The cult Swiss card game Gloschli is a varied and original mixture of games like UNO and Memory.

15. April 2023 - Alexander Schmidt

Gloschli – The Cult Card Game From Switzerland


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In the card game Gloschli you become an exterminator. Because the point is to get rid of vermin as quickly as possible and as much as possible – and to push them to other players.

The city of Bern is known for many things: its beautiful old town, the seat of the Swiss government, the discovery of the special theory of relativity by Albert Einstein, the Bernese Oberland and much more…

Definitely to be added to this list is the iconic card game Gloschli, which originated here! Some sources even claim that Gloschli used to be played by Alpine people with real insects. Because that’s what it’s all about: getting rid of bugs and accumulating as few points as possible.

I got to know Gloschli with friends living in Switzerland, who are all (children as well as parents) downright addicted to this game. For me it was an unexpected discovery and the enthusiasm quickly spilled over.

What is the game about anyway?

What makes its appeal?

And for whom is the purchase worthwhile?

The answer to these questions and more, you can read here in my full review.

Gloschli at a Glance

  • Game type: Card game, Family game.
  • Age: from 10 years
  • Players: 2-5 players
  • Duration: approx. 30 min.
  • Publisher: Aarefabrik GmbH
  • Game Origin: Traditional game.
  • Design: Card design by Alexandros Coutsikos.
  • Game Objective: Get rid of bugs with high points and have the fewest points at the end.
AngebotBestseller Nr. 1
Mattel Games UNO Kartenspiel für die Famile, Perfekt als Kinderspiel, Reisespiel oder Spiel für Erwachsene, für 2-10 Spieler, ab 7 Jahren, W2087
Mattel Games UNO Kartenspiel für die Famile, Perfekt als Kinderspiel, Reisespiel oder Spiel für Erwachsene, für 2-10 Spieler, ab 7 Jahren, W2087
Das klassische Kartenspiel, bei dem passende Farben und Zahlen abgelegt werden müssen; Mit den individuellen Joker-Karten können Spieler ihre eigenen Regeln schreiben
8,60 EUR Amazon Prime
AngebotBestseller Nr. 3
NSV - 4059 - THE MIND - Kartenspiel
NSV - 4059 - THE MIND - Kartenspiel
The Mind - Nominiert zum Spiel des Jahres 2018; Inhalt: 2 x 60 Spielkarten, 1 Anleitung; Alter: ab 8 Jahren, Spieler: 2-4, Dauer: ca. 15 Min
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Ravensburger 27003 - Skat, Französisches Bild, 32 Karten in Klarsicht-Box, 32 Blatt, Spielkartenformat: 59 x 92 mm, glasklares Etui
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AngebotBestseller Nr. 5
Mattel Games Skip-BO, Kartenspiele für die Famile, Perfekt als Kinderspiel, Reisespiel oder Spiel für Erwachsene, Gesellschaftsspiel, für 2-6 Spieler, ab 7 Jahren, 52370
Mattel Games Skip-BO, Kartenspiele für die Famile, Perfekt als Kinderspiel, Reisespiel oder Spiel für Erwachsene, Gesellschaftsspiel, für 2-6 Spieler, ab 7 Jahren, 52370
​Skip-Bo ist ein zeitloses Kartenspiel für die ganze Familie von den Machern von UNO; Spieler ​verwenden Geschick und Strategie, um sequentielle Kartenstapel zu erstellen
11,99 EUR Amazon Prime

How Gloschli is Played

"The cards in the game Gloschli represent different animals or forms of vermin."

The higher the score, the faster you should get rid of a card.

Gloschli consists of 54 cards, 48 of which represent different forms of vermin worth different amounts of points: from flies (1 point) to worms, ladybugs, rats, frogs, caterpillars, lizards, spiders, fish, woodlice, maggots and rhinoceros beetles. Each of these animals exists exactly 4 times. In addition, there are 6 special cards.

Lots of points are a bad thing in Gloschli, though, because in each round the goal for everyone is to be the first to have 5 points or less. So the goal is to get rid of the cards with high points and replace them with cards with low points.

It is played until the score of a person exceeds 100. The winner is the one who has the fewest points.

Game Start

At the beginning of each round, each player is dealt 4 cards face down. The remaining pile is placed in the middle and one card is turned face up next to it. Now everyone may discreetly look at 2 of their 4 cards and memorize them.

Process of a Round

"The discard pile in the Swiss card game Gloschli"

The player whose turn it is must decide: From which pile do I draw?

It is played clockwise, with the person with the greatest fear of spiders getting to start. Whoever’s turn it is gets to perform one of 3 actions:

  1. …draw a card from the deck. You may now either a) place the card on the discard pile or b) exchange it for one of your own cards, which is then discarded.
  2. …replace the top card from the discard pile with one of your own.
  3. …place one of your own cards on the discard pile if it has the same value as the top card of the discard pile.

If you draw and immediately discard a card from the deck that has a card action, you may (but are not required to) use it. However, you cannot perform a card action on a card that is discarded from your own cards.

In this way, one tries to reduce the number of one’s own points. The first person to suspect that he has 5 or less shouts “Gloschli” loudly. All the others get another turn, then it’s over and the cards are turned over and evaluated.

Punishments

  • Whoever looks at one of his cards without permission will get an additional card.
  • Whoever accidentally discards a card that does not have the same value as the top of the discard pile during the 3rd action also gets an additional card.
  • 15 penalty points will be given to anyone who calls out “Gloschli” by mistake, i.e. who then still has more than 5 points.
  • 5 penalty points will be given if you have correctly called “Gloschli” but someone else has even less points.

The Card Actions

"The action cards for the actions "Eye" and "Spy" in the game Gloschli"Some of the cards have an action symbol. You can perform these actions by drawing a card from the deck and discarding it directly. There are a total of 8 actions, or 4 pairs of actions. An action pair has the same symbols only once black on white, once white on black. The actions on a white background are performed with your own cards, those on a black background with the cards of one or more other players.

For example, the symbol “circle with a dot in it” on a white background means the action “eye”, on black “spy”. When performing the action “eye”, you may look at one of your own cards, with “spy” at the card of another.

There are also the actions “Super Eye” and “Super Spy”, “Deception” and “Confusion”, as well as “Blind Swap” and “Swap”. For a full description, see the game manual.

Heroes and Combos – The Special Cards at Gloschli

In addition, there are the already mentioned 6 special cards. These are divided into 4 heroes and 2 combos.

"4 special cards that have special abilities are called heroes in the game Gloschli."The heroes are called “Chötzli”, “Glubschi”, “Pferd” and “Isbär” and all have a value of 0 points. They also have certain superpowers. For example, “Glubschi”, when drawn, can also be played as an action and allows you to look at all your own cards.

The combo cards are more dangerous, because they only unfold their good effect if you also have a 2, 3 and 4 in your cards. Otherwise they count a hefty 15 points! However, if you have the combo, not only does your total score magically drop to 0, but you also give your fellow players a handicap for the following round. Depending on the card, this means 1 card more for all others (“Plus 1”) or all others are not allowed to look at any of their cards at the beginning (“Blind”).

"The 2 combo cards can be a curse or a blessing with Gloschli, depending on whether you also have cards 2, 3 and 4!"

The 2 combo cards can be a curse or a blessing...

Evaluation and Conclusion

The basic idea or the game concept of Gloschli combines several features of other games in an original way. It has in common with Memory that you have to remember which card is where, both your own cards and those of the other players. Of course, the fact that you have to get rid of cards, play actions and shout out a certain word just before the end is strongly reminiscent of the classic game UNO. The cards with different animals on them, worth different amounts of points, again made me think of the game Mammuz.

Angebot
Mattel Games UNO Kartenspiel für die Famile, Perfekt als Kinderspiel, Reisespiel oder Spiel für Erwachsene, für 2-10 Spieler, ab 7 Jahren, W2087
Mattel Games UNO Kartenspiel für die Famile, Perfekt als Kinderspiel, Reisespiel oder Spiel für Erwachsene, für 2-10 Spieler, ab 7 Jahren, W2087
Das klassische Kartenspiel, bei dem passende Farben und Zahlen abgelegt werden müssen; Mit den individuellen Joker-Karten können Spieler ihre eigenen Regeln schreiben
8,60 EUR Amazon Prime

For all the similarities with other games Gloschli still has its own unique feel. The card game has me pretty quickly under its spell. First of all, it takes a few rounds until you have memorized all the actions and special cards, but the time passes like in a flash and quickly you are in a real Gloschli flow.

Rating

Idee
Ausstattung
Spielspaß
Anleitung
Preis / Leistung
Total Grade
very good

Pros and Cons

The idea of the game is quite simply brilliant for me and also ensures maximum fun. The game manual is available online and is easy to understand and well explained. You can also find game variants like “Züri Style” or how to play Gloschli in pairs on the Gloschli website.

"The Swiss card game Gloschli in plain packaging"

The game's packaging comes across as rather plain.

The design of the cards is quite successful, although I would have found colored cards even nicer. The price of the game is 20 Swiss francs (currently about 20.50 euros), but quite steep, especially for the fact that the cards are printed in black and white, the game box is very simple and you have to print out the instructions from the Internet itself.

For Whom is the Swiss Card Game Gloschli Worthwhile?

Regardless of the price, I would recommend Gloschli almost unreservedly to anyone, because it’s just great fun and through the variants is also provided for variety. Especially people who love card games in the style of UNO or Phase 10 will enjoy it. Like all pure card games Gloschli is due to its compactness also great as a travel game for the road.

Here you can order the Berner game directly from the publisher.

Conclusion

A downright addictive iconic card game from Switzerland that combines aspects of UNO and Memory in an original way.

Whether it’s Gloschli or another game – have fun at your next game night!

Do you love discovering new games? Do you like to tinker, go on excursions, or try out new activities like escape games or climbing parks? All these are good reasons to stay a little longer on Abenteuer Freundschaft and browse through our wide pool of ideas.

On our website you can discover a variety of leisure tips for friends, for couples and families with children. And if you want to support us and stay up to date in the future, follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest!

*This post contains so-called affiliate links (referral links). This means that if you order a product through such a link, we may receive a small commission. The price of the product will not change at all for you! This way you can support our work while shopping 😉


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