company’s site for $5.99. It seems like it’s pretty popular, as the site notes it is currently back ordered until September 9.
For those concerned that their beloved game is changing, the company is quick to point out that the original Uno is still available.
“We’ll still have classic Uno. This is a separate version—as we do those many other versions. We’ll see the response, and it could be something we do in our everyday pack,” says Alder. “I think for us, Uno is doing so well, that we don’t want to take changing the regular deck lightly. We want to be really careful with it … and there is a deck for everybody.”