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The pack

The standard 52-card pack is used.

Rank of suits

From highest to lowest: Spade - Heart - Club - Diamond.

Rank of cards

2 (high), A, K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3.

Object of the game

To win by getting rid of all your cards first. The person with the least number of cards left is 2nd place, and so on.

The deal

Any player may deal first. The winner of each hand deals next. Each player is dealt with 13 cards. Game is played counter-clockwise. Lowest card starts the game.

The play

The player with the lowest card (3 of Diamonds) goes first and must play this card, either by itself or as part of a legal combination. The player to the right plays next, and so on.

At your turn, you must beat the previous play by playing a higher card (or higher combination with the same number of cards) or pass (play no cards). All plays are made by placing the cards face up in the center of the table. Everyone will take turns putting down a higher card (or combination of cards) unless every passes except for one. The person who played highest (all the others having passed) begins again by playing any card or legal combination of cards.

You are never under any obligation to beat a card or set of cards just because you are able to - you may always choose to pass and keep your high cards for a better opportunity. Passing does not prevent you from playing when your turn comes round again.

Everyone is allowed to know how many cards the other players have in their hands at any time - if asked you must answer truthfully.

The first player who succeeds in playing all the cards in their hand wins. As soon as this happens, the play ends and the hand is scored. (The other players do not get a chance to get rid of cards by beating the final card(s) played by the winner.)

The combinations

Cards may be played as singles or in groups of two, three or five, in combinations which resemble poker hands. The first card/card combination sets down the number of cards to be played. All cards played must contain the same number of cards until everyone passes. The combinations and their rankings are as follows:

  • Single cards: Any card from the deck, ordered by rank with suit being the tie-breaker (King of Hearts beats King of Clubs).
  • Pairs: Any two cards of matching rank, ordered as with singular cards by the card of the higher suit. (A pair of Jacks with Spade/Diamond beats a pair of Jack with Heart/Club)
  • Triples: Three equal ranked cards.
  • Five-card hands: There are five different valid five-card hands, ranking from low to high as follows:
    • Straight: Any 5 cards in a sequence (but not all of the same suit). Rank is determined by the value of the biggest card.
    • Flush: Any 5 cards of the same suit (but not in a sequence). Rank is determined by Face value of the cards (highest first, then each lower card in order). Suit is used to break ties.
    • Full House: a combination of a triple and a pair. Rank is determined by the value of the triple, regardless of the value of the pair.
    • Four-of-a-kind + One card: Any set of 4 cards of the same rank, plus any 5th card. (A four-of-a-kind cannot be played unless it is played as a five-card hand) Rank is determined by the value of the 4 card set, regardless of the value of the 5th card.
    • Straight Flush: A Straight that's also a Flush (5 cards in sequence in the same suit). Ranked the same as straights, suit being a tie-breaker.

A combination can only be beaten by a better combination with the same number of cards: so a single card can only be beaten by a single card, a pair by a better pair and a triple by a better triple. You cannot for example use a triple to beat a pair or a straight to beat a triple.