Hi Lo Flip: A Light Card Game Where the Rules Keep Flipping | Casual Game Revolution

Hi Lo Flip: A Light Card Game Where the Rules Keep Flipping

Hi Lo Flip

Try to be the first player out, while also setting up situations in which your opponents are left without options; in this speedy little card game in which you never know from one turn to another whether you’ll be playing higher cards or lower ones.

Published by Gamewright, Hi Lo Flip has a bit of the feel of a classic Gamewright card game. There’s plenty of luck in the draw and the flip, but how you use your cards is also just as important.

Gameplay

Hi Lo Flip is played over several rounds. At the start of each round, the deck is shuffled and each player is dealt seven cards. At the beginning of the first round, the hi-lo chip is flipped like a coin, landing either on hi or lo. When the chip has hi face up, then a card can only be added to the discard pile if it is higher than the card that is currently on top. If lo is face up, then the card must be lower. The numbers range from one to one hundred. The player who starts the round may play any one card from his hand to start the discard pile.

On your turn, you must play one card to the discard pile if you are able to, following the rule set by the hi-lo chip. If you can’t play a card, you flip the chip. If it lands on the opposite side, you may play a card following the new rule. If it lands on the same side, you draw a card from the draw deck. If you are still unable to play, then the player who last played a card takes the discard pile and puts it in his score pile. You then ‘reset’ the discard pile by playing any one card from your hand. It is now the next player’s turn.

There are a couple types of cards with special abilities. Cards ending in a one skip the next player. If you play a card that ends in two, you must take another turn. If you can’t play another card, then the player who played a card before you takes the discard pile.

The round ends once someone plays the last card in his hand. This player scores ten bonus points. Each player then scores one point for each card in their score piles, except for any card that ends in a zero: these are worth ten points each.

You then set up for another round, shuffling all the cards together and dealing out new hands. The hi-lo chip is not flipped, but stays in the position it was in at the end of the previous round.

The game ends at the end of any round in which at least one player has scored seventy-five points, and the player with the most points wins.

Hi-Low Flip Compnents

Review

Hi Lo Flip is a light card game that is great for families and casual settings. There is a lot of luck involved: will the chip flip your way? Will you draw just the card you need to play? But there’s also a certain element of push-your-luck that lends just enough strategy to the gameplay.

When do you play your cards that are on the extremes of the high/low spectrum? As the discard pile continues to grow, you might be tempted to hold out a few more turns, but another player might end up collecting them all. Particularly early on in a hand, you can often be faced with choices of when to make big jumps in numbers with the cards you play and when to go more slowly.

There’s a lot of back and forth action in the game and the card abilities are good for adding just a little extra spice. It can be very luck based, and sometimes you’re just not going to have any good options during the round. But there’s something great about that moment when you draw just the card you need, or the chip flips in your favor. When that chip flips everyone is watching it and the result, whether good or bad, is always exciting.

The box insert in our copy did arrive just a little bit torn. The box itself is also larger than is necessary, making it less portable than it should be. The hi-lo chip is also just hefty enough that you don’t want it coming down directly on a wooden table, which can make finding a good spot to flip it a little hard — this means you’re not as likely to take the game out to a restaurant to play.

Hi Lo Flip is a great, speedy casual game that feels in line with some of Gamewright’s classic card games. It’s not going to interest everyone, but if you like fast, light card games with relaxed gameplay, this one hits a nice note between player agency and luck.

Pros: Some fun push-your-luck choices in the gameplay, fast, good player interaction

Cons: Lots of luck, box could be more portable, a few minor component issues

Disclosure: we received a complimentary review copy of this game.

Sophie
Sophie's picture

Still in the process of learning this game but it is so exciting to play with friends.

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