Thrift Treasure: Ninety-Nine or Bust

Thrift Treasure: Ninety-Nine or Bust

There are a few key things I look for when shopping for a game at thrift. I glaze over all the Scene Its and Trivial Pursuits and start looking for boxes I don’t recognize. Even when looking for used items, packaging does matter. Oddly-shaped boxes catch me eye, as do certain colors and designs. One type I always grab and check are any that come in a metal box. They’re usually a deluxe version or an indicator that the publisher didn’t skimp on quality. This week’s thrift treasure also came in a tin container – Ninety-Nine or Bust by Legendary Games.

What I didn’t realize is that we technically already owned this game! And wrote about it here on SahmReviews! It turns out that Ninety-Nine or Bust is actually a re-named version of the classic O’NO 99 by the same makers of UNO, with only a few minor rule changes.

Looks like this week we accidentally bought a game that was nothing more than a re-skin of one we already had! Let's look (again) at Ninety-Nine or Bust! -

And that isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as there’s good reason O’NO 99 was so popular back in the 80’s. It’s a card game that supports up to eight players with a custom 54-card deck. Players take turns playing a card and adding its value to the previous total, trying not to be the person to make the total exceed ninety-nine.

Looks like this week we accidentally bought a game that was nothing more than a re-skin of one we already had! Let's look (again) at Ninety-Nine or Bust! -

Special cards mix up the play by subtracting ten from the total, keeping the current count the same, reversing the direction of play or even taking the count all the way up to ninety-nine (this is slightly different than the original O’NO 99, where the 99 card acted as a dead card and could not be played).

Looks like this week we accidentally bought a game that was nothing more than a re-skin of one we already had! Let's look (again) at Ninety-Nine or Bust! -

At the beginning of the game everyone received three tokens, and whomever is the person that causes the stack to exceed a value of 99 must forfeit one of their chips. A new hand is started and once you run out of tokens, you are out of the game. The last player standing wins Ninety-Nine or Bust!

If you prefer the classic styling of O’NO 99, you can find copies on eBay on a regular basis. If you’d prefer this newer version with nicer chips and a metal container, head over to Amazon to get your copy for around $20 shipped.

What do you think of games that are just renamed versions of older titles? Nice upgrade? Or waste of money?


About Scott

A former manufacturing executive, Scott now balances his family life with ownership and backend administration of websites such as, and a number of other online properties. He also is an occasional writer and full-time board game fanatic.

11 comments on «Thrift Treasure: Ninety-Nine or Bust»

  1. Flora201 says:

    Funny game! I want to play it with my friends? Where can I buy it?

    1. Scott says:

      You can find a copy on Amazon – just click on any of the photos above!

  2. I used to love playing Uno with my family. Ninety-Nine or Bust by Legendary Games sounds like a great twist on the classic Uno card game!

  3. Sounds like a fun game! My kids would love it. This will help sharpen their math skills.

  4. There are apparently SO many games I’ve never heard of before. I need to hit up my thrift shops for games now!

  5. Echo says:

    This looks like a fun game! You guys always introduce us to the best games, old and new.

  6. This looks so fun. We play a lot of games, and I’m sure my kids will love this one!

  7. Rebecca Swenor says:

    I love to shop at the thrift stores for almost anything because you really can find amazing treasures. The game Ninety-Nine or Bust by Legendary Games I believe I have not heard of before but I have heard of O’NO 99 . These games are fun to play but I actually do think it is a waste of money in most cases. Thanks for sharing the information.

  8. I have never heard of this game! I think it’s a bit to advanced for my kids developmentally right now, but good to know for the future. I love love love thrift store shopping-good to see someone else who gets as excited about good scores as I do! Earlier in the year I got at train table for under $2!

  9. Matt says:

    This looks like a great family game! We might have to get it for our game night. What is the recommended age range for children?

    1. Scott says:

      This one is suggested for 8+ according to the box.

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