Georgians Puzzled Over Pickleball

Journo Research

Wednesday, September 13th, 2023

Have you ever tried to play a game only to find the rules so confusing that you had to look for help online? 

The team at online gaming site compiled a list of over 650 of the most popular games and analyzed searches for each, followed by 15 common search terms, such as ‘how to play,’ ‘rules,’ and ‘tutorial’ to find out which games have Americans the most confused.

1. Pickleball - 280,000 searches per month

Described as a mix of tennis, badminton, and table tennis, Pickleball has baffled Americans more than any other game, with Americans searching for how to play 280,000 times a month on average across the US. Pickleball is the most confusing game in 27 states, including Washington, where it is the state’s official sport and where the game was created in 1965. Pickleball landed in the top five for all states except Nevada and Alaska.  

2. Poker - 236,000 searches per month

When asked to think of a card game, poker comes to mind for most. However, with poker’s many different rules, variations, hands, and strategies, it remains one of the most confusing games, with 236,000 monthly searches for how to play. Poker is the top search for five states: California, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Texas. It was also in the top five searches for all states except Montana and Wyoming.  

3. UNO - 184,000 searches per month

The classic family party game UNO ranks as the third most confusing game in the U.S. The game has been rebooted for online play with new rules and modes. In 2022, UNO divided fans after revealing a controversial rule that states players can use Skip cards to avoid Draw 2s, but only if they're the same color, prompting fans to question if they have been playing incorrectly the whole time. Despite only taking “minutes to learn,” according to Mattel, UNO racks up around 184,000 monthly searches for how to play nationally, appearing in the top five for 38 states 

4. Powerball - 178,000 searches per month

The lottery game Powerball ranks fourth most confusing in the U.S. The public search for how to play 178,000 times per month on average. How to play Powerball is the top search in Maryland, Mississippi, and Rhode Island and appears in the top five for 26 states. 

5. Chess - 173,000 searches per month

Chess needs no introduction but perhaps some easier rules. At 173,000 monthly searches, the classic board game keeps Americans scratching their heads. Chess landed among the top five searches for 21 states. 

6. King’s Cup - 143,000 searches per month

A game most students are familiar with, King’s Cup, AKA Kings, Ring of Fire, or Circle of Death, is the sixth most confusing game in the U.S. The drinking card game, which involves picking up face-down cards with predetermined rules attached, receives 143,000 nationwide searches for how to play and is the top search in New Mexico and North Dakota. 

7. Pokémon Trading Card Game - 139,000 searches per month

You may have collected the coveted shinies growing up, but did you ever know how to play Pokémon? The iconic franchise became a mainstay on kids’ screens and the playground with its collectible trading cards. But the game continues to puzzle Americans, generating over 139,000 monthly searches for how to play, with the official YouTube channel’s tutorial racking up almost 7 million views. 

8. Blackjack - 138,000 searches per month

Found in just about any casino, Blackjack ranks eighth among the most confusing games in the U.S., generating 138,000 monthly searches. Nevada is the only state where blackjack appears in its top five, ranking second. 

9. Go Fish - 128,000 searches per month

Go Fish ranks ninth with 128,000 monthly searches nationwide and is the fifth card game to appear among the most confusing games. 

10. Mancala - 118,000 searches per month 

One of the oldest games to ever exist, Mancala goes by various names: Kalah, Warra, and Ouril, to name a few. It remains a confusing yet popular game in the United States, with over 118,000 monthly searches. Nebraska and Utah ranked Mancala among its top five searches. 

A spokesperson from commented on the findings: “Pickleball surprisingly took the top spot with a significant number of searches compared to the most popular games in the world. The search volumes highlight which states find different games the most confusing, with pickleball, poker, and UNO taking the top spots nationally. At the state level, there were some clear differences. Cribbage came out on top in ten states; Farkle was the top search in Oklahoma; Rummy was most confusing in West Virginia; Nevada’s top five searches are casino games, implying that most tourists and residents don’t know how to play before they arrive”. 

The study was conducted by, where users can play hearts for free.