Skip-Bo: It's as easy as 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12

Addictively simple, simply addictive!

Skip-Bo Cards
Photo Credits Ziyaad Plaatjes


If you have ever played the card game Solitaire (Patience), then there is a good chance you might have delved into the competitive version of the game known as Spite and Malice or Cat and Mouse.

In 1967 Minnie Hazel "Skip" Bowman introduced the commercial version of Spite and Malice, calling it Skip-Bo.

International Games purchased the game in 1980, and Mattel subsequently bought the company in 1992, and has had license to manufacture and distribute the game ever since.

Up until a few days ago, I had never played the commercial version Skip-Bo, and was quite interested to see how, or if the game differed.

Skip-Bo is the ultimate sequencing card game from the makers of UNO!

As I remember, we used to play Spite and Malice with three decks of cards, and the kings and jokers were used as wild cards.

Skip-Bo pack consists of 162 cards, twelve sets of cards numbered 1-12 and 18 Skip-Bo wild cards.

The aim of Skip-Bo is to be the first player to get rid of your stock pile, BUT, you have to get rid of them in sequence.

Playing Skip-Bo
Photo Credits Ziyaad Plaatjes


There is a certain amount of skill and strategy which you need to use in order to create stacks of sequentially numbered, ascending cards (1,2,3,4…12) until you have no more left to play.

The game is recommended for 2-6 players, and for children aged 7 and above.

For 2-4 players a stack of 30 cards would need to be dealt, and for 5 or more players they would need 20 cards each.

The stack of cards which are dealt to each player is laid faced-down in front of the player (their Stockpile cards), with the top card turned over (to reveal the number), and the rules of Skip-Bo is that the youngest player goes first.

Once all the players are dealt their own personal Stockpile of cards, play begins with the first player drawing 5 cards from a central pile (the Draw Pile) and building up to four 'build' piles, only starting with the card numbered '1'.

Before your turn ends, if you have any cards left, you have the option of discarding 1 card, so that you can draw more cards on your next round (have up to 5 cards in your hand at each turn). You may only have up to 4 discard piles. 

The Skip-Bo wild cards may be substituted or played as any number from 1 to 12. Side note: Use these cards wisely, it can give you the edge you need to win!

To win the game, you need to deplete all of your Skip-Bo Stockpile cards first - it's as easy as 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12!

Skip-Bo is a fun and competitive game, that requires some skill and a good strategy in order to win - which you will get used to, the more times you play it.

Skip-Bo is available at a recommended retail price of R129, and is available at retailers nationwide - I actually saw it at our local Checkers. 

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Ziyaad Plaatjes is the Co-Founder of

He is a Bachelor of Commerce Honours graduate and has been running businesses since the age of 13. Ziyaad is a registered Financial Advisor, but has taken on many roles in various industries over the years. With his entrepreneurial skills and vast knowledge he assists individuals and businesses to grow and achieve their goals.  

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